The news: YouTube has renewed a deal with the MLB to stream 15 regular-season games beginning in May, making it the latest digital video service to enter the scramble for live sports streaming rights.
More on this: YouTube often goes unmentioned in the whirlwind of exclusivity deals and M&A that’s dominated the streaming industry lately, but it’s still one of the most-watched video services out there.
Trouble for consumers: The race to claim exclusive sports streaming rights has led some sports leagues to become increasingly fractured across services, which could lead to consumer discontent down the line.
Looking forward: YouTube can’t be ignored as a streaming competitor. It’s not only one of the most-used social media and digital video platforms, but is also free from the production and M&A costs of its competitors thanks to its user-generated content and the recent shutdown of its Originals program.