NBC Sets More Olympics Ratings Records, But Not Without Tape Delayed Controversy

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By Alex Weprin Comments

Every single night so far of NBC Olympics coverage has broken previous Olympics ratings records, this despite the controversy over tape delay. Through the weekend NBC averaged 35.8 million viewers in London, five million more than Beijing, and over a million more than the previous record-holder, Atlanta.

That isn’t to say everything else has been without issue. On last night’s primetime broadcast, Bob Costas teased the Women’s 200M freestyle race, which featured swimmer Missy Franklin. Unfortunately, just a few minutes before the race was set to begin, NBC ran a promo for “Today” touting an interview with Franklin, noting that she won gold. A new, spoiler-free promo ran on the west coast, but that wasn’t any solace to those in the east that wanted the results to be a surprise.

Another controversy brewed yesterday, when Twitter suspended a reporter for London’s Independent newspaper who was very critical of NBC’s coverage. The reporter, Guy Adams, was allegedly suspended for tweeting out the name and email of an NBC executive, and encouraging followers to email him to complain about its coverage.