Wednesday, April 05, 2017

ESPN aims to drive ratings lower

ESPN Ombudsman: "New ESPN guidelines recognize connection between sports, politics."

Oh goody.  There's nothing that illuminates a Red Sox game like a discussion of Black Lives Matter.  This is why I watch most sports with the volume muted.


Bram said...

Do they recognize the connection between politics and me changing channels?

Roger Bournival said...

What Bram said - I watch sports in part to get away from politics.

Horrible new development said...

So... George W. Bush's 2001 World Series pitch was inspirational, and the NFL pulled the 1990 Super Bowl out of Arizona because of the dry heat, and Rick Monday was a hero for grabbing that flag, and Jesse Owens was an even bigger hero, and it was a disgrace when ESPN fired Curt Schilling, and Tommie Smith and John Carlos were either a disgrace or an inspiration, and Muhammad Ali presumably took a 3 1/2-year vacation to go clamming in New Hampshire, and Whitney Houston's F-16-punctuated Super Bowl anthem was stirring, and it was 100 times more awesome when Joe Louis knocked out Max Schmeling than when he'd knocked out Harry Thomas two months earlier, and Augusta National Golf Club would've admitted blacks and women eventually anyway, and America cheered for Bobby Fischer only because they love a good Ruy Lopez Opening, and voters supported Jim Bunning and Bill Bradley and Jack Kemp and Steve Largent and Jesse Ventura because of their positions on tariffs and school zoning, and Billie Jean King just beat some old dude, who didn't see that coming, and the 1966 NCAA college basketball championship game was all about dribbling and shot selection, and those cut-in shots of soldiers in Afghanistan cheering the Patriots and Falcons may have been inserted by hackers, and Jackie Robinson was just a good infielder, and football fans always adored Pat Tillman, and what was all that fuss about the 1980 U.S. hockey team?

But shame on ESPN for injecting politics into the virgin territory of sport.

Eric said...

Conservatives hate ESPN now... and the History Channel, and Nicktoons, and USA, and the Disney Channel, and CMT, and Discovery, and TBS, and FX, and Syfy, and A&E, and Animal Planet, and the Weather Channel, and the Food Network, and... said...

Breitbart has a sports section -- Breitbart has a sports section -- but ESPN must completely ignore politics. Because.

Here's another look at ESPN's liberal death spiral, its uniqueness, and how it's all thanks to shoving politics in viewers' faces:

More than 70 percent of the most widely distributed channels have lost subscribers in the last year, according to Nielsen data. Most television network owners have a channel that has done as bad or worse than ESPN's percentage loss since December 2015.

Overall, the number of households with cable or satellite hookups in the U.S. fell by 1.6 percent — those are people who disconnected entirely, so that figure represents a sort of minimum loss for widely distributed networks like ESPN (if you're already in every cable household, there's nowhere to go but down).

What makes ESPN unique among cable networks is the extremely high fees it charges distributors to offer the channel to customers. While that high price can be attributed to unique costs related to sports programming, it has also made the channel a target in slimmed down cable packages that aim to offer cheaper bundles with more personalized options.

As of November, [ESPN]'s average Nielsen viewership numbers for the year (viewers aged 18 to 49) showed a drop of about 10 percent. Again, that's not outstandingly bad — about a quarter of channels did worse than that, and ESPN is still the No. 1 network — but it looks bad when you're charging $7.21 per month per subscriber. That's nearly four times more than the next most expensive channel, TNT at $1.82.