Streaming Wars For Live Sports, Entertainment, and Gambling

Pat McAfee’s Muzzle Order, Which He Is Trying To Hide Now, Is In Effect At ESPN

(As the NFL godfather nods with the quiet joy of expectation of assent to the order)

As linked is McAfee’s linked statement on Twitter after all the heat he rightfully took from the public and within ESPN this past week. Was it worth it Pat to have Rodgers on your show spouting off like that just like in those good ol’ pandemic days on Joe Rogan!? Hmmm…!?

And no Pat, you deliberately went to politics on your show as well, until only that backfired inevitably as is what happens when you claim to do a sports show but then open those doors because you happen to agree with somebody’s politics too!

Now you can stop that noise McAfee, or you can let it happen again with some of your other “bros” like that jackass Aaron Rodgers, who no doubt would continue on your show for his narcissistic rear-end face in the off-season but only now, the order has been given and he cannot do so as well. BYE!

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And Rodgers was back on today to “talk football”

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:sweat_smile:

There’s proof that his narcissistic butt could not stay away despite McAfee’s muzzle order, but then again McAfee alleged that his contract to be on his show with Rodgers was to end at the end of the NFL season, though it’s unclear whether he meant regular season or post-season anyway.

I personally believe the latter part of McAfee’s statements was just cover to protect his “bro,” with a weak attempt to save face for his brand, for some unknown reason.

The best business move McAfee could make right now is to dump Rodgers off to Rogan, where Rodgers is just fine to talk politics for that brotastic trash brand well-established by Rogan, who has made quite a home for himself in Austin, Texas after leaving California during the pandemic.

That opinion stands if indeed McAfee is serious about having a sports brand and not chasing Rogan for his brand, which will be a failed mission for anybody doing so until Rogan is no longer at it, which won’t be for a good while given the current lingering political scene in the US.

So if that’s clearly the best business move, why won’t McAfee just make sure it is done?

We shall see if Rodgers simply “pops in” again or not.

Either McAfee is having it or not, and either way we know the truth versus all that is in his statement, including if he’s flaunting his muzzle order.

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This was two days ago before the news today about the end of Belichick’s time in New England. The show is on Apple TV+, and it started on Tuesday 9 January 2024.

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Hollywood Predictions From Wall Street for 2024

When these lists come from informed parties, I don’t view them as akin to amazing prophecies from professed soothsayers, but rather as an exercise to see what trends are on the mind of those informed, who in this case are tied to the capital to back ideas and businesses.

Here are a few excerpts I found interesting if not also agreeable.

The social media star’s [TikTok’s] increasing dominance of our attention, not to mention its increasing focus on longer-form content, will also begin to eat into our ‘Netflix and chill’ time, and the streaming giant will feel the pain.”

Paolo:
Personally, I never get into the “short” format for video, but I am a vast minority in that regard. I save and watch stuff in stages.

At the same, “streaming content budgets will continue to fall back to Earth due to basic business realities of costs outpacing revenues,” predicts Csathy. “Expect all major streamers, including Netflix, to do more with less content. Gone are the days of continuous billion-dollar content budget increases.”

Paolo:
That’s the same guy here as in the previous item, but that’s NOT a prediction because it’s already been discussed and started to happen far more already in 4Q2023.

“M&A is unlikely to save” media and entertainment companies’ streaming businesses.

With media mega-merger chatter all the rage on Wall Street these days, some predict big moves in 2024 that will reconfigure the Hollywood landscape. But at least one outspoken analyst is pouring cold water on such expectations. “Many investors believe consolidation is the answer to legacy media’s streaming woes,” LightShed Partners’ Rich Greenfield wrote in a recent report. “We disagree.”

His bearish explanation: “Legacy media companies are simply too late and not equipped talent-wise or strategy-wise to build scaled global streaming services on top of the growing headwinds facing their linear TV assets.” And, amid talk about possible deals involving the likes of Paramount Global, Warner Bros. Discovery and Comcast/NBCUniversal, he warned: “Layering on even more linear TV assets to any of these legacy media companies feels like a financial death sentence.”

Paolo:
I’ll take that bet. There’s a whole lot that must be jettisoned by the old guard NOW even before such mega-mergers for Big Media, which includes especially executives still operating as if the cable bundle is going to make some grand comeback just because alleged better streaming is “bundled” in again. I’m looking at YOU now first, Comcast. Ditch all your rot, including Peacock, lest you rebrand that piece of crap.

“Video streaming providers who are still losing money may be running out of time in 2024.”

Kenneth Leon, analyst and research director at CFRA Research, in his forecast for the new year predicted diverging fates for the biggest streamers and the rest of the pack. “The top-tier group, including Google’s YouTube TV, Amazon Prime Video, TikTok TV, Netflix, and Disney+ with ESPN and Hulu, is likely to gain market share from viewers and advertisers,” he suggested. “The second-tier group (based on total subscribers) may find it more challenging to reach positive earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) and profitability. This group includes Comcast’s Peacock, Paramount+, Warner Bros. Discovery’s Max (formerly HBO and Discovery+) and other small providers.”

Paolo:
I agree here except for Disney et al, who are in the middle of a proxy fight now amidst recent financial (and, especially in Florida, political) disarray, though Disney will not disappear from being a major player after it appears Disney will hang onto ESPN and Hulu as they rebrand, which is now in progress especially after they just paid Comcast billions to buy the rest of Hulu.

“The algorithm is not listening anymore.”

That is one 2024 forecast made by Mark Mulligan, music industry analyst at market intelligence firm MIDiA Research and his colleagues. “This is our headline prediction and one that we think will have far-reaching impact across all forms of entertainment,” they wrote.

After all, streaming and social media platforms have so far proudly touted their ability to offer up content consumers really want and like. “Algorithms on large-scale platforms once super-served users, encouraging them ever closer to their respective niches,” the experts explained. “Now, algorithms are increasingly pushing users to the content that supports platform monetization priorities over user priorities.” As an example, Mulligan mentioned X’s shift in the use of recommendation algorithms “to surface views that are intended to provoke response from users.”

Paolo:
I’ll go one better just as I ranted just moments ago today - the algorithm was hardly ever listening all along! If YouTube’s algorithm is not listening well now, I’ll keep my bet in place just fine that the rest of them, but for perhaps Netflix in my experience, are not doing so either.

As he describes at the end is exactly what Facebook had been doing all the more, with vast acceleration of the practice via AI technologies in the times when it had tried to become a “news” organization in 2015 to 2016. That decision changed social media forever, starting most especially in 2017 when Facebook was mainstream for those Baby Boomers coming over from their cable news crap.

Now that practice by those “algorithms,” or let’s just cut right to it, their human manipulators, is just new wine in old bottles.

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Courtesy @Stickweld21 here, and below also key layoffs in the video and AI areas at Disney and at Google…I think this is only the initial trickle for the rest of January for a second year in a row of massive tech layoffs in January …

https://www.reuters.com/technology/google-lays-off-hundreds-working-assistant-software-other-parts-company-2024-01-11/

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I’m not sure where to put this story but it’s my small contribution to the conversation

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That is interesting that the NFL has been trying to dump the NFL network for years, not being a media type I but from the looks of it the NFL Network is bleeding subscribers as cord cutting continues.

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Darn, I thought I was going to blow people away but they started working on this since August :rofl:

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The NFL On Peacock: As Expected, It Did NOT Go Over Very Well

As those who are fans of Premier League well know, the NFL fans got a taste of NBC’s hijinks last night. We’ve been angry at Comcast since September 2020 for these hijinks with a crappy app.

At least now NBC has come around to having at least one match per time slot on regular TV for Premier League after their initial plan to stuff most of it on crappy Peacock.

Many former Comcast subscribers like me also left them over this issue, for you don’t mess with my live sports when I am already paying you to watch them!

Here’s a mere sample of all the scathing reviews from last night:

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@Paolo_X - I gladly pay the seven dollars a month for Peacock and the reason is - drum roll please ---- Figure skating - the wife and mother in law love figure skating. They watch that stuff for hours on Peacock and are super happy. Granted they might be the only two people in the western Hemisphere that are happy with Peacock but if they are happy I am happy. Six bucks a month for some small shard of happiness - I am in.

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@Paolo_X - If you thought the NFL was calling the shots at ESPN before - how about when they buy a chunk of ESPN and are paying the salaries.

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Pro move there - but wait for the part when the app interrupts or lags in the middle of a routine …that’s the bigger problem than the additional cost per month right there and going four years in, Comcast still has not fixed it and lags the other major services in performance

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They grew up with three TV channels and terrible TV reception when the weather was bad - they are good with it - a lag in the routine they don’t even blink for something like that. I am telling you there are three total people that are happy with Peacock and we are the sum total of those people right wrong or otherwise.

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The Peacock Disguised Pay-Per-View Strategy

From Comcast’s arrogance and gloating at halftime about the Peacock broadcast on Sunday night football, in their corporate propaganda delivered to the script by their usual glib and trusty shill, Mike Tirico, we shall see what is in the works here and it’s not looking good for NFL fans.

Basically it sounds like the NFL is gearing up to make more games, which in effect a disguised pay-per-view.

It’s not for me, but I don’t have an issue with a business doing so but there are at least three core issues not addressed here and being overlooked:

  1. When the NFL owner has used public subsidies to have their venue built, the content for MOST live games should be publicly accessible for FREE on FREE TV. That’s not every NFL owner, but that’s many of them.

  2. Again, for those chiming in that it’s “only $6 per month and you can cancel,” no doubt I get it but on the other hand for those so high on Peacock OTHER than for an NFL game, then of course these people could have signed up before like the 28 million had by 3Q2023 though most were paying for less than that amount. For most people, there is nothing else interesting on Peacock to make it worth signing up, and until that’s the case via Comcast, no thanks either.

  3. The performance of the Peacock app is not up to modern standards even after about four years in development and after launch in 2020.

The first item is definitely not going to be addressed publicly in American sports media beholden to the NFL, but already a US Congressman has gone there and so will others in time given the populism at hand irrespective of political leanings.

We’ll see what the NFL tries to do, for as @Stickweld21 mentioned, it will be interesting if the NFL takes a stake in ESPN.

I will bet now that any such deal by the NFL for a stake in ESPN won’t pass the regulators without also various concessions for viewership of games (i.e. a certain number guaranteed on ABC, which is already the case anyway) by the public especially after this Peacock fiasco on Saturday night.

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Well, if you thought/hoped streaming was going away, think again. The KC/Miami game on Peacock set an all time record for a streamed NFL game and there were more eyeballs watching than last year’s Wildcard game on NBC over the free airwaves. I don’t follow this like some of you do but thought I would provide the info.

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Paramount+ Plus Feed Via Paramount and CBS, Steelers at Bills, Wildcard Game,
15 Jan 2024

As the NFL is likely to bid out one of these wildcard games in the future plus perhaps also in December just like this season, I hope they open it up to Amazon Prime or to Paramount+ too, much like cited in that article.

Like ever since I subscribed to Paramount+ in January 2022, it’s a much better app and picture even though other than live sports, there is not a whole lot else on there but for a few classic series and movies.

I definitely would not renew for a year in late February were that not the case, and we shall see what happens for “grandfathering” should there be a merger with another firm by Paramount later in 2024.

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The antitrust exemption as I read it keeps each team from selling their own broadcast rights by keeping the broadcasts on in the home markets for all the teams.
The league has an antitrust exemption that allows all-or-nothing rights deals with the likes of CBS, NBC, Fox, and ABC, because back in the early 1960s, Congress gave the league an exemption to federal antitrust laws, permitting all of the individual teams to act as a single entity when negotiating TV contracts. Without the broadcast antitrust exemption, the NFL would face significant liability if it forces networks that would prefer to purchase the right to televise only Cowboys home games to also take home games from all teams. Eventually, every team would do its own deal. And it would become very hard to hold the league together if one team is making $1 billion per year and another team is making $50 million per year. (Most of this is copy and paste from three different articles.)

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Basically you’re an AI writer now :wink:

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