Those with MLB.com’s online streaming package, MLB.TV Premium found out last week that being able to access games that had just been played via MLB.TV’s archive function were no longer made available 45 min. after a game has ended, but without advance notification to subscribers, was bumped up to 90 min. – twice the waiting period.
The delay was not part of a technical issue, but rather, according to feedback from MLB.com support, a new policy instituted by MLB Advanced Media through MLB.com based on pressure from television networks.
As noted on page 2 of this MLB.com support thread, “[T]he networks requested waiting 90 minutes to be able to watch a game that has ended so that we do not interfere with the start of any encore presentations of a game that are shown once the game has ended.”
Looking at the response, there are a number issues.
The extra 45 minutes being requested by the networks amounts to a blackout. The curious thing is, if someone can watch a particular game live via MLB.TV (not blacked out), why would the networks wish an extra 45 minutes of blackouts for encore presentations?
Lastly, any subscriber to MLB.com knows that notification emails for promos and ticket sales are a near daily event. So, why was there no advance notification sent to subscribers?
More details as they become available.
Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He is contributor to Baseball Prospectus, and is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network.
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