The London Olympics kicked off on Friday night, but if you live in the United States, you might not have known. Or, you knew, but hours after the rest of the world.

NBC decided to broadcast the opening ceremonies from London on a tape delay Friday evening, despite the proliferation of capable technologies willing and able to do so.

One glance at a Twitter feed on Friday showed a combination of two things. One, people complaining about their inability to watch the proceedings live. And two, people who found a way to do so in spite of the Peacock.

In a day and age when everything is on-demand — and NBC boasts an app that live-stream some 10,000-plus hours of live video — the decision to start things off on the wrong foot is quite baffling. Yes, it’s understandable for the network to want to maximize an audience, but in that attempt they also invite wandering eyes to venture online in search of less-than-legal methods of watching.

Another side effect of NBC’s tape delay is that it opens up the network to criticism of its selective editing. Deadspin points out that the official feed on American television cut out a memorial to victims of a London bombing in lieu of an interview with Ryan Seacrest. Yikes.

With the now! mentality so pervasive in media consumption these days, NBC’s decision to air the ceremony late might still have its merits in a business sense. But as for common sense? The Peacock has some work to do in that area.

Thumbnail photo via Facebook/London 2012

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NBC's Decision to Broadcast Opening Ceremonies on Tape Delay Baffling in Age of Internet Video

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