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Friday, October 3, 2008


We are the consumer. But sometimes we are just pawns in a game of chicken. In Buffalo this weekend, an unfortunate situation has arisen and some (gasp) may be without the Bills game on the local CBS affiliate due to a squabble between Lin Television and Time-Warner Cable. Lin has even gone so far as trying to block Time-Warner from grabbing the local Rochester feed, so they can continue to hold the Bills game (and the rabid Bills market) hostage as a negotiation ploy (not bad, actually). Let's put this in perspective, the Bills get ratings in the 40's (Nielsen) when they are on the road, which is astronomical, and leads to nice advertising dough (locally and nationally). Now, this doesn't affect me as a DirecTV customer, but the SpaceGal reminded me of my plans to take the kids to a local establishment for pizza and wings after their swim meet to watch the game. Why is that important? Because every cable watching Bills fan will be out trying to find a place that is showing the game. Result: Mob scene in every sports bar/restaurant in town.

Anyways, if you've read this far (thanks mom) you're probably wondering what this has to do with horse racing. Last night I was surfing the net and turned my television to TVG and the nightcap at Santa Anita was on. Ahh, I think I'll make a little wager on race 8. I jumped into my twinspires account and learned that in order to wager on OSA, telephone only. Ugh. WTF. Same with Keeneland. I'm sure it has to do with the ADW issues and exclusivity. I'm not well versed in any of that, so I can't espouse any knowledge on the subject. I'll leave that to those in the know. All I know is I couldn't wager online and that sucked. I'm hoping I will be able to for the Breeders Cup, should my Casino Niagara plans fall through. I sent an email to customer service. Still waiting on a response. Yeah, I could suck it up and just use my phone or open another account, but it's a matter of convenience. I'm a customer who wants to wager, but is limited in my selection. This sport just can't help itself. Again I'm guessing, but I'm probably just a pawn or collateral damage of a fight happening between the horsemen and the race tracks.

What does this mean? Another trip to the Self-Appointed Fan Committee. Who are they, you inquire? Folks who listen to those who rant, complain or have ideas of how to fix our sport. Monthly they send reports summarizing the data to industry groups such as the NTRA, the Jockey Club, the Breeders' Cup and other racing organizations.

Roger Staubach once said about customer service: "There are no traffic jams along the extra mile." (Bet you were wondering what's up with the Roger Staubach picture)

Lately, it seems like customer service is a dead end.


Winston...not really said...

Go Navy!!!!

Keith - Triple Dead Heat said...

Are you playing in the Hawthorne Survival contest?

I'm still alive but totally guessing my picks.

Tough loss for the Bills...but hopefully they learn a few things and improve. You can't win them all.

Geno said...

Keith: I didn't enter Hawthorne, but I did enter Keeneland and was doing ok through first two days, yesterday was a lean day. Keep it going at Hawthorne!

Bills needed a wakeup call...they got it!

I'm actually heading up to Toronto for a late afternoon meeting today, disappointed Woodbine is dark..haha.


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