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November 30, 2017

NFL Partner-Networks to Lose $500 Million Due to Declining Ratings

You can't fight a Social Justice War without expecting some collateral damage.

Outkick the Coverage offers four reasons for the decline in ratings besides turning the NFL into MSNBC with 30% more Repeated Trauma Brain Damage. One of them is the NFL's greed in expanding the game into new hours (the morning London game) and new nights (the Thursday night game, once a welcome once-in-a-blue moon novelty, now a permanent drag).

One of the reasons I used to like the NFL was the specialness of each game, as there were so few. In baseball and basketball, individual games aren't so important; it's winning and losing streaks.

Now, teams don't play more games (the NFLPA resists that, I think: the NFL has entertained an 18-game schedule, I think), but the NFL now has games on Sunday morning, the typical Sunday 1pm game, the 4 pm game, the Sunday night alleged game of the week, the Monday night even more dubious game of the week, and the not-even-pretending-it's-a-game-of-the-week game on Thursday night.

There's just a loss of specialness there.

I think there might also be a Completist Revolt going on too. People with the Completist Bug -- who need to watch every episode, buy every videogame sequel and DLC, etc. -- used to be able to be NFL completists, watching all games available in their markets.

But you can only push a Completist so far before he can no longer even attempt being a Completist and stops even trying. If a Completist football fan now tried to watch all the games available to him, he'd pretty much have to be unemployed and without a family, or he would be after a season of attempting this feat.

That observation may be a stretch too far, but I think it's a factor in bubble markets. As long as you're not trying to extract too much from your Completist types, you can flood the market with product and basically tax them for revenue. They'll pay the tax on their time and money and you'll reap rewards.

But if you flood the market beyond that, the Completists begin abandoning the hobby. Which is bad for business, because you can really milk a Completist for a lot of their time and money. Right up to the point where they give up and tune out.

That said, I think this is mostly about the politics. Conservatives used to love football almost without reservation, not just because of the product, but because of the values (tradition, family, respect for the military) they thought the NFL shared.

Now it's just another SJW TV show with a lot of progressive actors and executives.

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posted by Ace at 01:26 PM

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