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2.00 Regional Sports Fee?


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#151 OFFLINE   Satelliteracer

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Posted 13 February 2014 - 09:32 AM

This idea so tempted me that I just did it!!

Sure enough, all kinds of double-talk and discounts but after wading through them all there was no mention anywhere about a REGIONAL SPORTS FEE at checkout even though PRIOR to my last bill it was there! So they MUST have changed my ZIP code to not have the fee anymore.

My biggest laugh was that I told the website I only had 1 TV but wanted a Genie. It cheerfully charged me a $25 "advanced receiver fee" which when highlighting the question mark told me that whole home service was included!

I also noted that their way of giving "free HD" was a so-called $10 discount for the first 24 months.

 

EDIT:  Apologies, just realized I was responding to a message about a year old. 

 

----------------------------

 

I just did it, says Regional Sports Fee may apply.  You have to choose CHOICE package or above since Entertainment and Select do not have RSNs, thus no Sports Fee. 

 

It comes up right at step 1 when you choose your package after you put in your zip code.

 

Here's a screen shot...the regional sports fee is there at the bottom and appears on any package selection that is CHOICE or above.

 

zld7r.jpg


Edited by Satelliteracer, 13 February 2014 - 09:36 AM.

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#152 OFFLINE   Satelliteracer

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Posted 13 February 2014 - 09:35 AM

It is strange to see a regional company add an RSN fee ... one would think that they would just adjust all of their prices - similar to the way cable companies with regional pricing have been able to charge more in some areas than others for many years.

This Cablevision charge seems to be more PR based. They will raise their rates just like they do at least every year but this year they will blame part of the rate increase on sports and express it as a surcharge. Other companies (including DirecTV) adding surcharges have opened the door for carriers to charge a specific surcharge for sports.

Article: Cablevision Adds Sports Programming Surcharge To Consumer Bills

 

Remember, they are being hit by huge costs in their area as well to carry those sports channels.  These RSN fees don't even cover the actual costs in many cases, that's how crazy the programming costs are in some of these markets. 


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#153 OFFLINE   woj027

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Posted 13 February 2014 - 12:27 PM

Remember, they are being hit by huge costs in their area as well to carry those sports channels.  These RSN fees don't even cover the actual costs in many cases, that's how crazy the programming costs are in some of these markets. 

 

So, does this mean DirecTV is willing to pay more for CSN-NW or Pac-12 so folks in the Pacific Northwest can have something?  Or because there isn't a glut of teams/channels it's not worth it?

 

Or should I get a discount because DirecTV hasn't been able to negotiate all the channels for my Region (Pacific Northwest to be general), Portland, OR to be specific.  :grin:



#154 OFFLINE   CCarncross

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 11:55 AM

Kind of shady how they slipped this one in. No notice, can't remove from package, even though it's a separate charge like a receiver or a premium channel. Going to have to call and get some discounts now. Not happy.

you say no notice but its been known about for at least 2 years as evidenced by the age of this thread, and you've been a member here since 2007...



#155 OFFLINE   DawgLink

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 11:52 PM

Remember, they are being hit by huge costs in their area as well to carry those sports channels. These RSN fees don't even cover the actual costs in many cases, that's how crazy the programming costs are in some of these markets.


Which is ashame but should not be our problem as customers.....especially those not interested in that specific area or sport.

DirecTV should not be paying such ridiculous feed anyway and to their credit fought back against CSN Houston and others.

Thankfully, IMO, people have reached their price point and the fees going any higher will see more and more leave


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#156 OFFLINE   acostapimps

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 09:16 PM

I think I have the sports fee also, not sure since this months billing cycle hasn't started yet, only reason I say that is because when I had the sports pack then 1 month later removed it, I thought I saw a $1.82 sports charge in the recent transaction on my account, Not sure if it was specifically for the sports pack or for the future bill, There's also a credit when sports pack was removed but that's normal when any programming is removed after the last months billing cycle.


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#157 OFFLINE   acostapimps

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 09:24 PM

Nevermind I checked Directv website with my zip code and it has the $1.82 charge, even though I'm only getting one RSN (CSN Chicago)


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#158 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 11:53 PM

Nevermind I checked Directv website with my zip code and it has the $1.82 charge, even though I'm only getting one RSN (CSN Chicago)


That is interesting ... I tried a couple of Zip Codes, 60661 Cook County and 46350 LaPorte (Indiana). Both get the same RSNs (just CSN Chicago). LaPorte does not have the fee, Chicago does. Go further east to 46601 South Bend (Indiana) and it is still just CSN Chicago and no fee, but the blackouts change.

CSN Chicago must really be charging an arm and a leg for DirecTV to charge $1.82 extra in the Chicago area. But why not in LaPorte and South Bend where they get the same RSNs?
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#159 OFFLINE   slice1900

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 03:53 AM

That is interesting ... I tried a couple of Zip Codes, 60661 Cook County and 46350 LaPorte (Indiana). Both get the same RSNs (just CSN Chicago). LaPorte does not have the fee, Chicago does. Go further east to 46601 South Bend (Indiana) and it is still just CSN Chicago and no fee, but the blackouts change.

CSN Chicago must really be charging an arm and a leg for DirecTV to charge $1.82 extra in the Chicago area. But why not in LaPorte and South Bend where they get the same RSNs?

 

 

RSNs charge more for "local" viewers. Who is local in terms of a RSN charging more and who is local in terms of Directv providing that RSN may not be the same thing.


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#160 OFFLINE   BLMN

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 10:08 AM

I got hit with this charge for the first time as well, Boston DMA (I live in NH)

 

Regional Sports Fee - Charge  $1.82


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#161 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 11:14 AM

3.63 here in Los Angeles and if they pick up the stupid Dodgers channel it will skyrocket even more. They want five a month for that channel. I hope they don't pick it up. And I'm a Dodgers fan, although I now have to reconsider that.

#162 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 05:56 PM

RSNs charge more for "local" viewers. Who is local in terms of a RSN charging more and who is local in terms of Directv providing that RSN may not be the same thing.


I thought the SNL Kagen numbers generally put an in-market RSN at around $2-$3 and out of market around 20c-30c? In any case, I'd expect the first RSN (or two) to be built in to the regular package prices. (For example, DISH charging $5 more for AT120 plus RSNs over AT120 without RSNs.) The RSN fee was introduced as a way of keeping prices down in single or cheap RSN markets. The more areas that have a fee and only one RSN the more the fee seems to be just a way of not increasing the regular package prices. The increase is just hidden in a fee.
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#163 OFFLINE   slice1900

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 10:44 PM

I thought the SNL Kagen numbers generally put an in-market RSN at around $2-$3 and out of market around 20c-30c? In any case, I'd expect the first RSN (or two) to be built in to the regular package prices. (For example, DISH charging $5 more for AT120 plus RSNs over AT120 without RSNs.) The RSN fee was introduced as a way of keeping prices down in single or cheap RSN markets. The more areas that have a fee and only one RSN the more the fee seems to be just a way of not increasing the regular package prices. The increase is just hidden in a fee.

 

It is a way of keeping the base packages cheaper, but unless subscribers are offered a way to opt out of having the RSNs it is no different than the games cellular companies play with made up charges like "regulatory recovery fee". What's the point of letting customers know how much they're paying for sports if they have no choice to opt out of it, aside from choosing a base package that doesn't include a lot of channels they want to watch?

 

If sports networks like ESPN and RSNs can't be stripped out of packages for viewers who still want higher tier networks like AMC and HBO, I think those higher tier networks will respond by offering streaming subscriptions for their content, cutting the broadcasters out entirely. Half the country will cut the cord, and cable/satellite subscriptions will be the province of those who watch sports and are willing to swallow the yearly fee increases.

 

I have said before that Dish is the only provider in the country who could reasonably decide to stand up to Disney and hold out for placement of ESPN in a special sports package. It would be a highly risky move, but as the cost for sports continues to rise much faster than the rates for other programming, Dish could keep their fee increases minimal and grab many of those who may otherwise abandon cable/satellite entirely over the next decade.


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#164 OFFLINE   KyL416

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 11:33 PM

What's the point of letting customers know how much they're paying for sports if they have no choice to opt out of it, aside from choosing a base package that doesn't include a lot of channels they want to watch?

This is explained in post 143:
http://www.dbstalk.c...-8#entry3229200

And remember this is because DirecTV prices their base packages nationally, if you go to cable you're not escaping it just because you don't see it split out on a seperate line in your bill. On cable the regular prices of their base packages vary on each system to account for the different RSNs along with the different channels they have in their packages locally. (i.e. one system may have channels like CMT, Fuse, Golf Channel, Disney XD and OWN in expanded basic, another might have them on a digital tier)



#165 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 01:18 AM

At this point a subscriber in Chicago is paying $1.82 more per month than a subscriber in the same TV market getting the same channels and one RSN. It appears the two counties closest to Chicago in Indiana get the fee but the third county out (still the Chicago TV market) does not have to pay.

CSN Chicago must be charging a lot for DirecTV not to be able to handle the cost of a single RSN in regular package fees.
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#166 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 09:20 AM

I suppose that RSNs don't usually expect to benefit from advertising revenue from markets that the advertising doesn't cover so they feel compelled to "spread it around" and charge the out-of-market customers more.

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#167 OFFLINE   SWORDFISH

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 03:12 PM

At this point a subscriber in Chicago is paying $1.82 more per month than a subscriber in the same TV market getting the same channels and one RSN. It appears the two counties closest to Chicago in Indiana get the fee but the third county out (still the Chicago TV market) does not have to pay.

CSN Chicago must be charging a lot for DirecTV not to be able to handle the cost of a single RSN in regular package fees.

This also goes against their published reason for charging the fee. 

 

From the Directv Help Center:

"The Regional Sports Fee is a result of higher costs due to contractual obligations requiring us to offer multiple sports networks in select ZIP codes."

 

Since this is not the case in Chicago, they should explain the reason for the fee.


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#168 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 05:50 PM

I suppose that RSNs don't usually expect to benefit from advertising revenue from markets that the advertising doesn't cover so they feel compelled to "spread it around" and charge the out-of-market customers more.


Think the other way around. The reported prices for RSNs is higher within their own market. Perhaps the RSN does not have to pay rights for people who do not receive blacked out programming ... or realize that no carrier would carry them out of market at the in-market price.
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#169 OFFLINE   slice1900

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 06:58 PM

This also goes against their published reason for charging the fee. 

 

From the Directv Help Center:

"The Regional Sports Fee is a result of higher costs due to contractual obligations requiring us to offer multiple sports networks in select ZIP codes."

 

Since this is not the case in Chicago, they should explain the reason for the fee.

 

It may only be one RSN, but it carries games for the Cubs, White Sox, Bulls and Black Hawks. How many other RSNs are there that carry games for four teams in a large city? In cities like LA and Houston, there are RSNs created for a single team's games. It may only be one network, but I'll bet it costs a lot more than most RSNs.


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#170 OFFLINE   BLMN

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 01:32 PM

I wonder if cable co. are applying this fee also. here I have only 2 rsn's NESN (red sox + Bruins) and CSNNE (Celtics + NE Revolution). I don't think it is worth the extra $1.82. Now I would be fine with the extra charge if they lifted some of the blackouts of the out of market rsn's :D


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#171 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 04:52 PM

Cable generally has regionalized prices - the regular price for Comcast/Xfinity in one market may not be the same in the next market. Channel lineups outside of sports may also differ. Cablevision splits out the cost of RSNs to show their customers what they are paying ... although they still are not a la carte channels that can be dropped. And it is ironic that Cablevision does this as they own high priced RSNs.

I have noticed that the promotional prices for Comcast/Xfinity seem to be the same regardless of market ... but once the promotion period ends the regular price varies by market.
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#172 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 09:17 AM

Think the other way around. The reported prices for RSNs is higher within their own market.

I had a feeling I misunderstood this. I really doesn't make much sense.

I have to chuckle at the "contractual obligations" clause. If they have to carry a sports net to swing a deal on a suite of conventional channels, the cost should arguably be counted in the suite of conventional channels.

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#173 OFFLINE   KyL416

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 10:49 AM

I have to chuckle at the "contractual obligations" clause. If they have to carry a sports net to swing a deal on a suite of conventional channels, the cost should arguably be counted in the suite of conventional channels.

Again, the RSNs are different depending on where you live. Some areas that overlap territories could have as many as 6 RSNs, some could have 1 really expensive RSN, others like Philly have none. The difference is cable providers can just adjust the prices of their base packages based on the specific channels the individual system has while DirecTV prices their packages nationally. Before they just spread the cost out nationally, but in the past few years everyone and their mother started launching team specific RSNs creating an imbalance as a result of bidding wars where the network expects to recover the high bid by jacking up the costs of the channel in the next contract renewal.

#174 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 12:40 AM

I have to chuckle at the "contractual obligations" clause. If they have to carry a sports net to swing a deal on a suite of conventional channels, the cost should arguably be counted in the suite of conventional channels.


Although there are RSNs that could leverage carriage of "conventional channels" the point is RSNs all want the same placement ... as many subscribers as possible. It is carriage of the RSN itself that is held up if a satellite or cable company does not want to pay a huge fee for every customer or if the RSN thinks they should be in Entertainment instead of Choice. The fee needs to come down to where the carrier can accept the cost and the tier placement needs to be the typical placement for an RSN. No special deals that would cause other RSNs to want to renegotiate their deals.

The typical "contractual obligation" would be tier placement ... delivered to a certain level of subscriber not in a higher tier or an a la carte package. The constant customer request to "sell sports separately" is not going to happen as long as the sports channels (most national channels as well as RSNs) refuse to be sold outside of the current tier placement.
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#175 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 12:13 PM

Again, the RSNs are different depending on where you live.

I was referring to a possible link of the one of the NCAA conferences (SEC?) to the Disney suite.

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