Finally! NBC will air the 2018 Winter Olympics live across all U.S. time zones.
You can thank — or blame — social media.
NBC's conundrum was simple and has sparked complaints from fans for years.
It went like this: The Olympic Games are a global event that often happens half a world away from the United States. NBC used to broadcast the most intriguing competitions during U.S. primetime. But as social media and digital technology revolutionized the ease of learning results as they happened (or even watching them happen via online live-stream), NBC's lack of live broadcasts seemed increasingly greedy and outdated.
It's all part of that ongoing, difficult transition to a brave new digital world.
But no more. Welcome to 2017, baby! (Well, 2018 technically, but let's not split hairs here.)
Jim Bell, NBC Olympics' president of production and programming, announced Tuesday that the network will air the 2018 Olympics from PyeongChang, South Korea, coast to coast in the United States.
"That means social media won’t be ahead of the action in any time zone, and as a result, none of our viewers will have to wait for anything," Bell said in a post on the NBC Sports site. "This is exciting news for the audience, the advertisers, and our affiliates alike."
That's a smart play. In fact, it's the only play.
But knowing the internet, Olympics-watchers online will still find plenty to complain about next winter. (In other words, it's unlikely we've seen the last of that #NBCFail hashtag.)
The PyeongChang Games begin Feb. 9 of next year.