Baseball fans have filed a motion to enforce a Major League Baseball broadcast monopoly class action lawsuit settlement.
Lead plaintiffs sued MLB and cable providers over an alleged monopoly that restricted competitors from broadcasting sporting events. The parties settled with just minutes to spare before trial began in January 2016.
Under the terms of the settlement, the price of sporting broadcast packages was to be lowered and increased access to broadcasts of games was to be provided by MLB and cable providers.
In their motion to enforce the settlement agreement, the plaintiffs in the class action alleged that MLB raised its prices, but has not increased the value of the service. The plaintiffs acknowledged that agreements to provide service later are in place, but argued that was not enough under the terms of the settlement agreement.
“Defendants claim that they have met their obligations because they have ‘agreements’ in place for in-market streaming,” contend the plaintiffs in their motion. “Yet the obvious purpose of the settlement was not that ‘agreements’ of some kind be reached, but that the actual games be available.”
According to the motion, under the terms of the settlement agreement, MLB would offer access to single-team packages through MLB.tv. Additionally, say the plaintiffs, cable providers were supposed to offer more live-streaming access to games in 2017.
The plaintiffs argue that by not providing increased service options, under the terms of the class action settlement, MLB cannot raise subscription prices. “Despite the unavailability of these games, MLB charged, and is continuing to charge, the increased prices only allowed if the in-market streaming deals were complete,” allege the plaintiffs in their motion.
Additionally, the plaintiffs argue that MLB failed to fulfill another aspect of the settlement agreement that requires them to offer additional streaming options when teams play “out-of market” games. These games would have been blacked-out before the settlement agreement, say the plaintiffs, but now the option to view them is not integrated with other viewing packages.
According to the plaintiffs’ motion, MLB is attempting to fulfill its obligations under the settlement agreement by offering a “Follow Your Team” service in MLB.tv; however, say the plaintiffs, MLB severely limits this option by restricting availability to web browsers.
“This is absurd,” the fans state in their motion. “If defendants seriously mean that they must simply offer ‘a product’ — any product — that provides access to these telecasts, then the agreement would be meaningless. By that interpretation, the league would meet their obligations by offering a low-resolution, postage-stamp-sized video only available on Dell computers running Windows 95.”
The plaintiffs are represented by Howard I. Langer, Edward A. Diver and Peter E. Leckman of Langer Grogan & Diver PC.
The MLB Broadcast Monopoly Class Action Lawsuit Settlement is Garber, et al. v. Office of the Commissioner of Baseball, et al., Case No. 1:12-cv-03704, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
Additional class action lawsuitss involving recent athletes have involved blood thinners namely the Xarelto Lawsuit Settlement. If you or someone you know is in need of a Xarelto Lawsuit Attorney visit http://xareltolawsuitinfo.com.
Xarelto (rivaroxaban) is an anticoagulant drug – commonly referred to as a blood thinner – which is prescribed to patients to prevent blood clots and strokes.
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