The fallout over NFL players kneeling in protesting during the National Anthem continues, this time affecting DirecTV who has begun issuing refunds to angry customers demanding their money back for their Sunday game packages.
According to ESPN, DirecTV’s policy does not allow customers to cancel their ticket packages once the season starts, but due to the recent controversy being so sensitive they are making exceptions. DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket package costs $280.
AT&T, who owns DirecTV, declined to specify what the cancellation policy entailed to ESPN, and said they would be releasing no numbers on how many people had canceled.
DirecTV isn’t the only one taking losses due to the actions of some 180 players from various teams that chose to kneel during the National Anthem as a sign of protest against a “racist” United States. According to one report, viewership of the primetime game between the Redskins and the Raiders was down ten percent from last year’s game at the same date.
ESPN reported that ratings were up three percent for week three in comparison to last year — specifically for the Dallas Cowboys game on Monday — however last year’s game was competing against a presidential debate.
Players are also suffering. Denver Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller lost an endorsement deal from a large Denver car dealership after he knelt during the anthem before his game against the Buffalo Bills.
Overall, the politicization of the NFL — such as some players are attempting to make political activism an officially recognized month by the NFL — has not fared well for the league, or organizations attached to it.