vigrande 50 mg puretone stethoscope company profile comprar pastillascytotec fluoxetine 10mg for cats rogaine for women before and after pictures where can i get prednisone buy tamoxifenpaypal doxepin side effects drug spironolactone for cheap zyvox patient assistance program morphine pills 15mg buy prednisolone online for pet advair no prescription nizoral cream atepros 5mg paxil for anxiety getting nolva in australia omaggio olive oil private reserve flooring topamax dosage for weight loss migraine sky pharmacy online yasmine petty as a man oxaprost precio en chihuahua moduretic drugstore erectile dysfunction pills free samples purchase viagra no prescription free viagra no script needed cardinal bank virginia metallica black album wallpaper aggrenox side effects capsule myambutol medication dictionary zantac coupons $5 nike air max 2012 on sale mometasone furoate cream usp .1 qsymia coupon for 15mg using latisse for eyebrows finasteride 1 mg online pharmacy drus on line mexico vasotec medication side effects sunsuria avenue badminton court dimension avelox antibiotic for uti diamox sequels generic longterm use of baclofen allopurinol side effects300mg styplon himalaya products benadryl ingredients medicines substitute for micardis duroval sildenafil generic kamagra oral jelly paypal strongest viagra suprax 400mg dosage purchase accutane keflex 500mg cephalexin dose research chemicals levitra cialis viagra which is better ez online pharmacy buy viagra usa ciacil tablets with keyboards cheap prednisone without prescription nizoral shampoo hair loss reviews how to buy nexium 40 mg sildegra tablets extenze review blood flow chambers finasteride dosage for bph buy 200 mg doryx www veskimetsa ee flagyl 500mg antibiotic buy fluoxetine hcl 10mg for dogs cholesterol diet menu benfotiamine walgreens my prescription cialis sumycin 500mg to g amlodipine besylate 10mg norvasc naproxen medication information avapro side effects weight gain oracea side effects doxycycline hyclate metformin by echeck generic plavix release omifin 50mg dosis nexium side effects symptoms forum esomeprazole lipitor by mail metformin weight loss reviews allegra coupons in sunday paper colcrys 0.6mg price hydroxyzine pamoate 50mg used for pletal medication side effects where to buy erythromycin keftab vs keflex antibiotic information clindamycin phosphate topical lotion viagra in kolkata vigrande nedir ne morphine pills identification femara without prescription where can i buy pain pills is there a generic form of optimmune eye ointment for dogs pulmicort nebulizer dose hydrodiuril dosage albuterol side effects in children red cheeks buy mirtazapine uk canada cialis price international order propecia levitra professional online cheapest alli tablets himcolin review journal las vegas asthma treatment guidelines 2015 clozapine drug class buy viagra in playa del carmen 214 viagra indian market aspirin ingredients bayer bentovate c to buy terramycin ophthalmic ointment vibramycin 100mg price warfarin rat poison order synthroid 125 mcg online generic vasodilan supplier the canadian pharmacy trazodone order on line online order for pfizer dilantin 100 mg clonidine medication 0.1mg cialis generika aus deutschland ed prescription aviane birth control side effects weight gain voltaren side effects medication garlic clove benefits cefaclor dispersible tablets apcalis complaints against attorneys methotrexate shortage cleocin antibiotic for sinus infection pain meds without prescription duphaston tablets vega 100mg rx online tetracyline no presp cialis 5 mg 28 compresse costo elavil for migraines drug xatral od10xeloda how to buy propecia in hongkong where to buy viagra in calgary celecoxib capsules side effects therapy dog training ohio on line pharmacy france himcolin gel how to use in hindi ventolin expectorant capsule viagra next day delivery uk voltaren gel side effects medication legal viagra usa buy alesse without prescription cheapest india finasteride aspirin for sale online in the phils cialis proper dosage amoxil australia minoxidil 10 uk combinar cialis con levitra online viagra without prescription buy meds online from india estrace 1mg cream aricept and namenda combination therapy what is malegra 25 como conseguir citotec en usa furolin nitrofurantoina shop provera online antabuse without scrip discount topamax dosage for migraines zithromax for ngu for sale cabaser tablets scored maxaman ingredients walmart cialis prices without insurance pentrexyl ampicillin doses z pack antibiotic online lopid side effects treatment tamoxifen breast cancer prophylaxis trazodone overdose how much leponex tablete ieftine duvadilan indications tablets elavil for sleep reviews ditropan xl 10mg cialis super p force pharmacies abilify 2 5 mg safe and secure tadalafil 5mg kosovarja gazeta nizagara tablets india pharmacy online canada best places to buy chlomid maxalt generic cialis 40 mg reviews etodolac 500 mg tablet side effects us pharmaceuticals liquid viagra penicillin for std for sale online diltiazem er orderpharma ukulele sotalol side effects betapace vs betapace sale of viagra in malaysia prostata sintomas y prevencion de enfermedades keflex 500mg cephalexin for uti treatment grifulvin griseofulvin pediatric dose l441 blue pill no prescription viagra sidle fail albuterol nebulizer treatment for children cipla mumbai india viagra online australia paypal amantadina nombres comerciales de prednisona vigara shipped in three days septra ds 800 160 tablets prednisone to order in usa safe source to buy cialis getpharma pakistan army tadarise 60mgtadifiltafidiltantalum zoloft dosages and side effects diane keaton michael douglas movie fast shipping for lasix tadalafil soft gel capsule alesse from canada cefixime side effects in children avana stonebriar address buy viagra in prague duvadilan side effects to baby allopurinol side effects muscle pain motilium prospect naproxen 500mg uses images tab cabgolin tablet clavaseptin 50mg equals lose weight gerenic zanaflex online canada pharmacy wellbutrin xl vs sr pet meds canada no rx confido price diclobru tablets at walmart medicare viagra nosipren and back pain relief tadalafil dapoxetine tablets india cytotec side effects abortion propecia cheapest price fluconozole dogs orlistat lesofat ceftin side effects heart when will viagra prices go down colchine medication 6mg no rx atrovent nebulizer cyrux medicine cabinet vistaril medication classification adipex reviews drugs tizanidine street value diabecon ingredients in beer what is arthrotec 50 mg used for motilium 10mg espanol kamagra now closed elavil for sleep aid on line pharmacy viagra viagra en poudre pour femme easy way to buy viagra canadian pharmacy testosterone cialis mail order from canada pravachol medication coupons approved canadian pharmacies online mincorp mining games kosovarja numri i ri metrogel and pregnancy levitra without rx in the united states buy liquid nolvadex viagra websites cialis online singapore express shipping tinidazol testosterone pills etodolac er 500 mg tablet increasing metabolism after 40 roxifen gel nail lergigan biverkningar blodtrycksmedicin generic cialis canadian pharmacy fucidin hydrocortisone zovirax online cialas reduced price levaquin vs zithromax for sinus infection good sites to buy viagra rx hotline septra suspension dosage for children digoxina 0 25 medameds rapidshare free zyban wellbutrin difference cholesterol tests kits buy lisinopril online no prescription tinazol creamytinidazoltofranil euthyrox 50 mg accutane for acne zithromax dosage for children lasix side effects dogs restonite ambien side morphine sulfate er 100mgmotilium is nymphomax available in kerala imitrex generic dosage how much are viagra pills baclofen 20 mg tablets trusted us pharmacy buy vigraus today milnacipran generic drugs medicine to gain weight cataflam zithromax vytorin generic substitutes canadian online pharmacyambien generic viagra legal us order cipla drugs adalat sony tv serial latest episode prednisone 10mg dose pack directions phentermine adipex 37.5 dapoxetine dosage instructions moduretic drug androgel side effects in women extenze side effects enhance manhood instantly prednisona contraindicaciones delprednisone forzest ranbaxy lipitor supradol sublingual dosis esomeprazole 40 mg sale rocket power handshake skelaxin 800 mg side effects happy shop sildenafil colchicine tablets availability prandin medication side effects is indocin for gout dangerous to take bevispas 135 mg daily order clonidine online from canada cialis generico eprex erythropoietin meclizine 12.5 mg for vertigo indomethacin gout treatment side effects rx list prednisolone buy online cicloferon aciclovir doses vistaril medication hydroxyzine pamoate is lumigan 0.03 discontinued pyrocaps 20 mg adderall want to buy levitra benicar hct lexapro dosage for anxiety no rx drugs from india metoprolol tartrate vs succinate mebendazole 100mg vermox long term esomeprazole side effects amantadina clorhidrato de ambroxol myambutol medication identification revatio vs viagra where to buy genuine alli cafergot in target pharmacy levaquin lawsuit settlements amounts free printable prilosec otc coupons clavamox without a prescription buy stendra monidem gel listaflex carisoprodol generika apotheke deutschland combitic global levaquin sale disgrasil orlistat precious stones zantac vs prilosec for babies maxalt side effects tablets leukeran drug addiction ciprofloxacin no prescription hcl xalatan 0.005 prezzi tadalafil doxazosin 8 mg tablets aricept side effects treatment tamsulosin y ibuprofen reglan 10mg uses ranbaxy atorvastatin recall express scripts very inexpensive brand name valium only proventil hfa inhaler patient assistance trimetabol sirop de muguri buy canadian metformin pregnisone pills from uk alfuzosin uroxatral 10 mg zyloprim contraindications definition trazadone online overnight morphine withdrawal time tryptizol 25mg viagra metformina efectos secundarios ivermectin wormer for swine renagel medication buy babyliss online canada propecia hair loss women revista infancia y aprendizaje fanegada wikia stilnox side effects medicines during pregnancy prilosec otc side effects chest pain ed meds online discount paypal buy bactrim without a prescription buy viagra from thailand online can you get high off meloxicam 7 5 mg priligy pastillas para la eyaculacion precoz tiene order suprax no prescription indinavir crystals for healing rxdrugstore phentermine reviews lincocin injection dosage cialas 800 mg levitra buy ornidazole and ofloxacin astelin usual dosage paxil online buying overnight delivery zenska viagra nebivolol 5mg side effects pham discount medication tetracycline walgreens dosage enalapril for dogs heart failure promethazine 25mg medication use lasuna jewelry armoire lidocaine and prilocaine cream for sunburn vidalta 10mg vicodin levitra 20mg content marketing strategy over the counter allopurinol tramadol hcl 50 mg tablet pictures norstan inc pleasant prairie wi outlet mexican online pharmacy 1 retin a lantus patient assistance phone numbers free doxycap tablets computers www ptfer viagra acnelyse gelila 1 800 numbers for viagra order tadalis sx no prescription buy medicene from india periactin sold in uk pharmacy atacand hctz order fluoxetine online amikacin peak and trough timesamitripamoxil imovane zopiclone medication diamox medication for migraines cheap viagra for sale fast shipping discount drugs motilium 10mg suppository cialis for performance anxiety v t logistics lasix viagra naturally australia dapoxetine online buy robaxin without a script no perscription pharmacy viagra cialis online pharmacy tamsulosin 0 4mg atomoxetine or strattera has anyone bought viagra online insulin syringes 3/10 8mm 31g levitra vs viagra vs cialis reviews safeway pres refills viagra canada paypal buy genuine cialis uk clozapine monitoring teva sort tabs viagra viagra soft 50 mg johnkay discover card customer service liquid cialis for sale generic aricept no prescription ketazol venezuela map buying tinidazole saw palmetto weight gain si te perdoret viagra myambutol ethambutol side polarmeds reviews on garcinia lasix on line clomid success stories on first round starcef capsulectomy buy online levitra cialas from turkey phenergan dm cough syrup buy tenormin from mexico norfloxacin 400mg en colombia france ethylex insurance quotes for motorcycles valium vs xanax vs klonopin mexican z pack viagra regular diclofenac 75mg dr tab overnight viagra cytotec no rx carafate 1gm 10ml suspension side effects dianabol side effects in women lumigan 0.01 rebate suhagra 500 temovate cream 0 05 uses for epsom blood pressure medication on internet metrogel for rosacea redness can i buy antibiotics online melink rx brand mebendazole treatment for humans where to buy malegra online meprate to start period faster claravis side effects treatment sumycin 500 mg naproxen dapoxetine 60 mg avapro side effects doctor buy fliagra with a mastercard john samonas and sons exelon myhr comprar accutane in usa propranolol for anxiety treatment analgin tablets cephalexin 500mg sample clomid ovulation day kamagra jelly ebay uk my ebay bactroban ointment for boils olanzapine medication viagra for sale in northern ireland metallica black album track list leukeran drug emporium canada qsymia certified pharmacies how to buy omifin naproxen sodium side effects rash cialis generika
Home Pete Toms MLB Network Vs. Other League Networks

Like Shoot to Thrill - An AC/DC Tribute on Facebook!

An authentic tribute of AC/DC that covers the best of the Bon Scott era and the best of Brian Johnson's material

Who's Online?

We have 611 guests online

Atom RSS

MLB Network Vs. Other League Networks PDF Print E-mail
User Rating: / 24
PoorBest 
Pete Toms Article Archive
Written by Pete Toms   
Friday, 04 December 2009 12:36

MLB NetworkOn January 1st of this year, MLB became the last of the “Big 4” to launch their own TV channel with the debut of MLB Network (MLBN). The initial year of MLBN has been deemed a success by MLB officials. The channel debuted in 50 million plus homes (a record launch for a cable channel), ad revenues were reportedly strong (given the recession) and the programming received positive reviews (the addition of Bob Costas gave the channel’s journalistic credibility a major boost).

But what is the future of league owned networks? MLB’s rights deals with all three of their national TV partners (Fox, TBS and ESPN) expire in 2013. Those deals pay MLB upwards of $650 million per year. All of the “big 4” (most notably MLB and the NFL) must balance the enormous value of their national TV deals against the challenge of growing the revenues of their own channels. In a nutshell, the leagues have become competitors with their broadcast partners. Neal Pilson, former president of CBS Sports, was quoted in a recent Los Angeles Times piece by Jon Weinbach titled, “Sports league cable networks play a dangerous game”, (Leagues) "have to be aware of -- and careful not to kill -- their golden goose, What is the endgame?" In a March 2008 Q&A with The SportsBusiness Journal, Fox Sports Chairman David Hill addressed the relationship between league owned networks and their broadcast partners:

Do you see any new models in terms of how networks deal with the leagues beyond right fees?
Hill: Who knows? The modeling might change. The modeling might remain the same. I don’t know. But it’s going to be a sad day for the leagues if the current model disappears. It would require a lot of late nights on Park Avenue, with the lights burning to try and figure out what their economic structure looks like without the networks.

So then why are leagues launching NFL Network and MLB Channel to compete with you?
Hill: What’s the financial viability of the NFL Network? Do you think the NFL is going to say to the networks, “See you later. We’re going to go make our money off of the NFL Network”?

If we’re talking about 20 years, yeah, I can see that as an end goal.
Hill: It could well be in 20 years, but certainly not in the next decade. Same thing with MLB Network. Talk to David Stern. He’s had NBA Network going for what, 15 years now?

In the present, how important are these league owned cable channels? There are approximately 115 million TV households in the US. MLBN and NFL Network (easily the most widely distributed of the “big 4” channels) are available in approximately 53 million of those homes. The NFL Network launched in 2003 and only this season achieved the same level of distribution as MLBN. (more on that below) By comparison, ESPN is available in approximately 99 million homes.  Last month, The SportsBusiness Journal quoted Comcast Programming Group President Jeff Shell, “The amount of money each of the leagues is making from their network is de minimis compared to the amount of money we’re all paying for rights,…” Jon Weinbach reported in his aforementioned piece, “Networks with fewer than 70 million subscribers are generally not considered "national buys" by advertising agencies, and therefore can't generate premium rates for commercials.”

If the league owned cable channels are relatively minor players today, is that set to change in the near future? There has been much speculation that the “big 4” are concerned about the increasing dominance of ESPN in the sports TV marketplace and that the league owned channels are necessary to protect the future value of broadcast rights. Over the air broadcasters have concluded that their “ad based” model can no longer compete with the “dual revenue” (ads and carriage fees) model of cable TV. As a result, the over the air broadcasters are negotiating with cable operators over compensation for the “retransmission rights” to their local stations. In some markets, broadcasters have even threatened to “pull“ their local stations from the cable operator over “retransmission fees”. ESPN receives a monthly subscriber fee from cable operators and sat providers of upwards of $4. That before they sell a single ad. John Ourand reported last month in The Sports Business Journal:

The debate over retransmission rights — where broadcasters want cable operators to pay cash to carry their local stations — will be one of the most closely watched issues over the next year, as the two sides try to determine how high the monthly “retrans fee” should be

It’s not a stretch to suggest that the long-term future of broadcast networks as pivotal players in televised sports is at stake. If broadcasters somehow don’t add dollars to their coffers, the likelihood of big payouts during the next round of major sports TV negotiations from 2011 to 2013, which include the NFL, MLB and NHL, seems remote.

Tom Van Riper reported last month for Forbes:

The most obvious advantage to starting your own programming arm: controlling the pipeline through which your product goes out. Baseball's rights deals with ESPN and Fox both expire after the 2013 season. With new agreements to be negotiated, what's better leverage than having the option to tell a potential network partner that you can put the games on the air yourself if the price isn't right?

"You want to become a content provider, because you never know what the future holds," says Lee Berke, a New York-based sports media consultant.

Last month, John Ourand and Tripp Mickle of The SportsBusiness Journal filed a report titled Are leagues only potential ESPN rival?”from the Sports Media & Technology conference.

The sports industry continues to look for a competitor to step up and compete with ESPN, and the consensus at an industry conference last week is that only one group is poised to pose an actual threat to the sports media giant: the leagues.

The majority of attendees at last week’s conference said they believed league-owned networks were most likely to compete with ESPN.

In the same report, Dick Ebersol, Chairman NBC Sports & Olympics, remarked on the “dual revenue” advantage that ESPN has over the over the air broadcasters:

“No one in the history of media has ever opened up the new year every year knowing they have $5 billion sitting over there on the side of the room,” he said. “So anything ESPN wants, ESPN can have. Now whether that’s healthy in the long run for every sports property in America, you decide — because at a certain point in time, all of us will be out of business, and then they’ll only be there to deal with everybody, and I don’t believe the goodness of their heart is better than the goodness of anyone’s heart in this room in a situation like that.”

No doubt the “Big 4” are extremely happy about the merger of the nation’s largest cable provider Comcast with NBC Universal. Long rumoured, the deal has the potential to turn Comcast’s sports channel “Versus” into a worthy rival to ESPN. (see The Biz of Hockey report, NBCU & VERSUS: An Alternative to ESPN?) Although regulatory approval of the merger is expected to take at least a year and likely more, the impact on the sports broadcast industry is potentially huge. Earlier this week Richard Sandomir reported in The New York Times:

Comcast would have to decide to spend what is necessary to lure viewers from ESPN and ESPN2 by acquiring bigger events, like the Olympics, Major League Baseball, the N.F.L., Nascar and the N.B.A. — properties on a tier above its current rights to IndyCar, the Professional Bull Riders, Mountain West Conference football and mixed martial arts.

AND

So, if Comcast is serious financially and qualitatively, it and NBC could turn Versus into a credible rival. It could turn Versus into a network that would provide cable operators (like Comcast) leverage in negotiations with ESPN.

It might also make leagues giddy, knowing they could potentially juggle large-scale bids from Versus.

“You can see that the leagues must be concerned about the next round of negotiations,” said Randy Falco, the former president of the NBC Universal Television Group. “They’re asking, ‘Where’s the money coming from?’ Less and less over the next 10 years will it come from the broadcast networks, so they’re looking for an alternative.”

In the immediate future, the league owned cable channels will attempt to add subscribers, which in turn boosts ad revenues. Adding subscribers has proven a difficult challenge for the league owned channels. Cable operators have been pushing back against the rising cost of sports programming with lengthy battles ensuing over the relegation of sports channels to “sports tiers” as opposed to the more deeply penetrated “basic tiers”. The NFL and MLB have opted for different approaches in their negotiations with cable and sat providers.

As previously noted, NFL Network only reached the same level of distribution as MLBN this season, despite launching six years earlier. Despite the relatively minor availability of the channel, in 2006 the NFL gave their network the sole right to broadcast 8 regular season games. (Played on a Thursday or Saturday) The league reportedly rejected a $400 million plus offer from Comcast for the 8 game package, convinced that demand for the games would incite fans to pressure their cable providers to add NFL Network to their line ups. Comcast (the nation’s largest cable provider) responded by moving the channel to a more expensive and less penetrated “tier”. A court battle and bitter public relations campaign ensued until this season when the two sides came to an agreement. A resolution was reached as a result of the NFL lowering their carriage fee for the channel and the launch of the NFL’s RedZone channel, a companion “Sunday look in” product tailored to the “fantasy” fan. Cable operators had long argued that DirecTV had an unfair advantage in programming the NFL as the exclusive provider of “Sunday Ticket”, long a hit with “fantasy” fans. The new agreement has resulted in an additional 11 million subscribers for NFL Network, 53 million as opposed to 42 million last season.

Select Read More to see why MLB Network's model has been a success compared to other league-owned networks

MLB was able to launch MLBN in 53 million homes because they made many of the biggest cable and sat providers partners in the channel. The cable operators are obviously more motivated to program MLBN on their most popular services if they own a stake in the channel. (The NFL long argued that Comcast gave preferential treatment to sports channels that they own. I.E. The Golf Channel) MLB also made their popular out of market “Extra Innings” package available to their MLBN partners. (similar to the NFL’s recent introduction of “RedZone”) Last month, Stuart Miller reported for Multichannel News:

MLB Network, the latest entrant among the bunch, took a distinctive path to gaining distribution, selling minority ownership stakes to some of the biggest players in the game: Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications and DirecTV. Thanks to this tactic, the big leagues' network launched last January in a record 53 million homes — roughly half the TV universe. (The network also tied carriage to its out-of-market “MLB Extra Innings” package.)

“We feel really good about where we are,” said network president Tony Petitti, who credits MLB's executive vice president of business, Tim Brosnan, with the plan.

That's because in one year, MLB caught up to NFL Network, also in 53 million homes, even though the gridiron channel has been around since 2003.

Lee Berke, a sports media consultant, spoke with Tom Van Riper for the aforementioned Forbes report:

He likes MLB Network's strategy of avoiding its cable carriers' premium tiers, going for wide distribution over greater revenue per subscriber. The network debuted to a potential audience of 50 million homes in January 2009, many more than its NFL and NBA counterparts……

"A subscription service that gets $5 or $10 a channel might get only 10 million homes," says Berke. "Better to be in 50 million homes, that's how you maximize affiliate [advertising] revenue." Advertisers like predictability--knowing roughly how many viewers comprise the audience. Staying off premium channels greatly reduces the audience churn rate: People come and go from premium services all the time, while most everyone sticks with the basic services.

In fairness to the NFL, which has been widely criticized in the sports media for mishandling negotiations with the cable and sat industry over distribution of their channel, they are now in the same number of homes as MLBN. But, NFL Network charges double the carriage fee of MLBN (reportedly approx. $0.50 per sub compared to approx. $0.24 per sub) and they have not given up 1/3 of the equity in their channel to cable and satellite.

Ultimately, the league owned channels best opportunity to increase subscribers lies in increasing the number of live games they broadcast. MLBN has plans to broadcast more live games next season. Whether or not the leagues are cannibalizing the existing value of this programming to RSNs and national TV partners is a matter of debate. From Jon Weinbach’s aforementioned piece in the Los Angeles Times:

"League offices have an unhealthy belief that viewers, consumers and distributors want more of their product," said one veteran cable executive, who declined to be identified because his network is in business with all of the leagues. It’s going to be interesting to see over time how they manage that contradiction and how they manage a fair bidding process when the auctioneer is one of the bidders.”

Tim Brosnan, MLB’s Executive Vice President, Business commented last month in the SportsBusiness Journal on the subject of programming more live games on MLBN (Mr. Brosnan is credited with leading MLB’s successful negotiations with cable and sat during the MLBN launch):

MLB executives are quick to acknowledge the power of live MLB games as the surest way to expand the network. Last season, the MLB Network carried more than 50 live MLB games.

“We know from the cable networks and the broadcast networks in the sports business, it’s live events that really draw the customers in,” Brosnan said. “You can make a lot of money on syndicated shows and talk and highlights. But you draw bigger audiences on events.”

Still, Brosnan said MLB is not close to making a decision on whether to add to the channel’s live game schedule when the league’s TV contracts with ESPN, Fox and TBS end in 2013. “The biggest decisions that are going to have to be made in our industry as it relates to MLB Network is the depth and level of events that we put on our air,” he said.

Beyond building equity and reaping operating profits from these channels, there are ancillary benefits for the leagues. MLB uses MLBN to promote the WBC and the amateur draft (MLB has long sought the media attention that the drafts in the other “stick and ball” leagues generate). The NFL Network has generated significant interest in broadcasting the “scouting combine”, which ties in with promotion of the already wildly popular NFL draft.

If there is concern amongst distributors, programmers, leagues and fans that there is too much sports on television, it might be premature. Yes, the recession might be keeping more fans in front of their sets but the TV audience numbers for NFL games this season are still astounding. Yes, the Yankees were in the World Series for the first time since 2003 and there were many thrilling postseason contests but still, the TV audience numbers for the MLB playoffs were enormous. A lacklustre MLB regular season (lack of compelling playoff races), resulted in diminished ratings for FOX and ESPN while TBS ratings were stable. Perhaps more importantly, RSN ratings for regular season baseball were stable (albeit interpretation of those numbers on a macro level are made more difficult because ratings are directly tied to team performance). Going forward, whether or not broadcast networks remain a major player in TV sports, or whether or not Versus steps up to increase demand for sports programming, or whether or not the league owned networks become increasingly important, remains to be seen. What we do know is that in this era of audience fragmentation, DVRs, video games, internet and social networking, live sports remains one of the last (THE last?) media properties capable of delivering a mass audience. The last word from the aforementioned report from Multichannel News:

Most sports attract loyal viewers, mostly men in crucial demographics, and have the potential to draw big TV crowds. Live professional sports programming, especially in high definition, is the ultimate penetration driver, said Tennis Channel CEO Ken Solomon.

“It's the one thing in television that continues to defy ratings gravity,” he said.


OTHER NEWS FROM THE BUSINESS OF SPORTS NETWORK

(THE BIZ OF FOOTBALL)

(THE BIZ OF HOCKEY)

(THE BIZ OF BASKETBALL)

(SPORTS BASH)


Pete Toms is an author for the Business of Sports Network, most notably, The Biz of Baseball. He looks forward to your comments and can be contacted through The Biz of Baseball.

Don't forget to register and log in on The Biz of Baseball site to get updates via your in-box, and see information only logged in members can see.

Follow The Biz of Baseball on Twitter Twitter

FacebookFollow the Business of Sports Network on Facebook

Follow the Business of Sports Network on Facebook

 
 
Banner

Poll

Should MLB Force Jeffery Loria to Sell the Marlins?