Are The TV Studios Encouraging Piracy By Not Playing Nice With Google TV?

You know, if people once again turn to piracy it’ll be their own damn fault. Google TV has begun to trickle out, and it’s… OK. Not great, but not outright trash. It’s easier to put up with if you’re an earlier adopter, techie type, but if you’re Joe Public? You’re not going to sit on your couch with a clunky keyboard and fiddle around with resolution settings when all you want to do is watch Glee. But what if you can’t even watch Glee? More and more networks and content providers have decided to play hardball with Google TV, banning their online streams from being accessed by Google TV. Have television executives learned nothing from the music business’ woes? Napster and all that nonsense was ten years ago!

Now, the other day I said something to the effect that the television business isn’t in imminent danger of bursting into flames. That’s probably fair to say. But I can still be disappointed in the industry’s stance as it relates to the future.

Why would you outright ban something like Google TV from accessing your stream? On a technical level, what’s the difference? A browser is a browser is a browser, right? If I’m watching Hulu on my laptop using Firefox, how is that different from watching Hulu on my TV using Google TV?

Or, what’s to stop me from connecting my laptop to my TV with an HDMI cable?

Nothing, exactly.

But it seems like all these television folks who are screaming that Google TV will be the death of the industry need to learn a thing or two from what happened to the music business. Rather than fight this thing tooth and nail, thereby pushing people to piracy—why would I play by the rules and watch approved network streams when I can just fire up BitTorrent and get an MKV file that I can play anywhere on any number of devices, no questions asked—perhaps the TV industry would do well to sit back, analyze the situation, and realize that a bunch of techies using the Logitech Revue won’t put them in the poor house.

What might put them in the poor house is the continuous fight against anything and everything that might make them have to take a few minutes to think about the future.

But, whatever, there’s nothing worth watching on TV as it is. I’m glad I realized that many years ago.