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Networks Blocking Google TV From Viewing Full TV Episodes

by Sean P. Aune | October 22, 2010October 22, 2010 12:00 pm PDT

Despite the fact that Google TV is just supposed to turn your television into a large Web browser, it seems that not everyone agrees with this concept. U.S. television networks are letting users know that things are not all good between the search giant and them, and now there is a whole lot of scrambling going on.

Google TV LogoDespite the fact that Google TV has just launched, the ABC, CBS and NBC television networks were ready for it, and they are making sure that users of the Google TV devices can’t access their television programs as they please. People are discovering that they are unable to play videos from these networks via the built-in Google Chrome browser, and it appears that it is all due to Google’s supposed lack of interest in filtering out results for pirated material from its search engine.

The networks have been quibbling with Google for some time over the fact that results for pirated shows show up on in search results along with official sites.  The networks have demanded that Google remove these results, but the company has told them that they need to submit requests for result removals just like anyone else.

A Google spokesperson told The Wall Street Journal, “Google TV enables access to all the Web content you already get today on your phone and PC, but it is ultimately the content owners’ choice to restrict their fans from accessing their content on the platform.”

Obviously the parties are all going to have to sit down and discuss this, but going by the information we have, the networks are asking Google to give them special treatment.  Other companies are filing for the removals, but the networks feel it should just be done for them automatically?  Well, they can skip the advertising revenues they would earn from the extra viewers if they like, but it seems a bit backwards to me.  Apparently they feel users will pressure Google into agreeing with them, but they might also discover that consumers will realize that its the networks doing this and not Google.

What say you?  Should Google give in to the networks blackmail?

Sean P. Aune

Sean P. Aune has been a professional technology blogger since July 2007, but his love of tech dates back to at least 1976 when his parents bought...