Aug 18, 2014

Sharing sports video online

The Premier League just announced they are developing GIF crawlers and Vine crawlers etc. to end "illegal video sharing". I agree with the article linked below that it is a rather stupid idea - although I understand the reasons. One major source of income for sports leagues and governing bodies like FIFA, UEFA, NBA etc. comes from TV - sports events are most of the few contents that still work as "TV by appointment". In Germany, the whole top10 of the TV shows with best all-time ratings are football (soccer) games. In France, it's 9 of the top10 and so on. So what the Premier League tries to do here is to protect the value of their TV live and replay products. Already two years ago I wrote a piece about the NBA and why I think that yesterday's highlights will boost today's live ratings. But I understand that when social sharing of LIVE TV gets too accessible, this might hurt the TV stations which are over-paying for their rights. Still, a fan who wants to share his passion about something that just happened in a sports match should be considered a chance and not a threat. So instead of dedicating resources to Vine crawlers, maybe one should thnik of developing sharing tools that give the rights holder some control - and motivate others to want to see the full live picture, too.