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Bally Sports Network offers bill credits after outages

Affected subscribers will need to contact customer service to have the credit applied to their account.

Affected subscribers will need to contact customer service to have the credit applied to their account.

The logo of Bally Sports is seen on a smart television set. (Graphic by The Desk)

Regional sports brand Bally Sports will offer bill credits to customers who were afflicted by multiple widespread outages involving the Bally Sports Plus streaming app last week.

The issue left thousands of sports fans unable to watch live games or other programming through the Bally Sports Plus app, which is available without a cable or satellite subscription in areas where Sinclair’s Diamond Sports Group operates one or more Bally Sports-branded channels.

The glitch impacted live National Hockey League (NHL) and National Basketball Association (NBA) games in areas like Milwaukee, Columbus and Detroit, with fans complaining that the service went down multiple times over five straight days.

In a series of posts on the social media website X, formerly Twitter, officials at Bally Sports apologized for the disruptions, saying it was a “tough week for the fans” and that the company was “actively issuing credits” to subscribers who requested them.

“We are truly working around-the-clock to find a permanent solution and drive further optimizations and stability around our platforms,” a Bally Sports official wrote.

Diamond Sports Group didn’t say what was causing the glitches. But the website Awful Announcing noticed that Bally Sports updated their streaming app to require a separate account through the service itself, even when viewers are authenticating with their cable or satellite credentials. The move appears intended to cut down on password sharing between paying users and freeloaders, Awful Announcing theorized.

The outages come as Diamond Sports Group is still working through its Chapter 11 bankruptcy case that was filed earlier this year. Some of its regional sports channels have since been closed, with programming moving to broadcast outlets and other streaming services.

On Thursday, the New York Post reported Sinclair was interested in acquiring Diamond Sports out of bankruptcy for around $850 million, or a fraction of the company’s $10 billion-plus purchase price that Sinclair plunked down to acquire the once Fox Sports-branded networks from Disney several years ago.

The acquisition would almost certainly need the approval of the federal bankruptcy court, which is working through various plans to address more than $8.6 billion that Diamond Sports owes to its various creditors. Those creditors include U.S. Bank ($1.6 billion), Dolan Broadcast ($77.2 million), DirecTV ($40.1 million) and the Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team ($30.8 million).

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is an award-winning journalist with more than 10 years of experience covering the business of television and radio broadcasting, streaming services and the overall media industry. In addition to his work as publisher of The Desk, Matthew contributes regularly to StreamTV Insider and KnowTechie, and has worked for several well-known news organizations, including Thomson Reuters, McNaughton Newspapers, Grasswire, Comstock's magazine, KTXL-TV and KGO-TV. Matthew is a member of IRE, a trade organization for investigative reporters and editors, and is based in Northern California.

Email: [email protected] | Signal: 530-507-8380