Ray Frager at the Sun writes that In Demand pay-per-view and Dish Network will get another chance at scoring access to Extra Innings, but that the deal in place with DirecTV is designed to make it nearly impossible for cable and Dish Network to come up with a deal that would give them the rights to air the programming.
The thing that's now getting me is how baseball people and some writers are spinning it as not that bad of an idea, because according to research, there were about 500,000 EI subscribers last season, 270,000 of which came from DirecTV. And then research indicates that there are so few customers without access to DirecTV that it's not an issue.
The problem isn't access, though. It's choice. You are forcing those that want to subscribe to the package to get DirecTV, whether or not they want the service, or to stick to paying MLB for the games over the internet, another bunk proposition when compared to watching the games through digital cable or Dish Network.
I have access to DirecTV, sort of. I live in an apartment building on the fourth floor, with no deck. DirecTV is available in my area, but even if I had a deck or lived in a house, I don't WANT DirecTV.
I've said this before, but I reiterate for the new wave of people wondering what the fuss is: It feels as though the consumer that does not want DirecTV is being bullied by Major League Baseball out of unnecessary greed. So yes, access is not really the issue. It's choice, and having choices taken away.