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Apple loses NBC
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wallinbl
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Aug 31, 2007, 07:49 AM
 
NBC to end iTunes sales of its shows | CNET News.com

Looks like no more Heroes, BSG or The Office. That rather sucks, and I hope Apple does something to remedy this. On the heels of the spat with Universal Music, this seems like there may be cause for future concern.
     
jokell82
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Aug 31, 2007, 07:54 AM
 
NBC wanted to charge more than $1.99 for their shows. Screw them. I'll go back to torrents.

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MacinTommy
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Aug 31, 2007, 07:58 AM
 
NBC Universal and other companies say they want to increase prices by packaging content--say an episode of The Office with the movie The 40- Year-Old Virgin, because they both star the comedian Steve Carell.
They want to package one tv show episode with a movie because it has the same actor? I really don't understand that.
     
Super Mario
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Aug 31, 2007, 07:59 AM
 
Originally Posted by jokell82 View Post
NBC wanted to charge more than $1.99 for their shows. Screw them. I'll go back to torrents.
But...but...but jokell82, NBC Universal support your beloved HD-DVD and now you're supporting piracy....naw
( Last edited by Super Mario; Jan 10, 2018 at 02:35 PM. )
     
wallinbl  (op)
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Aug 31, 2007, 08:22 AM
 
Originally Posted by jokell82 View Post
NBC wanted to charge more than $1.99 for their shows.
$1.99 is already on the high side for something that is otherwise free. With the new, cheaper, HD Tivo coming out, perhaps I'll just buy one of those and quit buying shows at $1.99.
     
jokell82
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Aug 31, 2007, 08:36 AM
 
Originally Posted by wallinbl View Post
$1.99 is already on the high side for something that is otherwise free. With the new, cheaper, HD Tivo coming out, perhaps I'll just buy one of those and quit buying shows at $1.99.
Exactly. At $1.99 an episode you already rival prices for DVDs if you buy an entire season's worth of shows.

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Chuckit
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Aug 31, 2007, 09:56 AM
 
NBC has the episodes on their site for free anyway, if I recall.
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Aug 31, 2007, 09:59 AM
 
I guess they just don't understand that people will simply download them via torrent.

If they want to give them to Xbox or whatever, that's fine, but why cut Apple out of the loop?
     
His Dudeness
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Aug 31, 2007, 10:16 AM
 
I love torrents. That has replaced the vcr.
     
wallinbl  (op)
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Aug 31, 2007, 10:20 AM
 
Originally Posted by Chuckit View Post
NBC has the episodes on their site for free anyway, if I recall.
I can't download them - I have to watch them in a browser window on my computer. I need it to be available on my TV for it to be of any use to me.
     
BadKosh
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Aug 31, 2007, 10:44 AM
 
N-othing
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C-lueless
     
Chuckit
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Aug 31, 2007, 10:47 AM
 
Originally Posted by wallinbl View Post
I can't download them - I have to watch them in a browser window on my computer. I need it to be available on my TV for it to be of any use to me.
Yeah, me too. I guess that's why the good Lord gave us Bittorrent.
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Cold Warrior
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Aug 31, 2007, 10:54 AM
 
They don't get it -- they're not competing with Apple. They're competing with piracy. Apple is a partner, a venue.
     
Laminar
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Aug 31, 2007, 10:59 AM
 
Originally Posted by wallinbl View Post
I can't download them - I have to watch them in a browser window on my computer. I need it to be available on my TV for it to be of any use to me.
And in crappy quality from what I can recall. The advantage to iTunes is that you can have it now. No waiting for the DVD to come out. The Office and Heroes are the only two shows I watch anymore. My roommates will torrent them for me.
     
kman42
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Aug 31, 2007, 11:10 AM
 
My email to NBC:

To whom it may concern:
My wife and I were disappointed to learn this morning that you have chosen to pull your programming from iTunes. We gave up our onerous cable subscription months ago due to the sparse availability of quality programming and an inability to fit traditional television into our busy and mobile lives. Instead, we have found TV bliss through iTunes and our iPod/iPhones. We download all the shows we enjoy, including NBC's excellent 'Office', and watch them either on the 24" screen of our computer on our own schedule or, more often, on our iPod or iPhone during our commute or when traveling. While we will miss the humor of the Office, it is simply not compelling enough to get us to subscribe again to cable or to conform to your broadcast schedule. Instead, we will continue to purchase quality programming like ABC's 'Lost' from iTunes.

It is mystifying to me that you cannot recognize the market shift that is occurring. Young, affluent technologically inclined consumers are choosing to view video and listen to audio content in a new way--a way that fits our schedules and our lifestyles. Rather than alienating us, you should be wooing us any way you can, including making your material available on the only platform that offers an experience that consumers are willing to pay for: iTunes. You, through actions like this, are driving this demographic toward the very thing you fear most: piracy.

I hope you will reconsider your decision.
     
All_Insane
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Aug 31, 2007, 11:47 AM
 
Well written, Kman. Unfortunately, NBC's decision seems to reflect the traditional, slow-to-change, 20th century attitudes of most of the important people involved not only in media distribution, but also in areas such as copyright law. 21st century technology, and its availability and ease of use are changing the way that we watch TV, watch movies and listen to music, and its a shame that some people are slow to recognize this.
     
His Dudeness
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Aug 31, 2007, 11:52 AM
 
Originally Posted by Super Mario View Post
But...but...but jokell82, NBC Universal support your beloved HD-DVD and now you're supporting piracy....naw
Okay, I have asked this question probably a billion times:

What is the difference between bittorrent and a VCR?
     
Chuckit
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Aug 31, 2007, 11:58 AM
 
Actually, there is a difference: There is a fee built into videocassette prices that is meant to make amends for piracy. Not that I really give a ****. If these people want to make the consumers their enemy, they can see how far that gets them for all I'm concerned.
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wallinbl  (op)
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Aug 31, 2007, 11:59 AM
 
Originally Posted by His Dudeness View Post
What is the difference between bittorrent and a VCR?
One is legal and one is not. I don't want to dredge up that discussion, but for some of us, that matters.
     
kman42
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:07 PM
 
Plus, with a torrent, you can put the file on your iPod. Not true with a VCR.
     
Laminar
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:12 PM
 
With a VCR, you're most likely recording the commercials as well, whether or not you watch them is up to you. Also, if you record it yourself, you get one copy for yourself. If you're torrenting a file, you're not only downloading it for yourself but you're sharing it with countless other people.
     
Chuckit
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:15 PM
 
Originally Posted by wallinbl View Post
One is legal and one is not. I don't want to dredge up that discussion, but for some of us, that matters.
Has the legality of Bittorrent ever actually been put to the test? All of the suits I've seen involved normal file-sharing networks where people actually share files (and even those the industry sometimes loses).
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His Dudeness
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
With a VCR, you're most likely recording the commercials as well, whether or not you watch them is up to you. Also, if you record it yourself, you get one copy for yourself. If you're torrenting a file, you're not only downloading it for yourself but you're sharing it with countless other people.

...who all want the same file. The end result is the same, though. I don't download movies at all. Never have and never will. But as long as NBC broadcasts a tv show over the airwaves for anyone to record with a vcr, then downloading said show is the same thing. The method of delivery is different, the end result is the same.
     
Laminar
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:19 PM
 
Commercials?
     
papadopolis
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:20 PM
 
****!!!
     
His Dudeness
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:28 PM
 
I haven't seen a commercial in a while. I use my cox dvr box quite a bit, and when I watch normal tv, I keep surfing until I don't see commercials.
     
Randman
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:29 PM
 
I've never used any torrent system but I will in needed to get Heroes. I'm working abroad and the iTMS was the only way to get the show without waiting 6+ months after the season ended to watch it.

This is a computer-generated message and needs no signature.
     
His Dudeness
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:32 PM
 
Is that a good show? I keep hearing about it, but I haven't seen it yet.
     
Eriamjh
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:45 PM
 
NBC is greedy.

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scottiB
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Aug 31, 2007, 12:58 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post
NBC is greedy.
Apparently so. Apple just issued a press release saying that NBC wanted to increase the wholesale cost per episode more than double. The new price, according to Apple, would be $4.99.

Also, iTMS will not carry any of the new fall season of NBC shows.

As a counter-strike, NBC will probably pull all content soon.
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Laminar
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Aug 31, 2007, 01:01 PM
 
Originally Posted by His Dudeness View Post
I haven't seen a commercial in a while. I use my cox dvr box quite a bit, and when I watch normal tv, I keep surfing until I don't see commercials.
Ah, DVR and VCR are a bit different. Just a bit though.

Originally Posted by His Dudeness View Post
Is that a good show? I keep hearing about it, but I haven't seen it yet.
It's amazing. I like it a lot. It's one of two shows I'll turn a TV on for.
     
Kenneth
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Aug 31, 2007, 01:04 PM
 
Apple’s agreement with NBC ends in December. Since NBC would withdraw their shows in the middle of the television season, Apple has decided to not offer NBC TV shows for the upcoming television season beginning in September.
What's about the current Season Pass holders?
     
jokell82
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Aug 31, 2007, 01:06 PM
 
Originally Posted by scottiB View Post
Apparently so. Apple just issued a press release saying that NBC wanted to increase the wholesale cost per episode more than double. The new price, according to Apple, would be $4.99.

Also, iTMS will not carry any of the new fall season of NBC shows.

As a counter-strike, NBC will probably pull all content soon.
That is absolutely ridiculous. So they want a full season of shows to cost $120???

All glory to the hypnotoad.
     
scottiB
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Aug 31, 2007, 01:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by Kenneth View Post
What's about the current Season Pass holders?
If the show's season ends before 12/31/07, then it should be okay.
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Laminar
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Aug 31, 2007, 01:26 PM
 
Do a lot of shows only go half the year? I know Heroes and The Office both went into the spring.
     
scottiB
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Aug 31, 2007, 01:27 PM
 
Originally Posted by jokell82 View Post
That is absolutely ridiculous. So they want a full season of shows to cost $120???
I don't know. Just because the wholesale price increased by 2.5x, doesn't mean the retail price needs to.

I'm assuming for example's sake that NBC currently charges Apple $1.00 per show, and Apple marks that up 99 cents to cover costs and a small profit. If the wholsale cost increases to $2.50, Apple can still just mark it up the same 99 cents (assuming all costs stay the same) with the episode being $3.49.

The $4.99 price may be just marketing-speak.
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scottiB
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Aug 31, 2007, 01:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
Do a lot of shows only go half the year? I know Heroes and The Office both went into the spring.
Some shows on cable--like those on Bravo--begin in the summer and last through to the fall (though I don't know if season passes are offered on those shows).

Any of NBC's shows, though, would need new season passes beginning this fall, and since Apple won't offer these shows fall 07 seasons, then no new season passes would be available (or refunded it someone purchased Heroes season 2--I would think).
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besson3c
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Aug 31, 2007, 01:36 PM
 
Originally Posted by His Dudeness View Post
I love torrents. That has replaced the vcr.
I love Usenet even more... much faster.
     
SirCastor
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Aug 31, 2007, 02:21 PM
 
Has it occurred to anyone else that NBC's well aware that this will drive people to piracy?

Consider for a moment. You want to sell your content, but you want to sell it in a specific way. You want to bundle it with other contents, sell it on high-profit-margin video discs, or display it on Television and your own website where you have absolute control over the content. If people can't get things the way they want, they resort to breaking the law which gives all the more power to the argument that piracy is hurting your business and more laws need to be enacted to stop it.

I try not to be a conspiracy theorist, but when I look at it, I see NBC/Universal saying "We can make $35 on this show on iTunes, a cut of which goes to Apple, OR we can make $60 on the DVD set, in which we get more profit.

Universal, along with many other content producers, is not interested in their customer, only their customer's wallet.
I'm disappointed because this is the only way that I can watch BSG.
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zerock
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Aug 31, 2007, 02:34 PM
 
i agree i will miss BSG, The Office and Heroes!

i just wanted everything on iTunes. why do they hate Apple so... those ungrateful bastards at Universal.

As long as Apple keeps making apple tv, iPods and iPhones they can't stop them, no matter how much stuff they remove from iTunes Store.
     
jokell82
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Aug 31, 2007, 02:35 PM
 
Originally Posted by SirCastor View Post
Has it occurred to anyone else that NBC's well aware that this will drive people to piracy?
I doubt it. More than likely this decision was made by upper-level execs looking at numbers only. They're seeing lower ad revenues so they look at where they can increase their bottom line.

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Aug 31, 2007, 04:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by wallinbl View Post
One is legal and one is not. I don't want to dredge up that discussion, but for some of us, that matters.
Not that it shouldn't matter, but remember that the labels tried to make VCR recording illegal, and that it is legal in spite of the labels' will.

- See Sony vs. Universal
     
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Aug 31, 2007, 04:18 PM
 
Originally Posted by scottiB View Post
Some shows on cable--like those on Bravo--begin in the summer and last through to the fall (though I don't know if season passes are offered on those shows).

Any of NBC's shows, though, would need new season passes beginning this fall, and since Apple won't offer these shows fall 07 seasons, then no new season passes would be available (or refunded it someone purchased Heroes season 2--I would think).

Originally Posted by scottiB View Post
If the show's season ends before 12/31/07, then it should be okay.
I have Top Chef Seaon 3 (BravoTV) Season Pass and it costs $28.99, so there are still a few episodes left.

No refund will be crazy, similar to Google Video.
     
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Aug 31, 2007, 04:35 PM
 
I just noticed Apple features an NBC TV show in one of its iPhone demos. I guess they'll want to change it soon to stop giving NBC the free publicity.

Apple - iPhone - Widescreen iPod
     
zerock
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Aug 31, 2007, 05:03 PM
 
Hmm even though i'm ready to drop support for NBC Universal. I'm just hoping they sort it out before my favorite shows start this season. But I'm ready.
     
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Aug 31, 2007, 05:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by Randman View Post
I've never used any torrent system but I will in needed to get Heroes. I'm working abroad and the iTMS was the only way to get the show without waiting 6+ months after the season ended to watch it.
Watch Heroes Online

I'm on the last episode. A few have subtitles, but it is less than five of them.
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Aug 31, 2007, 05:25 PM
 
Tvshows = Win
NBC = lose

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Aug 31, 2007, 05:28 PM
 
This is hilarious!

So the big brained media giants like NBC, Universal, etc. couldn't figure out a way to combat piracy (via BitTorrent and the like). In comes Apple to show them the way. They were understandably reluctant to join a service that was unproven, and from a computer company no less.

Fast forward a little bit, iTunes Store is a success and rapidly growing. NBC, Universal, and others jump on board, giddy that they are now making money selling content (TV shows anyways) that are otherwise free over the air and whatnot. But consumers are consuming. People are buying the stuff, and its just getting better as time goes on. The talk of BitTorrent as the devil seemed to have all but gone away. Seems like everyone is winning.

All of the sudden these big brained media giants decide that they've suddenly figured out a way to do better than iTunes. They can't be content with making profit where they shouldn't be making profit, by selling free crap on the Internet. Nope, they have to get MORE profit. They have to jack the prices up on free things, and mask that stupidity by offering nonsensical "bonuses" to the deal (like movies with TV shows).

So where are we now? Well, suddenly BitTorrent has come back into the conversation. Everyone who was buying this content from iTunes will now go back to pirating them through other channels. Now the media giants are back where they friggin started, but now they are shoveling cash into a service that most people feel will fail (with what we know so far).

I just don't get it. I don't buy the argument that they are trying to drive people to buy the HD DVD's. That plan didn't work before and it wont work now. Consumers are now used to being able to download this content at a reasonable price. A lot of people have built their media centers around this model.

I hate these companies. I really do.
     
jokell82
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Aug 31, 2007, 05:51 PM
 
Great editorial over at iLounge about this:
An Open Letter to NBC re: Leaving Apple’s iTunes Store | iLounge

Wonder if NBC will respond to any of this backlash...

All glory to the hypnotoad.
     
kman42
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Aug 31, 2007, 05:54 PM
 
Most people are honest. If you give them a way to purchase media for a reasonable price and give them the opportunity to use it fairly, on the devices they want to use it on, they will buy it. iTunes has proven this by becoming the third largest music retailer. Take away any part of that equation, whether it be fair pricing, fair playback, or ease of use, and people will revolt.
     
 
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