Loss of free to air coverage

Loss of free to air coverage

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Discussion

TheDeuce

3,734 posts

14 months

Monday 18th November
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Cabinet Enforcer said:
F1 is still Free to Air for the discerning German audience on RTL, and there is nothing stopping anyone pointing a dish a few degrees over from sky and watching along.

I have been doing this since sky first started taking races, and use 5live for commentary, on DAB the timing is close enough not to matter, though if it's online commentary then I usually need to pause the TV for a few seconds.

Apart from paying out for sky it's my only real option for live coverage as broadband in my area is pants.
God there are endless ways.. I only pay because I can afford to do so for the sake of a simple life. Even then, I feel a little resentment at the cost.

I wouldn't blame anyone for finding a workaround tbh, the way I see it, Sky's pricing has effectively put them at war with F1 fans. If they reduced it to a reasonable level then the masses of F1 fans either currently cheating the system one way or another, or simply giving up on live races could be coaxed through the paywall and everyone would win. Sky have paid a one off fee for exclusivity and they're simply not making it attractive enough to enough former devout viewers to get the best out of that. I think they have something like 20% of the former FTA viewers... That's too slim surely. It could be a better balance than that.

Edited by TheDeuce on Monday 18th November 07:45


Edited by TheDeuce on Monday 18th November 07:46

Jon39

6,378 posts

91 months

Monday 18th November
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Cabinet Enforcer said:
F1 is still Free to Air for the discerning German audience on RTL, and there is nothing stopping anyone pointing a dish a few degrees over from sky and watching along.

I have been doing this since sky first started taking races, and use 5live for commentary, on DAB the timing is close enough not to matter, though if it's online commentary then I usually need to pause the TV for a few seconds.

Apart from paying out for sky it's my only real option for live coverage as broadband in my area is pants.


I do exactly the same. It is the principle, rather than not wishing to pay Sky (is it) £70 every month.

WATCHING LIVE F1 FREE IS EASY AND LEGAL

Have a second satellite dish permanently pointing to Astra 19, making it easy to watch (German) RTL without any technical fuss.
Watched the race yesterday with vision from RTL (mute sound), English commentary from DAB BBC Radio 5 (about 10 seconds ahead of vision), and the free timing screen from F1.com, running on a tablet (slightly ahead of vision, but that helps with paying attention to imminent pit stops, or overtakes).

Quite a good race yesterday, judging by my not falling asleep.








Edited by Jon39 on Monday 18th November 10:30

oyster

9,430 posts

196 months

Monday 18th November
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Eric Mc said:
Derek Smith said:
TheDeuce said:
Well... all I can say is that the race just run was a perfect example of one that really needed to be seen live. Unbelievable shock happenings in the second half. You'll see the same stuff on catch-up of course, but the way the story came together was definitely worth watching live smile
Got to agree with you there. A bewildering race that was full of excitement. The editors are going to struggle to make it coherent.
Are you saying that the race was so full of highlights that those tasked with putting together a highlights package will struggle to put together a comprehensible set of highlights?
I don't think you can put sports on highlights.

In F1, the highlight might be the overtake or the crash, or the botched pitstop, but unless you see what had led up to those events, there is no context.

JD2329

203 posts

116 months

Monday 18th November
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For someone who would never miss a live race or qualifying session, my strategy now for watching F1 is either up at the pub or YouTube highlights.
By the time the C4 highlights come on it’s hard to have avoided the result and searching through on All 4 catch up yields interminable adverts (though fair enough they have to fund the cost).
Now TV allows you to buy the race alone or a weekend as a one off, which I do occasionally.
It jars to have to pay but with so many races, many of those held at bland, non descript circuits, I wonder how many I would watch even if it was on free to air.

All this means I am less into the sport than I used to be, and I suspect I am not alone.
Worse will come if Sky adopt a further pay per view on top of the regular Sky sports package, as they do with boxing for instance.

Jon39

6,378 posts

91 months

Monday 18th November
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oyster said:
I don't think you can put sports on highlights.

In F1, the highlight might be the overtake or the crash, or the botched pitstop, but unless you see what had led up to those events, there is no context.

I think I have read somewhere, that the Channel 4 F1 highlights programme is contracted to only show track action for a maximum of 50% of the programme time. That would probably explain why there is so much presenter talk.

Yesterdays race would have been particularly difficult for them to edit into 'highlights', and have much hope of retaining context.



Krikkit

16,768 posts

129 months

Monday 18th November
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TheDeuce said:
Krikkit said:
5 mates and I started watching F1 together at uni, we watched every race live, all the way through to the current years. We used to make a special effort to attend a race every year, we did 10 on the trot, now we're going to BTCC instead. 10-20% of the price, 95% of the fun.

Since free to air is gone, even with people who have Sky, most of us can't afford to pay the extra to get the F1 channel. 2 of us watch most races live, the other 4 just watch the highlights if available on C4.
That's quite interesting actually. You watched every race and went to 10 GP's on the trot and Sky still can't get you through the paywall? If they can get anyone through the paywall it should be folk such as the six of you...

Just goes to show the cost is too high. I really think that Sky need to re-asses their pricing both for their own good, our good as fans and also for the sake of the sport in the UK. It's saying something that such passionate fans actually have the base Sky package and STILL can't be convinced to pay the extra for live F1.

Maybe you should call/email Sky to explain the effect the pricing has had on you and your mates. The more feedback they get the better! Also, they're sky, so they will probably gift you a sub for bothering to give them the feedback. Sky have ALWAYS been retro-active like that. No value for money until they know you've noticed they're ripping you off smile
Yep, the cost is way too high - admittedly we're in that early 30s arena of having kids/paying mortgages that money is tight, but the best offer we've had is either bundle it with other sports for £22/month, or pay for the channel alone for £16/month, both of which is just too steep.

I pay for it, but consider it a pretty steep charge, and I don't watch other sports. £8-10/month would be the sweet spot for subbing for all of us I think. Compare it to WEC where it's £35/year or whatever it works out to now, even double that would be palatable.

NoAdverseDevelopments

55 posts

11 months

Monday 18th November
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Yet C4 managed it very well, their editing team are a cut above for getting the story across in the allotted time.

I'm another previously avid fan who refuses to pay Sky anything, I've watched the odd race at my parent's as they have the legacy HD package and the commentary team (especially Croft) are just abysmal. They make so many mistakes, over dramatise non-events and generally travel up their own arses that I'm perfectly happy with the C4 highlights package. The added bonus is I get to go out and do stuff on a Sunday then come home and watch the race while eating my dinner. Ok the races in the Americas are on rather late but I then just go to bed early and watch them on All4 in the morning while having breakfast. Easy to avoid the result when you're asleep.

Jon39

6,378 posts

91 months

Monday 18th November
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Krikkit said:
I pay for it, but consider it a pretty steep charge, and I don't watch other sports. £8-10/month would be the sweet spot for subbing for all of us I think. Compare it to WEC where it's £35/year or whatever it works out to now, even double that would be palatable.

If you don't watch other sports, why do you not use the free and legal way to enjoy live F1 television, as outlined a few posts above ? It is not complicated.




Evercross

909 posts

12 months

Monday 18th November
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TheDeuce said:
But the deal is done, sky have the rights and it ain't changing for another 5 years.
Never say never!

I think the problem (that has been alluded to in this and other threads on the topic) is that Sky's business model of bundling channels and services in order to 'add value' (aka force people to pay for things they don't want in order to get the things they do want) is rapidly becoming old-hat and increasingly unacceptable in a marketplace where streaming services and picking-and-choosing your entertainment is becoming the norm.

Even this year we have seen huge market shift and I wonder if Sky are going to able to continue to make their current method of selling F1 viable for the remainder of the duration of their rights deal. Five years is a long time in their particular industry, and Sky's main delivery medium broadcast satellite is already yesterday's technology, and Sky's streaming answer NowTV is far too expensive compared to rivals but they can't cut the price too much as they would just end up competing with themselves.

Then of course you have the likelihood of Lewis Hamilton retiring within that 5 year period (very high and IMO would see Sky F1 subs in the UK fall off a cliff-edge).

Murdoch got out at the right time IMO and Sky is now on the long, slow decline of brand and asset sweating. I'll bet my house that when their F1 deal is over it'll be one of the big streaming providers who will take over and give Liberty's plan of a universally recognisable and globally available F1TV the infrastructure it needs to work properly and a product that can be sold to F1 fans for a smaller monthly fee.

The big worry though for F1 in general is will there be enough people interested in the product by then and I'm sure that is Liberty's biggest regret about inheriting the Sky deal - great in the short term but risky and damaging longer term.

Edited by Evercross on Monday 18th November 12:37

TheDeuce

3,734 posts

14 months

Monday 18th November
quotequote all
Evercross said:
Never say never!

I think the problem (that has been alluded to in this and other threads on the topic) is that Sky's business model of bundling channels and services in order to 'add value' (aka force people to pay for things they don't want in order to get the things they do want) is rapidly becoming old-hat and increasingly unacceptable in a marketplace where streaming services and picking-and-choosing your entertainment is becoming the norm.

Even this year we have seen huge market shift and I wonder if Sky are going to able to continue to make their current method of selling F1 viable for the remainder of the duration of their rights deal. Five years is a long time in their particular industry, and Sky's main delivery medium broadcast satellite is already yesterday's technology, and Sky's streaming answer NowTV is far too expensive compared to rivals but they can't cut the price too much as they would just end up competing with themselves.

Then of course you have the likelihood of Lewis Hamilton retiring within that 5 year period (very high and IMO would see Sky F1 subs in the UK fall off a cliff-edge).

Murdoch got out at the right time IMO and Sky is now on the long, slow decline of brand and asset sweating. I'll bet my house that when their F1 deal is over it'll be one of the big streaming providers who will take over and give Liberty's plan of a universally recognisable and globally available F1TV the infrastructure it needs to work properly and a product that can be sold to F1 fans for a smaller monthly fee.

The big worry though for F1 in general is will there be enough people interested in the product by then and I'm sure that is Liberty's biggest regret about inheriting the Sky deal - great in the short term but risky and damaging longer term.

Edited by Evercross on Monday 18th November 12:37
I agree with almost all of that. The bit about people losing interest before the price situation sorts itself out though.. Worth remembering that the UK is a small (but relatively important-ish) market for F1 as a global sport. And elsewhere in the world it's doing so well right now. It's also starting to really build a following in the USA, so I don't have too much concern that the paywall we're stuck with in the UK will put the sport itself under any sort of threat.

I think after 7 years of the sky paywall, it will definitely be less popular in the UK itself of course!! But in time, that will start to improve again too - so long as the price is right.

TheDeuce

3,734 posts

14 months

Monday 18th November
quotequote all
Krikkit said:
Yep, the cost is way too high - admittedly we're in that early 30s arena of having kids/paying mortgages that money is tight, but the best offer we've had is either bundle it with other sports for £22/month, or pay for the channel alone for £16/month, both of which is just too steep.

I pay for it, but consider it a pretty steep charge, and I don't watch other sports. £8-10/month would be the sweet spot for subbing for all of us I think. Compare it to WEC where it's £35/year or whatever it works out to now, even double that would be palatable.
I think sub £10 p/m would be hard to argue with. And even those that think that's still too much would probably pay it anyway. As I understand it current pricing in countries where you can watch the action live via F1TV is between £60-100 ish a year. That's over 100 hours of live F1 track action for £100 or less - at that price point virtually anyone who enjoys the sport will find the money..

As it is via Sky, Liberty have to make their money AND sky have to make their share - it can only result in an unfair price.

Daston

5,604 posts

151 months

Monday 18th November
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I have just gone through a similar thing after getting into the WEC. I was shown on Eurosport but was recently taken over by BT Sport. We spent a few races waiting for the FIA to put it up on YouTube (normally after 2 weeks) but found it increasingly harder to keep away from the results (especially as teams and the FIA paste it all over social media seconds after they cross the line).

In the end we subscribed to Motorsport.TV for £3.99 a month and since then we have watched British GT, SuperGT, World Touring Cars, Nascar. I am amazed no one has done a similar thing for open wheeled racing.


Kraken

1,271 posts

148 months

Monday 18th November
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Most forms of racing outside of F1 have their own streaming services and/or stream live on YouTube. I watch many series live on YouTube and I have subscriptions to Aussie Supercars Superview and the FIA WEC which are great value for money compared to the likes of Sky. F1 is so far behind the curve in terms of coverage it's laughable for what is supposed to be the best.

Mind you I think a lot is to do with a generation of people who think nothing of forking out £30 to wear a t-shirt with the name of the company that made it plastered all over it.

I don't see why I should pay to watch a program that has ad breaks and displays track side advertising and on the cars. If they want to get as many people as possible to see those adverts then make it free or offer something (like no ad breaks, multiple camera angles, archived footage, no additional channels etc etc) for the money.

SturdyHSV

6,719 posts

115 months

Monday 18th November
quotequote all
I really enjoy the Ch4 highlights show, I've seen a couple of the races 'live' this year at friend's houses, and I found the Sky coverage (commentary / pre-post race chat) ste in comparison to be honest, I think by contrast Ch4 have an excellent roster of presenters.

It's a shame they're limited to how much race footage they can show, but they do a very impressive job chopping it all together, you just have to remember to look at the lap counter fairly regularly as it's very easy to not realise what stage of the race you're watching hehe

Drew106

975 posts

93 months

Monday 18th November
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I'm in the camp of not having Sky and just taking out NOW TV subs every now and again. I rarely miss a race.

I don't mind highlights, but I hate it when they're on really late, so took out a sub for USA & Brazil. Prime time live viewing.

It is expensive though and annoying if the racing is crap. £33.99/month is a bit steep when you only watch a few hours. I used to watch every bit, but now I'm not fussed at all by the pre or post race waffle. Just want to watch the track action live.

I would quite happily pay a monthly Netflix-esque sub for F1 content. Even better if it had other Motorsport.

Perhaps someday there will be a Motorsport App - £7 to £10/month with F1, F2, F3, WEC, WRC et al. That's the dream.

markcoznottz

5,331 posts

172 months

Monday 18th November
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Derek Smith said:
I used to be an F1 nerd, and even had the Sky package when it was live FTA on Ch 3 (that was just me and Kevin I think). I don’t have Sky now.

I’ve watched just over half the races live on Now. Otherwise, I’ll use Radio 5, f1.rfeed.net for timings, and PH. I went on dedicated F1 fanzine website a couple of years ago but found posts very argumentative and often quite abusive. Not to mention downright silly. I know we have one or two similar posters on here (I know he’s won 6 WDCs, but he’d be nothing without a car to drive) but they are outnumbered (and you’d think embarrassed, but, unfortunately no) by the more sensible type who are F1 fans.

I've had some Sundays where I'm out doing something else. I go to classic car shows a lot so the £10 I 'save' balances the ticket prices.

Oddly enough, I find following the races I follow on timings, and commentary on radio, just as, maybe more in some cases, exciting as you ‘see’ more (some?) of the midfield battles. The most exciting GT races I’ve watched have been from in the pits, where there’s just the timing screen. I often follow the timings when watching Now, but the images take my attention. Austin showed some of the midfield overtakes, but they missed the build-up, the green sectors, and the reducing gaps.

Around 20 races a season is too much for me. The cost of Sky with F1 is prohibitive, although I’d probably pay it if there was no Now. As it is, I’m happy with my current balance. The races in America cry out for Now, but otherwise I pick the circuits I like.

Not missing Sky. I cringe at the shouty starts on Now.
When did sky show F1 when free to air was itv? I guess you mean when it was on Eurosport?

Eric Mc

108,171 posts

213 months

Monday 18th November
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Wasn't Bernievision shown on Sky Sports?

towser44

1,259 posts

63 months

Monday 18th November
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I only watch the races now when Now TV have Sky Sports Offers on. This year I've had several months where it has cost me less than £15 for a whole month of Sky Sports. Last month I had it for £5, because they were offering a month for £9.99 and AMEX had an offer of 50% cash back for a Now TV purchase, so it was £5. I cancelled to make sure they didn't auto renew and for some reason they did at £16.99 for the next month. This turned out to be an error and they automatically emailed me and refunded me the £16.99 but gave me the month for free, so I've got it until early December now for nowt.

Drew106

975 posts

93 months

Monday 18th November
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towser44 said:
I only watch the races now when Now TV have Sky Sports Offers on. This year I've had several months where it has cost me less than £15 for a whole month of Sky Sports. Last month I had it for £5, because they were offering a month for £9.99 and AMEX had an offer of 50% cash back for a Now TV purchase, so it was £5. I cancelled to make sure they didn't auto renew and for some reason they did at £16.99 for the next month. This turned out to be an error and they automatically emailed me and refunded me the £16.99 but gave me the month for free, so I've got it until early December now for nowt.
Where did you see the £9.99 offer?

I find that most of the offers are for new customers only.

I have an Amex, so annoying that I missed that cashback offer.

Krikkit

16,768 posts

129 months

Monday 18th November
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Jon39 said:
Krikkit said:
I pay for it, but consider it a pretty steep charge, and I don't watch other sports. £8-10/month would be the sweet spot for subbing for all of us I think. Compare it to WEC where it's £35/year or whatever it works out to now, even double that would be palatable.

If you don't watch other sports, why do you not use the free and legal way to enjoy live F1 television, as outlined a few posts above ? It is not complicated.
Because the enjoyment of watching it live and in full is (just about) worth it. I can also record the full races on the Sky box and watch them later if I want to be busy. I always find highlights frustrating.