Cutting the cord: Sky are fostering their own downfall


Last week we discussed a Bloomberg article on the increasing availability of premium quality, pirated, broadcast content, made possible by set-top boxes.  In short, products are available to make any amount of premium sports or movie content available to users without subscription, with little the law can do about it.

Quite apart from pirate viewing, subscription broadcast numbers are under pressure from legal streaming services, such as Amazon Instant Video and Netflix, a drift known as Cutting the Cord.  A survey published this week reports that 8.2% of US broadcast subscribers ditched their service in 2014 in favour of streaming.  More significantly, 45.2% of US subscribers report they cut back on content they paid their broadcast supplier for.

UK satellite and cable TV subscribers pay some of the top prices in the world for sports and other premium content.  A dysfunctional market has emerged due to the controlling position of two players:

BSkyB, who dominate subscription TV supply in the UK
The FA Premier League, who own the key content for the UK market

Within this market there are winners and losers.  The winners are English and Welsh football clubs who earn enormous revenues from the FA Premier League TV deal, and subsequent trickle-down monies.  The losers are UK subscribers, who paid a fortune to keep the BskyB-FA Premier League contract in funds, and, of course, Scottish football clubs, who are excluded from the England and Wales league system.

Scotland is 8% of BskyB’s business, significant enough to make a dent in its revenues, but more importantly, if a US-style drift from expensive subscriptions is fostered in Scotland, it will move south soon enough.

I’ve been looking into this since we discussed it last week and will report back.

Shocked and stunned to read in the Daily Mail that Dave King met Sports Direct on the morning of his club’s EGM, as reported by Phil MacGiollaBhain a week ago.  That will explain the lack of denial, I suppose.  The interesting question is: Who gave the Daily Mail the story?  Dave King, or through his PR company?

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  1. Canamalar


    12:58 on


    24 June, 2015




    We’ve read and agreed with those articles, what do you suggest we do next ?


    Should we stop discussing subjects applicable to everyone because you want a single subject forum ?





    12:58 on


    24 June, 2015




    12:41 on


    24 June, 2015





    Many of us have learned a lot from this site,mate.



    We have indeed.Like Thompson Twin is some sort of deity.Three persons in the one trumpet.





    Canamalar,did I say that?.

  2. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    Taylor Swift will sort it out.



    They should just appoint her Supreme Being of the World.

  3. leftclicktic on

    Sad to see young John Herron leave,


    A fine Bhoy with a great attitude and no shortage of ability,


    He will have a great career elsewhere imo,





    I think SKY publish ‘churn’ rates every quarter. Their income from subscribers and income per subscriber should also be available.



    However,those figures won’t be broken down by ‘region’. To do so would be commercially dangerous,IMO.



    Reason being the number of Scots who have had it with their sports coverage and who have either cancelled it or get it at a cheaper rate.

  5. Paul,I am sure Level 5 gave out the story to try and diminish the effect the truth would have had.It has been carefully worded to make out it had nothing to do with Phils claims.


    Too late,I would think.


    Not for the chronic gullible,but many will be re-thinking the reasons why.


    Great fun the piece by piece unfolding of this soap opera.





    Never wise to post under different monikers. He’s not the first to prove that.

  7. ArranmoreBhoyLXV11 on




    Mrs ABs 50th .so we re ALL off to Barca for a few days .. Taking myself & 3 of our young ABs to the Nou Camp..



    Has anyone any tips? Eg best day( ie quietest ) ..sat or Sunday..



    Best time etc…




    Would wearing the hoops in the nou camp on the tour be welcomed or will we be given the rubbish tour?



    I ve the videos to prove Celtic v Barca was special….




  8. Turkeybhoy,


    You’d rather read them articles than anyone’s opinion on world politics/economics, fair enough why can’t you do that without greeting about it ?


    All I’m saying is they are read by most and there is usually very little debate or comment about them because most of us agree with them. Obviously you are happy with the state of the planet as you appear to object to anyone discussing the subject on what is traditionally an open forum, these subjects have been discussed on this forum long long before you became an addition and you probably knew that when you became a lurker before you joined in, so, was your reason for joining to stifle such discussions ?

  9. Paul 67,



    I wonder how many of Scotland’s 8 percent have Sky to specifically watch English football.?



    We as in Scottish football need radical change to even begin to compete .eg summer football.




  10. I am told that Saidy Janko from Man Utd will be signing very soon











    Another right-back?



    Blinkin flip,we’ve got hunnersathem.

  12. bellshill tim on

    Afternoon bhoys! What Phil Mac didn’t say was if Ashley had agreed to sit on his rights or to give king the other 5m… I hope there’s a complete breakdown as I don’t fancy Ashley being associated with them long term.

  13. BMCUW,


    You can’t have too many, remember WGS having 5 and still having to play someone out of place because they were all broke.





    Was that Darren O’Dea against the huns? Poor fella never really recovered from that.



    IIRC,that was the McCurry Bookatimathon Day.

  15. He is a Swiss u19 right wing back



    I believe it is a loan deal initially




  16. Dontbrattbakkinanger on

    Are there not more implications for whoever plays at fullback for our U-19s?

  17. So most of us agree it’s a Sky boycott is well overdue. Hopefully ALL of us will now follow the process laid out here.



    What I can’t understand is why we don’t ALL have the same go at the Daily Record. Its done nothing other than rubbish our club for years. From the “Thugs and Thieves” headline lies, to every good player we have is leaving and we’re out priced on bidding for everyone else we’re linked with. Yet still I see supporters reading this rag. Paying the money that keeps it going. Liverpool got the Sun to rethink- we can stop the Records nonsense.




  18. Posed this question yesterday? May have missed reply as I’m in a five hour time warp in the U.S. just now.



    If one was to purchase an Android box or Amazon TV thingy and have Kodi installed, how would one go about recording stuff?

  19. rw76,


    Only a tiny minority of Celtic supporters use t’interweb, there’s your problem right there.

  20. South Of Tunis on

    Lunch time- way down south .



    Barry McGuire – on the last thread .



    Horrible memories ( late 70s Glasgow ) of being dragged ( think my old man must have been washing his hair / cutting his toe nails that night ) by my Musical loving mother to a born again Christian musical called -The Witness . . Born again Barry McGuire played Peter …



    Absolute pap —

  21. leftclicktic on

    Celtic Football Club ‏@celticfc · 1m1 minute ago


    RD: “I had a good break. I went to Norway and had some days in Spain and Gran Canaria.”




    RD on drawing @FCStjarnan :”It’s a good draw. Every opponent you get is difficult. We are going to be favourities whoever we met.”




    -RD: “We have experience of Icelandic teams. We have to have a good pre-season and make ourselves ready for the game.”




    RD: “We know if we are on top, we have a chance to get a good result.”




    RD: “We are used to being favourites and we are in this game as well. We will go into the game the same way we did last year.”




    RD: “We know the goal is to get into the #UCL and that’s a big goal for us. We will do everything to get through.”




    RD: “We have Dedryck in now and that’s good. We needed another central defender after losing Jason.”




    RD: “The most important thing now is having consistency.”




    RD: “We have kept the squad for a long time and it’s very strong, and I’m comfortable and happy with the players I have.”




    RD: “We have a lot of options at Celtic. We went for Boyata from Manchester City and we are very happy with that.”




    RD: “We have a lot of central defenders, and if we can keep what we have, we don’t see any reasons to get another in.”




    RD: “You will come up with a 100 different names & just important to see if something is coming when it’s arranged and confirmed




    RD: “But first of all, it’s about keeping the players we have here and developing them.”




    RD on Boyata: “A great talent & very high ability. He needs matches now to get match fit, our task now is to get his potential out.”




    -RD: “If we can do that we’ll have a top international player in our squad. Like all players, though, he needs time to adapt & settle.”



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