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Cocooning: People increasingly watch sports on TV versus live

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Old
02-18-2013, 07:11 PM
  #1
knorthern knight
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Cocooning: People increasingly watch sports on TV versus live

The article talks about reduced travel in general, including to local sports events... http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/p...coons/1880473/

One of the concerns cited was personal safety...

Quote:
And it's safer, even for a guy who's 6 foot, 2 inches. "I'm a big Dodgers fan, but the last time I was at a game someone was actually trying to get stupid with me," he says. "I'm a fan, but I'm not going to lose my career or my life over a game, either, you know."

Recent assaults at sports events have caught the attention of the public and fueled cocooning. A post-game stabbing occurred at the NFC Championship game in Atlanta last month. And in 2011, national attention was turned on Los Angeles after a San Francisco Giants fan was beaten at Dodger Stadium.
In addition, there's the issue of getting to the game and back, which can eat up a few hours if you don't live near the arena. The NHL is currently a gate-driven league. It has been trying to get bigger national contracts in the US, but only managed to match the current Canadian contract, despite the US population being 10 times as large as Canada's. What does cocooning portend for the NHL, businesswise?

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02-18-2013, 07:20 PM
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MountainHawk
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I'm not sure the NHL will be subject to the same forces, because alcohol isn't as much a part of the culture of the sport fandom as it is in football and baseball, where much of the problems tend to happen.

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02-18-2013, 07:23 PM
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Mightygoose
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Increasing content and TVs in HD is helping this trend as well.

If more people are watching the games on TV and streaming as opposed to live, it can lead to better ratings and consequently networks wanting to pony up more $$$ for the rights. Not sure if that can offset revenue earned by bums in seats.

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02-18-2013, 07:24 PM
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awfulwaffle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MountainHawk View Post
I'm not sure the NHL will be subject to the same forces, because alcohol isn't as much a part of the culture of the sport fandom as it is in football and baseball, where much of the problems tend to happen.
Huh? I'm attending games to the wrong sport then. I should stop drinking before the game like I am for the Coyotes game. I should be sober instead of getting drunk and trying to start the wave when I'm 10 beers in.

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02-18-2013, 07:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MountainHawk View Post
I'm not sure the NHL will be subject to the same forces, because alcohol isn't as much a part of the culture of the sport fandom as it is in football and baseball, where much of the problems tend to happen.
It's not just that. If you have a nice TV, it's hard to justify going to many games. 4K resolution in the next 5-10 years isn't going to do the NHL any favors in that regard. The NHL needs to move away from being a gate driven league.

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02-18-2013, 07:25 PM
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Tinalera
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It's certainly something to keep an eye on-as a large segment of the population enters retirement years, just from that standpoint alone, there might be more people inclined to stay at home to watch the games. I don't think it's something that's going to change drastically overnight, but between the next 10-20 years bears watching. I mean there are markets that will always sellout every night, no question.

I think where we may see more of an effect is the idea of going to watch a game at a "rival" arena. I think there was a thread on the main boards a couple of years ago where there were a few people (if I'm remembering correctly) who took the view of "you come into our barn to root against our team you take your chances" which I thought was rather blunt and surprising. I mean sure you go to a rival arena and take a chance on getting ragged a bit in good fun, but the idea of harming someone because they root for the wrong team? I thought that was out of line.

I do know there has been discussions on these threads before about the "tribal" nature of the game. It IS a game though-in my opinion if I go to a "rival" arena, I should expect to get jeered and ragged on-I shouldn't expect to have to defend my life.

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02-18-2013, 07:26 PM
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Rob
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Look up fans fighting on YouTube. Hours of entertainment. Raiders nation seems to be involved in most fights.

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02-18-2013, 07:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MountainHawk View Post
I'm not sure the NHL will be subject to the same forces, because alcohol isn't as much a part of the culture of the sport fandom as it is in football and baseball, where much of the problems tend to happen.
It does happen though-isn't there a "famous" picture of a Jersey fan getting punched out by a Philly fan (that's NOT a shot at your team BTW! ) It definitely may be minor, but that particular picture got media attention.

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02-18-2013, 07:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MountainHawk View Post
I'm not sure the NHL will be subject to the same forces, because alcohol isn't as much a part of the culture of the sport fandom as it is in football and baseball, where much of the problems tend to happen.
You haven't been to Red Wings/Coyotes game at Jobing.com arena.

With the large screen TV costs coming down and the awesome pictures in HD, some people will think why not just watch it at home. You can drink as much as you like without the prospect of a DUI and you can be in bed in a few minutes after the game if you are working the next day. I like the live game experience myself.

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02-18-2013, 07:30 PM
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It goes beyond alcohol and the behaviour of fans at games.

It's getting more difficult to afford tickets to games, and it's hard to get to games with people working longer hours, taking care of kids, etc. When presented with the option of watching a game in HD on a big screen TV at home for a fraction of the cost - the live experience becomes much less enticing... especially when you find out you've gone to that trouble only to watch a boring game.

I've been seeing it for years now. People I know who used to go to all sorts of NHL, NFL and MLB games have gotten to the point where it's much more enjoyable watching the game at home while at the same time saving a lot of money.

For a gate-driven league like the NHL, this will hurt them tremendously.

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02-18-2013, 07:32 PM
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This is BS. Attendance is up from the 80's to 90's, the 90's to 2000, and has only increased or leveled off because of sellouts. There are more people on earth now and more TV's of course TV ratings will get higher as more people to watch games, and less tickets to buy for some.

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02-18-2013, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Realm View Post
This is BS. Attendance is up from the 80's to 90's, the 90's to 2000, and has only increased or leveled off because of sellouts. There are more people on earth now and more TV's of course TV ratings will get higher as more people to watch games, and less tickets to buy for some.
Not necessarily. The only team I make an effort to see live are the Coyotes. If I loved in Miami, I would attend every Dolphins game. Suns and Diamondbacks, I'm content with watching them on tv.

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02-18-2013, 08:34 PM
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Yeah, I'm not sure I buy the connections being made in this article either.

- Attendance across pro and amateur sports is WAY up over historical levels. On a different scale entirely in some cases. I don't count hotel reservations and rental car sales as a better indicator of sports attendance than attendance figures, which are not mentioned.

- The idea that people are now afraid to go to sporting events is news to me. If anything, I'm not so sure this issue is really getting worse and not better in a majority of venues. Have we forgotten Boston Garden and the Spectrum already?

- To the extent that people are in fact avoiding live events, it's bizarre not to open the conversation with economics. Quite simply, prices are higher than ever before and the economy is only just coming out of a global recession. Pro sports especially are not affordable for a lot of people who used to be within the core customer base. That's clearly a bigger factor than fringe behavior like "cocooning" which appears to have more to do with lower prices on electronics and higher prices on travel combined with an aging population.



I trust everyone knows what I mean when I say this is a very "USA Today" way to make a nebulous social trend sound like a really big deal.

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02-18-2013, 08:50 PM
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Honestly watching a game on TV pales in comparison to the live experience

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02-18-2013, 09:22 PM
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I've been to basketball games, I've been to football games, I've been to baseball games, I've been to soccer games.

All are fun to watch live, but the experience isn't that much different to watching at home. With hockey, the difference is huge. The NHL is a gate driven league because it's the best damn live sport on the planet.


Last edited by Crease: 02-18-2013 at 09:42 PM. Reason: Accidentally hit edit. No changes made.
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02-18-2013, 09:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ernie View Post
I've been to basketball games, I've been to football games, I've been to baseball games, I've been to soccer games.

All are fun to watch live, but the experience isn't that much different to watching at home. With hockey, the difference is huge. The NHL is a gate driven league because it's the best damn live sport on the planet.
It's a gate driven league because they don't get much TV revenue, either because A) the game doesn't translate well on TV or B) theres not enough interested eyeballs.

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02-18-2013, 09:59 PM
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I prefer watching games on TV. Nowadays with the ability to pause or download it, it's more convenient. And I love the satisfaction of not wasting $ on the ******* lockout creating NHL or overcharging Leafs. Yeah I know some rich guy or some idiot will gladly fork over his $ but not worth it to me with modern technology.

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02-18-2013, 10:30 PM
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Weak article. If you want to analyze attendance you probably want to look at, oh, attendance data. Instead it looks at electronics spending and overall tourism money. Disney and Hawaii trips might be down -- not clear how that impacts attendance at the local team.

Standard crap journalism.

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02-19-2013, 12:04 AM
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awfulwaffle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ernie View Post
I've been to basketball games, I've been to football games, I've been to baseball games, I've been to soccer games.

All are fun to watch live, but the experience isn't that much different to watching at home. With hockey, the difference is huge. The NHL is a gate driven league because it's the best damn live sport on the planet.
If it was the best live sport, they would have even higher ticket prices. It's a gate driven league because their TV deal [mod].


Last edited by Fugu: 02-19-2013 at 12:08 AM. Reason: offensive
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02-19-2013, 12:22 AM
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Have you been to an NBA game? The crowd is pretty coropate and boring. Dosent seem like the fans have any passion.

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02-19-2013, 12:24 AM
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Attendance numbers say this isn't an issue...it's just that there are more people interested in general.


As for the live vs. television debate...
Hockey - Live is a million times better. HD has helped hockey more than any other sport, but hockey is simply best when seen in person. I've never turned anyone into a fan by having them watch a game on TV, but I've turned many people into fans by taking them to games.
Baseball - The stadium experience is fun and helps lessen the blow of all the downtime, but both sides have pros and cons. It's a lot easier to enjoy a gem of a pitching performance on TV than it is live, for starters. I typically go to 3-6 games a year (when living near a Major League team, of course...I probably went to 3 games combined in my 5 years living in Montana) and watch another 80-100 on TV.
Football - College football is a million times better live. Professional football is a million times better televised.
Soccer - All depends on the stadium atmosphere. The soccer games I've gone to (in Denmark and the MLS Cup) were a blast because of the atmosphere, but I don't balk at watching it on TV either.
Basketball - I'm trying to think of scenarios it would take to get me to watch a basketball game and they all involve Zooey Deschanel and Alison Brie and very little basketball.


In general the only sport that I'd say TV has any real impact on as far as my desire to go to games is NFL football...and I haven't lived in a location that had a NFL team since the 2006 season...

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02-19-2013, 02:32 AM
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Baseball- Better on TV. Boring live. Every single pitch looks almost identical. Very hard to tell strikes/balls depending on where you sit.

Football- Better on TV. You can't see the yellow 1st down line in person. Usually cold at the stadium. A million stoppages, you cant follow the other games (a lot of people play fantasy football) Pepole would rather sit home and eat wings during the game.

Basketball - Doesn't really make a difference. The court is so small, you don't really miss anything on TV. Most of the baskets happen after the team has already set up.

Soccer - Probably better in person. You can also see the play develop and usually the atmosphere at soccer games is great. Although in person you cant always see the curve of the ball.

Hockey - Definitely better in Person. You see the play develop better in person. Everyone on this forum knows this.

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02-19-2013, 04:02 AM
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I think an important point that is often missed when people say "attendances are up" is that often they (and teams) are basing their comments on ticket sales, not actual attendances.

As I'm sure many folk have seen (and scratched their heads over) "sell out game" is often mentioned by commentary teams, with the implication being that the arena is full, but this often is at odds with footage of rows of empty seats.

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02-19-2013, 06:51 AM
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Just from my experience.

Hockey - better in person. HD helps a ton though for TV viewing.

Baseball - I love being at the games or watching on TV. Too much downtime for some people but it's not that bad to me.

Football - Depends. College games where you're playing a rival or a top 5 team are a blast live. Pro football I'd rather just watch at home, especially when it's cold outside.

Basketball - Same with football. College rivalry games are a blast. NBA games for the most part are terrible.

Soccer - I've never been to an outdoor soccer game, only indoor but indoor was fun. I'd go to an outdoor soccer game as well as I think that would be great live. You get to see all the plays developing.

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02-19-2013, 06:56 AM
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No question the fact HD tv are more affordable helps.

I, for myself, am watching more games on TV since I could buy a decent HD TV set.

I like watching hockey, football and soccer. I am not really into baseball and basketball.

Watching golf on HD is a totally different experience then on a standard tube.

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