NBC wants viewers to know: The kickoff of the London Olympics was just too complicated to watch live.
The network is fighting back against intense criticism of its decision to black out the opening ceremony on Friday, instead offering a taped version hours later in prime time. Viewers reacted with disgust when they tried to watch live coverage of the event on TV or online but could only find a few bootlegging sites carrying the feed in the U.S.
"We are live streaming every sporting event, all 32 sports and 302 medals," an NBC spokesman wrote in an email to Show Tracker. "It was never our intent to live stream the Opening Ceremony or Closing Ceremony. They are complex entertainment spectacles that do not translate well online because they require context, which our award-winning production team will provide for the large prime-time audiences that gather together to watch them.
"We will be providing clips and highlights of each ceremony online so viewers know what to look forward to in primetime on NBC," the statement added.