Tuesday, April 22, 2014

I just want to watch Jackets playoff hockey!

Please help.

I was unable to get a straight answer from Dish Network.
I was unable to get a straight answer from Fox Sports Ohio.

It is 12:39 am.  I'm supposed to be sleeping.  Big day at work tomorrow.  But instead I am sitting at my computer, stewing.  I was unable to watch the Blue Jackets Game 3 playoff game on TV on Monday.  Now it seems I may be unable to watch tonight's as well.

I live in Troy, Ohio.  Just north of Dayton.  I am not a wealthy man by any means.  I cannot afford to attend NHL games very often but I do drive the 90 minutes to Columbus a few times a year to enjoy a Blue Jackets game at Nationwide Arena.  When I can't see them in person, one of my favorite things to do is to relax in front of the TV with my two boys and watch the Jackets on our regional Fox Sports station.  We watch so much, that they have memorized the commercials!  Proven here:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vipvWVQ3-t0

I am a Dish Network subscriber and pay an additional $5 per month for the Fox Sports regional sports package.  I do this for one reason and one reason only: to watch my beloved Blue Jackets.  I do not watch the Reds or Xavier or any other sports team.  I pay those few dollars extra every month for the CBJ.

I am ecstatic that my team is finally back in the playoffs.  Unable to watch Game 2 on Saturday night due to work, I was looking forward to watching Game 3 on Monday.  Fox Sports televised the game in my area (DirecTv customers were able to watch)...yet I was unable to watch.

You see, I actually have Fox Sports Cincinnati (a division of Fox Sports Ohio, I think).  Throughout the season I was able to watch every game on this station.  When there was a conflict with another team, I would always be able to find the game on an alternate channel.  But not Monday.  With the Reds playing that evening, I found myself searching for the alternate channel.  To my complete and utter frustration, the Reds game was also on the alternate channel.  That made no sense to me.

Was this a mistake?  I'm not so sure.  I contacted Dish Network and was told it was a programming decision by Fox Sports Ohio.  But the Fox Sports Ohio web site indicated that I still should be able to watch the game in my area as proven here: http://msn.foxsports.com/ohio/story/channel-information-for-monday-april-21-blue-jackets-and-reds-041714

So right before bed tonight I checked my Dish Network guide.  The Reds game for tonight starts at 7pm and is televised on Fox Sports Cincinnati.  So I searched the alternate channels.  NO BLUE JACKETS GAME.
I find this very disturbing.  I have been able to watch every Blue Jackets game on Fox Sports this season.  Now they are in the playoffs and suddenly I cannot watch???  Sure it's on the NBC Sports network but I don't get that channel.  That package would cost me an additional $10 per month.  I'm already spending $5 for Fox Sports...a channel on which I SHOULD be able to watch the Jackets.

But the bigger issue is this: EVERYONE in this part of Ohio and Cincinnati should be able to watch the Jackets game.  And EVERYONE who has Dish Network and the same package as me CANNOT.  From a marketing perspective, this is horrible.  The Blue Jackets organization should want everyone in the state with access to FSOhio to be able to see the Blue Jackets in the playoffs.  This is the perfect way to promote the game and hook new fans.

In comparison, DirecTv (from which I recently switched) offers both FSOhio AND FSCincinnati as part of its regional sports package.  Dish Network should follow suit. Or whoever is in charge.  Dish Network?  Fox Sports?  Blue Jackets?

I don't want to watch a choppy, illegal Internet feed.  I don't want to go to a bar.  I just want to sit on the couch with my two boys and watch the Jackets.  Is that too much to ask?  I should be able to do it.  I've been able to do it all year.  Why has it changed now when it matters most?

Please help!  Someone must know something!


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