Sports Fans

ESPN Is Losing 15,000 Subscribers Every Day


It looks like ESPN’s losses are speeding up. According to the most recent numbers from ESPN, they are losing 15,000 subscribers every day.

This does not mean there are 15,000 new cord cutters every day. (Although many of them are likely fully cutting the cord.) This means that every day 15,000 people downgrade their TV package to one without ESPN or cancel their cable TV package all together.

ESPN lost about 500,000 subscribers just this month. This all comes from a report from James Andrew Miller, who is the author of several New York Times bestselling books including Those Guys Have All the Fun: Inside the World of ESPN.

The bad news does not stop at the subscriber losses. According to Miller ESPN is at risk of not being able to afford NFL’s Monday Night Football going forward. ESPN is at serious risk of losing money on their NFL deal.

If ESPN walks away from Monday Night NFL Football, it will not be the first time Disney has done this. In 2005 Disney declined to renew their NFL deal because they were losing money. So there is history to back up Miller’s projection that they may drop the NFL soon.

If ESPN walks away from Monday Night Football, there is likely a long list of companies willing to buy up the rights; however, it would be one more stab in the reputation of ESPN as an almost untouchable network in the world of cable.

If you want to learn more, you can find Miller’s full breakdown HERE.

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  • Robert Frankenfield

    This is what happens when you turn a sports network into a political platform.

  • Keith Foster

    Maybe the House of Mouse should look into making ESPN OTA via ABC sub channels.

  • Carl Collie

    They produce nothing of value, they are just a middleman to show live sports. They are the Blockbuster Video of this generation, they take someone else’s product and mark it up (advertising). People tune in for the live sports but the rest of their on-air shows have no shelf life. Not to mention instead of covering sports they now include political commentary. It is only a matter of time before they are on the wrong side of the slope, as people cut the cord or tune out the channel for political or other reasons.

    • Yes, they are the Enron of sports. May they go the way of that ‘great’ company.

    • vrm

      well, nobody would watch TV if networks didn’t pipe it to their homes. Great events happen across the world everyday that few people know of.

  • Rick Barnett

    Well written. I appreciate that you didn’t attribute it all to cord cutters. I cut cable but I still subscribe during football season via Sling. I do have high hopes that subscribers will continue to vote with their pockets and that it trickles down to the overhyped and overpaid leagues that ESPN airs. I’m a hypocrite but my teen sons win out on this one.

  • Obsidian71

    Schadenfreude. ESPN is infested with overpaid analysts. Cable tv is too expensive the natives are fleeing

  • Michael Smith

    ESPN should have stayed with sports commentary instead of their biased political rhetoric. I like sports but when Ditka and others were shown the door and Jemele Hill was allowed to stay that was it for me. I will not watch another sporting event on that network let alone their sports center (I have the internet for sports news). I hope that network implodes and give up their MNF contract after this season and don’t let the screen door hit their rear ends on their way out of our lives!

    • Phuq_Me

      Oh god not another one that bring politics into a thread. By the way if ESPN was all conservative and getting rid of so called “libs” you would have ZERO issues with that. So enough with your hypocrisy and change the f–king channel.

      • Fitz Greg

        Actually ESPN brought politics into their network which brings us to this thread. 😉

      • Michael Smith

        Hey punk, go back to school and learn comprehension with your poor reading skills! I was actually saying, keep political bias out of sports!

        • Brian Trimble

          Sometimes, when wrong is wrong, even in sports, taking a stand is what MUST be done for the sake of what is right. Fascism is evil, with it’s bigotry racism, and hate. Wrong is wrong no matter where it is and MUST be called out eventually. So kudos to ESPN….although politics is not what is causing the loss of subscribers. Even fascists (right wingers) need their football and/or sport fix.

          • Robert Frankenfield

            Where in gods green earth did you read about fascism in this article? The only person spewing hate in this article’s thread is you. Please go to CNN or MSN and spout your nonsense with other like minded, mis-informed individuals. Man, you are one delusional, extremist nut job.

  • Vegas Steve

    This is what happens when you can’t anticipate upcoming trends. They overpaid for everything, thinking the cable cash cow would live forever. Nope, see ya!

  • Paul

    Ohhhhhhh well……If ESPN wants to stay around, they need to lower the amount of money they have to charge per subscriber. I like sports a lot, but since switching to Sling Blue – I don’t miss having ESPN at all.

  • Jack Astor

    Remember when Rush was fired and their excuse was Sports and Politics don’t mix.

  • Randy Smith

    ESPN has been bleeding for years. Lack of quality is what is killing them, more than any political posturing from the commentators. Their sports bias, to me, has always been way more annoying than their politics.

  • Rlee

    To many SJW’s on that POS network.

  • Phuq_Me

    “This does not mean there are 15,000 new cord cutters every day. This means that every day 15,000 people downgrade their TV package to one without ESPN or cancel their cable TV package all together.”

    A) Cutting you cable package would be cutting the cord

    B) Which cable/satellite companies offer a non-ESPN tier?

    I would suspect close to 95% or more of those 15,000 are indeed cord cutter.s Probably more than 15,000 since some of those that get rid of cable or satellite sign up for an OTT product that includes ESPN.

    • Brian Trimble

      I had cable for many years and NEVER got ESPN ……and yes, if you READ what was written, it was stated “OR CANCEL their cable”…..so this is why it INCLUDED chord cutting but was not NECESSARILY ALL chord cutting…when I cut cable, ESPN was not affected.

  • Tom

    I have boycotted espn and will continue to boycott them until they fire the racist, jemele hill, they have working for them.

    • Fitz Greg

      That’s not the ONLY racist they have working for them sadly.

  • Mike Thaler

    For years, only watched ESPN for the actual events they carried. A few football games a year, few basketball and baseball. Maybe one or two a month. Never watched commentary. Not worth the $8/mo + what cable has to add on to make a profit.
    Families w. kids have to pay for ESPN – because as I understand it, cable companies have to buy ESPN to get Disney.

  • Sundiata Bradshaw

    The problem with Disney/ESPN is that they don’t have the balls to support their staff. I’ve canceled PS Vue and am just using alternatives to watching my CFB and NBA. Jemele Hill made one comment that apparently offended one old rich white man and gets suspended.

  • vrm

    it might do more damage to NFL as their perception of being in demand will also fall. It is only popular because its ingrained into the minds of kids, esp boys from a very young age that it is the greatest sport in the world. That perception has to change because football is a lousy sport and a very poor clone of Rugby.