Wednesday, March 12, 2003

As I mentioned several weeks ago, CBS plans to switch coverage of the NCAA tournament to its Viacom subsidiaries in the event a war with Iraq starts next week. Besides taking the Big Dance off of network TV for the first two rounds, and on to cable stations not available throughout the United States, it will change the broadcasting of the games in one significant way. Unlike CBS, which can branch off different games to its affiliates, depending on local interest, the channels in questions, TNN, Nickelodeon and TV Land, are limited in the number of feeds; in fact, only TNN has an east and west coast feed, so local fans of, lets say, Maryland, might not get to see their team play if Duke is on at the same time. None of this should affect people like myself, who take up residence in sports bars for the duration, or those smart enough to have DirecTV, but it will constitute yet another blow against the sport, which relies upon the tournament for its revenue and to make up for its low ratings during the regular season. [Link via Counterspin]


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