ESPN Apocalypse is today


#101

MLB has positioned itself very well if cable collapses. Having MLBN in place (and also a cut of WWE’s network which they host) means they’ll still be able to monetize (and getting rid of the blackouts would kill FOX RSN’s)

Sports fan political biases are generational- the older sports fans are incredibly conservative, the younger ones have a social conscience- for my uni, the only thing the two blogs can agree on is hatred of Cheater Hill- one skews full-on Trumpist, the other is very liberal.


#102

I find the social media stuff a real turn off for me.

Recently Sky Sports have made big changes to their daily programs and news. We have the twitter wall and feed and all the other social media crap we get. I really don’t want to know what sport stars are tweeting at all. All I want to know is how they feel they preformed not good luck to AJ fighting Klitchko and all the other inane stuff they put out these days.

Yes they have to fill 24/7 so it isn’t that easy but it just makes me switch it off.

On a Saturday they have a show called Soccer Saturday with a presenter and 4 ex players and to be fair they just talk about who they think we will win and why or why they will lose and it works, nothing about who ate what for breakfast and what shows they watched last night. My kids love it and we feel it is closer to what we want from a sports show.

There is also too many reporters who seem to think they are important asking more inane questions or questions that are meant to rile the person being interviewed rather than get the right interesting and relevant information out. As soon as Bryan Swanson, Jim White, Gary Cotterill and Kaveh Solhekol appear the mute or swap channel button is pressed.

The thing is it’s the information I am interested in and relevant information at that not the presenters and not them or their opinions which is also another issue. Too many opinions based on very little fact or data being put out there are true and relevant. Really we should call it chinese whispers or rumours. Explaining to my kids why what they just heard is very very unlikely to happen and why, is the norm these days.

More and more I find myself just watching the actual matches and skipping everything else and getting relevant information from reputable sources online.


#103

That’s what I’ve always done, really. Partly because my soccer team is rarely on TV, and I don’t care about the Premiership. So it’s not an issue for that sport - I just don’t watch it on TV at all. I catch the highlights of Oxford matches on Youtube. As for the other sports I follow, it’s all streaming, and I just watch the games. MLB.tv and NFL Gamepass are great if you’re overseas.


#104

FS1 is far from an established brand, it’s not even 4 years old. I doubt ESPN uses them as a benchmark for their performance.


#105

I can assure you 100% that ESPN benchmarks itself against FS1, FS2, and NBCSN among others on viewership, ratings, retention, and demographics.


#106

What pisses me off, is there should be some tie-in between the MLB app my cable subscription, I have ths channel to watch Red Sox games. Why can’t I watch it on my tablet?


#107

The Fox regionals allow you to do this with the Fox Sports Go app, fwiw, so it sounds more like a NESN issue. You could always switch to PS Vue (which carries NESN and works on mobile platforms) and join us in the cord cutters topic :)


#108

If you have a non-fox network, it’s up to them, you could (or could not) be SOL.


#109

Ratings are down for that time slot but it matches the overall network trend. I am not sure if that means it ‘tanked’.


#110

Fair enough, but that’s shooting low. “They are doing worse” seems like a great excuse for believeing you have nothing to fix about your own network.

From what I’ve seen over the last few years, the worldwide leader in sports appears to have found sports kind of dull and unsatisfying, and have made a point of firing people who are unduly focused on sports and keeping the “culture” folks.

I don’t think we are too far away from “I’m old enough to remember when ESPN covered sports” being as true as “I’m so old I remember when MTV showed music videos.”


#111

Seppy is exactly right – Sports TV Ratings have tracked it since it opened and it follows that trend.


#112

Apropos of nothing, Clay Travis is terrible.

I wonder what the falling sub numbers do to ad dollars but I guess we can’t see that except as reflected in falling revenues. Or I guess I should say “I wonder what the calculus looks like when juggling falling add dollars with adding more ads”. If I’m the SEC, I’m definitely worried that ESPN is going to overcompensate by one-upping the already godawful amount of commercials on the CBS 3pm games. Just kidding! if I’m the SEC I don’t give a shit either way as long as I get paid. My problems aren’t going to land for awhile yet, but they are coming. Eh, we’ll think of something! If I am the Big Ten, I feel pretty good about my network but I am seriously unsure about how that move to add Rutgers and Maryland is really going to help since it was all predicated on TV dollars. Nobody is ever going to care about Maryland and Rutgers playing for the Lapis Lazuli Oyster Bucket or whatever the fuck Tom Delaney claims is the prize for that long standing “rivalry”.

ESPN tried to turn college hoops into a national sport and for all the money the dance brings in, I wonder if that hurt them more in the long run as ratings for regular season games went down over time I think. They’re trying to do the same thing for college football, which is going to tank harder I suspect. In the short term they’ll fix the problem via playoff expansion. In the long term, it’s a much uglier picture and that’s before the kids start getting paid (although there remains an easy and free fix to help there that the NCAA has not yet taken: allow kids to profit from their own likness. This doesn’t fix all problems nor does it mena there won’t be a bigger battle over TV revenue later, but it doesn’t cost anybody anything worth mentioning and the kids - the stars anyway - will start getting some serious compensation). That’s going to make the schools more desperate, certainly. Put two desperate parties together and I’m not sure what comes out but it won’t be good.


#113

You misunderstand me.

I have no problem with pro athletes making scads of money. I don’t even have an issue with many very good pro basketball players making $15-20 million (as they recently have).

I DO have a problem with non-superstar basketball players making max money 30 million dollar deals because of this ESPN money. (To be clear: Lebron is underpaid). But by the time this summer is over, there will be another ~15 players making 30 million max money deal their talents really don’t deserve. That’s about $10 million of their $30 million that comes solely from this ridiculous rights deal.

That ESPN now can’t afford to pay for.


#114

My bad – I can get behind what you’re saying.


#115

The players don’t negotiate the tv contracts, the league does. The rights don’t go up because salaries go up. If the players who you believe are overpaid were paid half the only difference would be that the owners would keep that much more money. They aren’t going to charge less. The rights wouldn’t be cheaper in the auctions. Mark Cuban would just be even more rich. Your cable would not be cheaper. NCAA rights aren’t cheap because the players are unpaid.


#116

I never want to tell someone not to get paid, but the side effect of the TV Deal cash is that it made some average-to-good guys command max deals just because any number of lousy teams could then also throw the max at that guy. THAT aspect of it I’m ok with scrutinizing.


#117

If TV pays the NBA X number of dollars, and the players get a percentage of X, why would I care what a player gets paid? Where else should the money go? You want the NBA to give it back to the networks? What is there to scrutinize?


#118

So you think Caitlyn Jenner is a sports story? Caitlyn Jenner is a fucking reality TV show spinoff. Why is this on ESPN? Why did Caitlyn Jenner win an ESPY? Absurd.

Look at that shit. Why does ESPN have a story called “Five Poets on the New Feminism” on their site? What the fuck does that have to do with sports? Set aside the fact that one of the poems was a tribute to a cop killer on the lamb in Cuba. Do you think Joe Sixpack is coming to ESPN to read about “New Feminism”? LOL the fuck?

One market. But in a swing state, it stands to reason that this shift is happening in other markets. ESPN’s left turn is hurting them, and the recent talent cuts show that they are doubling down. Like I said, ESPN’s biggest problem is that they overpaid for live rights and cord-cutting is killing them. But going out of their way to insert left-wing commentary any chance they get is only hurting them further.


#119

Yeah, why can’t these freaks go back into their closets and leave us normal folks alone ?? No one wants to see that shit. Especially not the thousands and thousands of kids that feel something’s wrong with them because they never see anyone else in the same situation as them, or their parents wouldn’t support them if they tried to talk to them, and they’re getting bullied every fucking day of their lives because they’re different. Yeah! Don’t need any weird athletes wearing dresses and shit and interrupting my NASCAR coverage. Fuck that!


#120

I don’t know how old you are, Olaf, but to 8-year old me, Bruce Jenner was a true American hero. She is a sports icon and so any story involving her is a legitimate sports story. Her coming out as Caitlyn was a brave step that brought a critical issue to light and ESPN should be lauded for honoring her, not vilified.