NBC Goes Retro – Will Stream Classic TV Shows Online

     February 19, 2008




NBC has just announced that some of their vintage/classic TV shows will be available to watch online via streaming download. The plan is for certain shows like “A-Team,” the original “Battlestar Galatica,” “Miami Vice,” “Night Gallery,” “Kojak,” “The Alfred Hitchcock Hour,” “Emergency” and a few others to be online at NBC.com, SCIFI.com, ChillerTV.com and SleuthChannel.com beginning this month.



All I can say to this news is….FINALLY.



Finally a media company gets it. After all this time, the broadcast networks are beginning to understand that the internet is not a problem, but a benefit.



It used to be that a TV show would air once or twice, and then disappear forever. When the home video format emerged, certain popular shows got released on VHS, but the large majority remained in the studio vaults. Now, with the uber popularity of TV on DVD, almost everything that aired on a network is either on DVD, or on the drawing board. The network and media companies see how much money there is to be made, and they’re taking advantage of it.



But I always wondered when the media companies would start to offer the old shows online. After all, the proliferation of sites likes YouTube, which have almost every classic TV moment in their database, you’d think the media companies would want that traffic. Also, YouTube has lower quality than what sites like NBC.com could offer.



I’ve often said that the networks and media companies should offer the video online for a price. But not actual money, the price should be how many commercials you’re forced to watch. So if you wanted to watch in low quality, you’d get 2 or 3 commercials during the entire episode. But if you wanted an HD version of a show, you’d be forced to watch 12, or whatever number they want to make you view. That way the advertisers are paying for the bandwidth, and the consumer gets exactly what they want.


Since I only run a website, I don’t expect any of the media companies to listen, but I’m telling you…it would work and make all the companies money.



Anyway, with NBC starting to show classic shows online, I’d expect the other networks to follow. Here’s the full list of streaming vintage series that have been announced so far:



NBC.com


“A-Team”


“Emergency”


“Night Gallery”


“The Alfred Hitchcock Hour”


Miami Vice”


“Battlestar Galactica” (1978)


“Buck Rogers”



SCIFI.com


“Battlestar Galactica” (1978)


“Buck Rogers”


“Tek War”


“Night Gallery”



ChillerTV.com


“The Alfred Hitchcock Hour”


“Swamp Thing”


“Tremors”


“Crow”


“Night Gallery”



SleuthChannel.com


“Kojak”


Miami Vice”


“Simon & Simon”


“A-Team”


“Night Gallery”






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