USOC TV Network Delayed To Aid Chicago 2016 Bid
By Marcus Gilmer in News on Aug 17, 2009 2:00PM
In a move that they hope will boost Chicago's odds of landing the 2016 Olympics, the USOC has decided to delay the launch of their new Olympic-themed TV network. The launch was seen as a hindrance to Chicago's bid because of bad blood launching the network would cause between the USOC and the IOC (who gets to actually vote on who gets the Olympics). Like everything else in life, the conflict really boils down to two things: money and the American spirit of "Screw you, we're doing it anyway." Per the Tribune's report:
Among the issues to be resolved are rights to archival footage and the USOC network's impact on NBC, the IOC-designated U.S. Olympic network. NBC has paid $5.7 billion for U.S. broadcast rights to the seven Winter and Summer Olympics from 2000 to 2012.
NBC officials were angry the USOC cut a network deal with Comcast rather work something out with NBC-owned Universal Sports, which already has programming similar to what the USOC network plans.
The IOC relationship with NBC "clearly is a significant consideration for the IOC, something we want to be as thoughtful about as possible," Probst said.
It was only a few months ago that the USOC and IOC agreed to put off a decision about other issues concerning the USOC's share of certain global rights until after the 2016 selection was made. USOC chairman Larry Probst did some back-pedaling at a press conference in Berlin this weekend, admitting, "In hindsight, it probably could have been handled more effectively and more thoughtfully." The 115 members of the IOC will vote on the host city in a little over six weeks - on October 2.