YouTube TV has confirmed that it is dropping Fox RSNs with the date set for October 1, 2020. This is not the first time YouTube TV has had to deal with Fox RSNs, although the previous issues were temporarily lifted after a deal was agreed. This time, no deal will be done.
Just like local channels, having access to regional sports networks is a big deal for many cutting the cord, and it has also become one of the more difficult parts of the streaming equation. As prices have increased, services have faced the decision of either dropping the RSNs or charging consumers more. In cases where a better deal can’t be agreed, the channels are usually dropped.
In February, YouTube TV confirmed it was unable to strike a deal with Sinclair Broadcast Group and would be dropping Fox RSNs. However, in March YouTube TV announced it had reached an extension deal to keep the RSNs, although not all subscribers saw them return. That same extension is now about to end and this time there is no new deal to take over. As a result, YouTube TV has now made it clear that Fox RSNs will be gone, and soon.
YouTube TV also confirmed that this change will not only affect live access, but that subscribers will also lose access to any MLB, NHL and NBA content they have recorded from Fox RSNs using their cloud DVR.
A sports fee too far for YouTube TV
YouTube TV is well aware of the importance of sports and that’s one of the reasons why the service recently and significantly expanded its sports options. However, Fox RSNs have proven particularly hard to secure for streaming services without them having to significantly increase the cost. For example, this has not been just an issue for YouTube TV, as Sling TV and fuboTV have also both had problems securing Fox RSNs.
Regardless of why the problem exists, or who is to blame, the end result is that consumers have now lost another of the few options that were available for Fox RSNs. YouTube TV did say that it hopes they will return in the future, but the tone and wording of the message suggests that’s unlikely to be the case.
Source: YouTube TV (Twitter)