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SBD/Issue 112/Sports Media
ESPN Deportes Lauded For Coverage Of Alex Rodriguez Scandal
Published February 27, 2009
SENDING A MESSAGE: In Miami, Barry Jackson writes ESPN2’s regular Tuesday feature of allowing fans to post comments during college football and basketball broadcasts "easily has crossed the line.” The gimmick is a “transparent attempt to drive traffic" to ESPN.com, and when the “interactive element detracts from the enjoyment of a game, then we have a problem.” When the Texas A&M men's basketball team defeated Nebraska on Tuesday on a last-second shot, “part of the screen was polluted by a recurring graphic encouraging fans to submit their remarks on ESPN.com.” Jackson: “It’s the equivalent of TV graffiti, irritating enough to make you change the channel if you’re only moderately interested in the game” (MIAMI HERALD, 2/27).
HELPING HAND: Beta Research’s annual “Cable Operator Study-Evaluation of Basic Cable Networks” survey has Disney-ESPN Media with a 74% rate of being “very helpful in selling high-speed Internet, HDTV and/or video on demand” services, only behind 75% for Discovery Network. Meanwhile, ESPN was named the "most valuable network" for the ninth consecutive year by cable operators. ESPN2 ranked second in that category, the fourth straight year it has landed in that spot (MULTICHANNEL.com, 2/25).