Eric Black was named Chief Technology Officer of NBC Sports Group Digital in 2015. Black manages all IP-delivered platforms for NBC Sports Digital, including its numerous websites, applications and connected devices. He also oversees NBC Sports’ Playmaker Media, a separate business which provides end-to-end video support service for companies in need of best-in-class live streaming and VOD solutions.
Under Black’s leadership, NBC Sports Digital and Playmaker Media have streamed some of the most prestigious properties in sports, including six Olympic Games, three Super Bowls, Sunday Night Football – primetime television’s No. 1 show — the National Hockey League, Premier League, National Basketball Association, NASCAR, the Triple Crown, Notre Dame Football, MLB and the Open Championship, among many others. The systems built by Black have focused on both high concurrent traffic and scale, and now operate on more than 20,000 events per year, resulting in billions of consumed minutes.
In addition to the tens of thousands of events that air each year across NBC, NBCSN, Golf Channel, Telemundo, NBCUniverso and six NBC Sports Regional networks, Playmaker Media provided streaming video solutions for the Presidential debates and 2016 election coverage for NBC News. The service currently provides end-to-end services for the Olympic Channel, the International Olympic Committee’s global digital platform. In 2017, Black pioneered a partnership between Playmaker and iStreamPlanet, owned by Turner. Together, the two companies delivered digital services for many of sports’ biggest events: Telemundo Deportes’ coverage of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia; CBS and Turner Sports’ March Madness coverage; Super Bowl LII; and the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang, Korea.
NBC Sports Digital’s streaming coverage of Super Bowl LII peaked at 3.1 million concurrent viewers, making it the largest domestic streaming sports event in history. The 2018 PyeongChang Olympics also set Winter Games records, streaming 1.85 billion live minutes and 2.17 billion total minutes. Telemundo’s World Cup coverage shattered all Spanish language records in the United States, garnering the most live streamed match in Spanish-language history (Mexico v Sweden, 6.9 million live minutes).
A 20-year veteran of the digital video/live streaming industry, Black and his team were instrumental in NBC Sports Digital’s success during the Rio Olympic Games, which set streaming records with 3.3 billion total minutes, 2.71 billion live minutes and 100 million unique users. It remains the largest digital even in history.
Black joined NBCUniversal as a webmaster for NBC New York’s website, wnbc.com, in June 2000. In 2010, as Director of Digital Operations for NBC Sports, he managed the first-ever live stream of Super Bowl XLVI. He was promoted to Vice President, Technology, for NBC Sports and NBC Olympics in 2012.
Black has been recognized with seven Emmy awards, the Olympic Golden Rings for the Games of the XXXI Olympiad on NBC, and the Edward R. Murrow Award for 9/11 coverage in 2004. In addition, he was honored with the 2013-2014 technology and engineering Emmy Award for Pioneering Delivery of Pay TV Linear Video to Consumer Owned and Managed Devices Over an IP Connection.