The NBA Commissioner Blames Cord Cutting for Its Recent Ratings Decline





basketball fans watching tv

basketball fans watching tvRecently the NBA has seen ratings sliding down. The recent news around the NBA has driven up traffic, but overall the season is still down when looking at viewership.

The NBA Commissioner Adam Silver told the Daily News that in short cord cutting is the issue. More importantly, the issue being that cord cutters, especially young cord cutters, are not paying for a live TV streaming service.

“There are then some structural issues in the way our games are delivered, and it’s something that we’re working through with our media partners now,” he said. “For example, it’s well-known that on one hand we’re celebrated by some because we have such a young fan base, but that young fan base is disconnecting from pay television in record numbers, and by disconnecting, not just simply not subscribing to cable or so-called cutting the cord, they’re not watching traditional paid television the way they used to. They’re watching over-the-top streaming services. They’re watching screens, but it’s not essentially pay TV.”

“So the good news for the league is that, when we look at all other data points, particularly what we see in social media, what we see in terms of distribution of highlights and general chatter around our games, we’ve never been more popular, but we haven’t found a way to connect those young fans to our broadcast through whatever platform they’re going to be delivered.”

There is a lot of truth in Silver’s remarks. Reports are that of the estimated 35 million to 40 million cord cutting households in the United States only about 8 million of them pay for a live TV streaming service. According to the NBA, many cord cutters who may want a game here or there are skipping it to save money and watch services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon.

This has been one of the core issues for traditional pay-TV services. Early on with cord cutting the hope was that Americans would happily switch over to cheaper live TV streaming services. While some have, the majority of cord cutters have decided to skip all live TV streaming services in favor of cheaper on-demand services.

Do you subscribe to a live TV streaming service or did you go on-demand only? Leave us a comment and let us know.

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