The BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) is the governing body for cricket in India and is the largest and most revenue earning board in the whole cricketing world. Cricket is followed as a religion in the Indian Subcontinent and today, as we stand in 2021, the digital medium has exploded and everyone likes to watch cricket online, whether it is mobile phones or simply big screens. While every cricketing nation owns a YouTube Channel, we wonder why BCCI doesn’t own a YouTube channel, even though it is the biggest online platform?
BCCI has its own website
BCCI owns a separate website called bcci.tv (check it out for viewing highlights), they also have an app released on Play Store and App Store. BCCI.TV was started way back in 2000s, much before than the rest of the world. BCCI was also the first board to start live streaming cricket on the internet wayback in 2010. Not only just highlights and live streams, they do press release from their website and put up interviews of umpires, ground staff, cricketers and much more.
BCCI sells its digital rights
BCCI has being selling its TV and digital rights to media companies for a long time. Currently, BCCI sold its TV and digital rights to Star India for a period of 2018-2023 (5 years deal) for a whooping Rs. 6,138.1 crores ($944 million). Disney+ Hotstar (earlier under the Star India) currently has all the media rights for that matter. It is one of the biggest ways BCCI earns money to run cricket in India and they certainly do not want to hinder their source of revenue.
Boosting Disney+ Hotstar
YouTube is certainly the easiest medium to access anything and it might end up causing huge losses to Disney+ Hotstar in India. A highlight video on YouTube on other boards like CA, ECB, etc easily gets a couple of million views in a day but on BCCI.tv it hardly surpasses 100K views in a day. During IPL, Indian domestic matches, world cups, Disney+ Hotstar gets so many viewerships and subscribers that sometimes their website crashes. IPL 2020 viewership alone helped Disney+ Hotstar’s Revenues Cross Whopping ₹1600 Crore Landmark just a few months ago.
Building their own brand
BCCI doesn’t own a YouTube channel but one can surely check all the cricket videos and highlights on their website. Huge traffic comes to their website for that matter and it seems they are interested in building their own brand and website with content. It surely becomes very easy for them to upload things according to their needs and will and they need not to follow a set pattern as you see on other cricketing YouTube channels.
Doesn’t consider YouTube to earn revenues
Google and Facebook were also in the line to buy the broadcasting rights of BCCI in the year 2018 and they took part in the E-Auction that happened for 3 long days but eventually Star India won. Other boards are earning money from YouTube ads but BCCI already gets so much money from its rights that it doesn’t need to maintain a channel on YouTube.
Ultimately it all comes down to a single point and that is money but this is the same money that has helped so many cricketers to come out of poverty and earn more than any other cricketing nation’s players. It is yet to see whether they will eventually open a channel on YouTube but chances are very less.
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