Fox Broadband - a benefit or boycott it?

Discussion in 'TV, Satellite & Radio' started by HDSports, Aug 7, 2007.

  1. HDSports

    HDSports Member

    Aug 30, 2005
    The best way to explain what FOX is trying to do and my position is to present part of the letter I wrote to someone at FSC:

    "I am writing regarding the new fledgling Fox broadband service.

    As it has previously been explained to me, the broadband service would be showing 1-2 games per week, showing the game previously not shown live (the 4th choice 10 am game) and the game not picked. For example, by this explanation this opening weekend would have meant that broadband would carry Derby v. Portsmouth and Middlesbrough v. Blackburn. This represents added content for those who opt to pay for it and I have no problem with that.

    Now I hear that Arsenal v. Fulham, a game in a time slot that last year would have been aired by Setanta Xtra, (and shown delayed on their regular channel) is will now only available on broadband. I have sat down to watch games on broadband (my internet service provides me with ESPN360) and find it very uncomfortable to sit watching a computer screen for two hours, and more aggravating is that my opportunity to watch this game on my large screen TV has been taken away from me. And while more people have broadband internet than ever before, there are still many soccer fans for whom you have removed the opportunity to watch the game at all.

    Instead of providing extra content for fans whose teams games would have not been televised anyway, what is being doing here is removing a game that would have previously been available on TV. Most disturbing about this poaching of a 'moved' match is that it will undoubtedly be repeated throughout the year with top teams, since they are the clubs likely to have their scheduled games changed due to having midweek contests in Europe for Champions League or UEFA Cup.

    When the sublicensing of PL games to Setanta occured, I was not one of those complaining, because I felt overall it provided an improvement in access to live Premiership. In this case, I did not mind paying the cost of buying and installing satellite equipment for what turned out, combined with your FSC broadcasts, to be an improved viewing experience. However, this is not the case here. When broadband is presented as an alternative method of access (for example, I have no problem with Setanta broadband, because they are providing the matches available on their television channel for those who are unable to get satellite services) or provides additional material to those 'completists', it can be a step forward, but not how it is being used here. What can be welcomed as a technological extension, can instead be met with antagonism when it is misused. I recall the reaction when ESPN pulled the Barcelona-Chelsea Champions League match off ESPN2 in order to try to force people to use their broadband service."

    I am curious how many of you are planning on utilizing this new PPV service to watch Fulham-Arsenal and how many resent it? (if they ever get the service going)
     
  2. CG

    CG Member

    Jul 25, 2001
    I would just like to be able to find some info about it from Fox to start.
     
  3. GutBomb

    GutBomb Red Card

    Aug 28, 2003
    Outside Boston
    i am going to ignore it. if agame i want to see isn't on tv i am going the torrent route.
     
  4. HDSports

    HDSports Member

    Aug 30, 2005
    I called someone at Fox Soccer Channel just yesterday, who told me they're going to the 11th hour to get this thing up, but still could not give me particulars pertaining to price, etc. He was telling me all the good things that FSC has planned and seemed taken aback when I told him what I felt about what they were doing in regard to the first two Arsenal games being moved to broadband only. In all fairness, he listened to what I had to say and was polite, plus tried to put a positive spin on this development.

    More than ask if anyone would pay to support this, there is so little information that a better question would be: What do you think Fox's asking price (both per game or by subscription) will be for this 'service'?
     
  5. Johnny Bundesliga

    Aug 6, 2006
    Chicago
    Club:
    Manchester City FC
    I think it's great that closer to every game will be available one way or the other. There is probably going to be resistance akin to the resistance that was felt when cable TV came on the scene 30+ years ago.

    There were so many pre-conceived notions then that needed to be changed -- from the idea of having to actually "pay" for TV to the equipment (cable box, wiring, etc.) required, plus the resentment of losing programming that was once "free" to cable exclusivity. Those biases were eventually changed by the quality and breadth of the product and the viewers' ability to adapt. For us today, eventually, I think that means everyone is going to have a PC (or PC-like device) hooked up to their TV to watch broadband content, just like everyone has a cable box now. And generally the quality of streams will improve to as technology and infrastructure are upgraded. In terms of Fox/Setanta Broadband in particular, it will depend on the quality of the service whether people will choose to adapt quickly or not.

    HD, I will be interested to hear any more information you get from Fox.
     
  6. alexp92

    alexp92 Member

    Jul 5, 2007
    i looked at the schedule and saw that the arsenal blackburn game a few weeks in was being shown on setanta broadband. should i sign up, or wait and see what this fox broadband thingy is? im very confused. so the fulham game will be on the computer?
     
  7. HDSports

    HDSports Member

    Aug 30, 2005
    Next week's Arsenal -Blackburn game was originally scheduled for Saturday and was selected by Setanta as the first choice 10 am game. Due to the fact that Blackburn is playing the previous Thursday night in Finland in an UEFA cup qualifier, they have moved that game to Sunday. As of yesterday, the game was still listed on Setanta's schedule, but that will change, and the game probably will only be available via fox's broadband service, if its still in business.:rolleyes:
     
  8. HDSports

    HDSports Member

    Aug 30, 2005
    I'm not against changes in technology, but Setanta did it the right way, by offering their station on broadband as an alternative, not forcing you to see a particular game on what is not yet a mature technology. My internet service provides me with ESPN360, and I watched some portions of U-20 World Cup matches that ESPNU did not televise, but in this case, ESPNU was covering a tournament more extensively than it had been in the past here in the US, and put even more games on the PC. What Fox is doing is equivilent to ESPN removing games from the World Cup TV schedule and putting it on a PC and then charging more for the inferior product. In Fox's case, they are taking a top team's game that could be seen on either Setanta or FSC Tv before and putting on a PC. Most households do not yet have that degree of integration that you speak of, and watching a computer monitor for two hours is not my idea of good quality tv. At this point in time, advances in technology should be focusing on things like bringing fans games in HD rather than migrating to a platform with poorer resolution than what we now have.

    Also, you would think they would have the courtesy to have the broadband fully set up before pulling games like this off...I still don't know how much they are planning to charge!
     
  9. alexp92

    alexp92 Member

    Jul 5, 2007
    ok thanks
     
  10. rangers00

    rangers00 Member

    Jun 1, 2000
    I am not concern about moving games away from Setanta TV to FSC broadband, but this argument about forcing you to watch games on a PC is really a weak one.

    Three years ago, I had big arguments with BocaFan, Visca el Barca, KottoBass and MiamiAce about ESPN2's coverage of the CL. That was the time BT took off, and almost all the CL games not covered by ESPN2 were available on BT. I got as many as 15 game per MD. At that time, may games were available thru' the Internet, but their stupid argument against ESPN2 not carrying more CL games were constantly:

    "No one wants to watch the game on a PC"....

    The truth is, no one forces you to watch the game on a PC, or more accurately, a monitor. Never mind that the monitor nowadays look very much like a TV (I have an LCD monitor that I double as a TV using a TV tuner, no PC involved), but any game you get from the Internet, from streaming to BT download, you can easily watch it on a TV instead of a monitor. I know, because I always do that. I rarely watch the downloaded games on my monitor. There are at least 3 options:

    - have a graphics card that has a TV-out, very common these days. I use this option when I play the game on my desktop.
    - buy a TV adapter that converts VGA into RCA video. I have 3 of those, 2 for PAL and 1 for NTSC. That's how you feed your video output to a TV. I use this option when I play the game from my laptop.
    - if the downloaded file is in AVI or MPG format, just copy the file into a DVD-R. My PVR/DVD Player can simply play the AVI/MPG2 files. It's not even played as a DVD (you know, the VOB format). It's played as an AVI file. I use this option when I want to use both of my computers for some other tasks.

    So, the excuse "I don't watch to watch the game on a PC" is rather old. I have been watching these types of games on TV for at least 3 years. And guess what, for video with smaller resolution, if you play full screen on a monitor from 2 ft away, you notice the difference. But if you play it on a TV from 8 ft away, the difference is hardly noticeable.

    Of course, BocaFan used another brain-dead excuse:

    "what if my house is so big that the PC and the TV are hundreds of feet away?"

    I hope you don't sink down to his level...
     
  11. TarheelJTK

    TarheelJTK Member

    Dec 14, 2004
    Jersey City
    I'm not going to get Fox Broadband. I have a feeling that it will be a disaster like so many things that FSC attempts to do. Just think about the production issues that they regularly have while doing television. I'm not anti new technology either because I'm a Setanta broadband subscriber.

    Setanta did do this the right way. The broadband option is just another way for people to get the channel.
     
  12. AndSomeAreAngels

    AndSomeAreAngels Moderator
    Staff Member

    Jun 7, 2003
    Brokelyn
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Of course watching games on your TV is possible, but you're not addressing the issue - are games being switched from Setanta TV to Fox Broadband? If so, that's annoying for Setanta subscribers, who would prefer to watch them on their TV, like last year.

    Look, I can drive my car up to my living room window and blast the music, but I'd rather listen to it on my home stereo.
     
  13. CG

    CG Member

    Jul 25, 2001
    I think FSC broadband will only have two games not currently shown elsewhere as part of the broadband package. That is if I heard correctly on the podcast.
     
  14. MasterShake29

    MasterShake29 Member+

    Oct 28, 2001
    Jersey City, NJ
    Club:
    New York Red Bulls
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Yeah, these are games that either won't air live on FSC, or wouldn't air at all, but that FSC already has rights to.

    No games are being taken away from Setanta.
     
  15. AndSomeAreAngels

    AndSomeAreAngels Moderator
    Staff Member

    Jun 7, 2003
    Brokelyn
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Ok, good.

    So in that case, I have no problem watching games on my computer. It's not ideal, but I've watched plenty of games on my computer before (as well as all 52 episodes of The Wire...worth it only b/c it's the greatest TV show ever made).

    Hey, the more soccer available to the consumer the better. But I don't think I'm alone in my lack of faith in FSC's technological infrastructure. Until Liverpool's got a game on FSC Broadband, I'm probably gonna hold out.
     
  16. wyman

    wyman Member

    Jul 23, 2006
    New York
  17. HDSports

    HDSports Member

    Aug 30, 2005
    Normally, the two games fox broadband would show (the sat 10 am fourth pick and the game not chosen) would not interest me, but they've redone the deal with Setanta which provides the loophole....any game beyond the two on Sunday can go to fox broadband. When it involved the big clubs (who often move their game due to midweek games in Europe), in the past the games starting before 10 am would go onto Setanta(Xtra) and those after would be shown after the 11 am game on FSC. In return, Setanta gained the showing of the Monday games this year.
     
  18. rangers00

    rangers00 Member

    Jun 1, 2000
     
  19. Spartak

    Spartak Member

    Nov 6, 1999
    Philly
    Club:
    AC Milan
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
     
  20. ChicagoTom

    ChicagoTom New Member

    Mar 17, 2005
    Chicago
    I am NOT too excited about watching matches on my computer monitor. I do NOT have the capability to plug my monitor into my TV. My DSL connection is shaky at best most times thus I will be watching a lot of buffering on my screen which is NOT that appealing.

    As others have mentioned, I think Fox should have gone about this the same way Setanta has by offering online content in conjunction with the same matches being shown on TV. Thus, for those who cannot watch or get Setanta, they can watch via Broadband. But to offer Broadband only for select matches is something I am NOT too keen on.

    I will give it a shot and see how things work out, but I just fear that knowing Fox and their less than adequate production that this will NOT be ready by Sunday and if they do roll it out, there will be many, many issues with it that they will need to resolve before it operates the way it needs to.
     
  21. MasterShake29

    MasterShake29 Member+

    Oct 28, 2001
    Jersey City, NJ
    Club:
    New York Red Bulls
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The FOX guy said on the EPL Talk podcast that due to their agreements with the cable companies, they can't do that.

    That I would expect.
     
  22. rangers00

    rangers00 Member

    Jun 1, 2000
    Pray tell, why do you want to plug your monitor into your TV? You do NOT plug your monitor into your TV. You direct the video out of your graphics card to the TV INSTEAD OF to the monitor!!!!

    That is a problem of streaming content from the Internet, and this is a legitimate concern.

    However, this problem has nothing to do with "I don't want to watch the game on a monitor". Afterall, sometimes you watch the game from the Internet delayed, after you download the whole game to your PC. You can still watch the game on your TV.
     
  23. GutBomb

    GutBomb Red Card

    Aug 28, 2003
    Outside Boston
    dude chill out. people have legitimate reasons for preferring not to have to resort to watching a game through their PC either on a monitor or a tv. You work through those concerns because you're knowledgable and are willing to compromise some things that others aren't. We understand that you think you are the better fan because you don't mind watching the stream or the BT download through your computer on a tv or monitor (or both)

    we get it. but coming in and being pedantic with that last guy because he used the wrong word makes you look like a raving lunatic.
     
  24. HDSports

    HDSports Member

    Aug 30, 2005
    Are there any programs that can be recommended for capturing streams from the internet for later viewing, in effect acting as a internet VCR?

    Will there be any hardware requirements (to at least optimize the programs operation) or is it completely a software product..

    Can such a program be "set" to capture a specific stream adn/or at a certain time, and how would it do that?

    Do different stream providers have to be captured in a different method from other providers (or even disable the process)?

    [I'm sure those who go ahead and purchase a broadband package might want some conveniences they are used to getting from TV/DVR/VCR equipment. While I do not plan to purchase from Fox, I do have access to ESPN360]
     
  25. rangers00

    rangers00 Member

    Jun 1, 2000
    The streaming I get from the Internet is thru peer-to-peer, not thru' a service like ITVN or Setanta broadband. As such, the peer-to-peer client in fact behaves as a streaming server, that streams the media locally to your media player. As a result, Windows media player is the default player used by these "local" P2P streaming.

    The problem is that in WM Player, you cannot record.

    Your alternative is to pay for a software that does stream recording:

    http://all-streaming-media.com/record-video-stream/all-streaming-video-recording-software.htm

    Notice that in this page, there are some freeware, but I never managed to get these freeware to work. And they are buggy too.

    On the other hand, if you don't want to pay and want something more reliable, try the VLC Player. This player also has the recording function. So while you use the VLC Player to play the stream from the P2P client, I also enable the recording function and get the stream recorded.

    To do timer recording, I would use the Windows Task Scheduler to inovke the VLC Player.

    And if you don't want to go thru' the hassle of setting up a Windows task to do stream recording, you can also feed the PC video to a VCR/PVR (using the 3-color cable). It's just converting a content in digital form back to analog form, and record the analog signal. That's why learning how to direct the PC video output to a TV is very crucial. If nothing else, you can easily record games you can't watch live.
     

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