ESPN is hemorrhaging subscribers.
In addition to people cutting the cord, others are tuning out because the network has chosen to push a progressive political agenda.
Despite the spiraling revenue, something unthinkable just happened at ESPN.
Disney, ESPN’s parent company, reportedly offered embattled ESPN chief John Skipper a contract extension.
Both ESPN and the National Football League have been losing fans and revenue hand over fist, but despite the cascading failures both entities have offered executives huge contract renewals.
Last week news broke that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell was set to reel in big perks to re-up his contract leading the league. Among other perks, Goodell is asking for a $50 million per year salary and a private jet that he will be able to use for the rest of his life, according to sources speaking to Maxim magazine.
This is all on top of the big dollars he pulled in during previous years. In 2014, for instance, Goodell’s base salary was only $3.5 million. But he also reeled in $26.5 million in bonuses and other benefits. Also, with all his perks added up, Goodell made a hefty $44 million in 2013. All total, Goodell has reportedly made $180.5 million since becoming NFL Commissioner in 2006.
Goodell asks for and receives all this largess, despite the massive loss of fans and ratings due to his lenient handling of the national anthem protests.
The situation is just as baffling at ESPN, perhaps even more so.
Disney has reportedly offered ESPN chief John Skipper a contract extension ahead of its expiration at the end of next year and uncharacteristically through the year 2021, according to Awful Announcing.
This despite multiple financial quarter reports citing ESPN as a major drag on Disney’s profit margins.
Skipper was also offered this new, long-term contract despite the steady loss of millions of subscribers, not to mention the recurring political controversies ESPN has suffered over the last several years.
With these two seemingly failing executives offered lucrative new contracts even in the face of massive losses that they had a hand in creating, it appears that neither ESPN nor the NFL cares anything at all about what their customers are telling them.
ESPN reportedly has another massive wave of layoffs on the horizon.
The network also received negative heat for only giving Jemele Hill a slap on the wrist after she called Donald Trump a white supremacist; she was subsequently suspended for breaking a cardinal sin by telling people to boycott the advertisers that pay her salary.
However, Skipper seems to be on terra firma. One theory behind the move is that Disney head Bob Iger is considering a presidential run, so he’s more than happy for ESPN to push a left-wing narrative.
It could explain why conservative voices like Curt Schilling, Mike Ditka, and Britt McHenry were let go, or why ESPNW, the female-centric wing of the network, promoted poetry by Assata Shakur, a radical leftist and convicted cop killer who fled to Cuba.
ESPN seems to have an agenda, and nothing else matters. Not even the bottom line.