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Another Week Without NFL Ticket Can Google Save Me?

Being able to watch any NFL game I want whenever I want is the Golden Ticket I’m striving to get.

Three weeks into the NFL season and I’m once again frustrated with the fact that I can’t get NFL Ticket. Of course, I wanted to see the Falcons play Miami without having to *redacted* online, but I couldn’t because I don’t have DirecTV. NFL fans know, DirectTV has an exclusive deal with the NFL which keeps NFL ticket from cable providers like Time Warner and Comcast or even fellow satellite companies like Dish network.

According to news outlets this could be coming to an end. Google/YouTube wants to purchase rights to NFL games which would mean more flexibility for people like me. If the deal goes through, NFL games could belong to google next season. Yes, 2014. Forbes also reports that Apple could step up to the plate and get rights so that Apple TV gets a greater share of living rooms across the country.

Obviously, google/you tube has invested a lot into making their company competitive with television. Remember their much promoted effort to invest in channels? They gave creators money to create content that would air at a specific time on a schedule similar to television. That project hasn’t seemed to go as planned and I’m sure that Netflix pouncing on the same market by creating several highly successful shows probably contributed. But mainly people, myself included, prefer to use you tube to see people who CAN’T get on TV rather than people who are already well known. I still am a fan of you tube because that’s where my favorite vloggers give hair tutorials, review reality tv shows and post their dogs doing cute stuff.

But You Tube wants more than that because growth in that audience has probably reached a peak. If Google gets rights to the NFL, the likelihood of getting more folks to use their new chromecast tool and stream shows on you tube would go up. You might not go out of your way to set your television up to get regular television shows but if you have your pick of NFL games it might be the extra boost you need to invest $35 and incorporate google’s technology into your home.

Overall, I don’t see how a partnership between Google and the NFL could be bad for either company. I see only more and more opportunities to make money and to expand the number games watched by fans during the season. However, the whole thing still makes me nervous due to the fact that Google has become less and less consumer friendly as time has gone on. I keep racking my brain to think about what unintended consequences there could be for consumers if this deal goes through.

The only immediate downside I see is for folks from rural areas (like me - I grew up on a farm) may have trouble streaming through Google because broadband in rural areas is still largely GARBAGE. Whatever happens, my house (in DC proper) isn’t DirectTV eligible (long story) so until NFL Ticket is available some other way I will still be complaining and *radacted* online. 

[Source: 7 Reasons for Google to Buy NFL Rights. Forbes]

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