There are no winners in the Women’s World Cup broadcast fiasco, only losers

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    There are no winners in the Women’s World Cup broadcast fiasco, only losers

    We are 43 days out (as of when this article was written) from the Women’s World Cup starting in Australia and New Zealand but, with Fifa threatening a blackout because of low offers for the broadcast rights from the biggest European footballing countries, you wouldn’t know it. There are no adverts, no references to coverage and there is no buildup.

    This is the first I even heard I can recall this “event” even being mentioned.

    There has been little effort to gauge the value of the tournament in its own right, which has held back women’s football. From the big – undervalued rights – to the small – not enough official merchandise and low kit availability – for almost 32 years the Women’s World Cup has been been pretty much deemed worthless and unprofitable by Fifa. It has been charity. It is loss-making and Fifa will take the hit because the optics of not supporting a Women’s World Cup in an increasingly progressively minded society is not acceptable.

    So what is FIFA doing to promote… oh wait.  They are doing NOTHING.

    Returning to the present day the Fifa president, Gianni Infantino, was outraged by the low offers from broadcasters for the rights to show the Women’s World Cup, which kicks off on 20 July…

    Offers are based off of what the broadcasters feel they can get in commercial prices with viewership.  If they have few viewers, the price per commercial will be low.  Simple math/marketing.

    FIFA has earned an unprecedented $7.5bn in revenue through four years of commercial deals tied to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar…

    The FIFA Women’s World Cup, which was held in France in 2019, generated revenue of almost $156.9 million U.S. dollars.

    So comparing the last World Cups revenue, the women’s tournaments revenue was 2% of the men’s.

    In England, the figure for the joint offer from the BBC and ITV is believed to be around €9m, about 8% of what was paid for the men’s edition.

    So the BBC & ITV were offering 4 times more in value than it did the men’s.  And how did Fifa respond?

    “slap in the face…”

    But that is reality.

    In addition, Fifa is not arguing for a reallocation of broadcasters’ budgets for major football tournaments, but a massive increase in them. There is an assumption that the rights for the men’s World Cups will remain as high as they are and that broadcasters should be finding money to bring the value of the rights for the women’s tournament closer in line with that, with the ambition of it eventually being level.

    Just look at the NBA and the WNBA.  The interest and demands between the men’s and women’s game could not be more clearly visible.  Merchandise and product recognition and revenue all reflects the reality that even 20 years (and with the support of the NBA) the WNBA is still a money losing venture.

    Now magnify that to the world’s number one sport.

    …essentially a media blackout in Europe’s biggest footballing countries is threatened, no one wins. Fifa does not get more money and broadcasters do not get the viewing figures. And, crucially, the biggest loser is the historically underfunded and undervalued women’s game, which is reliant on major tournaments to boost interest and investment in it.

    Underfunded?  Undervalued?

    Yet the value, skills, abilities, visibilities, merchandises, ticket sales, etc. are simply not there.

    To the broadcasters, they can find other things to show (which could generate more viewers/more ad revenue) than this.

    And importantly, what time slot would these games be broadcast?  You want it LIVE, it will be when most will not be able to watch.  That decreases its value to the networks.

    It is NOT an in-demand item.

    What can Fifa do instead? How about using less aggression and more discussion? Bring broadcasters to the table to have a fair and holistic discussion about the broadcast rights of the men’s and women’s tournaments and how you sustainably grow audiences, tournaments and revenue all round. And do it now.

    And not just broadcasters, but those who make the merchandise, the jerseys, the kits, etc.

    The game/revenue can only grow if ALL invested parties are involved.

    By Fifa demanding they (the men’s and women’s world cup) be treated the same/given the same value, when clearly they are not, is very delusional, especially when Fifa itself does not give the same resources/time on the two.

    Will all that money Fifa made off the men’s tournaments, why have they not done more for the woman’s?

    …Fifa is doing with prize money, after all, raising the Women’s World Cup prize pot to $110m (£88.4m) for this year’s tournament and committed to matching the men’s prize pot by the 2027 edition.

    Great to the woman’s teams/players, if Fifa is subsidizing the woman’s game (much like the NBA is doing with the WNBA).  But to demand broadcasters pay the same (when the value is not there), etc.

    Where was the build-up?  The excitement?

    Fifa’s promoting of woman’s soccer is so non-existing, I would call it “a slap in the face” to coin their own words.

    And to be perfectly honest, I just don’t care.  If my national woman’s team wins, would I care?  Would I celebrate?  No.

    I am not invested in the team, the players, this tournament, etc.




    The level of playing isn’t even an argument. Apply the same logic to a concert. Let’s say you’re in a band, and you play on a stage at a festival where the Rolling Stones or some other big band play on another stage. Should you get paid the same amount? Which name sold more tickets to the festival? Similarly with actors or any other form of entertainment. If you sell seats, you get a cut.

    There are sports where women earn more than men. Tennis for example. I don’t see anyone complaining about equal pay there…


    Supply and demand.

    The bigger the demand, the more the price goes up.

    The smaller the demand, the less the price will be.

    Simple economics.


    You want your “product” to be worth more, then you make to make it something people WANT.

    As is stands right now for female soccer on the world stage, the demand for it is not there.  It is not a product whose demand is high, hence the price is low.


    Same goes for the WNBA.  Same goes for the Premier Hockey Federation (PHF), formerly the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL).

    Those are a product whose demand is low, hence the price is low.


    One wanted their product to be in demand does not automatically make is so.

    The NBA formed in 1946 and it took DECADES to get to the level of demand, pay, merchandise revenue that it is at today.

    The NHL formed in 1917 and it took DECADES to get to the level of demand, pay, merchandise revenue that it is at today.

    The modernized version of the soccer/football beginning in 1863 with the founding of the Football Association and it took DECADES to get to the level of demand, pay, merchandise revenue that it is at today.


    It takes time to develop the product, the demand, etc.

    You cannot just force what took decades to build up in other leagues to happen overnight just cause you want it to.


    FIFA President Says Women Need to ‘Convince Us Men’ on Equality

    The world’s best female footballers can achieve pay equality — if only they “convince us men” first, according to FIFA President Gianni Infantino, sparking a near-immediate backlash.

    Well, give us equally entertaining product.

    Infantino has in the past been a vocal proponent of the women’s game. He has called for better sporting conditions, demanded that broadcasters offer higher bids to show the tournament on television—which he has linked to lower prize money—and demanded that more countries set up women’s leagues.

    Give us men something worth buying merchandise of.

    Give us a game worth spending and attending games on.

    Give advertisers a reason to spend more on your products.

    Give us likeable players who don’t hate and spit on fans and potential fans.

    Stop giving people reasons NOT TO support you, your sport, etc.

    The tournament also broke even, generating $570 million, according to the FIFA president, unlike the 2015 and 2019 Women’s World Cup competitions.

    Congrats on finally breaking even.

    But to equal the success of the men’s tournament, you need to improve the game, the players, their image, their likeability.

    How long has the NBA subsidizes the WNBA?  and it is still a money loser.  The product sucks!  Their players insufferable!

    Look at the woman’s soccer (especially on the US side).  Too many of their players are insufferable!

    Why would any person support that?  We don’t.


    The advertisers see that low viewership/attendance, and will only pay to advertise accordingly.


    Those female athletes calling for equality, give us equal quality of play, of skill, of entertainment value.

    Give us the reason to support you on the same level as other sports.

    Why do people go to college level games and not pro-female sports?

    Why do sports writers cover college over pro-female sports?

    Why do people support sports and want to watch just sports, and reject the crybabies/agenda pushing players and their sports where all they want to do is PUCH an agenda/narrative over improving the game and level of play of their game?


    How many other male sports/sport leagues/teams failed because they could not create a product people want to see and invest their time and money in supporting it?

    You cannot create a fake/false interest.  Eventually it will fail.

    The FIFA president has previously said he hopes to offer equal prize money for the Men’s and Women’s World Cups within a few years.

    If you can’t get females to buy tickets and merch and be interested in your female sports, why do you expect men will instantaneous buy in?

    How long did it take to develop the men’s game to where it generates so much revenue, and you want to woman’s game to generate that much overnight?



    Screenshot 2023-08-20 at 17-54-34 Vox Popoli

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