UE11 wrote:Find investors, buy the digital broadcast rights to MVC and whatever other niche sport leagues you want, offer them to whomever wants them free of charge.
The MVC is in this deal through 2025 IIRC. ESPN negotiates with the MVC saying "ESPN3 is available in 80 million homes", and then drastically reduces that potential audience by un-bundling from the cable bill. I always understood that ESPN3 was paid for by my cable provider. My cable bill went up by 10% this spring, and now it does not include a substantial portion of the programming I watch in January and February.
While I understand your point, I'm not sure the current length of the MVC/ESPN media deal is the main deterrent to AD1770 purchasing the rights and distributing them. And while ESPN3 may be available in 80 million homes, my guess is the number that actually know it is available and has ever used it has significantly fewer 0s. Also, don't forget when the MVC was negotiating their side, they had a member that put many more eyeballs on screen than anyone in the conference now. Finally, small but I think important point, ESPN3 was paid for by your internet provided. Granted, in many cases that is the same as your cable provider, but some ISPs (such as TimeWarner/Spectrum) would not grant access unless you received regular ESPN from them as well. In some rare cases, the ESPN+ move could save people money by allowing them to drop regular ESPN or put more eyeballs on screen (like mine) that didn't have access to ESPN3 before but are willing to subscribe to ESPN+
I definitely will not be paying ESPN their extra $5 a month. Listening to road games on radio was just fine in the past, and will be fine in 2019.
Such is your right and what makes capitalism great.