Harder to find, however, were clips of comic Rob Schneider appearing on NBC's "The Tonight Show" as "Lindsay" last Tuesday. The "Deuce Bigalow" star was a last-minute stand-in for LiLo when her arrest prevented her from appearing on Jay Leno's couch to plug her new movie, "I Know Who Killed Me." The full 11 minutes of the wig-and-flask interview cropped up on the usual sites (YouTube, Defamer, TMZ, etc.) the following morning, but one by one the clips disappeared as NBC demanded they come down. By midday Wednesday, the network site was referring users to TMZ, which had only a two-minute highlight reel. Finally, around 6 p.m., NBC put up its own truncated version on NBC.com. It clocked in at a scant 47 seconds -- plus a 12-second pre-roll commercial, which required even more patience from consumers already combing the web to find the whole interview.
While the "Tonight Show" comment board was lit up with 33 remarks up by Thursday afternoon, there's no denying that NBC could've gotten much more out of its latest buzz-worthy clip. If "Lazy Sunday" proved there's an appetite for network-produced short-form programming on the web, why is the blogosphere still the best judge of what folks want to see? NBC seemed to be taking a leadership stance when it announced a joint venture with News Corp. to develop a YouTube competitor, complete with streaming clips and full-length episodes of each company's content. But if the partners in "NewCo," as the nameless site is colloquially known, can't be the first to host their own videos, YouTubers and MySpacers will keep beating them to it -- without an ad model. Isn't the whole point of getting advertisers onboard so you can maximize the potential audience for entertainment together?
It's quite possible that NewCo CEO Jason Kilar and NBC Chief Digital Officer George Kliavkoff are working overtime to make sure this changes for the new joint venture, which still doesn't have a launch date. But if they wait too long, they're going to get drowned out by a legion of web users who already know where to find their favorite videos. Just ask Lindsay.