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4 minutes ago, gingerjon said:

It's worth saying that the BBC have now gone down the route that means that it's unlikely each of us is seeing exactly the same home page as anyone else. The videos and links you're seeing are now linked to previous activity and to any personalisation you've put on there - with the exception, I think, of the initial main block.

yes, to be honest I get fed a lot of RL stuff as its one of "my sports".. which is why I have tried to not mention too much "well i'm seeing it" under those areas. 

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Just now, RP London said:

What metric are we using for bigger though? we definitely think we are but Netball is a bigger nationwide sport, it has more participation and has grown massivly.. Its very difficult to really pin it down as we are probably bigger where we are strongest but not outside where as they have the strength nationwide (if that makes sense).. its a tough call. 

I just wish we put the same effort in as they have, the difference it would make would be huge imho.

So I'm agreeing with you that netball is pushing itself very hard, including participation.

I'm saying that the men's RL SL is comfortably bigger than the netball SL in terms of interest, attendances, finances, viewing figures.

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14 hours ago, fighting irish said:

If your first line is true Martin, I think that's a very sad state of affairs indeed. Are you saying this ''threat'' was used as a lever to influence our compliance, or not? If our negotiators believed there was a risk of losing the Challenge cup coverage, why didn't they explore the BBC's position explicitly.

I hope you don't mean they were ''reading the omens'' and decided it's best to err on the safe side and just ''give in'' rather than poke the bear?

What I find myself wondering (and hinted at in my original post) is, weren't the details of the amount of coverage and the channels they were offering part of the negotiations?

Surely they just didn't say we'll give you £X and RL said ok? Surely our blokes are more sophisticated than that?

The fact that great games with huge potential to hook new viewers and lifelong fans, are hidden away on BBC3 must have been known by ''us'' in advance, so why the hell did we agree to it?

I agree that the loss of Adam Hill's and his C4 colleagues (and their production team) is very sad indeed.  I wish we could get them back. 

The deal would have been negotiated by IMG, as was the current Sky deal, so I haven't been given a blow-by-blow account of the negotiations.

But what I have been told is that the right to broadcast some Super League games was what persuaded the BBC to continue broadcasting the Challenge Cup.

That is why the Challenge Cup needs urgent surgery, as I wrote here and here.

There's effectively a two-year window to restore the fortunes of the competition before the contract comes up again.

But I'm not sure that the current leadership of the game has the ability to rescue the Cup.

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1 minute ago, Archie Gordon said:

So I'm agreeing with you that netball is pushing itself very hard, including participation.

I'm saying that the men's RL SL is comfortably bigger than the netball SL in terms of interest, attendances, finances, viewing figures.

Netball is also going for a fully closed-off, franchised, entirely business-plan top division next season. I don't think they've got IMG in to advise them but wouldn't bet against them having someone like that involved.

Either way, to go back to my point, rugby league is not uniquely badly served by the BBC - or, indeed, every other part of our media - rather, the BBC's changes to the sport set-up, and to the way it broadcasts most sport now, mean we're far less visible to casual viewers. I'd hoped for better, a lot better, and I suspect it will be better as we move to the business end of the season and all games now on BBC 1 and 2.

I still think, ultimately, we're in a better position than when we were on Channel 4 though - with the exception of the presentation by Hills when he was there.

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12 minutes ago, Archie Gordon said:

So I'm agreeing with you that netball is pushing itself very hard, including participation.

I'm saying that the men's RL SL is comfortably bigger than the netball SL in terms of interest, attendances, finances, viewing figures.

Yes, i think we are talking slightly cross purposes as I am looking at the sport as a whole not just SL.. Netball know though that with the right promotion they can grow becuase they have the participation. They are a much better organised sport from what I can see, in terms of both domestic and international organisation. We get by becuase we have a good top league that is strong enough, just, to weather the awfulness of the organisation etc that is around it IMHO. 

If we could do half of the good things netball have done we would be in a much better place which is why I said "I think we should absolutely aspire to an awful lot of what the Netball SL and Netball as a whole does and has done over the past 10 or so years.. their growth in terms of participation and spectators as well as coverage has been fantastic." I also do think we live on our past and "dont you know who I am?" I do think we strut where we shouldnt as there are some proper issues, and our national draw is definitely one, that will cause problems if sports like Netball keep growing the way they are. 

I dont necessarily believe we are comfortably bigger in terms of some of the things you mention (interest.. just look at participation figures etc) but I have no figures either way. However, I would happily say that they have a better nationwide spread and that has some pull on "national" broadcasters and advertisers for sure so. Again, its the fact we should aspire to what they are doing as they are 100% one of our competitors for the sponsors (vitality is a good headline sponsor.. not sure how much they pay though), tv airtime etc etc.. even if they are not bigger they are competition which was what I was saying.

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Posted (edited)
40 minutes ago, gingerjon said:

Netball is also going for a fully closed-off, franchised, entirely business-plan top division next season. I don't think they've got IMG in to advise them but wouldn't bet against them having someone like that involved.

Either way, to go back to my point, rugby league is not uniquely badly served by the BBC - or, indeed, every other part of our media - rather, the BBC's changes to the sport set-up, and to the way it broadcasts most sport now, mean we're far less visible to casual viewers. I'd hoped for better, a lot better, and I suspect it will be better as we move to the business end of the season and all games now on BBC 1 and 2.

I still think, ultimately, we're in a better position than when we were on Channel 4 though - with the exception of the presentation by Hills when he was there.

I do think this is an important point - I think outside of the really major events, we are being treated like many other sports, I think the BBC are having a bit of an identity crisis in this space and don't really know what they are offering and where. As I say, I do think there is an element of test and learn here. I was surprised a while back to have to watch Man City in the FA Cup on the Red Button only.

I can't recall whether I posted this - but I meant to ask about your point about all games now on BBC1 and 2. Where are you seeing this? On rugbyleagueontv.com they show this, however it does only show 5 more SL games on there. Haven't we only had 4 or 5 or so already? I thought the deal was meant to be for 15 SL games per year. I wonder if a few more will be slotted in. They currently have no SL scheduled between 2nd June and 23rd August - an almost three month break. 

One thing that also looks positive is that the next 5 SL games they have scheduled are all at 5.30pm on Saturdays on BBC2 - hopeully they can make this slot their own.

Edited by Dave T
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1 hour ago, Archie Gordon said:

Another point of failure on this deal is SL game highlights. Again, they never break out onto the main page of BBC Sport and so they must only be seen by diehards. But even then they come out after the very same highlights have been posted by SL and Sky - it's the very definition of pointless.

Haven't Sky, as the primary rights holder, always shown their highlights packages before the BBC? That was a reason why the SLS wasn't available to any region 'til Monday.

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13 minutes ago, Futtocks said:

Haven't Sky, as the primary rights holder, always shown their highlights packages before the BBC? That was a reason why the SLS wasn't available to any region 'til Monday.

Probably. My main point is that the BBC highlights are hidden away and so they will only be seen by existing fans, who will already have had chance to see them. I was hoping highlights might get a wider airing.

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19 minutes ago, Futtocks said:

Haven't Sky, as the primary rights holder, always shown their highlights packages before the BBC? That was a reason why the SLS wasn't available to any region 'til Monday.

I'm sure I read there was a delay on when the highlights could go out previously, but the BBC could have still had them out earlier than Monday night. That was their choice.

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3 minutes ago, Archie Gordon said:

Probably. My main point is that the BBC highlights are hidden away and so they will only be seen by existing fans, who will already have had chance to see them. I was hoping highlights might get a wider airing.

Are highlights ever going to be for anyone but interested viewers though? I don't think 5 min highlights videos are ever pulling in new viewers. 

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1 minute ago, Dave T said:

Are highlights ever going to be for anyone but interested viewers though? I don't think 5 min highlights videos are ever pulling in new viewers. 

Plus the Sky highlights get posted on YouTube where the potential for new people to happen upon them is far higher than the BBC or Sky website.

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Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.
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5 minutes ago, Futtocks said:

Plus the Sky highlights get posted on YouTube where the potential for new people to happen upon them is far higher than the BBC or Sky website.

Nothing to stop Super League/RFL making their own highlights programme either, and does seem to be one of those obvious things to do, which we don't.

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Posted (edited)

If people want to see highlights, they can easily find them nowadays, we've never been served better on that front. 

But I don't think randoms are just going to see a video titled Warrington v Hull KR and click on to watch 5minutes of highlights. Just as I would never do that for RU or Netball or whatever. These are there to serve existing fans, not hook people in. 

The short, viral clips are another thing. Wonder tries, big hits, funny moments on social media etc are the clips we need. 

Edited by Dave T
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32 minutes ago, Dave T said:

If people want to see highlights, they can easily find them nowadays, we've never been served better on that front. 

But I don't think randoms are just going to see a video titled Warrington v Hull KR and click on to watch 5minutes of highlights. Just as I would never do that for RU or Netball or whatever. These are there to serve existing fans, not hook people in. 

The short, viral clips are another thing. Wonder tries, big hits, funny moments on social media etc are the clips we need. 

Yes.

Re-thinking what I've written, it's the lack of SL clips/tries that are missing on BBC Sport rather than game highlights. 

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Just about to go into rant mode about the lack of info on the Saints v York match that the BBC are supposed to be showing this morning. Just checked and it's on the RL site just now. A good few minutes in time!

TESTICULI AD  BREXITAM.

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23 minutes ago, corvusxiii said:

Just about to go into rant mode about the lack of info on the Saints v York match that the BBC are supposed to be showing this morning. Just checked and it's on the RL site just now. A good few minutes in time!

If you want a moan, you might wonder why the sport is called St Helens

image.png.c05b4a6be8caca85d1b629f3ae5cfca8.png

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28 minutes ago, Rugbyleaguesupporter said:

Crazy imho that Wigan women semi is tomorrow, while St Helens can't play at St Helens 

I'm all for competition integrity but does that override an extra 1-2k watching punters at each game? 

Typical naff organisation by the RFL.

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To be fair, the RFL got criticised last year for allowing Leeds to play their Challenge Cup semi final at home (which in turn meant both Wigan teams played at Headingley) for compromising competition integrity.

This is a situation where they can't win.

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20 minutes ago, Chris22 said:

To be fair, the RFL got criticised last year for allowing Leeds to play their Challenge Cup semi final at home (which in turn meant both Wigan teams played at Headingley) for compromising competition integrity.

This is a situation where they can't win.

Exactly. The question should be asked if York refused to play at Saints, and why. (And it's in their right to do so, I guess.)

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1 hour ago, Rugbyleaguesupporter said:

Crazy imho that Wigan women semi is tomorrow, while St Helens can't play at St Helens 

I'm all for competition integrity but does that override an extra 1-2k watching punters at each game? 

The RFL can’t win if they’d put the Saints women game on at Saints this site would be full of moaning about it. 

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Moaning is largely irrelevant, it will actually be about the finances/bottom line. The downsides of cross competition double headers is that it rules out more stadia if you insist on neutral venues for all teams and you are unlikely to be able to pick from the remaining ones and please all 8 sets of fans, that can put off the paying punters.

I'd suggest the bottom line is that the cost of renting neutral stadiums for the women's challenge cup is too high to justify them going it alone, and the men's teams attract the most fans so their needs are going to come first, so the balancing factor is women's teams playing in front of largely empty stands.

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