iTunes, financial woes, and Tina Fey/Sarah Palin give NBC super-successful week

If anybody has any lingering doubts about iTunes’ value to NBC, and NBC’s value to iTunes, doubt no more.

Since returning to iTunes Sept. 9 after nearly a year’s separation, NBC racked up more than one million downloads for NBC Universal shows, according to the Hollywood Reporter and Apple.

The spike most likely is a result of a free-offering agreement between NBC and Apple as part of the network’s return to iTunes. NBC pledged to offer one free standard or high-definition download for its top series for two weeks.

It’s worth noting, however, that these numbers were achieved without NBC’s popular programs, which have yet to premiere. It’s expected that NBC Universal will account for about 40 percent of iTunes video sales, the level it was at when the network left  late last year over a pricing disagreement.

The Reporter also noted that NBC benefited in two other ways this week — the U.S. financial crisis and Tina Fey’s parody of vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin on “Saturday Night Live.” exceeded one million unique visitors for the first time after Monday’s stock market meltdown. The Website tallied 14.6 million page views that day, a 26 percent increase over the site’s previous best.

Fey’s dead-on depiction of Palin racked up 5.7 million views on and Hulu as of Wednesday, according to NBC data. It is the network’s most popular video of all-time — and if you’ve seen it, you know why.


last100 is edited by Steve O'Hear. Aside from founding last100, Steve is co-founder and CEO of Beepl and a freelance journalist who has written for numerous publications, including TechCrunch, The Guardian, ZDNet, ReadWriteWeb and Macworld, and also wrote and directed the Silicon Valley documentary, In Search of the Valley. See his full profile and disclosure of his industry affiliations.

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