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Browns Experience Ratings Decline Due To Terrible Season

Jason Barrett

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The Browns’ nightmare of a season, in addition to the usual round of firings, resulted in fewer people buying tickets, more no-shows from those who purchased seats and a sizable hit to the local television ratings for the team’s broadcasts.

According to an industry source, the average rating in the Cleveland designated market for the Browns’ 16 regular-season games dropped 11.7% in 2015. Also telling is the ratings drop was most significant for the younger demographic — adults 18-49.

For all adults 18-49, the average rating for Browns broadcasts on WOIO, WJW and WKYC slipped 10.1%. For men 18-49, the drop was 8.4%.

Before we dive into more numbers, a quick caveat: The ratings are still monstrous — a 30.2 average. By comparison, a typical regular-season Cavs broadcast on Fox Sports Ohio generates a 9.3 rating this season. (The ratings norm for the Cavs’ six NBA Finals broadcasts on WEWS last year was 43.7.)

A few more Browns 2015 ratings tidbits:

• The ratings average for 2014, when the Browns were 7-9, was 34.2.

• In the 18-49 demo, the rating dropped from 20.7 in 2014 to 18.6 this season. For men 18-49, the ratings norm decreased from 27.4 to 25.1.

• Ratings in the older demographic — a group that has more vivid memories of good Browns teams — were also down, but the margin wasn’t nearly as steep. The average rating for adults in the 25-54 demo was 23, down 3.8% from a 23.9 norm in 2014. For men 25-54, the average rating slipped only 2%, from 30.6 to 30.

• The most impressive Browns rating numbers: The games that were broadcast on WOIO actually drew more eyeballs in the 25-54 demo. The average WOIO rating for all adults 25-54 increased from 23.2 to 23.9. For men 25-54, the WOIO ratings norm jumped from 29.7 in 2014 to 31.1 in ’15.

Attendance at FirstEnergy Stadium was down 1.8% in 2015. The average crowd of 66,186 was a drop of 1,239 per game from 2014.

The two-year renovation of FES, which was completed prior to the 2015 campaign, decreased capacity at the stadium to about 68,000.

Several games didn’t sell out, and a sizable number of young people chose not to watch the games on TV.

Finally, fiercely loyal Browns fans seem to be getting tired of all the losing.

To read the rest of the article visit Crain’s Cleveland Business where it was originally published

Sports TV News

ESPN Unveils New NBA Graphics Package, Theme Song

The network unveiled a new scorebug, with colors for each team corresponding to what uniform they are wearing.

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As ESPN prepares for the upcoming NBA season, the network unveiled a new graphics package and theme song Tuesday.

The network unveiled a new scorebug, with colors for each team corresponding to what uniform they are wearing.

“Leading creative initiatives like this one are exactly what we envisioned when we created ESPN’s groundbreaking in-house Creative Studio almost two years ago,” said Carrie Brzezinski-Hsu, Vice President, ESPN Creative Studio. “We take sports from game to experience. It takes a dynamic collective of creative capabilities and storytellers to make fans feel like they are part of the game.”

“Like everything involving the NBA on ESPN, this has been a total team effort,” said Tim Corrigan, Vice President, Production. “We were thrilled to collaborate with our ESPN Creative Studio group to bring this new look and feel to life. It’s big, bold and contemporary and we can’t wait for fans to see it.”

The network has also unveiled new theme music for the upcoming season.

ESPN partnered with Made Music Studios for “the next evolution” of the NBA on ESPN’s sound.  The network says “Made Music created a hip hop-based concept with the power and energy synonymous with ESPN’s NBA Productions”.

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ESPN Accused Of Data Sharing Without Consent In Class Action Lawsuit

The proposed suit alleges these are violations of the Video Privacy Protection Act.

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According to a potential class action lawsuit, user data from ESPN.com and ESPN+ has been allegedly shared with Meta Platforms without users consent.

Corrado Rizzi of ClassAction.org has proposed the suit, alleging that ESPN “uses a pixel installed on the back end of its website to track when website and app users take certain actions, such as clicking on an ad or viewing video content”. That “pixel” is used by Facebook to capture “a subscriber’s Facebook ID, with which anyone can ‘quickly and easily’ locate, access, and identify a particular Facebook account and a file containing details of a watched video and its corresponding URL.”

Rizzi adds that ESPN.com and ESPN+ subscribers aren’t told their data could be shared. He also shares that while ESPN could create its website to information isn’t immediately shared with Facebook, it benefits financially from utilizing the “pixel” on its website.

The proposed suit alleges these are violations of the Video Privacy Protection Act. The VPAA, according to ClassAction.org, “prohibits ‘video tape service providers’ from knowingly disclosing without consent consumers’ personally identifiable information, including that which identifies someone as having requested or obtained specific video materials”.

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Pat McAfee Feels Good About His College Football MegaCast Debut

“I feel good going into the next one. I feel like we’ve learned from this first one,” he said.

Jordan Bondurant

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The College Football MegaCast featuring Pat McAfee and his daily YouTube show’s cast debuted on ESPN2 over the weekend, and McAfee is looking forward to the next edition.

On his show Monday, McAfee told co-host A.J. Hawk that he felt good about how the show went considering it was uncharted territory to be in.

“We had no idea how successful it would be,” McAfee said. “Like this is the first time we’re being judged in a different fashion. I don’t think we marketed it much, you know, because I don’t think we knew how it was gonna go.”

The alternate feed is being produced for ESPN by Omaha Productions, which is also responsible for the ManningCast which runs alongside the traditional Monday Night Football broadcast.

McAfee said this first show turned out to be a learning experience and that they started off on the right foot.

“I feel good going into the next one. I feel like we’ve learned from this first one,” he said. “We had no idea, it was very much of a roll of the dice. Going into the next one I think we’re gonna try and make it even grander and bigger, and I’m very excited for it.”

As for the style in which they covered the Clemson/N.C. State game, McAfee added that the giveaways and guest interactions added a lot of value.

“I think it’s the right way to watch a game, and to be honest I think it’s keeping us all invested as much and even more,” he said.

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