There are many reasons why the owners of the Chicago Cubs, the Ricketts family, are currently inspiring rage and hatred from their own fan base. The very existence of Marquee Network, and the way that it is has been mismanaged is right up there when it comes to reasons that Cub fans boo the Ricketts. Number one is obviously the ownership’s gutting of the roster at last year’s MLB trade deadline, with a repeat imminent in the next few days.
Willson Contreras and Ian Happ, a duo that is to this team what K-Ci and Jojo were to Jodeci, are set to leave meaning that this team’s recent six game winning streak will soon be ancient history. It won’t be long until the Cubs go right back to the pace of losing 100+ this season. Another Ricketts entity that’s losing is the Marquee Network.
— Paul M. Banks (@PaulMBanks) July 29, 2022
According to a Forbes article posted yesterday:
“The Chicago Cubs moved to their own regional sports network right when the pandemic hit in 2020. The performance on the field in 2022 hasn’t helped it gain traction. Marquee Sports is down -25% by household impressions YOY (6,368,900 compared to 8,475,000 at this point last year)”
Who knew that launching your own television network, right ahead of imploding your roster and thus making the club not competitive for years to come wasn’t a solid business plan.
Excuse me Sara, but I was told in January of 2020 that we “wouldn’t be booing the Marquee Network” after the first year. #Cubs
— Lauren Hughes (@blondewonk) July 28, 2022
People are turning off from Marquee Network (an enterprise that almost literally made a deal with the devil, as they’re partnered with vile, far-right wing propaganda vehicle Sinclair Broadcasting Group) for several reasons. One, it’s not easily available on an app, so that is can be better consumed via mobile. Two it’s not streaming service friendly, which is a laughably stupid position to be in, considering it launched in 2020.
While the New York Yankees’ YES Network is no longer available on YouTube.TV, at least it was prior to this season. You don’t go into TV these days without considering first how you’re going to reach cord-cutters.
A live look-in at Marquee headquarters: pic.twitter.com/1BQF4VoziG
— Less Chat, More Hat (@Frustrated_Fan) July 29, 2022
The more cable networks we have, the more unwatchable nonsense is going to be produced, and with that more people will get turned off by paying for stuff they don’t want and then cut the cord. It also should be noted that game broadcasts are the only reasons that RSN (Regional Sports Networks) exist. The filler material, the non-live games content is almost always entirely awful, and every sports fan knows that.
More people watch “this is a test of the emergency broadcast system, this is only a test” than the non-Cubs game programming on Marquee Network.
Part of this is the product on the field,but for me the decline comes down to the product of the broadcast
• Split screens
• asinine stats
• numerous distractions
— drunkharrycaray (@drunkharrycarey) July 29, 2022
I myself would much rather watch “The Boring World of Neils Bohr” than Cubs Countdown, and….uh…..and….I can’t even name another show on Marquee Network…that annoying betting show from Vegas or something? With the world’s most dumb you down promo that they run all the time?
-Traded away popular players
-Pretended to be too poor to pay new players
-Left the popular cable network we have been watching our whole lives
-Lost a very good and popular broadcaster
Other than that, I’m not sure why nobody is watching. it’s a mystery https://t.co/8oyklG4EUN
— fancy kat (@bgardnerfanclub) July 29, 2022
So it’s easy to why so many Cubs fans have gleeful schadenfreude about Marquee Network going through a very rough patch. We are right to take joy in their misery. Ricketts and company have certainly earned it.
Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Bank (TheSportsBank.Net) and author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” as well as “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”
He has regularly appeared in WGN, Sports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune, and he co-hosts the After Extra Time podcast, part of Edge of the Crowd Network. Follow him and the website on Twitter and Instagram.