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  1. #1
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    Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    I don't know if any of you have scrolled through the upcoming programing schedule on ESPN3.com, but they have obviously changed some things around quite a bit on what is and isn't available to watch for ESPN3 people. Only bad news below, so CAUTION to those scared readers at this point.

    As a general rule of thumb last year for football, you could watch on ESPN3 (for those who have an internet provider to allows access) any games which were on ABC (except blacked out area), ESPN, ESPN2, some ESPNU material (fairly limited), and all exclusively ESPN3 broadcasts.

    Now, take a look at the upcoming schedule and you'll see that now only some of the the ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU/ABC games are available nationwide on ESPN3, some aren't available to watch on ESPN3 at all, and some are available in certain areas (it gives a blackout area map for each of these).

    This SUCKS for the non-cable group like myself who use ESPN3 religiously. This whole thing seems to be a push by ESPN for that shared programming to shift to those few who have access too WatchESPN (you need a participating provider cable tv subscription to have access to this, not just internet), while it wants ESPN3 to be more just for showing their exclusively broadcast games. I know this because they provide a question/answer section on "what is a blackout" on their website. See below:


    Why canít I get certain events that I used to have access to on ESPN3?

    That content is now available on WatchESPN. ESPN3 is a network focused on
    exclusive programming.

    What will I be able to watch on ESPN3 now?

    Exclusive programming on ESPN3 includes college football, college basketball,
    NCAA Championships, tennis, golf, soccer, cricket and more. Limited events from
    ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU still exist on ESPN3 during some windows.

    When can I still watch ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU live events on ESPN3?

    ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU live events will still be available on ESPN3 weekdays
    from 12:01am-5:59pm and weekends from 12:01am-11:59am. All times
    local.



  2. #2
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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    This does suck, but I kind of new when I dropped cable that I probably couldn't expect the ESPN3 gravy train to last forever.



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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    Here are a few more questions answered from their website. Looks like this change just took effect in the last few days.

    How can I tell which specific games are blacked out in my area?

    Blackout maps denoting areas of coverage are located next to each event in
    the schedule page.

    Will I still be able to watch those GamePlan and Full Court games on
    ESPN3?


    Yes, games available on GamePlan and Full Court will continue to be carried
    on ESPN3, subject to local and regional blackouts.

    Will replays still be available on ESPN3?

    Yes, ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU replays will continue to be made available on
    ESPN3. Replays will be accessible as early as immediately after the conclusion
    of the event and no later than 2:30 a.m. ET that evening.

    When did this change to ESPN3 programming begin?

    August 27.

    If I have access to ESPN3, why don't I have access to
    WatchESPN?


    WatchESPN requires a video subscription from an affiliated provider.
    Currently they include Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks, Verizon FiOS TV
    and Comcast Xfinity TV.



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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    Quote Originally Posted by MNCyGuy View Post
    This does suck, but I kind of new when I dropped cable that I probably couldn't expect the ESPN3 gravy train to last forever.
    I agree with you that it was a gravy train. For a long time, it has somewhat been kind of too good to be true for us cable cutters. This is obviously a move to stop a mass migration of cable cutters like myself who rely on ESPN3 to survive. They know we will never have access to WatchESPN now unless we pick up a cable TV subscription.


    Last edited by Triggermv; 08-29-2012 at 12:27 PM.

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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    I'm in the same boat, Trigger. I think this is move by ESPN to get cable/internet providers to pick up their "WatchESPN" service, where you can watch ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3 and ESPNU online. Just ESPN/Disney strengthening their monopoly on College Football/Basketball - can't wait for the Big 12-FOX contract to be signed.



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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    Quote Originally Posted by 3GenClone View Post
    I'm in the same boat, Trigger. I think this is move by ESPN to get cable/internet providers to pick up their "WatchESPN" service, where you can watch ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3 and ESPNU online. Just ESPN/Disney strengthening their monopoly on College Football/Basketball - can't wait for the Big 12-FOX contract to be signed.
    I don't know that I'm in the big Fox boat with you. For us cable cutters, we don't have access to ANY Fox stuff outside their over-the-air network programming. At least with Disney/ESPN/ABC, we still get to chew off a few last meat remnants on the bone from what they've left for us to watch online. If you look at the schedule, there is still some ESPN/ESPN2 games to watch on ESPN3.com



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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    My mother-in-law is a Comcast subscriber in Annapolis, and I have the code.



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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    I've got the Blues................ I've got the I'm too cheap to pay for cable, mostly loaded with worthless programming shows that I don't give a lick about, so I've relied on my internet saviness to get sports programming online until them now getting smart and shutting me out and I somewhat knew it was bound to come blues.....don naw naw naw naw not......I've got the blues.....



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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    Right now the only thing keeping me a Mediacom customer has been ESPN3's coverage of college football and basketball. If a Big 12-FOX deal goes through and ESPN starts to blackout content, then it makes the decision easy for me to move back to one of the satellite companies. I can get back ESPN (and Monday Night Football), that I have been missing for a few years and also opt in to the FOX Sports Regional package (it also helps that I'm a fan of Minnesota sports teams).



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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    Quote Originally Posted by Triggermv View Post
    I've got the Blues................ I've got the I'm too cheap to pay for cable, mostly loaded with worthless programming shows that I don't give a lick about, so I've relied on my internet saviness to get sports programming online until them now getting smart and shutting me out and I somewhat knew it was bound to come blues.....don naw naw naw naw not......I've got the blues.....
    This is the real problem. Cable is loaded with garbage to get the few gems. Not worth it, IMO. Guess that gives me more free time.



  11. #11
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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    Quote Originally Posted by 3GenClone View Post
    Right now the only thing keeping me a Mediacom customer has been ESPN3's coverage of college football and basketball. If a Big 12-FOX deal goes through and ESPN starts to blackout content, then it makes the decision easy for me to move back to one of the satellite companies. I can get back ESPN (and Monday Night Football), that I have been missing for a few years and also opt in to the FOX Sports Regional package (it also helps that I'm a fan of Minnesota sports teams).
    I'm with you that I'm only a Mediacom internet subscriber because of their exclusive ESPN3 access in my area. Without that, I would have moved to Centurylink or Imon a long long time ago. I can't stand Mediacom. They've just had me by the gonads.



  12. #12
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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    I wonder how much it would have to cost to make offering a subscription streaming service attractive to ESPN instead of getting money to force people to get cable.



  13. #13
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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    Quote Originally Posted by MNCyGuy View Post
    I wonder how much it would have to cost to make offering a subscription streaming service attractive to ESPN instead of getting money to force people to get cable.
    I would personally pay for this as long as it is cheaper than getting cable outright. Make it somewhat like a Hulu service. I'd personally pay up to $20/month probably for full WatchESPN access.



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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    Quote Originally Posted by Triggermv View Post
    I've got the Blues................ I've got the I'm too cheap to pay for cable, mostly loaded with worthless programming shows that I don't give a lick about, so I've relied on my internet saviness to get sports programming online until them now getting smart and shutting me out and I somewhat knew it was bound to come blues.....don naw naw naw naw not......I've got the blues.....

    Firstrow.eu is still alive and well.



  15. #15
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    Re: Uh-Oh ESPN3 Content is Now Much More Restricted

    Quote Originally Posted by CycloneYoda View Post
    Firstrow.eu is still alive and well.
    I agree for sure, but I personally do like doing things legit as much as I can (ESPN3 is legit), not to mention how much better quality ESPN3 is than firstrow. My computer also appreciates much fewer viruses.



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