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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Stop streaming -- dam it

When you attend a live sporting event with your powerful smart phone in your hand, how much are you allowed to Tweet about it, or blog about it in "real time"? As much as you want? To the full capabilities of that gadget in your pocket?

Maybe. But the teams and the media outlets that make money off the traditional way of broadcasting the games are starting to feel a little threatened. And they're drawing some lines in the sand.

Comments (5)

I guess being rude isn't much of an issue these days.

For people that don't have NY Times web subscription, this was linked on Slashdot a couple days back. The SEC (Southeastern Conference, NCAA / College division) is trying to protect their $3B 15 year deal with CBS for football. They are attempting to prohibit posting to "social media" from the 12 schools in their conference, from "ticketed fans"

Good luck with that. Really.

Outside of banning cellphones altogether, there's no way they can enforce this. What's even more comical, is that as these schools renovate their stadia, they are including WiFi hotspots - Oregon State did this in the expansion of Reser Stadium a couple years back.

Really, the only enforcement they can hope for, is that the cellular mast closest to the stadium can't handle the amount of data traffic necessary, so everything jams up and doesn't work. This has been my experience lately when in Corvallis on game day. If you're in the stadium and attempting to use data services on your mobile, forget about it until about 30 minutes after the clock hits 0:00.

As for the "rudeness" aspect, I don't see anything rude about throwing a quick update to FaceBook at halftime while half the stands are either getting a fresh soda, or eliminating the last one into the lavatory. Even if you were posting during a 3rd and long situation, you're not affecting anyone else's enjoyment of the game as tapping away at the phone doesn't block anyone's view or disrupt anyone at all, and there's no way that you're gonna be able to talk / listen on the phone during the game because 46,000+ people (55k+ in Eugene) yelling their brains out is loud unless the game is a complete blowout.

Instead of "drawing some lines in the sand,"
you might consider rewording it as
"drawing some lines in the stands."

___ora et labora___

Right there with MSFred, with the caveat that the cell companies will be able to track just how much revenue they're missing by not having sufficient game-day data capacity. Eventually they're going to expand capacity, or be bought off by the networks to prevent them from doing so.

In addition to being doomed to fail technically, the attempt to monetize or restrict the fans' personal experience is just going to piss people off, and motivate lots of the fans to work harder on technical workarounds.

When your favorite Major Leaguer grounds out, is that statistic the property of MLB? Or are statistics "wild," subject to acquisition by capture? Time to dust off Pierson v. Post.

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