Why Does ESPN Plus Blackout Games?
Watching sports with ESPN Plus has become increasingly popular over the last few years, with many people turning to the digital option for their viewing pleasure. However, some viewers have been surprised to find certain games “blacked out” on the platform, meaning they’re unable to watch them. So why does ESPN Plus blackout games?
The most common reason for ESPN Plus to blackout a game is territorial restrictions. This means that ESPN Plus can’t always show live games in certain countries or regions, due to broadcasting rights. If a game is shown on a different channel that is restricted in the region in which you live, then ESPN Plus will likely blackout the game. Unfortunately, this is completely out of their hands and viewers are encouraged to check with local broadcasters for their coverage.
Sporting Leagues also have the ability to impose blackouts on certain games. This can be for a variety of reasons such as broadcaster exclusivity, local competitions or due to an ongoing legal dispute. ESPN Plus is required to adhere to any blackout requests as they are legally obligated to do so, regardless of the reason.
Pay-per-view (PPV) events such as WWE matches are not available to watch on ESPN Plus. This is because the sporting organization can choose to make their event exclusive and make viewers purchase the exact broadcast show. Therefore, ESPN Plus are unable to show these events on their platform.
In summary, ESPN Plus can blackout games due to a variety of reasons:
- Territorial restrictions
- Sporting League’s request
- PPV events