Talk:Blackout (broadcasting)

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NFL : St Louis Rams[edit]

Since when do the St Louis Rams play somewhere other than St Louis? The example of the Rams is extremely confusing. Meinterrupted (talk) 00:41, 11 September 2009 (UTC)[]

MLB Policy[edit]

I'm not sure the description of the MLB policy is completely accurate. Where I live, Duluth, Minn. (Twins and Brewers territory) I cannot recall a single game on TBS or WGN being blacked out (I'm positive about WGN). I believe these superstations are grandfathered in and normal blackout rules do not apply to them. WGN has even broadcast games that were carried by FOX on Saturday afternoons.

As for the example in the article: "THE CHICAGO CUBS--ST. LOUIS CARDINALS GAME WILL NOT BE SEEN ON WGN-TV TODAY. PLEASE TURN TO KPLR-TV FOR COVERAGE." I believe this is due to one (or both) of two things (a) WGN and KPLR are both owned by the Tribune Company, and they did not want their cable station competing with their local station, and/or (b) a rule not covered in the article that a home team can request a blackout of all (non-local?) broadcasts -- including the superstations -- within a 35-mile radius of the stadium [1] (perhaps only when there is no local broadcast?).

Does anyone have any more information on these rules before I edit the article?


I do know that WGN superstation is different than KWGN (or whatever it is) that broadcasts on regular TV. Seeing as I don't live in either local market, I've never seen a game blacked out.

Clarification for international readers sought[edit]

Pretty much none of the section makes sense readily.

1) Since FSN seems to be national why write "another local broadcaster"? Why is it important to know that TBS broadcasts "many Atlanta Braves games" and FSN broadcasts "many games in other areas"?

Can it be written in a from like: If Anytown Franchise are playing a game (anywhere in the country?) and local broadcaster Anytown TV has the rights to show the AF game then people who live in Anytown can only watch it on ATV. In Anytown, people who tune in to Big National Broadcast Network for most of their baseball will see a screen telling them to tune to ATV. Viewers of BNBN in the rest of the country will be able to watch on BNBN.

In a related way: Rival National Sports Channel own most of the rights to broadcast games played by Othertown Team. OT is scheduled to play AF. Naturally, in Anytown, ATV will show the game; in cities in the rest of the country the game can be seen on either of BNBN/RSNC depending upon who owns the right to broadcast the game to that city; the other broadcaster is blacked-out.

2) It seems to be saying that, "On Saturdays and Sundays residents of Anytown can't watch their team on television if the AF game starts at a certain (unspecified) time (but anyone else in the country can?). Anytown viewers have to settle for some sucky out-of-town team that they don't care about. BNBN can't show the game because as a local broadcaster ATV has the rights broadcast to Anytown the games played by AF, and ATV can't show the game anyway."

It could be made a lot clearer by getting rid of terms like "market" "certain start time" (unless that last is can be given some sort of example such "if the local team starts play at such time that their game could overlap with a game to be broadcast by natioanl broadcaster ESPN or FSN") and using things like "local broadcaster", "local team", "national broadcaster", "rival national broadcaster". --Waerloeg, 0245, 02 July 2006 (UTC+12)

I agree, as someone not used to either the US sporting events or the US TV networks etc, this article could be made much clearer. EAi 16:04, 17 July 2006 (UTC)[]
Thank you to the people who have worked on this article in the last couple of months. It is much clearer and I feel I understand the blackout rules. Waerloeg 08:56, 14 September 2006 (UTC)[]

Sat and Cable Packages[edit]

Purchasing a sports package on cable or satellite WILL NOT get you around blackout rules. The Article is incorrect in this. Example....

If I live in the home area for the Washington Redskins, and i have NFL Sunday Ticket. If the Redskins game is blacked out on local TV, it will also be blacked out on the NFL Sunday Ticket.

Oddly satellite will show "alternate" channels for some of the ESPN's when sporting events are going on. The theory being if a game is blacked out in one area, they replace the feed with one you can watch.

Theoretical Purpose of Blackout[edit]

"The purpose is to theoretically generate more money by obligating certain actions from fans, either by making them buy tickets or watch other games on TV."

Has this theory ever been validated or proven to be true? In other words, has the broadcasting industry measured revenue increase/decrease based on the Blackout policy?

The answer to these questions would eliminate any readers doubt as to the true intention of the Blackout policy. Most people I know become very irritated with local game Blackouts.


To someone from the UK who has no experiance of sporting blackouts (except once when people were dying in the stadium after a disaster) it does seem to be a pointless excercise. True it might increase the attendance but it would alienate more fans who can't go to the game for whatever reason. Cls14 (talk) 11:04, 25 February 2010 (UTC)[]

NBA policy[edit]

If anyone knows and wants to add the NBA policy for blackouts it would be welcomed. I am the original creator of this article, and I tried to put that in when I made the article, but could not find any information, thanks.


1970's NFL[edit]

I remember reading about how Congress passed a law in the '70s regarding pro football TV blackouts. Can someone provide the history of this issue? Arlen Specter's current problem with the NFL Network reminds me of this issue. According to ESPN, Congress passed in recent years, the Sports Broadcasting Act. Information about that would be helpful too. -Amit

NHL blackouts[edit]

I think that the NHL section of this article merits some re-evaluation.

The definition of a "blackout" given by this article states that it is when certain programming, usually sports, cannot be shown in a certain media market, with the aim being to get viewers to purchase tickets to the game itself or view it on another channel. Now, according to this definition, Saturday night Leafs home games on the CBC would be "blacked out" in the Greater Toronto Area but shown everywhere else – this is clearly not the case, as I'm sure most Torontonians can see Leafs home games on CBC on Saturday nights without any problem. Also, the CBC is available nationwide, so I'm pretty sure the same thing would happen in other cities on Saturdays as well (e.g., Flames home games aren't blacked out in the Calgary area, Canucks home games aren't blacked out in the GVRD, etc.).

The CBC's monopoly on NHL broadcasting on Saturdays is a result of the CRTC giving them that monopoly – they wouldn't even have it if the CRTC didn't give it the okay first. Furthermore, the CBC's decision to air the games of certain teams over others is a result of the decisions of programming executives at the network more than anything else. I don't think either of these fit the definition of "blackout," at least as stated at the outset of this article.

Hence, I'm seriously thinking this section needs to be eliminated altogether, or at least heavily edited (together with proper citations from secondary material) to more accurately represent realities. Being a good Wikipedian, I thought I'd bring up the issue here rather than take unilateral action, but as it looks now, this section mainly looks like whining from a disgruntled fan about how the Leafs get too much coverage on the CBC on Saturdays. Gujuguy 21:00, 18 April 2007 (UTC)[]

NFL in Israel[edit]

Two comments: first, the references link to completely irrelevant pages. Second, I was in Israel in December and watched the NFL just fine. So, should we remove this paragraph? Smartyshoe 13:37, 19 July 2007 (UTC)[]

Mostly SPORTS?[edit]

I noticed this article talks a lot about sports rather than other forms of pre-emption such as presidential speeches. Fairly OddParents Freak (Fairlyoddparents1234) Megaphone-Vector.svg C 02:22, 2 February 2013 (UTC)[]

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