NBC Sports is an American programming division of the broadcast network NBC, owned and operated by NBC Sports Group division of NBCUniversal and subsidiary of Comcast, that is responsible for sports broadcasts on the network, and its dedicated national sports cable channels. Formerly operating as "a service of NBC News", it broadcasts a diverse array of sports events, including the French Open, the IndyCar Series, NASCAR, the NFL, the NHL, Notre Dame football, Olympic Games, the PGA Tour, the Premier League, the Tour de France and the Triple Crown, among others. Other programming from outside producers – such as coverage of the Ironman Triathlon – is also presented on the network through NBC Sports. With Comcast's acquisition of NBCUniversal in 2011, its own cable sports networks were aligned with NBC Sports into a part of the division known as the NBC Sports Group.
|Launched||November 8, 1946WNBC in New York City, New Yorkby|
|Country of origin||United States|
|Owner||NBC Sports Group|
(NBCUniversal a subsidiary of Comcast)
|Key people||Mark Lazarus (chairman, NBC Sports Group)|
|Major broadcasting contracts||French Open|
Notre Dame football
Tour de France
- 1 History
- 2 Olympics
- 3 Branding
- 4 Programs throughout the years
- 5 Notable personalities
- 6 Presidents and chairmen
- 7 Main competitors
- 8 References
- 9 External links
In 2000, NBC declined to renew its broadcast agreement with Major League Baseball. In 2002, it was additionally outbid by ESPN and ABC for the NBA's new broadcast contract, ending the league's twelve-year run on NBC.
During this era, NBC experimented with broadcasting emerging sports. In 2001, the network partnered with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) to establish the XFL – a new football league which introduced modified rules and debuted to tremendous, but short-lived fanfare, only lasting one season (NBC shared broadcast rights to the league's games, which were mainly held on Saturday nights, with UPN). In 2003, NBC obtained the broadcast rights and a minority interest in the Arena Football League. The network televised weekly games on a regional basis, as well as the entire playoffs. The deal lasted four years, after which the league and NBC parted ways.
Beginning with the 1999 Pennzoil 400, NBC began its foray into NASCAR. NBC, along with Fox, FX and TNT, obtained the broadcast rights of the top two series – the Winston Cup and Busch Series – in a six-year deal, beginning in 2001. NBC televised the second half of the season and alternated coverage of the Daytona 500 with Fox. In December 2005, NBC announced that it would not renew its agreement with NASCAR. In 2001, NBC obtained the broadcast rights to horse racing's Triple Crown in a five-year deal.
In 2004, NBC reached a broadcast agreement with the National Hockey League (NHL). The revenue-sharing deal called for the two sides to split advertising revenue after the network recouped the expenses. Games were supposed to begin airing on the network during the 2004–05 season, however a league lockout that resulted in the cancellation of that season delayed the start of the contract until the second half of the 2005–06 season. NBC televised regular season games at first on Saturday afternoons before moving the telecast to Sundays, Saturday and Sunday afternoon playoff games, and up to five games of the Stanley Cup Final. Additionally in 2008, NBC broadcast the first Winter Classic, an outdoor NHL game played on New Year's Day at Ralph Wilson Stadium, a success in attendance and television ratings. The following year's Winter Classic would become the most-watched regular season game in 34 years. In addition to this regular season success, Game 7 of the 2009 Stanley Cup Final was watched by an average of 8 million viewers, the highest ratings for an NHL game in 36 years.
The NFL also returned to NBC in 2006 after an eight-year hiatus, broadcasting the league's new flagship Sunday Night Football game, along with select postseason games and Super Bowls XLIII, XLVI, XLIX, LII and LVI.
NBC Sports GroupEdit
In January 2011, Comcast finalized its acquisition of a majority share in NBC Universal. As a result of the merger, the operations of Comcast's existing sports networks, such as Golf Channel and Versus, were merged into an entity known as the NBC Sports Group. NBC Sports' senior vice president Mike McCarley additionally became Golf Channel's new head. NBC Sports' golf production unit was merged with Golf Channel, along with NBC's on-air staff, with that unit rebranding under the banner "Golf Channel on NBC", while Versus was reformatted toward a more mainstream audience, renamed the NBC Sports Network and eventually rebranded as NBCSN.
The merger also helped influence an extension of NBC Sports' contract with the NHL; the 10-year deal – valued at close to $2 billion, unified the cable and broadcast television rights to the league and introduced a new "Black Friday" Thanksgiving Showdown game on NBC, along with national coverage for every game in the Stanley Cup playoffs. On July 3, 2011, ESPN obtained the exclusive broadcast rights to Wimbledon in a 12-year deal, ending NBC's television relationship with The Championships after 42 years.
On August 10, 2011, NBC Sports also announced a new three-year broadcasting contract with Major League Soccer to produce games for the 2012 season on NBC and the NBC Sports Network. This included the broadcast of two regular season games, two playoff games, and two national team matches on NBC and 38 regular season games, three playoff games, and two national team matches on NBC Sports Network. On October 28, 2012, NBC Sports also announced a three-year, $250 million deal to televise Premier League soccer in English (primarily on NBCSN) and Spanish (on Telemundo and mun2) beginning with the 2013–14 season, replacing ESPN and Fox Soccer as the league's U.S. broadcasters.
On October 15, 2012, NBC Sports announced that it had acquired broadcast rights to the Formula One World Championship (formerly held by Speed and Fox Sports) in a four-year deal with the series. The majority of its coverage (including much of the season, along with qualifying and practice sessions) would air on NBCSN, while NBC would air the Monaco Grand Prix, Canadian Grand Prix and the final two races of the season, which include the United States Grand Prix. All races will also be streamed online and through the NBC Sports Live Extra mobile app. On October 4, 2017, it was announced that NBC Sports lost the broadcast rights to ESPN beginning with the 2018–2019 season.
On March 18, 2013, nearly all of the operations for NBC Sports and NBCSN began to be based out of a purpose-built facility in Stamford, Connecticut. The move was made mainly to take advantage of tax credits given by the state of Connecticut, which NBC has taken advantage of previously with the daytime talk shows of its sister broadcast syndication division. Only Football Night in America remained in New York City, at Studio 8G in Rockefeller Center, until September 7, 2014, when production of that program also moved to Stamford.
In July 2013, it was announced that NASCAR would return to NBC Sports properties in 2015 under a ten-year deal, with NBC once again airing the second half of the NASCAR Cup Series and Xfinity Series seasons. While no specific financial details were disclosed, NBC reportedly paid 50% more than ESPN and TNT (who took over the portion of the season previously held by NBC) combined under the previous deal.
On June 7, 2015, NBC Sports and The R&A agreed to a twelve-year deal to televise The Open Championship, Senior Open Championship, and Women's British Open on NBC and Golf Channel, beginning in 2017. The move came a year after NBC lost the rights to USGA tournaments to Fox Sports. The R&A's deal with ESPN had been through 2017, but the broadcaster opted out of the final year of their agreement.
Universal Sports Network ceased operations in November 2015. NBCUniversal acquired the rights to the content that was previously held by Universal Sports Network. Much of the programming moved to Universal HD, with the rest of the programming moving to NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra.
On March 7, 2016, NBC Sports acquired rights to Premiership Rugby—the top division of English rugby union—initially under a three-year deal. The contract included up to 24 regularly-scheduled games on NBCSN per-season, and up to 50 streaming. Its first live match was on March 12, 2016, when London Irish hosted Saracens F.C. at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey.
In June 2016, the group launched NBC Sports Gold, a subscription-based over-the-top streaming service. It debuted with a Cycling Pass, featuring several UCI road cycling races. In April 2017, a Track and Field Pass was launched, featuring IAAF and USA Track & Field meets, a Rugby Pass featuring the English Premiership, and a Pro Motocross Pass featuring the AMA Motocross Championship. A Premier League Pass was added in June 2017.
On March 21, 2018, it was announced that NBC Sports would renew its contract with the IndyCar Series (continuing a relationship with NBCSN which began in 2009 as Versus), through 2021, and acquire the broadcast television rights previously held by ABC. NBC will televise eight races per-season beginning in 2019, including the series flagship Indianapolis 500, with the remaining races airing on NBCSN as before. An IndyCar package will also be offered through NBC Sports Gold. The following month, NBC announced a six-year agreement with the IMSA beginning 2019, including the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, with the majority of coverage on NBCSN.
In 1964, NBC televised the Summer Olympics in Tokyo; in 1972, NBC televised the Winter Olympic Games for the first time. 1980 would prove to be a stinging disappointment for the network; after contentious negotiations, NBC won the broadcast rights to the Summer Games in Moscow. After the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, the United States and 64 other countries boycotted the event. NBC substantially scaled back its coverage and lost heavily in advertising revenue. In 1988, NBC televised the Summer Olympics in Seoul. Since then, it has branded itself as "America's Olympic Network", televising every Summer Olympic Games since the Seoul event, as well as every Winter Olympics since 2002. In total, NBC has aired 13 Summer and Winter Olympics, the most by any one U.S. network. The Olympic Games have also become an integral part of the network, despite some recurring controversy over its method of tape delaying events in part to take advantage of a wider national audience in prime time.
In 1998, Ebersol was named president of NBC Sports and Olympics.
During the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, over 500 hours of the games were broadcast across five NBC-owned television channels (NBC, NBCSN, CNBC, MSNBC and USA Network), with 1,000 hours being streamed digitally. In January, the company announced some exclusive digital-only streaming of the 2014 Olympics via the NBCOlympics.com website and the NBC Sports Live Extra app for Android and iOS, including exclusive content such as Gold Zone, Olympic Ice and NBC's Olympic News Desk.
Concurrent with the relaunch of Versus as NBC Sports Network on January 2, 2012, and the 2012 NHL Winter Classic, NBC Sports also launched a comprehensive redesign of its branding, including a new on-air graphics design built around the NBC peacock, and an updated logo for the division as a whole (replacing a logo that had been in use since 1989). The new design was also intended to be modular, allowing it to be expanded for use in larger events across multiple networks (such as the Super Bowl and the Olympic Games). A refreshed design for on-air graphics was introduced on January 1, 2015 (in time for the 2015 NHL Winter Classic and NFL playoffs), with a cleaner and brighter visual appearance.
NBC debuted a new graphics package specifically for Sunday Night Football during Super Bowl LII. NBC producer Fred Gaudelli stated that the network wanted the Sunday night games to have a more distinctive presentation to set them apart from other games. NBC similarly diverged for its Premier League coverage in 2019, adopting elements of its new British sibling Sky Sports.
Programs throughout the yearsEdit
- Olympics on NBC
- NFL on NBC: 1955–1963 (NFL Championship Game), 1970–1997 (AFC), 2006–present (NBC Sunday Night Football), 2016–2017 (Thursday Night Football)
- Super Bowl: I (shared with CBS), III, V, VII, IX, XI, XIII, XV, XVII, XX, XXIII, XXVII, XXVIII, XXX, XXXII, XLIII, XLVI, XLIX, LII, and LVI
- Pre-game show: Grandstand (1975–1976), NFL 77, 78, et al. (1977–1986), NFL Live! (1987–1994), NFL on NBC (1995–1997), Football Night in America (2006–present)
- American Football League (1965–1969)
- College football (1946–1965, 1991–present)
- NASCAR on NBC (1999–2006, 2015–present) co-produded with TNT (2001-2006) and Speed (2002-2006) with Speed Channel graphics
- Golf Channel on NBC (1964–present)
- NHL on NBC: 1966, 1972–1975, 1990–1994 (All Star Game), 2005–present
- Thoroughbred Racing on NBC (1981–present)
- Kentucky Derby (2001–present)
- Preakness Stakes (2001–present)
- Belmont Stakes (1950–1952, 2001–2005, 2011–present)
- Breeders' Cup (1984–2005, 2012–present)
- Haskell Invitational Stakes (2014–present)
- Santa Anita Derby (2009–present)
- Pegasus World Cup (2017–present)
- Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (2010–present)
- Royal Ascot (2017–present)
- French Open (1983–present)
- Tour de France (2011–present)
- IndyCar Series on NBC (2009–present)
- IMSA on NBC (2019–present)
- Rolex 24 at Daytona (2019–2024)
- Premier League (2013–2022)
- FINA World Championships
- World Athletics Championships
- Diamond League
- USA Swimming
- USA Track & Field
- U.S. Figure Skating Championships (2008–present)
- ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating (2004–present)
- Four Continents Figure Skating Championships
- FIS Alpine Ski World Cup
- Bobsleigh World Cup
- Skeleton World Cup
- Fencing World Cup
- FINA Diving World Cup
- FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour
- World Marathon Majors
- Rugby World Cup (2011, 2015)
- English Premiership (2016–present)
- Six Nations Championship (2018–present)
- IHF World Handball Championship (2019–present)
- National Dog Show (2001–present)
- Premier Lacrosse League (2019-present)
- Monster Jam (2019-present)
- AMA Supercross Championship (2019-present)
- Major League Baseball on NBC: World Series presented by The Gillette Company (1947–1965), NBC Game of the Week (1956–1964, 1966–1989), Baseball Night in America (1994–1995), Major League Baseball on NBC (1996–2000)
- NBA on NBC (1954–1962; 1990–2002)
- WNBA on NBC (1997–2002)
- 2002 FIBA World Championship
- NBC College Football
- Bayou Classic (until 2015)
- Rose Bowl (1952–1988)
- Sugar Bowl (1959–1969)
- Orange Bowl (1965–1995)
- Fiesta Bowl (1978–1995)
- Cotton Bowl Classic (1953–1957, 1993–1995)
- Gator Bowl (1996–2006)
- Hall of Fame Bowl (1988–1992)
- Citrus Bowl (1984–1985)
- Army–Navy Game (1945–1953, 1955–1959, 1964–1965)
- Blue–Gray Football Classic (1958–1963)
- USGA Championships (1995–2014)
- College Basketball on NBC (1969–1998)
- Wimbledon (1969–2011)
- NBC SportsWorld (1978–1992)
- Championship Auto Racing Teams (1979–1990, 1994, 2005–2007)
- American Le Mans Series (1999–2004, 2007–2008)
- Formula One (2013–2017)
- Red Bull Global Rallycross (2014–2017)
- Gillette Cavalcade of Sports (1946–1960)
- Michael Jordan Celebrity Golf Classic (1990s)
- The Superstars (1985–1990)
- XFL (2001)
- AFL on NBC (2003–2006)
- CFL on NBC (1954, 1982, 2012–2013)
- PBA Fall Tour (1984–1991)
- AVP Tour (1990–2009)
- Hambletonian (2007–2012)
- Premier Boxing Champions (2015–17)
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- NBC Sunday Night Football – Al Michaels
- NHL on NBC – Mike Emrick, Kenny Albert, Gord Miller, John Forslund, Chris Cuthbert, Randy Hahn, Rick Peckham, Mike Tirico
- Olympics on NBC – Mike Emrick, Tom Hammond, Dan Hicks, Mike Tirico, Ted Robinson, Al Trautwig, Arlo White, JP Dellacamera, Sebastian Salazar, Todd Harris
- NASCAR on NBC – Rick Allen, Leigh Diffey, Dave Burns, Ralph Sheheen
- IndyCar Series on NBC – Leigh Diffey, Kevin Lee, Jake Query
- IMSA on NBC – Leigh Diffey, Rick Allen, Brian Till, Kevin Lee
- Tennis on NBC – Ted Robinson
- Golf Channel on NBC – Mike Tirico, Terry Gannon
- Notre Dame Football on NBC – Mike Tirico, Dan Hicks
- Premier League on NBC – Arlo White, Steve Bower, Derek Rae, Peter Drury, Clive Tyldesley, Martin Tyler, Bill Leslie, Alan Parry
- IAAF/USA Track & Field – Rick Allen, Paul Swangard, Kenny Albert, Todd Harris
- FINA/USA Swimming – Ted Robinson
- Rugby World Cup – Rupert Cox
- Tour de France - Phil Liggett
- NBC Sunday Night Football – Cris Collinsworth, Terry McAulay
- NHL on NBC – Eddie Olczyk, Joe Micheletti, AJ Mleczko, Jamie Baker, Mike Milbury, Keith Jones
- NASCAR on NBC – Steve Letarte, Jeff Burton, Dale Earnhardt Jr, Dale Jarrett
- IndyCar Series on NBC – Paul Tracy, Townsend Bell, Anders Krohn, A. J. Allmendinger
- IMSA on NBC – Calvin Fish, A. J. Allmendinger, Paul Tracy, Townsend Bell, Jon Beekhuis
- Tennis on NBC – John McEnroe, Mary Carillo
- Golf Channel on NBC – Paul Azinger, Gary Koch, Justin Leonard
- Notre Dame Football on NBC – Doug Flutie, Terry McAulay
- Premier League on NBC – Lee Dixon, Graeme Le Saux, Jim Beglin, Phil Neville, Tim Howard, Geoff Cameron, Kevin Kilbane, Andy Townsend, Kyle Martino, Robbie Mustoe, Robbie Earle, Danny Higginbotham, Stephen Warnock, Alan Smith, Jamie Carragher, Gary Neville
- IAAF/USA Track & Field – Ato Boldon, Sanya Richards-Ross, Craig Masback
- FINA/USA Swimming – Rowdy Gaines
- NBC Sunday Night Football – Michele Tafoya
- NHL on NBC – Pierre McGuire, Brian Boucher, Ray Ferraro
- Olympics on NBC – Andrea Joyce, Michele Tafoya, Heather Cox
- NASCAR on NBC – Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Dave Burns, Parker Kligerman, Ralph Sheheen, Dillon Welch, Kevin Lee, Heather DeBeaux
- IndyCar Series on NBC – Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Kevin Lee, Jon Beekhuis, Robin Miller, Dillon Welch, Katie Hargitt, Anders Krohn
- IMSA on NBC – Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Dave Burns, Parker Kligerman, Jon Beekhuis, Kevin Lee, Brian Till, Dillon Welch
- Golf Channel on NBC – Roger Maltbie, Mark Rolfing, Notah Begay III
- Notre Dame Football on NBC – Kathryn Tappen
- IAAF/USA Track & Field – Lewis Johnson, Todd Harris
- FINA/USA Swimming – Michele Tafoya, Ahmed Fareed
- Football Night in America – Liam McHugh, Mike Tirico
- NHL on NBC – Liam McHugh, Kathryn Tappen, Paul Burmeister, Mike Tirico
- Olympics on NBC – Mike Tirico, Alex Flanagan, Lester Holt, Liam McHugh, Al Michaels, Jimmy Roberts
- NASCAR on NBC – Krista Voda
- IndyCar Series on NBC – Mike Tirico, Krista Voda
- Golf Channel on NBC – Jimmy Roberts
- Notre Dame Football on NBC – Liam McHugh
- Premier League on NBC – Rebecca Lowe, Liam McHugh, Arlo White
- National Dog Show – John O'Hurley
- Football Night in America – Tony Dungy, Mike Florio, Rodney Harrison, Chris Simms
- NHL on NBC – Mike Milbury, Keith Jones, Jeremy Roenick, Anson Carter, Brian Boucher
- NASCAR on NBC – Kyle Petty, Dale Jarrett, A. J. Allmendinger
- IndyCar Series on NBC – Anders Krohn, Robin Miller, Danica Patrick, Dale Earnhardt Jr., A. J. Allmendinger
- Notre Dame Football on NBC – Chris Simms
- Premier League on NBC – Phil Neville, Robbie Mustoe, Robbie Earle, Kyle Martino
- Thursday Night Football - Al Michaels, Mike Tirico
- Major League Baseball on NBC – Mel Allen, Bob Costas, Dick Enberg, Joe Garagiola, Sr., Curt Gowdy, Bryant Gumbel, Lindsey Nelson, Vin Scully, Bob Wolff
- NBA on NBC – Greg Gumbel, Dick Enberg, Don Criqui, Mike Breen, Bob Neal, Curt Gowdy, Dan Hicks, Paul Sunderland, Jim Lampley
- NHL on NBC – Tim Ryan, Dave Strader
- NASCAR on NBC – Bill Weber, Allen Bestwick
- IndyCar Series on NBC – Bob Jenkins, Brian Till, Bob Varsha, Bill Weber
- IMSA on NBC – Allen Bestwick, Bill Weber
- MLS on NBC – John Strong, Steve Cangialosi, Richard Fleming
- Thoroughbred Racing on NBC – Tom Durkin
- Golf Channel on NBC – Dan Hicks
- Notre Dame Football on NBC – Don Criqui, Dick Enberg, Tom Hammond
- NBC SportsWorld – Paul Page
- The Championships, Wimbledon – Dick Enberg
- Formula One – Leigh Diffey, Bob Varsha
- NFL on NBC – Merlin Olsen, Paul Maguire, Phil Simms, Bob Trumpy, Len Dawson, Al DeRogatis
- Major League Baseball on NBC – Joe Morgan
- NBA on NBC – Bill Walton, Matt Guokas, Doug Collins, Quinn Buckner, Tom Tolbert, Dan Issel, Chuck Daly, Cotton Fitzsimmons, Julius Erving, Steve "Snapper" Jones
- NHL on NBC – Ted Lindsay, Bill Clement, John Davidson
- NASCAR on NBC – Benny Parsons, Wally Dallenbach, Jr.
- IndyCar on NBC – Robbie Buhl, Jon Beekhuis, Wally Dallenbach, Jr., Dan Wheldon, Sam Hornish Jr., David Hobbs, Steve Matchett
- MLS on NBC – Brian Dunseth, Stuart Holden, Shep Messing, Robbie Russell
- Golf Channel on NBC – Johnny Miller
- Notre Dame Football on NBC – Pat Haden, Mike Mayock
- College Basketball on NBC – Al McGuire, Billy Packer
- Formula One – David Hobbs, Steve Matchett
- Tour de France – Paul Sherwen
- NBC Sunday Night Football – Andrea Kremer
- Thursday Night Football – Heather Cox
- Major League Baseball on NBC – Bob Costas
- NBA on NBC – Jim Gray
- NASCAR on NBC – Bill Weber, Allen Bestwick, Matt Yocum, Mike Massaro
- Olympics on NBC – Melissa Stark, Lesley Visser, Chris Wragge, Craig Sager, Marty Snider
- Notre Dame Football on NBC – Lewis Johnson, Alex Flanagan
- The Championships, Wimbledon – Bud Collins
- French Open – Bud Collins
- Formula One – Will Buxton, Townsend Bell
- NFL on NBC – Gayle Gardner, Bryant Gumbel, Greg Gumbel, Jim Lampley, Bob Costas
- Major League Baseball on NBC – Bill Macatee
- NBA on NBC – Hannah Storm
- NHL on NBC – Russ Thaler
- Olympics on NBC – Bob Costas, Dick Enberg, Gayle Gardner, Curt Gowdy, Bryant Gumbel, Greg Gumbel, Jim Lampley, Dan Patrick
- NASCAR on NBC – Bill Weber, Brian Williams
- IndyCar Series on NBC – Kevin Lee
- MLS on NBC – Russ Thaler
- Notre Dame Football on NBC – Hannah Storm
- Premier League – Russ Thaler
Presidents and chairmenEdit
- CBS Sports – sports division of CBS Corporation
- ESPN Inc. – joint venture between The Walt Disney Company and Hearst Communications
- Fox Sports – sports division of Fox Corporation
- Stadium – joint venture between Sinclair Broadcast Group and Silver Chalice
- Turner Sports – sports division of WarnerMedia News & Sports
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- "NBC's Final Medal Count: 190 Million Olympic Viewers". Multichannel News. March 1, 2010.
- "Olympic Hockey Gold Medal Game Viewed by Most in U.S. Since '80". Business Week. March 1, 2010.
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- "NBC embarks on tighter relationship with Sky Sports to enhance Premier League coverage". WorldSoccerTalk.com. Retrieved August 9, 2019.
- NBC did not provide live event coverage due to the U.S.-led boycott.
- "Spike TV's deal with PBC has reached its end". ESPN.com. April 12, 2017.
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- "Former Chairman of NBC Sports Group Dick Ebersol, USOC CMO Lisa Baird to be Honored at 2012 PromaxBDA Sports Marketing Summit & Awards". Yahoo! (Press release). October 17, 2012. Retrieved November 15, 2012.[permanent dead link]
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