AFL broadcast rights 2025-

One plus about Fox having a Friday night game tonight is the 4K coverage.
The AFL should mandate 4K broadcasts/streaming as standard for all games in the next deal, it isn’t 1997 anymore Channel Seven.

3 Likes

I like Nine’s attitude and wish 10 and Seven have the same kind of guts to break the dominance of Telstra and News Corp.

As I said before, the most likely scenario is that Seven gets streaming rights for all matches it produces each week, but it means viewers in SA and WA will miss out on seeing their teams on FTA each and every week during the home and away season. Using this Sunday’s fixture as an example, SA viewers will be able to stream Collingwood v GWS on 7plus and watch it on Seven, but miss out on both North Melbourne v Adelaide and Port Adelaide v Gold Coast which are produced by Fox Footy.
The scenario will be for someone like Paramount getting the all-inclusive rights so the state-based coverage can continue.

While it is relatively easy to stream AFL matches in 4K, there is no way the next deal will include FTA broadcast in 4K, given the federal government has not even planned for a nationwide trial broadcast in that format.

That’s a rubbish idea, who is going to stick around and watch Ten on a Saturday night? When the AFL is still being played. There is still a 4pm game and two 7pm games, if those games are on another network than people will flick to view them and not stick around to watch to Ten News.

This idea that Saturday afternoon is a big viewing time, it’s just not, that’s why seven pushed for Thursday night games over Saturday afternoon.

Local football, (country/city), people out shopping and doing other things on Saturday afternoon meant that the football on TV wasn’t being watch.

If we want to talk about tradition, than the tradition was you would “go” to the football on a Saturday afternoon, than the club rooms, followed by the pub and stumble home! That’s the traditional Saturday afternoon, not watching it on the box!

6 Likes

That’s what I have been thinking in the past 20 years or so. But how do you explain the high pay-TV ratings for Saturday afternoon matches which start at 1.45pm or 2.10pm?

Doubt that will happen considering how important it is for the AFL that people outside VIC are able to see their local teams on FTA TV every week. That was evident by how they refused to entertain a push by Foxtel to get more exclusively live games featuring NSW, QLD, SA & WA teams:

Not competing against a FTA slot. With subscription paying upwards of 70% of the pie. You don’t waste a FTA slot on a Sat arvo.

With Thursday night being weekly slot, it wouldn’t surprise me if all of Saturday becomes subscription exclusive much like the NRL.

1 Like

No they don’t. I have looked back at rounds 7-10 and average numbers for the 2:10 game are about 150k

The average numbers for the 4:40 game 170-180k

Saturday night games 2x average 250k plus**

**the viewers are spilt over two games at night.

Saturday afternoon football is lowest ratings games all weekend and the only game that normally is a stand alone game. Which is clear by the AFL, that the Saturday game doesn’t work for them.

2 Likes

Regardless of whether there are additional AFL games or not, trotting out the same stuff isn’t going to attract additional eyeballs. People aren’t going to stick around to watch a fairly insipid news service and yet another version of the project.

It possibly doesn’t help that the AFL’s scheduling tends to put the weaker games in the timeslot as well - they won’t abandon the timeslots (especially the 2:10 game), so they treat them poorly.

A controversial idea. The primary FTA broadcaster of the AFL, whether it’s 7, 9 or 10, should make a bid for the Saturday 4:35 game. Abandon the news on Saturday nights. Melburnians love their sport and I think we’ll survive without the 6pm (or in Ten’s case, 5pm) news for one night a week. The footy would probably rate higher - look at today, Geelong and Richmond are playing in that slot, that should get a huge audience.

And by having the Saturday 4:35, that then leads straight into the 7:25 game. Back-to-back footy. 1:45 or 2:10 is dead in the water for television.

This game would be in place of Sunday 3:20 on FTA so there’s still the same number of FTA games.

3 Likes

If 10 gets the rights, the 2 Friday games could be permanent with 10 airing Thurs night, Friday night, Sat arvo, Sat night and Sunday arvo in a normal schedule.

Afternoon games at their traditional 2:10pm timeslot going into 10 News First.

Sorry, but nope. They will keep the news on Saturdays, whether during half-time or before/after the game.

1 Like

I’m in two minds of a 4:35 game on a Saturday afternoon. It’s good for viewers and for the Networks (Seven, Nine or 10) - the match will lead into prime-time. But the problem is News bulletins. They may need to bump the Melbourne News to an earlier time at 4PM (which could drag down its ratings and might not be right). I am thinking that they will air the news during half-time.
During half-time Melbourne and Adelaide viewers will have like a shortened bulletin (20 minutes), covering local, national, international, sport, and weather. However, in Perth, they will get the time at 6PM (as normal for Seven and Nine News). Should this happen, it will help boost the rating shares. Over in the northern states, the Sydney, Brisbane viewers will get the 4:35pm on a multichannel (considering that AFL rates lower in the northern states)

I think there is a place where you can run news and sport at the same time. The networks have 4 FTA channels.

1 Like

I think Sunday 3:20 is the key game for Seven or Nine considering a deal - the lead in to the Sunday news and setting them up for the week with promos in the game for all the programming that week.

For Ten, yeah, I think you don’t care about the news, but I’d wonder if Saturday audiences are the ones you want. People who are at home all day Saturday aren’t exactly likely to overlap much with the demographics advertisers chase.

Maybe the way to do it would be like Nine did with the Sunday 4pm game, have News at 5 for half an hour, then the 4:35 game on delay but catching up to live for the final quarters to be the lead in for the main prime time game.

I can’t see you ending up with a situation of more FTA games in this deal, but if the deal is 2 games half delayed (Sat/Sun arvo), and average 3 games live (Fri/Sat night + Thu/Mon/event matches) you’d likely extract more money from the Pay TV side, with more “exclusively live” games, but more viewers would be able to see their team play on FTA each week.

2 Likes
12 Likes

You wonder how accurate these leeks are. $3b is a good figure. I would’ve liked to see paramount bid a more to make sure they secure them.

Again, this is playing out in the News Corp press and that’s the undoing for Paramount. News sees it as unfathomable that they are not automatically handed the rights.

2 Likes

You can only bid a figure that makes economic sense.

3 Likes

I think Seven and Foxtel will match that figure. Well done for Paramount for trying but I thinks it’s becoming more unlikely they will obtain the rights.

I’m super selfish if course but I definitely hope it stays with Foxtel. Being able to watch all games via satellite is heaps more convenient than streaming.

The ability to pause and rewind is a huge plus for me, that streaming just can’t compete with.

Likewise switching channels between two games that are simultaneously happening at once. No lag or buffer issues.

Plus using the AFL app to look for stats while watching on TV is tricky for streaming given the 20 second delay.

1 Like

AFL would be nervous about selling to 10 with another change of ownership in the works.

Like the idea of selling seperate timeslots like Thursday and/or Saturday.

Also - the simulcast rule isn’t fair to the free to air stations. Reckon they should get rid of that.