Introducing TV Time outs to Professional Rugby

Discussion in 'General Rugby Union' started by Canadian_Rugger, Apr 13, 2010.

  1. Canadian_Rugger

    Canadian_Rugger Senior Member

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    One of the biggest problem with getting quality rugby on free to air television in North America is the lack of stoppages within a given game to allow for commercial breaks. Canadian rugby internationals used to be shown regularly on free tv in Canada; TSN, Sportsnet, the Score, TV5 and CBC all at one point all covered rugby. Sportsnet would even show Super 12, NPC, and Currie Cup matches every week on Sundays, and they also showed the Rugby World Cup and all the IRB Sevens series. TV5 would show the French Six Nations matches, while the Score, TSN, and Sportsnet all showed Churchill Cup, and Canadian Test matches.

    This all stopped a few years ago because; unfortunately due to rugby's lack of pause they could not show many commercials to cover there costs. Canadian rugby fans are forced to watch all their rugby over the internet now as the national team does not get coverage on television anymore. The occasional club game will be showed on local television but that is all.

    North American sport relies on television breaks to make money, the NFL, baseball, CFL, NBA are all geared to make money off commercials. Ice Hockey much like rugby did not have many breaks to play commercials but that has changed now to with the introduction of TV time outs which happen once a period for 2 minutes at a time. Traditionally the NHL has been a spectator driven sport but with the introduction of TV timeouts that is changing.

    I believe for professional rugby to continue to grow in markets like North America, I will include Australia in this as well because I think the NewsCorp model the Super 14 employs is flawed, rugby needs to be on free to air tv... for this to happen it needs to adopt a North American model of broadcasting sport. It would surely help Canada and the US get more rugby on tv as it would allow for broadcasters to take more of a risk on rugby, and it would allow the casual fan an opportunity to see the game.

    What I am suggesting is, Around the 15 min mark, 30 min mark, 65 min mark and half time pro rugby teams take a 2 min pause in the game for commercial breaks. This would help with rugby getting on free tv more and would open the game to more casual fans. Hardcore fans will pay for a subscription to Setanta, Sky sports, Fox... whatever it may be but Casual fans will not.

    In North America the majority of rugby players are High School and College students, putting rugby on free to air is the only way that rugby is affordable for the majority of these people.

    Opinions?

    This would not turn rugby into the NFL, Commercial breaks have been a welcome addition to professional ice hockey, they happen once a period and it helps keep broadcasters coming back.
     
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  3. Canadian_Rugger

    Canadian_Rugger Senior Member

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    I would also like to add that even while paying for subscriptions to Setanta the coverage of rugby is quite pathetic, Setanta shows a few matches every week and I pay big money to see those matches while I can pay for NHL center ice, which is a package funded by the NHL which buys access to all major networks NHL feeds for 200$ a yearI get a few games of rugby on Setanta every week and maybe one I want to watch, while I pay almost the same per month for NHL center ice and recieve in upwards of 1200 hockey games in a season on tv, Every night I can watch atleast 4 or 5 hockey games for about the same price of Setanta, I can also get the same with the NFL and MLB, and watch every NFL game in a season for a 150$.
     
  4. Cymro

    Cymro Guest

    Umm its a no from me.

    Rugby should never ever go down the route of having time outs / break intervals. There are enough of them in the game. If the TV commercial people were intelligent enough they would put short adverts when there is a break in play for injury treatment or something like that. But to change the game to cater for America for me is a no.
     
  5. Canadian_Rugger

    Canadian_Rugger Senior Member

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    Well its not really just to cater to America, I believe having rugby on free to air in many other countries would help as well, Australia being my number one concern

    There was a huge uproar when they did this in ice hockey as well, but it happens 3 times a game and to be honest I have been to three games this season: Toronto vs Boston, Montreal vs Pittsburgh, and Ottawa vs Montreal and you barely notice the 2 minute breaks. its only 6 minutes out of a 60 minute hockey game.
     
  6. Canadian_Rugger

    Canadian_Rugger Senior Member

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    I also don't like how rugby has tied their fortunes to the pay tv market, honestly its going to hurt their bottom line in their future; especially with how viewing numbers have been in the past few years in Super 14.
     
  7. Cymro

    Cymro Guest

    But that is the point you are making, all American sport is based around adverts and for me its very frustrating to watch when that happens. Same happens in the IPL also. Rugby is rugby and you can't changed the nature of a game. It would stop the entire momentum in the game. It works for NFL / NHL / NBA etc because thats how American sports are ran but for Rugby you can't really change the game.

    Just do what I said in my previous by the TV companies putting adverts in breaks of play.

    Also on a sidenote click on the 'Edit' button to add more to your post instead of double posting!
     
  8. Charles

    Charles Senior Member

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    Same for me, no. Rugby has already sold it's soul more than enough.
     
  9. Canadian_Rugger

    Canadian_Rugger Senior Member

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    Point taken, also editing is disabled for me for some reason, I had looked for the edit button initially :)
     
  10. DuncTheDoodle

    DuncTheDoodle Senior Member

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    Cricket matches have ads come on while one person is walking into possition, or has just been dismissed, ect. Why can't it just be like that in Rugby? Injuries, walking to the lineouts, going back to their own half after a penalty or drop goal (Or the conversion of a try.) and so on could fit one or two ads in.
     
  11. Cymro

    Cymro Guest

    Thats what I suggest earlier. They can do it that way. But as I've said I dont agree with adding a break in play especially for the 'TV Timeout'
     
  12. Canadian_Rugger

    Canadian_Rugger Senior Member

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    It impedes the flow of the game; yes this is true in a sense as play will stop; however, play already stopped in rugby lots, especially with scrums and lineouts so I think at a scrum or lineout taking a small timeout would fit perfectly into the game. Heck the amount of time missed would be negligble, and people at home would not really notice all that much, off course people in the stadium would notice a bit but if it happens only three times a game then its not really a big deal; I think adopting NFL style commercials would be stupid; however, a model like the NHL uses where commercial time outs happen only 3 times a game would be not perfect but a good solution.
     
  13. dullonien

    dullonien Senior Member

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    I've noticed that they do indeed do what you suggested Cymro in certain countries. I think Aus go for a quick advertisement if there's a break in play, such as a injury. I personally found that extremely annoying, because sometimes the ad would overrun slightly, and you'd miss the next move, if that happened to be a quick try it would **** alot of people off. Luckily in Britain we have the BBC to keep everything in check. With no ads, and good rugby coverage (especially in Wales), it simply keeps the other broadcasters from getting greedy. If sky for example started shoehorning more ads into the game, there would be an uproar because we're used to limited ad breaks here in Britain.

    I don't like the idea of changing rugby further in order to improve the bottom line for the broadcasters. Pay per view broadcasters are always going to have more money to bid for the rights to things, because they have more money. Shoehorning extra commercials into sport won't change anything, as it'll simply allow more money to be made for the pay per view broadcaster aswell as the free to view one.
     
  14. TRF_SelimNiai

    TRF_SelimNiai 'Ark at ee mun!

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    God bless the BBC then. A whole game without ridiculous ads asking me if I want to see this film, no I'm watching the rugby now bugger off. It works in America and the IPL because everything is sponsored, how soon until the commentators themselves get sponsored.
     
  15. dullonien

    dullonien Senior Member

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    Hmm, the edit button has disappeared for me to!
     
  16. Canadian_Rugger

    Canadian_Rugger Senior Member

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    This is the purpose of the tv timeout, Instead of running commercials and possibly missing action as a result (having ads overrun play) the Tv timeout allows for 4 or 5 commercials to be played while the action is stopped.

    We don't do pay per view broadcasting for major sports in North America, most games are all on free to air. Trust me their is a lot more money to be made off free to air then pay-per-view... the Toronto Maple Leafs Average over 1 million viewers a game on free to air tv. TSN and CBC both pay huge amounts for rights to those kinds of events. I believe if rugby wants to become even more popular its going to have to take a strong look at getting off pay per view and getting on free to air
     
  17. TRF_Olyy

    TRF_Olyy English Arrogance

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    That'd be bloody aweful.
     
  18. Boggle

    Boggle Senior Member

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    Why not just do what they do over here ?

    Any number of times during a game the actual footage will sort of "shrink" a bit to about 80% the size of your screen and sit in the top right corner, the rest of the screen
    real estate (left and bottom) is used to show these little advertisements, this way you don't miss any of the rugby action but you still notice the advertisement.

    It's a sort of compromise, and yes, I guess it can annoy some, but I much prefer it to stopping the game for an advert.
     
  19. nickurat

    nickurat Member

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    In a nutshell, no.

    Professional Rugby needs to sort out the professional game so that it is watchable before trying to lever more revenue from fans who are becoming disillusioned with it.

    Personally, I found the 6N consistently tiresome this year and I really only bothered to watch it because it was on free to view, I wouldn't pay for it. If I want to watch real Rugby UNION with properly competitive rucking and scrummaging, scrums that get the ball back into play quickly and no aimless kicking ping pong I go to my local National 3 club.
     
  20. snoopy snoopy dog dog

    snoopy snoopy dog dog Senior Member

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    I disagree hugely with TV timeouts. While it's a sport I've a lot of time for, American football is a 3 hour commercial interrupted by 60 minutes of sport. I've no desire to see rugby start to go down this direction.

    Cymro came up with the best solutionif the powers that be want more advertising. I'd tweak that idea a little though. Half time is currently 10 minutes - soccer increased this to 15 minutes to appease advertisers/Sky Sports. There's no reason why rugby can't do likewise. Also, TV currently dictates to the referee when it's time to start a game (which is why there's often a pause before the flyhalf kicks off). Why can't TV executives by linked up to the ref throughout the game? Say there's a penalty scored. The referee blows for time off which gives TV the chance to air a 20-30 second ad. Once the ad is over, the ref is told to resume play. No play is missed by the TV viewer.
     
  21. King_D'Arcy

    King_D'Arcy Senior Member

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    "This scrum is brought to you by Gillette"
     
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