And the plummeting of ESPN continues apace. On Tuesday, data was revealed that the sports network (aka MSNBC with footballs, according to Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro), lost half a million subscribers in April. That’s 17,000 subscribers a day.
In the same time period in 2017, ESPN lost 683,000 subscribers, so the dizzying pace of the network’s decline has barely slowed down as subscribers flee for greener pastures.
As Clay Travis writes at Outkick The Coverage, “While the numbers of lost subscribers haven’t been as bad in the past few months, I suspect that’s because ESPN threw such a fit over last year’s numbers that Nielsen slowed down its subscriber attrition data for several months to make sure they weren’t off in their data measurements.”
The loss of 500,000 subscribers amounts to $48 million in revenue that ESPN has lost. ESPN still has over 86 million subscribers, but at the end of 2011 it had 100 million.
Travis points out that ESPN was hit harder than the other cable networks experiencing a decline because its revenue was damaged the most. He stated, “That’s easy to illustrate by using FS1 as an example. FS1 brings in roughly $1 a month in subscriber fees so losing 328,000 subscribers would cost it just shy of $4 million total a year. Whereas ESPN 500,000 lost subscribers cost it $48 million a year … So it’s probably a good thing the network isn’t spending $35 million a year on a brand new New York City studio and paying three people $15 million a year to host a show whose ratings are declining by 20% over the much cheaper show they replaced. Wait …”