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NFL fights to save its TV “blackout rule”


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#1 OFFLINE   Mark Holtz

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Posted 08 August 2014 - 02:41 PM

From ARS Technica:

NFL fights to save its TV “blackout rule”
Despite $9B revenue, NFL says blackout rule needed to keep football on free TV.

The National Football League (NFL) is trying to convince the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to preserve 39-year-old blackout rules that prevent games from being televised locally when tickets remain unsold. Last season, two games were blacked out locally in the regular season, while several blackouts were narrowly averted in the playoffs.

The FCC considered a proposal to eliminate its blackout rules last November, with then-acting Chairwoman Mignon Clyburn saying that the rules are outdated. Today, the rules aren’t actually responsible for the majority of blackouts, and they "have little relevance for sports other than professional football, because the distribution rights for most of the games in these sports are sold by individual teams, rather than the leagues,” the FCC said.

But they do matter to football. Naturally, the NFL wants to keep the rules in place—and argues that they are good for fans. Despite being the richest sports league in the country with more than $9 billion in annual revenue, the NFL said in an FCC filing that sports blackout rules are a “critical contributing factor” to its “ability to maintain its ‘free TV model.’”

FULL ARTICLE HERE


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#2 OFFLINE   jimmie57

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Posted 08 August 2014 - 02:52 PM

It is NOT free when people buy the Sunday Ticket , etc. That is a definite to do away with the rule.

I was going to get it for my son a couple of years ago and all he was going to see of his favorite team was 2 more games than without it. 2 games was absolutely not worth the price for it.


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#3 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 09 August 2014 - 02:52 AM

Free? I didn't know that ABC CBS and FOX stopped asking providers for money for their stations and espn and the NFL network became over the air free stations.
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#4 OFFLINE   Bronxiniowa

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Posted 11 August 2014 - 08:47 AM

Free? Since when did product manufacturers stop passing the cost of TV advertising onto their customers?



#5 OFFLINE   dpeters11

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Posted 11 August 2014 - 09:32 AM

It is NOT free when people buy the Sunday Ticket , etc. That is a definite to do away with the rule.

I was going to get it for my son a couple of years ago and all he was going to see of his favorite team was 2 more games than without it. 2 games was absolutely not worth the price for it.

 

Yeah, if you get it for one particular team it diminishes the value, particularly if they get a lot of national games, plus games played with a local team. At that point it makes a lot less sense.

 

I'm just not convinced that it really affects the crowds at the stadium. Those that go to the games go for a reason. Those that would watch on TV aren't suddenly going to go out and get a ticket just because it's blacked out, at least not to any large degree.



#6 OFFLINE   longrider

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Posted 11 August 2014 - 09:47 AM

I do see the free part in that when a game is on a pay network - ESPN, NFL Network, etc a local OTA channel in the teams home market carries the game. However I dont think it affects attendance at all, anyone who wants to go to a game will go anyway and I would be surprised if you could find a hundred TV watchers who would decide to buy tickets if a game was blacked out


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