Take any of the traditional major sports codes, the Cricket, AFL, NRL, NBL and the A-League. Two indisputable facts: They are shown on television. And, fewer people are attending the fixtures. Studies on such matters can be manipulated to say anything, but statistics illustrate a greater clarity.
Some of the A-League crowd attendances have been, well lets say, there was plenty of room to stretch out. The NBL has found it difficult to attract their crowd in recent years. Some of the NRL matches have struggled with good attendances, and the AFL have not escaped.
Cricket has changed the nature of the game to a Twenty/20 format and this has had a dramatic effect on the falling crowd attendances at one-day game fixtures.
The nation's interest in sport has not diminished, rather the nation is watching sport on television and where they watch it is another issue - in their homes, at a hotel, a sports club, a social function or even the church. For example, many churches hold big screen outreaches for State of Origin matches.
While sporting executives grapple with these changes, the pay television people have well understood this and are cashing in.
In some sense, the whole society has moved in this direction in a host of 'other fields'.
For example, a surprising number of people today buy their groceries on the internet and get them delivered to their home. They don't have to contend with the parking, the drama of the shopping trolley contests, and the hassle of carrying the grocery parcels from the car into the house.
Similarly, people are purchasing a whole range of goods and services through the internet. Anything from white goods, electronics, computers, books and even motor vehicles.
As people watch sport on television - they too no longer need to make the effort to attend the event, as consumers no longer need to go shopping at the mall or the large shopping complex. There is a whole raft of such changes in our society.
Reverend Dr Rowland Croucher of John Mark Ministries in his recent interview on the Australian Missionary News IPTV touched on the same subject, that there are more Christians today, not attending a church than do attend.
Check out any commercial television programing and you will find Christian programs that people watch. My wife enjoys watching, when time permits, Joyce Meyer and David Jeremiah. Likewise there are pay television Christian channels that are religiously viewed. I've often enjoyed a good movie on the Christian channel.
It's clear that Christians attending 'designer worship centres' (Church buildings) continues to fall, yet, the statistics illustrate that Christian 'faith observance' remains surprisingly strong and like sports executives, Christian leaders continue to search for new ways to attract people and their resources.