In 2009, it appears there is no way for Eagle fans who are outside the broadcast air signal of WYSP/WIP, or others in Eagles radio network, to catch a free, live audio broadcast of the game. New policies which apparently include the Eagles, CBS, and the NFL block any person from receiving live audio streams unless they are paying for it, viz through Sirius or NFL field pass. This is probably because radio stations in the Eagles network are CBS network stations. Although I'm talking here about digital audio, CBS has an overall digital media policy (which includes audio) and it's the most restrictive of the big four networks. That's why no CBS on Hulu, where you can see NBC, Fox, and ABC. CBS has a similar "no live stream" policy in the New England Patriots radio market. They also recently introduced their restrictive policies into their new SEC contract. By contrast, Kansas City Chiefs radio networks are Cumulus stations which allow both on-air broadcasts and streaming of the game.
But part of it is the Eagles themselves, otherwise KC would have to follow the same NFL policy. So it appears that, if the Eagles told CBS to stream their games on radio, CBS would apparently have to do so, instead of allowing only over-air broadcasting. Again, currently, people outside of the Philly radio network over-air zone cannot listen to Eagles games unless they pay for them. Take me for example. I'm an Eagles fan currently living on the West Coast. I want to hear the games. When I attempt to catch the stream online at their flagship station WYSP, I get rock music during the game. My choices for a live broadcast are then to purchase a Sirius radio system and plan (satellite), or the $15 NFL field pass (internet) for a month or $40 for the season just to listen. That's supposed to hold my loyalty as a fan? Eagles and other teams who do this, such as the Patriots, cut their own throats in the same way that music companies who overly concern themselves with downloading do. It BUILDS and KEEPS publicity alive to pump free audio streams of a game over the net. Why? Because having the largest possible fanbase is the way to make money. Those of us who listen on the net are not local in Philly to buy tickets anyway, or might be too low-income if living nearby, but we can stay connected and keep Eagles' passion by listening online. We share that with others, make merchandise purchases, etc, and Eagles publicity thereby spreads as wide as the internet -- potentially worldwide. By taking a pay route for basic audio, the Eagles step over a dollar to pick-up a quarter. We're talking about audio to the game.
Currently, the NFL has not pressured KC to shut-down all streams and go with the NFL Field pass and, since the radio stations in the KC area are not CBS, KC has also not been pressured by CBS to kill all streams. So, living here on the West Coast this year, I can hear KC games via internet streaming . How long it will last, I don't know. But seeing Philly start this garbage this year has really been a disappointment. It's hard to be a fan when the policy is essentially telling me, "Unless you have a car radio and are living in Philly, give us your money or you can't hear our games". I guess football is turning into a pasttime for the wealthy, even on the audio side. In the long run, greed of this magnitude, locking out low-income and distant Eagles fans who can't buy tickets anyway, is cutting their own fan base. It's not right, either.
Should the NFL, including the Eagles, charge for live audio streaming of football games?
Yes (1 vote)
No (29 votes)
30 total votes