Thursday, June 11, 2009 gives its viewers the Heisman

Reader Keith K. clued me into this one:

"This past week the geniuses over @ MLB decided to change their policy to make archived games unavailable until 90 minutes after the game. They were previously available immediately to "premium" subscribers and 45 min after the game to everyone else. As you can imagine, this makes watching anything but a live game on almost impossible for viewers on the ease coast. Their reasoning wass unbelievably that the "networks" requested the change. The complete disregard for their customers by MLB has left me disillusioned and flabbergasted."
I'm not an subscriber, but I can imagine how this could impact East Coast viewers interested in watching a West Coast game could hate this. According to the forum overlord at, this is the reasoning behind the change:
To answer the original question, the 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.
The networks made this call. Kowtowing to the networks yet again, giving your best customers the Heisman shove. Talk to the hand. I know the TV contracts are the gravy, but treating your most loyal (and paying) customers the middle finger is just not good business. It must be about the money since they already have's subscribers' money.

The response to the reasoning above:
"Thank you for answering my original question. However, it raises a new question. Based on your response, shouldn't the 90 minute policy only apply to games that were blacked out live (in other words, games in your local market)? If it's not a local game, an encore broadcast wouldn't air in my market, so it would be irrelevant and completely unnecessary to wait 90 minutes. For example, if I'm in Colorado, trying watching a game between the Marlins and the Phillies, the game would not be on local television, and therefore would not have an encore presentation. I don't understand how this 90 minute policy would apply to me."
Yep, that sounds about right, to me. And dumb as hell. The other impact of this is a changing of the rules/policy mid-season. This is a huge screw-job to those who paid for service and features they are no longer getting. One other forum poster ranted on this:
"This policy change is absolutely unbelievable. As a premium subscriber I signed up for a product that would allow me to watch games whenever I want, now I have to wait until midnight, on average, to begin watching a game????? Meaning the game won't end until almost 3 am.

This is ridiculous. How can the policies be changed midseason like this with no regard for the customers and fans?????"
Nice work,

UPDATE: (9:51am): A message to anyone from MLBAM who reads this: Please email if you want to explain your stance on these changes. I want to be fair and impartial, if possible. And since I know someone from the ISP has been here reading this, please come back and speak up.


ditmars1929 said...

Jason, you once used me as a comment of the day, regarding a business lesson for the Yankees. If you recall it, I believe it applies here as well. Idiots.

Ron Rollins said...

This is great. It's hard enough to watch the games over here as it is, and now this.

Of course, Bud doesn't believe baseball exists outside the continent of North America.

Ditmars, I think you nailed it.

How soon before we get a new commissioner?