A few days ago my fellow writer Steve Leblang published an article about the new streaming service for sports fans. So today I will give my take on the news as a Millennial.
Back in 2016 when I got my own place after living in and watching my mom’s house for two years while my siblings and I sorted through our family belongings I decided I was done paying for cable television. This meant I would be paying for at least one streaming television service in order to watch my favorite television shows.
At the time I was a Verizon customer and they did not yet offer any streaming services with their cellular plans other than Fios TV which costs the same as a cable television package. Since I do not watch too much TV aside from sports and T-Mobile was offering a new customer special that included a Netflix plan for free I decided to switch to T-Mobile for the free Netflix and then sign up for Hulu+ and pay the subscription on a yearly subscription since I hate monthly fees and go out to watch sports when I had the money to be out.
Then in 2020 when my Apple TV died during the first world shut down due to COVID-19 I decided to cancel my Hulu+ subscription all together since I had barely been using it. Fast forward to last July of 2023: Marquee Network, who is owned by the Ricketts empire, announced a direct-to-fans streaming option for $20 per month.
I did not sign up for it because of the fact that I’d be paying $20 per month to watch Cubs games and stay caught up on Cubs news but be subject to in-market blackouts based on MLB.TV restrictions since I live in Chicago. The icing on the cake with that was that there did not appear to be a way to pay for one year at a time.
Now, let’s take a quick look at this new streaming service which Disney’s ESPN, Fox, and Warner Brothers Discovery are teaming up to launch later this year. At the end of the day, I’ve had conversations with many sports fans of all ages over the last few years about having a streaming service such as Hulu + Live TV that is dedicated to just sporting events. To be clear, these conversations were with people of all ages who I am close with as well as complete strangers. The general consensus is that many would not pay for such a service unless there were no blackouts of any sort for in-market viewers.
Here’s the thing folks: This new streaming service that Disney’s ESPN, Fox, and Warner Brothers Discovery are preparing to launch will only be a great option for sports fans of all ages if there are no in-market blackouts because people should not be unable to watch their favorite teams as a result of living in the geographical market the team serves.
With that… only time will tell what the limitations of this new streaming service will be so stay tuned to Double Overtime as more info comes out about this new service for the latest.
If you cannot play with them, then root for them.