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How Will Online Streaming of The Masters Change Sports Broadcasting?

streaming-sports

This year, viewers who wanted to watch the Seahawks beat the Broncos had a new option: stream the game online. Fox offered Super Bowl XLVIII live streaming on FoxSportsGo.com and the Fox Sports Go iPad app, and viewers were able to load up streaming video and keep track of every touchdown.

Although online sportsbook TopBet recently wrote an article discussing America’s favorite Super Bowl commercials, the irony is that live online viewing of the Super Bowl with the commercials included, likely won’t happen anytime soon.

In a few months, CBS Sports is going to stream the The Masters Golf Tournament online. In addition to watching the golf competition, users will be able to click between different cameras and customize their experience. This is going to be a win-win for both CBS and golf fans.

These types of opportunities would seem like a natural solution for sports broadcasters – just stream sports programming online, as well as on television – except that the online solution isn’t a 1:1 transfer. That is: it’s not as simple as treating a web browser as just another TV channel, or even a TV channel with added options like “choose your own camera.”

How Streaming The Masters is Different

The Masters is making headlines again.

The Masters is making headlines again.

For starters: many streaming sports broadcasts are unavailable to a large percentage of users. As Geekwire notes, streaming sports live on FoxSportsGo.com isn’t available to everybody; “Typically, Fox allows access to the live content only to subscribers of certain cable services — AT&T U-verse, Cablevision, Optimum, Comcast Xfinity, Midcontinent Communications, Suddenlink and WOW!”

That means if you’re on Verizon, for example, you won’t be able to watch games on FoxSportsGo.com unless they make a special exception. (For the Super Bowl, Fox created a “free preview” of its FoxSportsGo.com service available to all internet/cable suppliers, ensuring everyone could watch the game.)

Fans of major sports tournaments, such as The Masters, do have other options if a streaming service does not supply to their internet/cable provider, although they are certainly not recommended. Plenty of underground websites upload or torrent sports programming and make it available for streaming or downloading. This is, of course, an illegal method of watching sports broadcasting, but it is an avenue often taken by fans who are unable to stream the game any other way.

That pesky 30 seconds you can’t live with or without

There’s one more way that streaming sports broadcasting is different from watching it on television: the ads. Yes, the same ads that play on TV do not transfer over to online broadcasts. Super Bowl viewers who watched the game on FoxSportsGo.com did not see the famous Super Bowl commercials that kept other viewers talking long after the game had ended. Instead, they saw a different set of commercials, because Fox negotiated the so-called “digital inventory” ad space separately from the television broadcast.

Unless it’s the Super Bowl, the commercials you watch during the game probably don’t matter.

This may turn out to be an opportunity for media companies like Fox to earn even more revenue by selling two completely different sets of ad space; one for live television, one for online streaming. But the advertisers are unlikely to go down without a fight. If Coke or Ford want to place an ad on national television during a highly popular game, they are unlikely to want to pay extra just to make sure online viewers get to see it too.

The Debate

Second-screen-experience

Ultimately, the question comes down to one major factor. Do we consider online streaming as an identical way of watching televised sports broadcasting, or do we treat it as something different? The Masters, with its interactive components, is already leading the way towards treating online streaming as something separate to watching the game on television. In fact, it could presage a world in which the most avid sports fans do both: watch the game on their TV and interact with the game on their iPads.

In the end, we’ll have to wait and see.

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12 Responses to How Will Online Streaming of The Masters Change Sports Broadcasting?

  1. lesley June 9, 2014 at 1:21 am #

    i often face the problem of streaming in our area, not even able to watch matches online. hopefully this issue resolved soon

  2. free live sports December 1, 2014 at 2:40 pm #

    At this moment I am ready to do my breakfast, when having my breakfast coming over again to read other news.

  3. pmassindiaseo June 26, 2015 at 1:17 am #

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  4. Cassie July 15, 2015 at 5:32 am #

    Isn’t it amazing how the internet is changing everything we do now days? Even watching sports is affected in one way or another, but like you said, is it good or bad, do we treat it differently or the same?

  5. Neha October 1, 2015 at 12:41 am #

    Yes, that is true that internet is changing everything especially in the sports field. Businessmen developing online shopping websites dedicated to sports products. I have visited one of them is Damroobox. Truly dedicated to original sports and fitness products. I found more than 13000 products on site.

  6. Alan Brown November 1, 2015 at 9:30 pm #

    Online Streaming of The Masters Change is major demand in now-a-days. I think; when a games is being started live stream should be more adjusted as well as sports lover attention.

    Sports Live Streaming TV

  7. Johnny G January 10, 2016 at 12:49 pm #

    The more options to view the Majors the better.

    And has the cable network pay structure changes more and more will go this route.

  8. Youtube January 21, 2016 at 1:33 am #

    Trend is that we can watch games whenever and wherever we are, so long as we have smartphones in hand, and we are allowed to watch games freely.

  9. hilton April 8, 2016 at 11:11 pm #

    online and tv ads are different as interest of advertisers, but i am wondering why tv sponsors not do ads online.

  10. itunes July 11, 2016 at 1:26 am #

    Fantastic read! I’ve stored your site and I’m as well as your RSS feeds to my Search engines account.

  11. Erik Winther September 15, 2016 at 12:59 am #

    Everything now changes thanks to the internet. I think it can be also good and bad. I sometimes have trouble streaming, but I would prefer the internet versus the traditional way thanks to a greater variety

  12. Fadil December 14, 2016 at 7:00 am #

    See you can easily watch the games with smartphones with out any tension with high speed internet

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