DEFINITION August 2019

SPECIAL | SPORTS CAPTURE

GOING FOR THE WIN THE TECH SIDE OF SPORTS BROADCAST IS CONSTANTLY EVOLV NG WITH NEW WAYS TO ENGAGE FANS AND DIFFERENT MOVEMENT OPTIONS FOR BROADCAST WORDS JULI AN M ITCHELL & CHELSEA FEARNLEY

F or decades, the business of sport has relied on four main revenue streams: broadcast, sponsorship, ticketing and merch, and there is a reason for that. Sport has something that’s very rare – endless live content. Like religion, sport is passed down from generation to generation, and in many families it is often considered a sacrilege to support a team that rivals the one from your hometown. But now sport is everywhere. Families from all over the world can be devoted to a team that is a thousand miles away. Last year, a combined 3.572 billion viewers – more than half of the world’s population aged four and over – tuned in to watch the official broadcast coverage of the Fifa World Cup in Russia. Global distribution of sport content has peaked, and a new age in the field is approaching. “Technology is coming into this space for the first time and it’s changing not only the way athletes perform, but the way we consume and produce sports,” explains Angela Ruggiero, 1998 Olympic Ice Hockey Gold medallist and CEO and co-founder of Sports Innovation Lab. There is a new type of fan emerging. Ruggiero calls it the ‘fluid fan’, someone who is open to change, empowered to choose and continuously evolving – that’s Sports Innovation Lab’s three-legged stool. The challenge is, if the fluid fan is continuously evolving, they might not be around tomorrow. “You have to constantly refresh your content and engage by investing in new technology,” explains Ruggiero. “They may never have watched cable or subscribed to pay TV. They’re fans that consume sports via digital or social platforms.” FAN ENGAGEMENT New technology for capturing sport, as well as for fan engagement, is a growing area. For instance, BriziCam has a fan engagement system that positionally

Fans directly control venue cameras to capture creative photos or looping videos of them and their friends, on demand

maps a stadium and then presents fans with shots of them in their seats. DSLRs with Canon zooms take videos of selected seats for 30 seconds. Fans control remote cameras with their phone’s web browser to share branded group photos and looping videos. BriziCam’s marketing speaks of ‘putting the feeling of getting on the big screen in the palm of your hand’. Fans directly control venue cameras to capture creative photos or looping videos of them and their friends, on demand. Sports teams are going to great lengths to enrich the fan experience, bringing more thrills, deeper insights and fuller stats. The LA Clippers’ CourtVision augmented game-watching platform reimagines the way basketball fans experience the sport. CourtVision lets fans toggle across multiple modes with

ABOVE NBA’s LA Clippers’ CourtVision is an augmented reality game-watching platform

BELOW Formula One has always been at the forefront of broadcast capture technology

38 DEF I N I T ION | AUGUST 20 1 9

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