• For more information on how to avoid pop-up ads and still support SkiTalk click HERE.

Media Coverage of WC racing - Streaming or TV

Rudi Riet

AKA songfta AKA randomduck - a USSS coach, as well
SkiTalk Tester
Contributor
Joined
Nov 12, 2015
Posts
2,427
Location
Washington, DC
For those of us on social media, I recommend tagging US Ski Team and Stifel, and asking them why it's so hard for US-based fans to watch the races. I've been doing it (fruitlessly so far) and I hope more people will add to the chorus of discontent.

It's one thing when they can't connect with the public-at-large to try and grow the fan base. But it's another thing entirely when you piss off the established fan base and make them feel compelled to seek alternate ways of getting quality video content.

Seriously: the whole "media thing" was supposed to be Sophie Goldschmidt's bread-and-butter, the reason for hiring her. And still we have this Gordian knot of services to navigate.

So definitely lean on them on social media, in emails to the U.S. Ski and Snowboard media office, to anyone and everyone who could have influence (heck - even your local NBC affiliate!).
 

dbostedo

Asst. Gathermeister
Moderator
Contributor
SkiTalk Supporter
Joined
Feb 9, 2016
Posts
17,760
Location
75% Virginia, 25% Colorado
so it should be an ideal moment to grow the sport in the US
It makes me wonder if they want to take advantage, but the media outlets don't see any money in it and don't care. I.e. maybe NBC/Peacock think that skiing is lucky to even get the coverage it does, and other outlets aren't seeing good revenue.
 

Tony S

I have a confusion to make ...
Skier
Team Gathermeister
SkiTalk Supporter
Joined
Nov 14, 2015
Posts
12,382
Location
Maine
I.e. maybe NBC/Peacock think that skiing is lucky to even get the coverage it does, and other outlets aren't seeing good revenue.
The way I understand Rudi's point, it's precisely that the ski team need to repossess ownership of media distribution of ski racing in order for it to get the visibility they want it to have. NBC obviously is not in any way their friend in that regard. NBC appears to see it as a bastard child whose primary ROI is in keeping anyone else from having it. What happens beyond that they clearly neither know nor care.
 

Rudi Riet

AKA songfta AKA randomduck - a USSS coach, as well
SkiTalk Tester
Contributor
Joined
Nov 12, 2015
Posts
2,427
Location
Washington, DC
The way I understand Rudi's point, it's precisely that the ski team need to repossess ownership of media distribution of ski racing in order for it to get the visibility they want it to have. NBC obviously is not in any way their friend in that regard. NBC appears to see it as a bastard child whose primary ROI is in keeping anyone else from having it. What happens beyond that they clearly neither know nor care.

That is exactly it: they need things centralized. And if that's via a FIS global service, so much the better. FIS will have its hands full getting the Austrian races under the global mantel, so let's leave that where it is for now.

But with the U.S. distribution rights split between SSL (which is basically a repackaged official FIS feed), NBC Universal, and Outside Inc., it's a real mess and one that has a lot of political risk to unravel.

Outside Inc. is trying to become a one-stop "active outdoor lifestyle" media outlet and has partnered with USSS on a lot of things. Wresting the streaming rights from them is super risky for USSS in terms of financial implications, be it ad revenue, sponsored stories across their various channels (including Ski and Outside, among others), etc.

NBC Universal is the official IOC and USOC media outlet and that gives them incredible clout in a country where most people equate any kind of skiing - be it alpine, nordic, freestyle - with the Olympic Games. As @Tony S intimates: they can treat it as a situation where "you should all feel incredibly lucky to have the coverage you get from us." And this isn't the only sporting property that they treat with such disdain: their contract with ASO allows them to butcher their coverage of big-name cycling events (their repackaging of the Tour de France and Paris-Roubaix is a three-ring circus of drek).

NBC Universal knows they have a cash cow and if there is any move to take a USOC sport away from them they will swiftly cut that off.

So we, as fans and viewers, are left grasping, frustrated, and treated like children of abusive parents. In this time of global access to things it is even more insulting to all fans, be they casual or die-hard.

So I wish the FIS luck in moving everything into a single-source global distribution model. If they do it properly it can be an incredible service. Let's hope this is the case and that USSS doesn't feel compelled to have NBC Universal and/or Outside play the "special interpreter" for U.S. audiences.

Just my $0.02. YMMV.
 

Tony S

I have a confusion to make ...
Skier
Team Gathermeister
SkiTalk Supporter
Joined
Nov 14, 2015
Posts
12,382
Location
Maine
Relocate.



Yeah, probably a bit expensive. So Tunnel Bear.
If Tunnel Bear is a VPN, that's not a silver bullet either. If the service you're trying to stream is free, it works. If it's a subscription service without an American presence, like Eurosport was for cycling before GCN+ came along as a US face for them, they will often reject your payment if coming from a US bank.
 

Tony S

I have a confusion to make ...
Skier
Team Gathermeister
SkiTalk Supporter
Joined
Nov 14, 2015
Posts
12,382
Location
Maine
with the U.S. distribution rights split between SSL (which is basically a repackaged official FIS feed), NBC Universal, and Outside Inc.
Not to mention that this mix changes every year in major and/or minor ways that further obstruct viewer access. For example, how many times has the streaming coverage moved among "NBC Sports", "NBC Sports Gold", and "Peacock"? Yes, they're all NBC, but each has its own subscription, its own app, its own UI, and many other idiosyncrasies. They've even changed it up sometimes in the middle of a season.
 

Teppaz

Out on the slopes
Skier
SkiTalk Supporter
Joined
Dec 12, 2016
Posts
547
Location
Brooklyn, NY
It's one thing when they can't connect with the public-at-large to try and grow the fan base. But it's another thing entirely when you piss off the established fan base and make them feel compelled to seek alternate ways of getting quality video content.
They've managed to do both!

I'm really motivated to watch the races, I pay for Peacock and SSL, I have an Outside subscription, and I still can't find some replays. At the other opposite I have friends who want to see what the Shiffrin hoopla is all about (they are not skiers but love sports and competition). They can't figure out how to watch races and have pretty much given up.
 

geepers

Skiing the powder
Skier
Joined
May 12, 2018
Posts
4,209
Location
Wanaka, New Zealand
If Tunnel Bear is a VPN, that's not a silver bullet either. If the service you're trying to stream is free, it works. If it's a subscription service without an American presence, like Eurosport was for cycling before GCN+ came along as a US face for them, they will often reject your payment if coming from a US bank.

HSBC?
 

Rudi Riet

AKA songfta AKA randomduck - a USSS coach, as well
SkiTalk Tester
Contributor
Joined
Nov 12, 2015
Posts
2,427
Location
Washington, DC

Doesn't matter if the HSBC account was opened at a U.S. branch. Same with Santander or other multinational banks with headquarters in the UK and/or EU.

There used to be a loophole where you could use an Amazon gift card to sign up for a Eurosport Player subscription but that, too, has been sunset with the shift to Discovery+.
 

Tony S

I have a confusion to make ...
Skier
Team Gathermeister
SkiTalk Supporter
Joined
Nov 14, 2015
Posts
12,382
Location
Maine
If Tunnel Bear is a VPN, that's not a silver bullet either. If the service you're trying to stream is free, it works. If it's a subscription service without an American presence, like Eurosport was for cycling before GCN+ came along as a US face for them, they will often reject your payment if coming from a US bank.


Doesn't matter if the HSBC account was opened at a U.S. branch. Same with Santander or other multinational banks with headquarters in the UK and/or EU.

There used to be a loophole where you could use an Amazon gift card to sign up for a Eurosport Player subscription but that, too, has been sunset with the shift to Discovery+.
This whole conversation only goes to show how ridiculous the whole thing is. In my fantasy world, what's-her-name from USSA reads this whole thread, realizes the error of her ways, and makes everything right with the world.
 

Cat1210

Putting on skis
Skier
Joined
Oct 28, 2023
Posts
72
Location
US
^ The link is huge, but they are launching a weekly ski show on CNBC starting Saturday.
 

dbostedo

Asst. Gathermeister
Moderator
Contributor
SkiTalk Supporter
Joined
Feb 9, 2016
Posts
17,760
Location
75% Virginia, 25% Colorado
^ The link is huge, but they are launching a weekly ski show on CNBC starting Saturday.
Just FYI, everything after the "?" can be deleted, and is just tracking info for where you arrived at the page from. I edited your link above to simplify it.
 

Rudi Riet

AKA songfta AKA randomduck - a USSS coach, as well
SkiTalk Tester
Contributor
Joined
Nov 12, 2015
Posts
2,427
Location
Washington, DC
^ The link is huge, but they are launching a weekly ski show on CNBC starting Saturday.

So it seems they had the chance at swinging for the fences and landed a solid base-hit single.

I hope this works out for them and that they get access to the FIS video feed as needed. That it's on CNBC - not noted as a sports network but whatever, it's used for their Olympic coverage - gives it a bit more access to those who prefer to use cable over a streaming service. I'm glad they also have the streaming-only folks covered, as well.

Yes, this is slant heavily toward USST coverage which is a bit of a shame as it will likely tune out the depth of the sport. But it's a start which, to be frank, is something. It seems like a reboot of the old syndicated Jalbert Productions World of Snow show from the 1980s and early 1990s.
 

Tony S

I have a confusion to make ...
Skier
Team Gathermeister
SkiTalk Supporter
Joined
Nov 14, 2015
Posts
12,382
Location
Maine
Here's the US TV schedule from NBC Sports up to Jan. 16. Includes races on SSL: https://www.nbcsports.com/olympics/news/alpine-skiing-tv-stream-broadcast-schedule-world-cup-peacock
Just about what I've come to expect. They're playing tic-tac-toe with us.

1701219122958.png
 

Rudi Riet

AKA songfta AKA randomduck - a USSS coach, as well
SkiTalk Tester
Contributor
Joined
Nov 12, 2015
Posts
2,427
Location
Washington, DC
Oddly enough: no coverage listed for the first DH at Beaver Creek. NBC has the races on Saturday and Sunday listed, but not Friday's race. I'd imagine it'll disappear in the Outside+/Peacock ether...
 

Sponsor

Staff online

Top