ESPN's future

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March 6th, 2017 at 11:25:45 AM permalink
AZDuffman
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 105
Posts: 7500
ESPN layoffs to hit on-camera personalities

More bad news at ESPN.
The man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it
March 6th, 2017 at 11:58:28 AM permalink
terapined
Member since: Aug 6, 2014
Threads: 40
Posts: 3585
Quote: AZDuffman

Yawn
The personality shows are all filler
Getting rid of personalities is no biggie
Except PTI
Other then that, I just watch for live sports
Sometimes we live no particular way but our own - Grateful Dead "Eyes of the World"
March 6th, 2017 at 12:58:52 PM permalink
AZDuffman
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 105
Posts: 7500
Quote: terapined
Quote: AZDuffman

Yawn
The personality shows are all filler
Getting rid of personalities is no biggie
Except PTI
Other then that, I just watch for live sports


Filler or not, a cut is a cut. I am still wondering when they stop picking up rights to some sports.

Personally, I cannot wait for them to crash.
The man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it
March 6th, 2017 at 4:47:28 PM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 773
Posts: 9162
Quote: AZDuffman
Personally, I cannot wait for them to crash.


It's not clear if they will crash. What does it matter if cable subscriptions keep getting cut by 10% if Disney can keep raising their rates by 12%?

SlingTV sells ESPN and other Disney channels for a reasonable price over the internet. Obviously Disney is hoping they will make up the difference of people cutting tradition cable.


Sling Disney Corporation option ($15)
Disney Channel
Freeform
ESPN
ESPN2
ESPN3


Sling Base ($5/month)
1 TNT
2 TBS
3 CNN
4 A&E
5 AMC
6 IFC
7 BBC America
8 Cartoon Network
9 Comedy Central
10 Adult Swim
11 Lifetime
12 History
13 Travel Channel
14 Food Network
15 Local Now by The Weather Channel
16 HGTV
17 AXS TV
18 Cheddar
19 El Rey
20 Flama
21 Maker
22 Newsy
23 Polaris TV
24 Viceland
25 Bloomberg
26 The Blaze
27 Galavisión
March 6th, 2017 at 5:06:27 PM permalink
AZDuffman
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 105
Posts: 7500
Quote: Pacomartin
It's not clear if they will crash. What does it matter if cable subscriptions keep getting cut by 10% if Disney can keep raising their rates by 12%?

SlingTV sells ESPN and other Disney channels for a reasonable price over the internet. Obviously Disney is hoping they will make up the difference of people cutting tradition cable.



To the first part, no. Near term the public will swallow the increases. But eventually people find a substitution. All you need to do is look at how landlines collapsed as a business. How many people now have them just because the bundle can be cheaper with than without?

The Sling Disney package? People with kids will like it. Sports fans will like it. If that is enough time will tell. I doubt it replaces all the revenue lost by forcing people to buy a basic tier. Another question remains, does sports in general decline in popularity? Some appear to already have peaked. NFL attendance and ratings are falling. NASCAR is falling. Some even here on the board will say it is impossible, but it is not.
The man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it
March 7th, 2017 at 6:17:34 AM permalink
terapined
Member since: Aug 6, 2014
Threads: 40
Posts: 3585
Quote: AZDuffman
NFL attendance and ratings are falling. NASCAR is falling. Some even here on the board will say it is impossible, but it is not.


I just don't see ESPN failing
Overall sports are still extremely popular in the USA
Baseball, basketball doing real well. Football is fine and still HUGE
Republican conservatives eat up sports. Huge fans.
That's why the TX bathroom bill aint going nowhere
Texas Republicans know whats important, its sports baby and the championships that come with it
Its huge big business. Its about the money. No way TX will give up what NC did.
I'm a huge college basketball fan.
Even Womens college basketball is growing.
MD Women hosted CT several months ago and sold out the building.
If anything , overall, sports is growing and ESPN aint going anywhere
Sometimes we live no particular way but our own - Grateful Dead "Eyes of the World"
March 7th, 2017 at 7:05:29 AM permalink
AZDuffman
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 105
Posts: 7500
Quote: terapined
I just don't see ESPN failing
Overall sports are still extremely popular in the USA


Of course you do not see ESPN failing. You have no vision. You are the kind of person who ignored the lifeboats in the Titanic because you were told it is unsinkable.

It is not a matter of sports being "extremely popular." It is a matter of business models. ESPN has about 88MM subscribers, almost all of who are forced to subscribe as part of the basic tier of cable service. They are losing 10-20,00 of these A DAY lately. For those of you taking common core math, that means a loss in revenue of $100,000 each and every day, or each month $3MM less than the month before. So sports may be "extremely popular" but not popular enough for people to keep paying ESPN to watch. An example of the attitude out there:

Quote: ams288
I hate sports.

I wish I could purchase a cable package without any of the sports channels. I hate to think about how much money I spend every month because I'm forced to include the sports channels in my bundle.


Until 1999, record companies made billions forcing people to buy a $14.99 album for 1-2 songs they liked. The warning signs were there, but they figured no need to worry since music was "extremely popular." How many record stores are left?

Quote:

Even Womens college basketball is growing.
MD Women hosted CT several months ago and sold out the building.


Wow, one game selling out one building.

Women's sports rarely makes money. It is a total niche.

Quote:
If anything , overall, sports is growing and ESPN aint going anywhere


I think I will quote this so it cannot be deleted. Pretty much any thinking person sees ESPN is broken. It will remain as a channel, but the business model is broken.
The man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it
March 7th, 2017 at 7:23:47 AM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 773
Posts: 9162
Quote: AZDuffman
It is not a matter of sports being "extremely popular." It is a matter of business models. ESPN has about 88MM subscribers, almost all of who are forced to subscribe as part of the basic tier of cable service. They are losing 10-20,00 of these A DAY lately.


AZD is kind of on target here. If ESPN has about 88M subscribers paying $8 a month through there cable subscriber, then what percentage of those customers would rather not be paying anything if they had the option? In addition ESPN sells commercial time to advertisers who want to reach those people.

In contrast NETFLIX has 50MM domestic subscribers and about 45MM foreign subscribers who are voluntarily paying $8-$10 a month. They can drop the service with an hour's notice.

Meanwhile ESPN has a ten year obligation to pay for MNF at a fairly high rate.

We talked about this discrepancy when we looked at Forbes list of top paid women in television. These six actresses are distinctive in that 5 of them are from popular shows. But the Mindy Project is even in the same universe of popularity, and in fact was kicked off broadcast and moved to Hulu. But yet Mindy Kaling is ranked #3.


Sofia Vergara: $43.0 million (comedy) {mostly from advertisements; Modern Family}
Kaley Cuoco: $24.5 million (comedy) {mostly from sitcom TBBT}
Mindy Kaling: $15.0 million (comedy;The Mindy Project)
Ellen Pompeo: $14.5 million (drama; Grey's Anatomy )
Mariska Hargitay: $14.5 million (drama; Law & Order: SVU )
Kerry Washington: $13.5 million (drama;Scandal )

General popularity doesn't matter as much as how much credit you are getting. The "Mindy Project" is pretty much a one woman operation.
March 7th, 2017 at 7:45:12 AM permalink
AZDuffman
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 105
Posts: 7500
Quote: Pacomartin
AZD is kind of on target here. If ESPN has about 88M subscribers paying $8 a month through there cable subscriber, then what percentage of those customers would rather not be paying anything if they had the option? In addition ESPN sells commercial time to advertisers who want to reach those people.


It is of course a guesstamite but if I had to predict I would say 75% would leave if given the choice to save $8/month. How the choice was made would depend on how fast it went. If it was "negative option" meaning you had to initiate it then it would be longer to happen and of course some people would never switch. OTOH if tomorrow ESPN went off the basic tier and you had to make the choice to add it then it would fall like a rock.

The ads are based on ratings, so hard to say the effect except they would fall as even people who do not care much about sports might tune in once in awhile now. If it is gone from their TV of course they cannot tune in.

The danger remains that if they go off the tier do they have to raise the price, and how much elasticity do they have in that price? Fewer guys will pay $14 than will pay $8. Some number may just care about say MLB or NHL and at some point just get that package from the league.
The man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it
March 7th, 2017 at 8:42:44 AM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 773
Posts: 9162
Quote: AZDuffman
It is of course a guesstamite but if I had to predict I would say 75% would leave if given the choice to save $8/month.


That may be a stretch, but of course the problem is one of a spiral. If 25% would leave to save $8/month, not the price must go over $10 a month, and then more people would leave.

TNT is the most expensive entertainment network on cable, and some people may argue that they don't watch most of the shows: Rizzoli & Isles, Major Crimes, The Librarians, Boston's Finest, Murder in the First, Animal Kingdom, Good Behavior, and The Last Ship. But if you watch even one of them, then the $1.50 is not worth arguing about.

But I would argue that ESPN is not the first head on the chopping block, but rather the broadcast stations like ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, CW, and ION. Collectively they are starting to cost as much as ESPN, and consumers can theoretically put up antennas.
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