By The TV Answer Man team

TV Answer Man, I am a cord cutter but I am a baseball diehard fan, too. Is there a way to watch the playoff games online without getting a sub of some kind? My friend says there are web sites that offer live feeds of all games and will do the MLB playoff games and you don’t have to pay except for a small amount like $5 or something. Are these sites legal? Are they safe? — Marcus, Reno, Nevada.
Marcus, the 2023 MLB playoffs begin today with the Wild Card games. Earlier today, we offered a guide on how cord cutters can watch all the games without having to subscribe to a pay TV service such as cable or satellite. But despite the availability of the games on legitimate streaming sites, many fans will likely opt to watch them via illegal sports streams because they are either free or require a nominal fee. Before you consider doing this, please consider these four reasons why you should definitely not.

First, it’s important to understand what we mean by “illegal sports streams.” These are websites or apps that offer live streams of sporting events without the permission of the rights holder. They often rely on advertising revenue to stay afloat and may offer a low-quality viewing experience. The main advantage of watching illegal sports streams is that they are often free. This can be appealing to those who don’t want to pay for a cable or streaming service subscription. Additionally, illegal streams may offer access to events that are not available in your region or on your usual TV channels.

1. It’s illegal.
But it is against the law. By watching an illegal stream, you are essentially stealing content that someone else has paid for the rights to broadcast. This is not only unethical, but it could also result in legal consequences if you are caught.

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2. Illegal streams are not top quality.
Second, illegal sports streams are often of poor quality. The stream may freeze, buffer, or even cut out altogether. This can be frustrating, especially if you are trying to watch an important game or event. Additionally, illegal streams may be full of ads or even malware, which could harm your computer or phone.

3. You are not supporting your team and players.
Third, illegal sports streams do not support the sports industry. When you pay for a cable or streaming service subscription, some of that money goes towards paying for the rights to broadcast sports events. This helps support the sports industry, including your favorite teams, players, and other individuals involved in the industry. When you watch an illegal stream, you are not contributing to this support.
4. You are taking a security risk.
Finally, watching illegal sports streams can be a security risk. These streams often require you to download software or enter personal information, which could be used for malicious purposes. Additionally, if you are caught watching an illegal stream, your ISP (Internet Service Provider) could potentially share your information with law enforcement or other authorities.

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