Broadcast networks blocking Google TV's access to shows on their Websites

Broadcast networks blocking Google TV's access to shows on their Websites

Summary: Wanna watch full episodes of your favorite shows from the networks' own Websites using your new Google TV device? Well, you can't, thanks to ABC, CBS, and NBC blocking their sites using Google's just-released platform.

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Wanna watch full episodes of your favorite shows from the networks' own Websites using your new Google TV device? Well, you can't, thanks to ABC, CBS, and NBC blocking their sites using Google's just-released platform.

You can probably figure out why. The big three can still sell a lot more advertising for their TV broadcasts instead of their online streams, so they have no interest in allowing easy ways for viewers to circumvent those commercials. Of course, if you record those same episodes with a DVR and fast-forward through those ads, it's apparently not as big an issue, but the networks seem to be digging their heels in to face this latest threat to their business model. Disney, which owns ABC, and NBC are also unhappy with how Google deals with (or doesn't sufficiently deal with) links to pirated content that shows up in its search results.

ABC and NBC are allowing Google TV owners to view episode trailers on their sites, and Fox hasn't blocked full-length episodes on its site -- yet. Cable channels like HBO and TBS/TNT have worked with Google to optimize their site videos for Google TV. Ironically, episodes on sites of some cable channels that the networks co-own, like Lifetime and CNBC, are still available to Google TV customers.

One thing we don't know is how many people have thus far tried to access full-length episodes via Google TV. Was it a sufficient number to be worth the PR hit the networks are taking from looking a tad oafish in blocking content?

[Via The Wall Street Journal]

Topics: Google, Browser, Hardware, Mobility, Networking, Software Development

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37 comments
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  • What PR hit?

    Most people do not understand, or know. I am sure those that do understand that the networks are a for profit business, and that companies like Google are interested only in using someone else's property for their own profit.
    :|
    Tim Cook
    • RE: Broadcast networks blocking Google TV's access to shows on their Websites

      @Mister Spock
      So are the networks paying you to make up lies? Google is not using someone elses "property" for anything. They have made a browser - just like microsoft makes a browser, just like apple makes a browser.
      And as google says, the networks are free to block it. If the networks wants to try and stay in the past century they can try that - for what little time they will then have left to function.
      Or they could come into the future and start making money again.
      Everq
      • Google TV is NOT A BROWSER

        @Everq Google is charging a licensing fee to use their product and using their logo. That means they are making money out of other people's product.
        wackoae
      • Though I have "exzagerated" on a few occasions

        never have I lied.
        "so they have no interest in allowing easy ways for viewers to circumvent those commercials."

        And where does Google aquire it's broadcasts for Google TV?
        That is correct, from the television companies. Does Google pay to bring that content to a television, when bypassing the current model? They do not, nor do they wish to.

        You talk as though streaming content is the future that all want, but I have seen a very small minority interested in that, the majority watching television the current way.

        If that is the case, it would be logical for Google to start it's own online network, and bid on the shows as do the networks, if they feel confident that this is the future that the majority wish to embrace.
        :|
        Tim Cook
      • RE: Broadcast networks blocking Google TV's access to shows on their Websites

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    • Not correct....

      @Mister Spock
      If you bought a TV and were "blocked" by the networks from watching those channels, you would be screaming. Google's application is nothing more than a variation of a TV set, displaying the same info as over the air broadcasts, which are already paid for by advertisers.

      There is nothing here that consists of using anybody else's property. Your hatred for all things Google is obvious. Time to grow up.
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      lossangel
  • RE: Broadcast networks blocking Google TV's access to shows on their Websites

    Don't forget to mention that users can change their user-agent setting in the browser and bypass these blocks. What would be nice is if GTV already had a firefox app, which would allow the user to leave it customized to omit any mention of the GTV origin, and thus let the user view normal web content via firefox, and GTV-optimized content via an untweaked chrome.
    Wayniac42
    • It's a little damning of your product

      @Wayniac42 If you have to disguise the way it "looks" to get full functionality.
      matthew_maurice
      • No, it is damning of the competition

        @matthew_maurice <br>If you have to disguise your product to a 3rd party so it doesn't look like it is competing with a product being sold by one of the directors of the owner of the 3rd party. Why should Google TV have to pretend to be anything different just because it is competing with Apple TV?

        Apple is being anti-competitive by trying to cut off the oxygen supply of Google TV. That isn't allowed. I truly hope the DoJ AND Disney shareholders demand an investigation. Both consumers of Google TV and Disney's shareholders are being harmed by Steve Jobs here.
        NonZealot
    • RE: Broadcast networks blocking Google TV's access to shows on their Websites

      @Wayniac42 That doesn't work. They don't check the user-agent, they get Flash to report what operating system it is running on.
      Everq
  • RE: Broadcast networks blocking Google TV's access to shows on their Websites

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  • Google blocks web access too

    Well Google does block access to its services on it's own terms, so this is a negotiation process not a right-wrong process.
    guihombre
  • Steve Jobs is being anti-competitive... again

    [i]Disney, which owns ABC, and NBC are also unhappy with how Google[/i]

    And Steve Jobs is trying again and again and again with Apple TV to compete against Google. There is no better way to kill Google TV than to remove Google TV's access to TV shows.

    Disney shareholders should [b]demand[/b] an investigation into Steve Jobs for a breach of his fiduciary duties. It is clear that Steve is putting Apple's needs ahead of Disney shareholders' needs. Also, the DoJ [b]must[/b] investigate to uncover Jobs' blatant anti-competitive practices.
    NonZealot
    • Jobs is a master at playing dirty

      @NonZealot

      The recently announced Mac OS X Lion new features are an <b>Ubuntu Rip-Off</b>.

      http://www.muktware.com/blog/45/290/23/2010/396

      Yes, Apple is ripping-off Canonical's innovations and when Lion launches Jobs will be claiming them as his. Just wait and see.
      OS Reload
      • Really?

        People are claiming that Canonical created multitouch gestures? An app store? I can't debate the other two, but the writer of the article is a joke with HALF OF THEM.
        Michael Alan Goff
      • RE: Broadcast networks blocking Google TV's access to shows on their Websites

        @OS Reload
        You make it sound like this is something new for Job to have done.. Dont forget he stole the GUI and the mouse from xerox
        rparker009
    • RE: Broadcast networks blocking Google TV's access to shows on their Websites

      @NonZealot How about we demand that you back up your blatant anti Apple/Jobs claims with some proof.
      non-biased
  • NBC not blocked

    Actually, NBC seems to be working fine, so it's just ABC and CBS.
    jpfieber
  • Did Google think they could just walk in like the wind?

    And in other news NonZealot blames Hurricane RICHARD on Steve Jobs.
    CowLauncher