YouTube TV has just sent out a 36-hour notice to its customers alerting cord cutters who switched to the digital platform that FOX Sports North (FSN) is set to disappear from the YouTube TV channel lineup this Thursday. The decision comes after a brief extension that allowed programming to remain on Google’s platform through the end of this really weird 2020 baseball, basketball and hockey season.
The most immediate impact of the contract ending hits Minnesota United FC fans, who won’t be able to watch the final nine games of the Major League Soccer team’s season.
FSN has been broadcasting the majority of Twins, Lynx, Timberwolves, Wild and MNUFC games over the last decade, and local subscribers were pleased to be able to watch their teams with no long-term TV provider commitment that YouTube TV provides. The decision doesn’t really effect The Wolves, Lynx and Wild right now, who are in their respective offseason, while Twins playoff games are broadcast on national networks like ABC, ESPN and TBS.
“To bring you 85+ channels, we periodically renegotiate contracts with content owners. In February, we announced we had negotiated an extension with Sinclair to continue providing FOX Regional Sports Networks through the end of MLB, NHL and NBA seasons,” YouTube TV’s statement said. “Now that the seasons are over, that extension is expiring. Starting October 1, 2020, FOX RSNs will no longer be available on YouTube TV. Members that are impacted will no longer have access to library recordings from the FOX RSNs.”
FOX Sports North is one of 19 Sinclair-owned RSNs that will be rolling off YouTube TV. As for how this affects your monthly bill? It doesn’t. YouTube TV hasn’t made any statements regarding bill credits or lowering the monthly price for the service that’s losing channels. With YouTube TV costing $65/month and these major sports channels being dropped, I wouldn’t be surprised if some subscribers drop their accounts and switch to other providers. There are alternatives available if losing FSN convinces you to switch from YouTube TV, and a fairly comparable option is Hulu Live, which includes FSN and FSN+.