I am sorry for the delay in getting this statement to you. I wanted to ensure that I had enough information to provide a meaningful response to the issues being experienced by some supporters. I am also sorry for the length of this statement but wanted to ensure I provided you all with as much detail as I could.
Our new streaming service launched yesterday, for arguably one of the biggest games of our season, in terms of viewer figures. From the response on social media and by email it is clear we have had some significant teething problems. This has been hugely frustrating for supporters and for this I apologise. Please know we share your frustration!
THE MAIN ISSUE – EMAIL LINK
I have identified one area where we have made an error. Our streaming provider, ‘StreamingVideoProvider’ hosts our video stream, handles signups, and passes your transaction detail across to Stripe, our payment provider for payment. Once confirmed, SVP sends you a confirmation email, this is all automatic. The club are not involved in this process.
It is apparent, thanks to some eagle-eyed supporters, that the URL contained within the confirmation email was pointing to the embedded player on our club website. This was not our intention; it should have pointed directly to the stream itself (hosted by StreamingVideoProvider).
While the link provided would work perfectly well under normal circumstance, due to the unusually large volume of people going to our club website to view the embedded version of the stream, our website club crashed. I must make it clear, that while the club website crashed, the stream did not.
Once we were made aware of this issue, we did our best to communicate the direct link via social media, however, as the game and stream was well underway and our small team were now tied up with operating the service, we may not have got the message to everyone, again for this I am sorry.
We spent much of Friday night and Saturday morning responding to supporters that had not been able to track down their confirmation email. Many of these were down to typos in the email address or apple pay / google pay sending over a different email address than the supporter expected.
In some cases, despite checking spam etc, some supporter still could not find the email, in this case we sent out a manual email including the details. In the latter case, we are assured by the Streaming provider that all confirmation emails had been sent, so we have asked for this to be looked at further – we have noticed that most issues in this regard effected people with btinternet and gmail email addresses.
Finally, we have had a couple of reports about passwords not being valid for this game. In all cases we have investigated, and it is clear this is because the supporter had purchased a different game.
2 FACTOR AUTHENTICATIONS
As your purchase allows only one stream per device, this system is in place to allow you to swap from one device to another. We have been assured by the streaming provider that this will only ever be triggered when you attempt to use your password on a more than one device, using a supporter browser. Using non-supported viewing devices or attempting to use in a business or commercial network setting may have unforeseen results.
WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO ABOUT IT?
We have identified several steps we can take to correct many of the teething problems we have had yesterday:
- To allow our small team to handle the inevitable admin around purchases, we will close sales at least 24 hours before the game. In this way we can deal with all queries in plenty of time to ensure supporters have the info they need.
- We will ensure that the URL within confirmation email is correct and validated before every stream goes on sale.
- We will investigate with the streaming provider why it is some supporters are unable to find their confirmation emails. This may take some time as it is likely being caused by outside factors, rather than our Streaming Provider.
- We will only have one game available to purchase at any one time, to avoid supporters accidently selecting a game that they did not intend.
PLEA TO SUPPORTERS
This service costs the club a great deal of money to provide, it is not the cash cow that some would have us believe, please be aware that for every refund there is a direct cost to the club, on top of the upfront streaming costs we have already paid to the streaming host. We recognise that this first attempt has not gone well, but we can assure you it is not for want of trying.
This service is provided with the best intentions and we do not take your purchase for granted.
We know it is a lot to ask, but we’d really appreciate you considering offering your payment as a one-off ‘donation’ we would be incredibly appreciative, we know it is a lot to ask, given the far from perfect start! It would, however, allow us to further invest in improving the overall service and ensure focus on correcting the teething problems, rather then worrying about the sustainability of the service. We are currently looking at what and how we can offer supporters helping us out on this occasion.
If you have not been able to access the stream or if you have not been able to view most of the game, we are able to provide a refund. Please send your full name, along with the email address and postcode used to purchase to firstname.lastname@example.org. We would appreciate your patience. Your refund may take up to 2 weeks to come back to your card.
Once again, please accept my personal apology for a far from ideal start, but please know we have and continue to put in countless hours and late nights to get it right. The only thing we want, is to be able to provide a great streaming service for supporters to enjoy.