MLB Moves Toward Major Streaming Action

Local streaming is coming to many Major League Baseball markets next season, according to Sports Business Journal.

Staff writers John Ourand and Eric Fisher report that under the proposed Fox agreement, fans will be able to access games on Fox Sports RSN websites and the FoxSportsGo app, plus distributors’ websites and apps.

In Jim’s words (and the title of one of his posts), You Can’t Kill Demand for a Product by Giving It to More People. He wrote:

“Let’s talk about the furtive moves being made in the direction of broadcasting plays and shows. There’s a fear that by doing so the value of the live experience will be lessened.

History does not suggest that this will be the case. At one time, musicians thought records would destroy the value of live performance. Record makers thought radio would destroy the value of records. Movie theaters thought VCRs would destroy movie sales. In all of these cases, and many others, greater and more freely available access to these products made people want these products more.

If the NBA didn’t yet exist — and it was being started today — would TV be an important part of the business plan? How about downloadable content on the internet? I ask because the ability to provide multiple ways for people to get access to the same content has two magical benefits:

• The extra revenue means you can invest more in the product and the people making the product.

• More people, maybe millions more, become aware of how great your product is.

In my view, starting now but developing in years to come, theater and performing arts venues should find ways of making the content available in multiple forms. Forget about ‘protecting the business model.’ The history of business shows us that the main danger is in missing opportunities by protecting the business model too much.”

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