Monday, October 12, 2009

Sportsnet: One suggestion for how it could get it right

Rogers Sportsnet ought to see if it can turn into a hardcore sex channel so gradually that no one even notices.

It's bound to work better than what they've been doing. In a space about 15 minutes late Sunday night during the Philadelphia Phillies' win over the Colorado Rockies, Sportsnet ...
  • ... Aired a promo for Game 4 of the American League Division Series between the "never-say-die Twins" and the New York Yankees. The Yankees had wrapped up the series in three games. Sportsnet could not have been expected to know this since the entire series aired on their network.

  • Evanka Osmak — who is probably the best anchor they have — plugged a sponsor by saying the fans in frigid Denver could "use a shot of Wiser's to warm up." It is cheesy to plug the sponsor again after it was already introduced.

    (Secondly, it is a myth alcohol warms the body. It actually constricts blood vessels. There's an irony an English major pointing this out about something said about a graduate of the Faculty of Applied Science at Queen's University.)

  • Sportsnet waited oh about 30 seconds after the final out to go to Sportsnet Connected so people could see the same highlights which already had been on every other channel hours earlier. Canadian viewers are just as entitled to see the post-game interviews. Apparently TBS let a clearly audible F-bomb make it to the airwaves.

    That was a missed chance to start gradually turning into a hardcore sex channel.
This is mainly worth pointing out to say last week's media uproar over Sportsnet keeping the Tigers-Twins tiebreaker game off the air in much of the country and sniffing consumers were at fault for not buying more channels was entirely justified. It's a joke. Chris Zelkovich noted in his Toronto Star column this was a huge screw-you to fixed-income seniors who make up a lot of baseball's viewership. Ball fans are getting screwed over. Please keep in mind Rogers has a lot to do with MLB Network being unavailable in Canada.

A better question from the young old farts is why doesn't Sportsnet stream all playoff games, so ball fans aren't put out when there's a conflict with hockey? Tonight, the Pittsburgh Penguins-Senators game is on the East channel at the same time as Rockies-Phillies. Anyone in Ottawa who has access to only one Sportsnet won't be able to get the ballgame.

Let people register with their account number and go from there, that way they're not giving it away for free. A leading telecom such as Rogers should be able to make it happen. Just a thought.

It feels bad to mention Osmak when 30 other nameless jagovs are responsible for these editorial policies, so-called. For her, it might be like the epiphany Robin Scherbatsky once had: "And that was when your Aunt Robin realized that even the bosses at Metro News One didn't watch Metro News One." That was on Season 1 of How I Met Your Mother, which on tonight as the same time as the baseball game Rogers customers cannot watch.


dzuunmod said...

Out here in BC last night, after the Canucks shootout with the Stars wrapped, they went to Jason Portmondo (I'm sure I'm butchering that name, but you know who I mean) in the studio who said something like, "We'll get you to the Rockies-Phillies game shortly, but first, let's have a look at the highlights from the Canucks game that was on this channel and ended not 120 seconds ago."

Ok, so I added that last part.

They then proceeded to show all the highlights, including those from the shootout (which again, I emphasize, ended literally about two minutes prior). Then they had an interview with a Canucks player. Then they showed highlights from the evening's earlier NHL game (Ducks-Rangers). Then they had another Canucks interivew, and then they had the guys in the booth talk about the game and Shane O'Brien for a couple of minutes. I'd say that it was actually about 10 or 12 minutes before they finally threw to the ballgame.

Now, for me personally, this isn't an issue since I have Bell TV and all four channels, but the decision to stick with post-game wrap-up over live playoff baseball (that was promised by the anchor!) seemed like a real head-scratcher.

(Slightly off-topic curiosity for me, Neate: does Kingston fall in Sportsnet Ontario or Sportsnet East territory?)

sager said...

Presumably Sportsnet Ontario for Kingston.

Ottawa is Sportsnet Ontario, but Leafs telecasts are blacked out and replaced by Senators games. So it's a hybrid for Ottawa. Presumably it is the same deal in Kingston, which back in the day had a mix between Toronto and Montreal fans.

Tyler King said...

"Evanka Osmak — who is probably the best anchor they have"

There are so many things wrong with that. No. No. No. No. No.

Actually, there's only one thing wrong with that. What it says.

sager said...

Kinger! There is being right and there's being nice, and I have both on you.

Tyler King said...

I don't think it's un-nice to say someone isn't the best of something.

She's nowhere close to the worst, in case that's what it seemed I was implying.

sager said...

Take it for what it was, a throwaway comment that was cover for the fact Ms. Osmak was the only one mentioned by name when there are 10 dick-smacks working off-camera at Sportsnet who should getting raked over the coals, but whose names we will never know. Sorry, it's annoying when people want to pick at stuff that is ancillary to the crux of the post, especially when they do it anonymously and claim they have worked with people.

Don't say what you wouldn't say to people's faces.