Thursday, July 06, 2006

'Worldwide Leader', My Ass

How has no one come up with a network to rival ESPN? CNN got their start, and after they proved to be successful, FOX and NBC followed suit with 24hr news stations.

I know FOX does a regional sports thing, but holy cripes - ESPN puts on some absolutely abysmal programming, that it shouldn't take much work to draw viewers away from them on a national scope.

But that's not exactly what's been bothering me lately about the 'Worldwide Leader'. As terrible as most of their coverage is, they at this point have the resources to cover just about anything. So I peruse the company website ESPN.com for a quick overview of my sports stories for the day. But lately, most of the info that I'd like to get from them, is part of their "Insider" coverage - and inaccessible to me, unless I suscribe to the "Insider" package.

I understand that websites should be viable business operations, but in this case, it's actually having the opposite effect. ESPN.com has decided that pretty much every and any article pertaining to college football is an "Insider" article... which means I can't read it. So you know what? I don't even bother with them for college football information. Which sucks, because no one else nationally has the access that ESPN does. But it's gotten to the point that I know ESPN won't even give me the coverage on college football, so I go elsewhere.

There was an article about NFL wide receivers on the site today, and there was no mention of it being an "Insider" article on the front page, but when you click on the link... oops...."You need to be an "Insider" to read this article!" Bitches.

It used to just be college football. Now, on the main page, there's a section that lists the top three articles for each major sport. Two of the three MLB articles are "Insider", as one of the NFL articles ( separate from the one I mentioned before ) ... ALL three NBA articles are, and all three college football articles.

Are there that many people out there that are just cattle, and sign up for this stuff? It used to be free... and that's what bugs me. It's not like they added a new feature, and said that I now have to pay for it.

Way to drive away your target market douchbags. Why can't some rich guy feel the same way I do, and create some competition for ESPN?? I'd sure as hell watch/surf anything else.

7 Comments:

At 8:18 PM, Blogger Nort said...

Hmm...

Gimmie everything for free - I deserve it!!!

What's wrong with them wanting to make a few bucks? How do you expect them to pay the bills for their "resources to cover just about anything"?

Granted, there is a line between legitimate profit and just bending someone over, but it's still your choice. You don't have to pay for it if you don't want it.

As far as I've seen, all their information from "insider" articles are just compliations they've found off other websites and/or media outlets. The couple I know about were copies of JSOnline and Green Bay Press Gazette articles. You don't have to pay ESPN for the material, you just have to do a little work yourself.

 
At 8:26 PM, Blogger Kuflax said...

Your second paragraph has a line that I wish I would have thought of, "There is a line between legitimate profit and just bending someone over" - and that's where I feel they've gone.

And if that's true about JSOnline articles, and GBPG articles, then shame on them. They're charging for work that isn't even their own.

I've resigned myself to look other places for it - it's just too bad, because I used to turn to them.

And as far as 'paying' the bills?? I think they're doing just fine. Watch 10 min of SportsCenter, and have a drink everytime there's a sponsor tie-in. You'll be drunk by the end of the ten minutes. The Budweiser Hot Seat, Coors Cold Hard Facts, GM Diamond Cutters.... every basball game is "Presented" by someone.... Hurting for money they are not.

And someone that's not exactly thrilled with ESPN either, I'm surprised you almost defended them ;)

 
At 9:39 PM, Blogger Nort said...

Sorry, I gave up watching SportsCenter a while ago, when the 'commercials' got more airtime then the highlights and news.

Here's hoping that The FSN Final Score goes back to what you and I both want...

 
At 8:22 AM, Blogger Will said...

Inconceivable! ESPN a bunch of asshats? Never!

Of course I'm being sarcastic.

"How has no one come up with a network to rival ESPN?" Well, it took ESPN 20 years to get where they are. It takes a huge amount of resources that ESPN has acquired over time to be able to do what they do. Of course, I wouldn't imagine Cuban isn't think something special for HD, but it's going to take time.

"Way to drive away your target market douchbags" Newsflash -- their target market is paying for it, douchbag. People are signing up, they're getting the stupid fuckin' phone too. That's who they want, and that's who they are going to get.

Insider use to be free, and now it isn't. That's the way it goes with every single website in the history of the internet. The kicker is that ESPN is nothing more than highlights. All their gem analysts write for newspapers. All of them. I can't think of one that doesn't. Jaws? He might be the only one.

Local newspapers cover their local sports better. It's been like that forever. NBA.com doesn't link ESPN articles on their website, they link the Dallas Morning News and Chicago Tribune. ESPN is a camera and Stu Scott sayin' "booyah", that's it.

 
At 8:57 AM, Blogger Lostgirl said...

Join the crowd. I used to enjoy reading "for free" Maureen Dowd and Thomas Friedman on the NYTimes online, bastards having now started charging to $3.50 per article or editorial. I don't need to know there opinions that much. Its all about money these days.

 
At 12:06 PM, Blogger Will said...

I don't know what's more shocking -- that you admitted to reading Maureen Dowd, or the NYT has the balls enough to charge for that shiat.

 
At 12:31 PM, Blogger Lostgirl said...

Awwwe snap! You got me ;) Yeah I like to read her columns although she can be quite snarky.

 

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