Comcast to acquire NBC, so much for online tv viewing

Modelworks

Lifer
Feb 22, 2007
16,240
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It looks like the sale of NBC to comcast is going to happen. Comcast is getting exactly what they want, control of online content. Hulu is owned by NBC Universal so I expect it to soon become a fee to watch or possibly a comcast subscriber exclusive.


http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/01/business/media/01deal.html?_r=2&hp
Under terms of the deal, G.E. will buy Vivendi’s 20 percent stake in NBC Universal for about $5.8 billion. It removes one of the few remaining hurdles in its plan to sell control of the television and movie company to Comcast in a $30 billion agreement that reflects the changing landscape of broadcast television.

While a deal between G.E. and Comcast still could hit a snag over the final price, it is considered highly likely: G.E. wants to sell NBC because of rising losses, and Comcast wants to buy it to control more of the television programs and movies that flow through its cable systems.
 

Blackjack200

Lifer
May 28, 2007
15,995
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This is where we need a regulator to step in and block it. It won't happen though, they're so spineless.
 

K1052

Elite Member
Aug 21, 2003
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I'm sure GE is tickled to death to be getting out of the content business. They simply couldn't grasp that running NBC/Universal was somehow different than turning out jet turbines or any other product they manufacture.
 

Blackjack200

Lifer
May 28, 2007
15,995
1,685
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I'm sure GE is tickled to death to be getting out of the content business. They simply couldn't grasp that running NBC/Universal was somehow different than turning out jet turbines or any other product they manufacture.

Yeah, they have a pretty bizarre mix of businesses.
 

JS80

Lifer
Oct 24, 2005
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Fox5

Diamond Member
Jan 31, 2005
5,957
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Hmm, and here I was hoping that the content providers would eventually bypass the cable companies and deliver content through the Internet. Looks like that's one dead emerging market.

On the plus side, wireless communications will still supplant wired communications unless the prices of wired communications drop significantly. When I already have a cell phone, and can get unlimited talk + data (tethering ftw?) for $120 a month, why would I pay $50 a month for the bottom tier of cable? 4G speeds are going to be comparable, and I can use it anywhere.
 

K1052

Elite Member
Aug 21, 2003
46,038
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Yeah, they have a pretty bizarre mix of businesses.

TV and film is a major departure in their portfolio from their other businesses. They though they were buying a cash machine then proceeded to micromanage and cost cut a once powerful network/studio into the ground.
 

Blackjack200

Lifer
May 28, 2007
15,995
1,685
126
TV and film is a major departure in their portfolio from their other businesses. They though they were buying a cash machine then proceeded to micromanage and cost cut a once powerful network/studio into the ground.

Yeah, six sigma probably doesn't work too well on sitcom set. I thought the manufacturing and finance/insurance business were dissimilar too, but I guess it's like GM and GMAC, sell the car (or jet engine) and do the financing too.
 

her209

No Lifer
Oct 11, 2000
56,352
11
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Hmmm... why is Comcast buying media companies when it should be rolling out network equipment to keep up with demand?
 
Oct 16, 1999
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Hulu is also owned by news corp, disney, and a PE shop. Comcast cannot will their power on Hulu as they wish by simply purchasing NBC.

News Corp also wants Hulu to charge. In fact that last big hubbub about that was started by some News Corp guy.
 

spidey07

No Lifer
Aug 4, 2000
65,469
5
76
Hmmm... why is Comcast buying media companies when it should be rolling out network equipment to keep up with demand?

Diversivication is good for any corporation. Plus nobody is doing more infrastructure upgrades than comcast with docsis 3.0.
 

Wreckage

Banned
Jul 1, 2005
5,529
0
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Hulu is also owned by news corp, disney, and a PE shop. Comcast cannot will their power on Hulu as they wish by simply purchasing NBC.

Comcast could take its toys and go home (i.e. remove all NBC content). If hulu can't survive on advertising alone it will fail. I doubt they will get enough subscribers. Especially with people already sick of the high price of cable.
 

jpeyton

Moderator in SFF, Notebooks, Pre-Built/Barebones
Moderator
Aug 23, 2003
25,375
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Cutting down on legal avenues for viewing TV content online only drives users to illegal avenues.

Comcast knows this.
 

JS80

Lifer
Oct 24, 2005
26,271
7
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Comcast could take its toys and go home (i.e. remove all NBC content). If hulu can't survive on advertising alone it will fail. I doubt they will get enough subscribers. Especially with people already sick of the high price of cable.

We can only speculate, but I would hope Hulu management struck long term deals with NBC so Comcast can't just yank the rug from under. But I won't comment on it's business model other than that you're probably right.
 

nageov3t

Lifer
Feb 18, 2004
42,816
83
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dude... NBC/GE has been talking about charging for Hulu since before the Comcast sale was even a twinkle in anyone's eyes.
 

K1052

Elite Member
Aug 21, 2003
46,038
33,066
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Hmmm... why is Comcast buying media companies when it should be rolling out network equipment to keep up with demand?

Access to the Universal film library/releasing pipeline for one. Comcast can leverage it into their VOD system in a bid to prop up video revenue by releasing to VOD at a premium before going DVD/BluRay and make a profit at both ends.

Though they're probably going to run into a problem with theaters if they push the already historically short DVD window a lot narrower. Theater chains may decide not to play their films and basically reduce Universal to making made for TV movies.
 

Ronstang

Lifer
Jul 8, 2000
12,493
18
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The only reason Comcast can buy NBC these days is because the network has been ruined over the last 20 or so years and it's value is diminished.
 

ebaycj

Diamond Member
Mar 9, 2002
5,418
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Why block it? other than maybe personal hate for Comcast.

Hmm. Seems like Comcast could behave in an anti-trustful manner if they own some but not all of the networks they deliver to customers. It'll be a nice breakup in a couple years.
 

Schadenfroh

Elite Member
Mar 8, 2003
38,416
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Diversivication is good for any corporation. Plus nobody is doing more infrastructure upgrades than comcast with docsis 3.0.

Indeed, if there is a massive exodus to satellite or alternative technologies, Comcast will not be up the creek without a paddle thanks to diversity.

I know AMD is thankful that they did not put all of their money into CPU investments and chose to diversify by buying ATI.

Comcast was the first in my area with broadband and Bell South's DSL was highly underwhelming when it arrived. DOCSIS 3.0 is coming to my current area soon and I am looking forward to it.
 

silverpig

Lifer
Jul 29, 2001
27,709
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Diversivication is good for any corporation. Plus nobody is doing more infrastructure upgrades than comcast with docsis 3.0.

Not really. There was a push towards massive diversification which lead to huge conglomerates like GE being formed. Recently we've seen these conglomerates sell off all of their extra businesses because managing them all becomes a nightmare.
 

cubby1223

Lifer
May 24, 2004
13,518
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I still don't "get it". The opposition is for what "might" happen, not what will happen. And in the end, NBC would not be up for sale, if people actually wanted to watch their shows! But they don't, so why do you give a crap who owns something that no one watches?