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THE NFL and NBC SPORTS kicked off their live online streaming efforts last night, offering the Giants’ victory over the Redskins live on NBCSports.com. The game had picture-in-picture functionality, 4 selectable camera angles and live commentary. Unfortunately, NBC chose Flash for the streaming format. Maybe I’m spoiled now, but Flash provides a sub-optimal online viewing experience when compared to Move Networks or even Silverlight (which NBC used for its online Olympics coverage).
In other NFL news, this Sunday on “NFL Countdown” ESPN will debut EA Sports Virtual Playbook, a new technology developed by ELECTRONIC ARTS. Virtual Playbook will let commentators interact with virtual athletes, allowing them to illustrate plays and simulate game situations. If the technology is a hit, expect to see it offered on more ESPN programming.
SARAH PALIN drew over 37 million viewers on Wednesday night, according to NIELSEN. The self-described “pit-bull in lipstick” trounced Joseph Biden’s draw by 13 million and approached Barack Obama’s record-setting 38.4 million viewers. It’s likely that the fiery hockey-mom beat McCain’s numbers for Thursday night. Stay tuned.
DISH NETWORK will bring an interactive element to the upcoming MTV Video Music Awards. Viewers will be able to answer on-screen pop-quiz questions during the broadcast. The feature will be sponsored by Pepsi and utilize software from Ensequence.
MICROSOFT launched its new $300 million “stop hating us” ad campaign last night, starring comedian Jerry Seinfeld and company founder Bill Gates. The series of spots is Microsoft’s response to the mockery it receives in Apple’s Mac vs. PC commercials. The first spot featured Seinfeld running into Gates at a discount shoe store….and was about as funny as you’d expect a Microsoft ad to be. You can view a high-quality version of the ad on Microsoft.com or a lower quality version that was posted on YouTube.
COMCAST has filed suit to overturn the FCC’s decision to bar it from selectively throttling Internet traffic. In the meantime, the company will comply with FCC mandates for increased disclosure of its network practices.