Despite years of preparation and extensive testing, a 31-year-old from Walnut Creek, California, has managed to get the better of US TV network NBC, which is broadcasting the 2012 Olympic Games. In fact, it took Jason Legate a mere ten minutes to connect his computer to a London-based server, which allowed him to access the BBC’s coverage and thereby circumvent that of NBC.
Speaking to Reuters, the computer enthusiast explained that despite having only used minimal effort, he was able to create a virtual private network which allowed him to send all of his internet traffic to a London-based server.
NBC has, of course, invested huge amounts in broadcasting the Games and it is impossible for people unwilling to pay a subscription fee to enjoy the coverage. That doesn’t mean, though, that those people who are reluctant to part with their cash will not follow the event. The likes of Mr Legate are prepared to adopt methods – which are sometimes legal and sometimes not – to follow events from Olympic venues.
"Because all of my Internet traffic looks like it's coming from that box in England, the BBC thinks I'm located in England," he explained to the news provider. Reflecting on what he perceives to be the exorbitant prices of NBC, Mr Legate added: “To me, it just felt like they were insulting everyone so I basically decided to boycott NBC for the duration of the Games, which meant I had to find an alternative.”
NBC spent as much as $1.18 billion for the rights to broadcast the Olympics on the internet and on TV in the US. The BBC, meanwhile, is the host broadcaster for the Games and is investing substantial sums in cutting-edge technology like 3D images.