I didn’t have to send any scores from Reading on Sunday, as the game was being shown live on Facebook. It was nice not having to worry about getting a phone signal, leaving free to moan at the refs, and I’m told it was a really good quality broadcast.
But it does raise the question as to what benefit there is for clubs livestreaming games and what effect it can have on their crowds.
The Thames Valley coach, Bob Banks, was in the crowd. He’s obviously steadier on his feet than many of his players as he managed to get to the bleachers without falling to the ground, but he did comment that he’d have watched the game at home if he’d known. Bob can afford £8 to get in at Reading, in fact it’s highly likely that he could’ve paid for everyone to get in without noticing, and buy the bleachers when they (eventually) gut Rivermead and rebuild it.
But the point is if this becomes commonplace to stream games for free, will anyone turn up to watch live basketball? Is there really enough sponsorship/advertising cash out there to make up for a lack of fans