SPORT AND TECHNOLOGY: THE CONFERENCE 2009
IN ASSOCIATION WITH BT MEDIA AND BROADCAST 4 JUNE 2009 BT CENTRE, LONDON, UK
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 AUTHOR: This post-event paper was written by Dr Louise Williams, Senior Lecturer, Sport Development, Liverpool John Moores University. It was edited by Rachael ChurchSanders, Director, ZagZig Media and Chair of Sport and Technology: The Conference since its inception in 2005. INTRODUCTION: SportBusiness Group PLC produced Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009, in association with title sponsor BT Media and Broadcast, the digital and broadcast solutions provider, on 4 June 2009 at BT Centre in London. The one-day conference brought together key rights holders and decision makers within the sports industry to debate the issues surrounding sport and digital media and broadcasting. The conference followed an interactive style and was based around panel discussions involving industry experts as well as a showcase session and keynotes. THE PARTICIPANTS: A variety of rights holders, distributors, broadcasters and executives involved in digital sports content production and delivery were speakers and delegates at the conference and evening drinks party. See Appendix 1 for a full list of participants.
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 WELCOME BY RACHAEL CHURCHSANDERS, Editorial Director, Major Events International
The key themes for the day were outlined by Wilson-Dunn, who acknowledged that technology can help sport in a recession: 1) Gaming and Gambling – which has become more pervasive in our lives 2) Ticketing and access – which is of increased importance 3) Young people and sport 4) Leaving a legacy – this is not just about a building but a society legacy
As conference Chair for the day, Rachael Church-Sanders welcomed delegates to the fifth edition of Sport and Technology: The Conference, held at the BT Centre, London. Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 aimed to concentrate on new technology and digital media, including marketing and live event issues. In addition to this, the role of gaming in monetising a digital proposition was to be addressed, as well as how technology can be used to maximise ticketing and access solutions as well as engaging younger sports fans.
What a difference a year makes Looking back at last year’s event, Wilson-Dunn referred to the Beijing Olympic Games and wondered how London 2012 can make it a better Games, given that Beijing set such a high standard from a spectacle point of view.
Thanks were given to BT Media and Broadcast, the event’s headline sponsor and host. Thanks also were given to exhibition and media partners for their involvement and support for the event.
Within the current economic climate, achieving this will be a challenge; however, as Wilson-Dunn pointed out, we must look “with growth and optimism.”
The extensive array of speakers was acknowledged, and the value of them sharing their experiences through panel discussions, showcase sessions and keynote addresses was outlined.
Wilson-Dunn referred to the recession, noting how household names and brands are collapsing. There is a downturn in confidence in key sectors and also a high rate of unemployment. However, despite the gloom and despondency, Wilson-Dunn selected some key sports news stories from the newspaper; including how Manchester United has secured an £80m shirt deal from a financial institution; English Premier League players earn over £1bn collectively, and finally, the debt warning for clubs despite making £2bn. Noting that there is money clearly available, Wilson-Dunn felt that the issue is how it is used for the good of sport.
OPENING ADDRESS: MARK WILSON-DUNN, Global Sales and Marketing Director, BT Media and Broadcast Mark Wilson-Dunn started proceedings by welcoming all delegates to BT Centre, outlining how BT Media and Broadcast is BT’s specialist media business, with over 50 years experience of working globally in the media industry. “Sport is in our DNA from a technology perspective,” he explained.
What does this mean to us?
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 Wilson-Dunn commented that there is less disposable income about which means people will have to make lifestyle changes and may stay in more. Additionally stress may become a bigger issue which will result in a debt burden for the NHS. Further to this, budgets will become tighter and more unstable for projects, including the Olympic Games. Prior to the recession, there was great expectation about the Olympic Games. However as a result of this, thought needs to be put in to examine how this can be worked through. “We need to do things very differently,” said WilsonDunn. Referring to the Olympic Games, Wilson-Dunn believed that perhaps London 2012 could become the ‘greenest’ in order to differentiate it in the current climate, or make it different by creating a lasting legacy.
make ticketing much cleverer for getting people through the gates quicker, more effectively whilst taking fraud out of the equation,” said Wilson-Dunn.
Young people and sport/ Leaving a legacy The issue for Wilson-Dunn was how to re-engage young people in actually participating in sport more so that they can exercise their bodies, rather than a virtual reality experience. The key to this, commented Wilson-Dunn, is to create the links between the two. Using London 2012 as an example, Wilson-Dunn suggested that whilst new stadia are extremely beneficial and worthwhile as part of a legacy plan, this is not the end legacy result that he would like to see. “What I want to leave behind is a legacy where every young person in this country wants to become an athlete, wants to compete, wants to be a football player or a hockey player, or a netball player, who wants to exercise themselves and gets a buzz out of it,” said WilsonDunn. Achieving this, would, in Wilson- Dunn’s opinion, “drive a generation of people who will have less health risks and issues will have a better quality of life and will be much more mentally able to cope with the kind of recessions and ups and downs we go through in our life.”
Wilson-Dunn also noted how we need to take sport out of the community and encourage young people to get out and play sport outdoors. In summary, Wilson-Dunn referred back to the themes outlined:
Gaming and Gambling With gambling being more pervasive in society with less of a stigma attached, the advent of technology makes it accessible to just about everyone. Whilst Wilson-Dunn acknowledged this as a good thing, he also noted how we must act with great responsibility, with technology being the key to do this.
In closing his address, Wilson-Dunn posed a question for consideration throughout the day. “What legacy are we as a generation, as technologists, as sports people, going to leave behind for our children?”
Ticketing and access Wilson-Dunn believes that we need to be much cleverer in how we take technology to the next level so that we do not need to attend sports events carrying our passports and other important proofs of identification. “We need to start to think about biometrics, finger printing and DNA to
PANEL 1: MONETISING SPORTS CONTENT: IS GAMING THE HOLY GRAIL FOR SPORTS RIGHTS OWNERS?
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 Moderator: Rory Squires, Editor, PA Sport’s The Sport Briefing
O’Connor. This led to the deal with Euro 96 for Ladbrokes which O’Connor reported, had fantastic benefits for Ladbrokes.
Panellists: Casimir Knight, Managing Director, Chelsea Digital Media; John O’Connor, Head of Marketing, BetFred; Kieron Kilbride, General Manager, FL Interactive; Paul Barber, Executive Director, Tottenham Hotspur; Sabin Brooks, Director, BetNOW
Is there a standard model? Squires moved the discussion on to ask what a standard model between a sports clubs website and a betting organisation looked like. “What is the structure, is there a revenue split?” asked Squires.
The first panel of the day aimed to explore issues relating to methods used by betting/gaming companies to engage with sports fans more creatively. The panel would also examine how important betting/gaming revenue is to sports websites; business models and commercial arrangements between bookmakers and gaming operators and a sports property, and also issues relating to softer forms of gaming (such as bingo).
O’Connor noted how the deals have evolved since the early 1990s as they started off as almost a customer service. “There was a small revenue share and maybe some sponsorship,” said O’Connor. Deals have now evolved (for online execution). O’Connor explains that, “There is generally a guarantee that is paid upfront.” Referring to BetFred’s deal with Manchester United, O’Connor noted that: “We have a fixed guarantee to operate across all their platforms which are retail, MUTV and online, and then there is a profit share which is generally a joint venture where we share profit above certain figures.”
Rory Squires started the panel by asking John O’Connor (formerly of Ladbrokes) how the relationship between football and the betting industries has evolved since Euro 96, given that it was considered ground breaking at the time.
Although this model was not considered an exact template for the industry, O’Connor did suggest that most deals he has been involved with have included some sponsorship and shared profit.
Taking one step back from Euro 96, O’Connor looked at why Ladbrokes wanted to get involved in football, in reflection of how gambling was moving from a niche market to a more mass market opportunity. According to O’Connor, the Hillsborough disaster and the subsequent Taylor report encouraged football clubs to get the audience into the ground earlier (a key requirement from the Taylor report). “Ladbrokes presented how to get people into the ground earlier on top of additional merchandise, one of those was to have in ground entertainment, part of that was to offer betting opportunities,” said
Squires asked Kieron Kilbride of FL Interactive how the model differed with Bet365 and the Football League. Commenting that the model was very similar to what O’ Connor outlined, Kilbride stated that: “We have an amount of secure income that comes into the business and revenues are shared. We market the rights centrally across the whole network.”
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 Referring to football, Kilbride noted that: “Nothing works better than a big cheque upfront, but you also have the incentive to work the partnership thereafter and build beyond those secure levels.”
betting companies at the moment,” said Kilbride.
Utilising text-based gaming Squires brought Sabin Brooks into the discussion with an enquiry into the current position of text and mobilebased gaming. Brooks noted how the gold rush with mobile and online related to how these companies wanted to capitalise on the sport base.
You have to work the partnership Kilbride explained how over the years, FL Interactive has learnt how important it is to work the partnership. “It is about building a solid partnership between the betting company and the rights holder.” With FL Interactive only holding online rights, Kilbride explained how it centrally sells the online rights. “The individual clubs within the networks will have their own relationships for in stadia betting. We cooperate and coexist in a fairly reasonable way,” said Kilbride.
Brooks believed that online is beneficial for poker, casino and sports betting, and mobile will evolve to be good for sports betting and casino, principally sports betting due to the immediacy of the channel. “The truth from a technology perspective is that it doesn’t work, even the biggest operators haven’t solved it. They use WAP and Java, but there is real big issue,” said Brooks.
Furthering this, Kilbride pointed out that there is a mechanism whereby if a Football League club became involved in a high value shirt sponsorship, FL Interactive would work to assist the club by allowing it to add the online rights into that relationship. “This would be crucial to the club,” said Kilbride.
He continued: “Everyone can text, so we came up with a solution that was simple and accessible to everyone, not just the high end gambling customers, but the technology needs to catch up from a technology perspective.” Commenting that he thought the models would be similar to online (as discussed), the state of play was that we need to wait and see how the technology evolves.
Reflecting on the panel title, Kilbride considered the Holy Grail to be more about having a good, broad mix of income streams across the business. “The distribution to clubs from betting are a significant proportion, but by no means a majority,” said Kilbride.
A key for Brooks in relation to sports betting is that it is about immediacy of content, given the move to live betting that has been huge. “It is about marketing as close to the point of consumption as possible,” said Brooks.
Referring to the current advertising downturn, Squires wondered whether more clubs would look to betting opportunities to put on their websites? Kilbride noted how the main income for shirt sponsorships at the moment was from the betting companies. “Betting companies have quite rightly identified an opportunity where there aren’t a huge number of people. There is a lot of opportunity out there for
Squires wondered whether there was a different demographic for text than online. Brooks answered that: “Text is a young application but what I think will happen is it will bring in a younger audience, people will be used to those technologies from 18 onwards.
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 However overall it will broadly be the same, 18-44 year old men.”
emphasis a lot.” Investing in this way is enabling Chelsea to get a single user view and also for a rich source to be developed.
In referring to the actual technology, Brooks believed that people do not use applications such as WAP and Java because they want something that is simple and quick, and he believed it is the same with betting. “The enjoyment with betting is whether you win or lose, not taking two hours to put a bet on. Currently technology doesn’t serve that need,” said Brooks. He continued: “Everything will evolve to simplicity, live betting, more content and entertainment orientation.” O’Connor agreed with Brooks noting that there are barriers to sales.
The nature of the beast has changed Paul Barber (Tottenham Hotspur) was brought into the panel discussion with reference to how his football club’s deal with Mansion came about and how that works across different platforms. Barber explained how Spurs was very open to the idea of having a gaming company on board with the club. “We secured £34m over four years. It completely changed the dynamics of gaming in our club. The online environment allows people to have considered bets, the whole nature of the Mansion deal changed the way we work,” said Barber. Whilst the secured income from the deal is beneficial, Barber also noted how Spurs cannot now take more than one gaming sponsor on as the deal is exclusive.
Need to understand the consumer Squires brought Casimir Knight into the discussion by asking how Chelsea leverages its relationship with Paddy Power across the different platforms the club operates. “Our TV channel is a successful channel but it is a subscription channel catering to a relatively small user base. It is not the mobile, not the TV, but how we can leverage ChelseaTV.com,” answered Knight. He continued to explain that: “We are trying to work out how we can leverage club orientated content in other parts of the internet in ways that makes sense for us in developing our fan base.”
Barber stated that: “The whole nature of gaming in football has changed, it is much more part of the match day experience and the in game experience.” In this, Barber pointed that there had been a change from just getting the sponsor awareness to actually generating income for it. Premier League football has the capacity to do this, but also to do this quickly, which was something Barber commented on in relation to Mansion’s objectives.
Knight moved on to look at how key the development of understanding the different demographics are, hence why Chelsea has invested heavily in its CRM system. Prior to this, Knight commented that: “My observation would be how you work editorial, that’s the art.” Knight felt that tracking unique users and similar areas are not the key issue; it is how well you work editorial to drive betting. “This something we are trying to get better at. Our CRM piece is something we
In relation to engaging with fans, Barber notes how Mansion has done this through offering the chance to play at White Hart Lane through both Mansion’s and Tottenham Hotspur’s websites which drives a lot of interest to the sites. “This is just one way they
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 have done this in moving to customer acquisition and spend,” said Barber.
O’Connor concurred, referring to how the cluttering of numerous betting boards is something that is not exciting as they merge into one mass. Following this up, Squires wondered whether sports rights holders should commit more financially and legally to policing the exclusivity of the content.
Squires wondered whether scepticism towards the betting industry has eased over the last few years? Barber believed it has ebbed and flowed but the key is in how responsible you are. For example, Tottenham Hotspur gives parents the option as to whether they want the Mansion logo on their shirt. “The authorities have been pleasantly surprised in most cases as to how responsible the whole area has been,” stated Barber. They key to this, as pointed out, was to get the balance right between parents, marketing, betting operators and the clubs to ensure that there is some logic to how this is dealt with.
Kilbride responded by commenting that: “I think it’s important that the way we go about our business takes into account the agreements we have got with our partners. If we have an exclusive position then under no circumstance would we be breaching that.” Referring to a long term deal with Bet365, Kilbride believed that both parties manage it actively, ensuring that they get the cut through they want from the relationship.
Knight added to this, by commenting that: “In the context of the UK, a lot of getting the balance right is common sense. There is a self regulating thing here. The difficulties that have arisen from sport sponsorship by betting industries in terms of getting kids gambling younger are minuscule.” According to Knight, the bigger challenge is internationally.
Areas for growth Squires reflected on the relaxing of the UK’s gambling laws, to ask where the key areas of growth would be in the future for betting in sport. Brooks responded: “I think there is a long way to go in the liberalisation of the betting markets. These companies are huge companies. They care about their profit margins.” In relation to geographic areas, Brooks believes that France and Italy are large markets that will do well, with Germany taking longer. “In Europe we are a sports betting culture, with casino and poker added on, and the US is the other way around, with sports betting being the devil’s product,” said Brooks.
However, Brooks felt that the international concern was more of an opportunity for rights holders. “There has to be a degree of pragmatism and realism in how sports bodies go about structuring these deals. Betting companies will spend as they are relatively recession proof,” said Brooks. O’Connor commented on the responsibility issue by noting that all the major players do act very responsibly in relation to under age gambling.
Is exclusivity important?
Squires moved onto the US looking at the fantasy gaming market, whereby a recent report suggested that up to 50% of visitors to sports websites in the US are going there for information to facilitate gambling or fantasy sports decisions.
Squires asked O’Connor whether exclusivity was important, to which
In answering this, O’Connor referred to predictor games that BetFred has
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 been running in house for the last year which will be used on community sites. As O’Connor explained, this can be used as an introduction to betting on sport. “It is a very simple pathway for a consumer, it is a bit of fun and we view that as being something we think will do well for us next year.”
time as we sit here today, we haven’t got that platform right and I think of the major betting companies, I don’t think they have quite got it right either.” Brooks added to this by commenting that in his opinion, the technology is not there. However, “we have solved the technology problem, I can place a bet in 20 seconds on any given sports event. That is why we went down the text route, it is simple and people understand it.”
In drawing the panel to a close before taking questions from the audience, Squires referred back to a point made about the betting industry being recession proof, asking the panel whether they deemed this accurate in general.
Q. In terms of social community and the leveraging of user generated content, do you think that will become more important moving forward?
The panel was generally in agreement that it was relatively recession proof. Kilbride commented that: “Proof is possibly the wrong word, it is resilient which is reflective of the way it has performed within our own network of websites. It is a good industry to be involved in at this moment in time.” Brooks also believed it would be resilient, stating: “People having a three, four or five pound bet every week as part of the match day experience… will still do that.” Barber added to this with reference to the Mansion deal which is due to run out in the near future, and of the three offers Spurs have had, two being from betting companies. “The biggest issue for betting companies in football now is differentiation, so maybe one will step out from shirt sponsorship,” said Barber.
Kilbride believed that this is very significant in the online universe in general. “We have been given a huge heap of rights by our football clubs, we work with them to find out what it is they want to deliver via the services we provide. What we found is that a lot of our football clubs are cautious about social interaction around user generated content. The clubs are protective of their brand,” he said.
Q. What measures are in place to ensure integrity is maintained? O’Connor stated: “It is a responsibility on both parts. It is not in our interest to be targeting 15/16 year olds or players, as that will affect our brand, there is no incentive to do that.” Brooks also believed that for a big company it is not in its interest to fix games or contribute to irregular betting patterns, sharing the view of O’Connor that it is everyone’s responsibility.
Questions and Answers Q. How do you work with developers to overcome technological constraints referred to with mobile? O’Connor answered that BetFred is currently on it at the moment, stating that his answer earlier was with reference to the current platform and user experience. “At this moment in
PANEL 2: JUST THE TICKET – ACCESS INNOVATIONS, SECURITY AND THE WIRELESS STADIUM
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 it was something Wembley was looking at although it already had a card system that has 8,000 people in it, all of whom are staff. “It is all about the package, if we do cashless on its own, I don’t think it works, it is what else can I do with it,” said Jennings. The main area for development at the moment, as Jennings pointed out, is in Wembley’s hospitality areas where the venue can offer more as hospitality guests are at the venue for longer and have more money.
Moderator: Rachael ChurchSanders, Editorial Director, Major Events International Panellists: Chris Bignell, Director, XL Communications; Daniel Gidney, CEO, Ricoh Arena; Paul Jennings, Head of IT, Wembley Stadium; Randal McLister, Managing Director, Scotcomms Technology Group Rachael Church-Sanders set the scene for the panel by outlining some issues that have occurred with access control at Exeter City FC, where she is on the Gate Committee, and wondered whether some of the technology about to be discussed was applicable to smaller clubs such as hers.
Church-Sanders brought Daniel Gidney into the discussion with reference to the cashless system at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry, UK, to see how the implementation of the system has gone since its soft launch in 2008 and whether it is actually totally cashless. Gidney noted: “We have been delighted with it. With any cashless system, you have to take a phased approach because my vision is to get a completely integrated system site wide that does a host of things.”
Church-Sanders commenced the panel by asking Paul Jennings of Wembley Stadium whether there is a pressure on England’s national stadium to have the latest kit on display and how the venue manages that to make sure that it has a robust system?
In joining the Ricoh in 2006, Gidney spent a lot of time in the concourse, thus referring to the public payers as the “heart and core of a venue. They spend a larger proportion of their wages and if they have a terrible experience they will tell people.”
Jennings outlined how the biggest pressure for Wembley is in fact the safety aspect and also speed. “For us, it’s how we get 90,000 people in safely, with the right ticket for the right seat. This is why we have invested more in turnstile access systems,” said Jennings.
Gidney added that “The customer journey will always be a perpetual one; you have to work to improve it.” Gidney refers to lost revenue opportunities that can occur in venues whereby people want to spend money, however often the venue puts barriers to prevent this.
The second challenge facing Wembley is pitch flow and flow rate, for example with music concerts. “We have introduced some thermal image cameras so we can count how many people are on the pitch, so we can increase our capacity,” said Jennings.
Speaking from his own experiences, Gidney noted: “A lot of venues think they will make money from hospitality, the retail is a captive audience, and we will just get what we get. But they are completely missing the point. The retail point will maximise the revenue
Cashless stadia Church-Sanders wondered whether there were plans in place for Wembley to go cashless. Jennings indicated that
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 of the customer experience. We needed to solve this problem.”
Church-Sanders brought in the issue of whether cards have been over engineered, to which Lister agreed. Church-Sanders further questioned Lister on how many uses there are for a smartcard, given that in a 2001 Sport Business report, 16 possible uses were listed.
Having visited German Bundesliga football club Bayern Munich to look at its own system, Gidney found that compared with the Ricoh Arena’s normal retail transaction time of 62-63 seconds, Bayern had a 17 second transaction time. “The transaction was that fast, it was literally a case of, here is my card, hold it over a reader, the reader says how much change I have. The pressure moves to the catering side now. You are getting happier customers,” said Gidney.
Lister noted how there are only two functions you can ever have on a card, however 50 applications can be added. “I could create multiple applications on it. We did a smartcard in 1999 for football for the simple reason we wanted portable data, portable authentication of your cash and your ticket entitlement. What I would say 10 years on is, I only need a simple barcode to identify you. I don’t need a smartcard, a barcode card is cheaper” said Lister.
Problems facing cashless technology Adding to this, Gidney commented that a key issue related to the number of different vendors. “Technology is moving quickly, and if you as a technology vendor don’t move with the times, you are going to get left behind. This is not about you as a seller, it is about the customer.”
The possibility of mobile ticketing Church-Sanders brought Chris Bignell into the discussion by asking how the mobile market is developing in terms of what opportunities are developing for ticketing on mobile phones. According to Bignell, at some point this year, 4bn people in the world will be using mobile phone technology. “The penetration of mobile within the UK alone is at beyond 100%,” said Bignell. Furthermore, at the end of this year, over 20m people will have smart phones. As Bignell pointed out, the important thing about mobile phones is that they are generally always with you, it is a personal device and almost everyone has got one. “In terms of mobile ticketing there are a number of different aspects to consider, the first could be the delivery of a ticket to a mobile phone so people can enter a venue using their mobile phone,” said Bignell. Further to this, Bignell added how there is the possibility to buy a ticket using your mobile phone which is a little further off in reality. “You could combine the two so you buy
Randal Lister entered the discussion with reference to the TeamCard smartcard which was first trialled at Bolton Wanders FC in the Nat Lofthouse stand for 8,000 people back at the start of the decade. The innovative design with this card was that it allowed fans to under swing with their credit, so if they purchased £5.70’s worth of food and only had £4 on their cards, they could have the extra deducted the next time they went. The issue with this was integration. “The reason this failed at Bolton was not a technological issue, it was the case that the caterer did not want to continue with it. The caterer killed it dead,” said Lister. According to Lister, the problems are not technology based, but people barriers.
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 your ticket by mobile phone and your ticket arrives to your mobile phone,” said Bignell.
a card at the Ricoh that is used at the Kiosk and then Visa-enabled offsite, so effectively is becomes a Visa, Debit or credit card offsite and my payments solutions card onsite,” said Gidney.
The issue with mobile ticketing, as Bignell pointed out, is not technologybased per se. “There are mechanisms already available by which people can fulfil these things. The mobile industry has an obsession with technological developments, but a lot of these are disappointing to the end user when they have come about,” noted Bignell.
The key to this that Gidney pointed out is making life easier for the customer, because if you can do this, you get quicker customer engagement. Church-Sanders developed this point to ask whether a one-card solution actually makes it easier for fraud. In response, Lister commented that: “I think the utopia of a single card as a methods of payment for inside and outside the stadium can always be technically delivered, but operationally it is difficult.” Further to this, Lister added, “Technical utopia is easy, operational reality is difficult.”
The key solution is not to use new technology, but to use proven technology. “There is huge opportunity across the board,” said Bignell.
Affordability for all? Church-Sanders raised the issue of whether the technology discussed on the panel was actually accessible and affordable for all, across all sports, given that a venue such as a race course might only need a system that only works for two weeks or so a year.
In reference to the issue of cost and accessibility, Lister noted how the turnstile technology of smart cards can cost £3,000 per turnstile. However if you, reversed this to a barcode, a turnstile could be done for £800, and a card for 22 pence.
Gidney believed that it is accessible for all, as there are different models available, for example on a revenue share. “If a small site wanted to do it, there is a way to do it on a success sharing basis going forward,” said Gidney.
A key for Lister in not having mobile ticketing related to the aesthetics of having something tangible such as small devices shown to the audience from Celtic FC.
Jennings believed that the key within this is to work out your strategy in terms of where you are going with it. “If you can get the strategy you can get the buy in and get the partners. You can then justify it and find the partners to help you finance it,” said Jennings.
In relation to mobile, a barrier that Lister identified is the technical literacy of the audience whereby it cannot be assumed that everyone will be technically literate. In response, Bignell noted how there is an education that needs to occur, but also how mobile can be personalised to have that loyalty factor that Lister referred to. This could be a ringtone, a screen saver which becomes a digital tattoo, although Bignell did concede the point about
Thin-wallet syndrome? Gidney referred to how people do not want numerous cards in their wallets now. “I can see a future when I have
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 Q. In relation to live video and replay delivered to fans through mobile devices, what opportunities are there?
people wanting to collect tickets and smartcards. “There is some ubiquity in mobile which has value. We have seen some examples of MMS marketing to targeted audiences that has seen a conversion rate of up to 20%. In typical direct marketing that is unheard of,” said Bignell.
Bignell responded in relation to the problems that there are with this. “There are some big issues, we are not there yet.” An example used was the size of screens and how this can distort the actual experience of watching a particular sporting event. “It is about context and how people use it. It is not about streaming it, it needs to be filmed a different way, which costs money,” said Bignell.
Questions and Answers Q. Are we focusing too heavily on technology, when we should be looking at education and culture? Gidney responded that technology is an enabler, whilst the customer journey is the number one priority and making life as easy as possible for them. “The answer will change as technology advances. It will only change if there is a strong enough reason to engage the customer to use that technology,” said Gidney. According to Jennings, the key issue is about safety. “If I have the strategy right, I can put more infrastructure in to help with that, but I need the manual fall back,” said Jennings. In relating this to mobile, Jennings pointed out that there would be issues if mobile phones were not working, how would Wembley cope with 90,000 people needing to find their seat?
Gidney added to this list and referred to what we watch on television and the advent of iplayers. Gidney believes this will change and is currently changing. However, Gidney felt strongly that new digital technologies would not kill off the live event experience, but the customer journey has to come first. AFTERNOON OPENING ADDRESS: NEVILLE WHEELER, Director, CMSG Europe, Cisco Media Solutions Group – “Engaging fans through community and connected venues” Neville Wheeler opened the afternoon session by introducing Cisco and outlining how one of its key drivers is typically market disruption. “It can be argued that the media, sport and entertainment industry has gone through a large amount of market disruptions and transitions, mainly brought about through technology but also consumer demands,” said Wheeler.
Lister felt that an issue in introducing technology into big stadia is PC and mobile literacy that is taken for granted, because you could have audience which consists of five-75 year olds, rather than one demographic. Bignell felt that the focus for too long has been on the technology. “It is about education but there is a further step needed. You need to understand the context of mobile, things are starting to change. It is about usability,” stated Bignell.
In pointing out one thing that Cisco could not have predicted was the rate of change that has occurred in these aforementioned industries. “We don’t see any hold back in that,” said Wheeler.
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 content and other people who are passionate about that content,” added Wheeler.
Cisco’s vision is based on the acknowledgement that technology can change. The key context for this that Wheeler outlined is based upon two key questions: 1) How are consumer’s expectations being changed by technology? 2) How are those expectations affecting the business of sports and media?
It is therefore important to understand the audience; something that is gaining increasing importance, whether this is in a venue or somewhere else. Wheeler believed you need to learn about the content interests of your consumers.
Wheeler outlined some key trends that Cisco has noticed from its time working in sport. The first was audience fragmentation, whereby it used to be easier to know your demographic more, and roughly at what time and place they would be watching your content. “Today with digitisation, they could be anywhere on any device and at any location. This is the challenge media companies are facing today,” said Wheeler.
Wheeler noted how in the present day, content is completely digital. “We can watch content at any time, any place, anywhere, but the challenges that brings for sport and entertainment companies are enormous,” said Wheeler. This, coupled with increased broadband penetration is an almost unlimited amount of content that is available for consumers. Wheeler pointed out this was beneficial for consumers, but not so good for rights holders. “Increasingly, the network is becoming the platform for entertainment,” noted Wheeler.
Linking this to monetisation, Wheeler believed that the issue is not simply about monetising your content as rights holder, the opportunity is there to monetise your users and their interaction with your content. In joining audience fragmentation and monetisation together, Wheeler noted how the result is: “Increased costs and increasing complexity.” The final trend that Wheeler outlined was the rise of the empowered fan and issues such as personalisation. “We are at a stage now where we are beginning to realise that technology has got to a point where it can offer personalisation,” he said.
Social Networking and Community Wheeler outlined how within this growth area, how you connect to people and how many connections you have are vital. “If you don’t have many connections, then you don’t exist, which is a rather sad situation,” added Wheeler. A key aspect here for Wheeler, was the underlying value in the technologies that people have become familiar with, but also in applying that with the world of content. “In this scenario, the centralising factor is the content and the ability for people who are passionate about content to come together and interact with great
As Wheeler pointed out, this would allow for more targeted content and advertising, which will make sites more sticky, more valuable and will also drive revenue.
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 More recently, Wheeler noted how Cisco has been looking at how it can have more innovative applications on top of the network systems that are already in place. “A key one is being able to provide ‘money can’t buy experiences’ which very passionate fans will pay money for. This technology we refer to as TelePresence,” said Wheeler.
brand, the ability to have social networking elements and the notion of discovery. “Cisco is not in the business of content, we want to provide tools, technologies and solutions to give media companies the power back, so they have control over their brand,” said Wheeler. Eos will provide the components to be able to do this: community, digital asset management systems, analytics and targeting technology and making relevant content available when they go to their favourite site. “You must know your audience and engage with them,” said Wheeler.
Looking at the online options used today to get the brand and brand message to consumers, Wheeler outlined three key areas and discussed some key advantages and disadvantages of each: 1) Branded sites: the benefit is that you have control over the brand and how it is represented, and also the interaction that you offer. The disadvantage is that not all companies are IT companies so they can’t offer these opportunities, or neither can they keep pace with change.
A key message that was highlighted by Wheeler was: “Whether you are a single brand owner, a single stadium, a single team, whatever your size, the online experience is critical to the way the outside world sees your organisation and content.” The importance within this is that this can be done efficiently with lower development costs and reduced complexity. Furthermore, the notion of ‘discover’ was raised by Wheeler as being of significance to Cisco in relation to how they can help to discover new audiences and grow sustainable digital businesses.
2) Content Portals: the challenges are about protecting rights. You will achieve a broader reach but within this, the loss of user data is an area that a lot of companies are picking up on. 3) Search: as consumers, if you know what you are looking for, then search is great. However if you are not sure, you just want to be entertained, then search does not provide this experience. “How can we turn that around so relevant content finds you, not you finding the content?” asked Wheeler.
PANEL 3: USING TECHNOLOGY TO ENGAGE YOUNGER SPORTS AUDIENCES – GADGETS V GRASSROOTS Moderator: Kevin Roberts, Editorial Director, SportBusiness Group Panellists: Alistair Kirkwood, Managing Director, NFL UK; Ed Elworthy, Head of Brand Connections, Nike UK and Ireland; Matthew Patten, Chief Executive, The Lord’s Taverners; Max Adams, Pupil, Trent College,
Cisco Eos As Wheeler pointed out, what Eos does, is that is brings together a number of different areas of the content portal, the experience of the
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 Nottingham; Tim Boden, Client Director for BT London 2012, BT Public Sector
Kirkwood believed that we are now in an environment where the youth are well informed, and can make conscious decisions and may also be cynical about marketing processes. “Now, it’s is a much more complex market. Our focus is from seven or eight years to about 24 years. My measurement of success is not selling out a stadium, but substantially growing the fan base.”
Kevin Roberts began the panel by reflecting on a recent conversation with IOC president Jacque Rogge about the forthcoming Youth Olympic Games. Roberts cited how he asked Rogge how the IOC knew that it understood youth, to which Rogge replied, that the international federation had consulted with the Belgian Scout movement. Roberts felt that this indicated a gulf between some federations between sport and youth.
Kirkwood outlined how most of the NFL UK’s work has been built around getting into the digital sphere and reaching to the younger demographic with direct communication and through customisation. In doing this, one challenge is education in terms of the sport making sense. To overcome this, as Kirkwood explain the NFL UK has one website aimed at seven to 12 year olds, and another one which aims to get people to take allegiance to a team.
Roberts paid particular attention to welcoming a `lightening rod’ to the panel, Max Adams, a pupil at Trent College Nottingham. Adams outlined to the panel how his main sporting interests were rugby and cricket for which he plays and watches both. Roberts wondered how sport fits into Adams’ life, from both a playing and watching perspective. Adams commented how he trains and plays matches but also does play computer games and is a fan of Facebook which he often uses. Adams’ rationale for Facebook over other media was its scope and also that it had the newest applications and items on. Roberts asked Adams if he would use Facebook to chat to others about sport or how he accesses his sport information on the internet. “Facebook is more the social side, to look up sport I would probably go on Sky Sports, that is the main one,” said Adams.
In response to Roberts’ comments about the size of investment in doing this by the NFL UK, Kirkwood stated: “You have to be honest about what you are and what you aren’t. In terms of grassroots we are not going to do too much because, firstly, that is the role of indigenous sports and secondly, there are barriers to the sport in terms of numbers, cost of equipment and level of understanding. It is better that we are honest about what we are which is potentially a very good television sport.” Ed Elworthy was brought into the panel, in relation to Nike’s innovative use of technology. Elworthy cited a couple of examples, the first being the brand’s partnership with Apple and Nike+. Essentially with Nike +, you get a chip which goes into your Nike + enabled shoe, which links to your Ipod Nano which tells you information such as calories burnt, distance, speed on
Using technology as an enabler Bringing Alistair Kirkwood into the discussion, Roberts wondered how the NFL UK uses specific technologies to overcome difficulties of not having the exchange with pupils in classrooms?
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 miles, all of which you log onto ITunes.
that for significant minorities, there are not the opportunities for young people to take part in sport at all. “The technology that we talk about is incredibly simple, like a wheelchair. A sports wheelchair costs between £1,000-£3,000,” said Patten. According to Patten, a lack of access to sport and a lack of access to technology are both economic issues.
According to Elworthy: “Nike+ was one of the first ways that we looked at bridging the gap between the online and offline divide.” Elworthy added that Nike aims to get more people out exercising, and is not just about selling shoes. “Nike+ does motivate people to run more,” said Elworthy.
Promoting inclusion in sport
The second example which is still in launch stages is Playmaker which is a tool that makes organising football fixtures easy. “The ambition for this is that it will grow into a social networking place, we will not rival the Facebooks, but it does allow for banter in sport,” said Elworthy.
Following on from Patten’s point regarding sport being used as a force for social good, Roberts asked how the companies of the panellists acted in a manner in which to promote this. Elworthy responded with reference to the corporate responsibility manager in place at Nike. Additionally to this, Elworthy cited some of many examples, including athletes having clauses in their contracts to act as role models; NikeGO in the US which is specifically targeting obesity and increasing physical activity in children and also Nike REGRIND which relates to the recycling and reusing of old shoes into basketball courts.
Roberts introduced Tim Boden to the panel by asking how technology was being used in orienteering to break some of the traditional barriers the sport has. Boden explained how technology has enabled the activity to progress from paper mechanisms for recording progress. However now, chips are used to log when you have been through check points and the time. “The idea is you download everything from the chip on your finger into a computer. There is no checking of wet cardboard anymore. It makes it more interesting to young people,” said Boden. The immediacy of results being returned through the chip was actually a key reason for this in relation to increasing the competitive nature and interest in young people.
Is sport that important to youths? Roberts commented how sport competes in an aggressive market for attention of the population and in particular young people. He asked Adams how important sport was in his life, in comparison to other forms of entertainment, such as music. Adams outlined how sport is most important above all other forms, with a key aspect of this being role models. With reference to his peers, Adams felt that is was more mixed, with some not being interested in sport. Roberts added to this to ask whether Adams had taken new sport interests as a result of online offerings. Adams pointed out how little advertising there is on Facebook, and what there is, is
Matthew Patten referred to the commercial focus of the conference and explained how The Lord’s Taverners is different in its interest in sport. “It is about a force for social good and how sport can help young people and particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds,” said Patten. Further to this, Patten believed
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 often ignored. Adams stated, “Nothing would distract me but it depends what you go on, but I love sport.”
partners), whether the latter are part of their offering to youngsters or kept separate? Kirkwood responded that: “It is completely de-commercialised. We have a reputation because of Super Bowl ads of being well primed in the commercial exploitation department, but when we are trying to reach out to people, we are decommercialised in what we do.” In relation to targeting children, Kirkwood pointed out how the NFL UK excludes anyone under 18 years old for legal reasons.
Using technology to address the ageing demographic of the Olympic Games Roberts asked Boden how London 2012 intends to use technology to engage young people. Boden noted how it is relatively early in the process therefore locking ideas now would not be the right way to operate. “There is certainly large scale intent to engage more on the internet and using internet channels and also to work in partnership with the local boroughs where the games are being hosted,” said Boden.
Elworthy added to this in relation to events that Nike UK runs, whereby under 16 year olds are not allowed to attend. Roberts wondered whether Adams and his peers responded to brand messages online? Adams did not think this was the case. “It doesn’t come up in conversation but it depends who is voicing the opinion. If Nike says something then you would value it more because it is Nike.” Following this up, Roberts wondered whether Adams attached the same credibility to other brands. Adams concurred with this, adding: “Yes because they are not as big a company.”
A challenge that Boden noted, related to rights and rights management in terms of the rights to content and the rights to results which are tightly regulated. “It is a very tight set of systems and solutions that manage the information. You won’t see a big explosion of information out there; you will see a set of well planned websites, web portals which will start to engage people but it is only being talked about at the moment,” said Boden.
In relation to creating positive impressions, Roberts wondered whether or not minds could be changed through what the brand offered online targeted at the youth market? Adams felt yes that is possible through the internet. “I think whoever has posted it, or whatever company, depends on whether you respect it more.”
Problems with digital marketing to youths? In relation to digital marketing, Patten wondered whether it will be possible to promote to children in the ways that have been discussed. Elworthy answered, commenting: “I do not know how it will be enforced. We target 16-24 year olds specifically with a clear understanding of the age that looks at our communication and engages with it. How would it be monitored?”
Questions and Answers Q. What is the role of technology in legacy?
Roberts asked Kirkwood, (given the NFL’s hard hitting rostrum of
Patten felt that this was an unanswered issue regarding London
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 2012 given the original promises that were made. “The legacy trust which has been set up is totally inadequate in terms of original promises. We are all looking forward to the plans, but I don’t see much at the moment,” said Patten. Further to this, Patten did not feel that technology was part of the legacy of the Olympics, but it was more about getting the youth active which will involve more than London 2012. “It is about centralised, consistent political will and serious funding,” said Patten.
TECHNOLOGY SHOWCASE: Presentations and case studies by rights owners and technology providers for sports events illustrating how technology has been used successfully to engage audiences. Showcase 1: Steve Byrd, Executive Vice President, STATS Inc Purchased by News Corp in 2000, STATS has been providing sports information for some time. Steve Byrd outlined how the company delivers scores, stories and photos to major portals, predominantly in North America with a growing international presence (STATS now partners with PA Sport in the UK).
Elworthy responded with reference to Patten’s point about the role of technology in the legacy. “Technology is the most powerful tool we have to do that at the moment,” said Elworthy. For example a chip which depending on how much exercise you do, you can plug into your Playstation to unlock new levels, or Nike+.
STATS has a broad clients base including media companies, professional teams in the US and also sports leagues. A new deal signed this week was with the ICC in time for the Twenty20.
In response to how Adams would like to see the Olympic Games presented, technology was seen to be a good way. “If you already like sport you will do it, but people who do not play sport because they are stopped by technology, it is about using that technology to get them to do sport as they like the technology,” said Adams.
Optical tracking technology Byrd outlined how this is not new, but it is now coming to the forefront commercially. STATS acquired an Israeli company called SportsVu in December 2008 which is how the company gained its entry into the sports tracking market. “We now collect data on what the players are doing, but not just what they did, but how did they did it. We are measuring the position of the players in real time which allows you to calculate things like speed, distance, position on the pitch, possession etc,” said Byrd.
Boden felt that the issue was about putting the right technology in place to make the Olympic Games work. “The way we are looking to start to do this, is to create a more engaged experience, whether this is going out into schools and creating more interesting information to inspire people to take part in sport,” said Boden. A key way to do this, is to get children involved prior to the Games, such as getting them to record what they think the Games would meant to them.
Using only three sensors that cover the pitch and running from a single server, STATS has the ability to cover more matches and get to more venues as the sensors are not permanently installed in the stadia.
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 including Snow Zone; which are made for web TV shows. “We have taken the type of content that would be of interest, behind the scenes content, highlights of events, training techniques and we have created shows that we now syndicate out to partners,” said Cooke.
Byrd showed some examples of the technology in action to the audience, and explained that broadcast is the first opportunity, but also there is use for clubs in terms of scouting, and training reports. “You can show where all the players are on the pitch at any one time and you can lay down real time circles on live broadcast,” said Byrd. Although it is deployed for soccer, there is ongoing development for basketball, American football and cricket, all of which will be rolled out over the next several months.
Cooke moved on to discuss his work with hockey, which is a low profile sport. In citing some facts about hockey, Cooke outlined: 1) There are only 140,000 regular players. 2) 1,100 clubs. 3) A budget of £7m exists to run the entire sport which includes running the whole international programme.
Using graphic rendering from Red Bee and stats from SportsVu, STATS can provide a replay within the match broadcast. “A lot of opportunities with this will be online where you can animate and show something from any perspective. You could follow the game from the perspective of your favourite player” said Byrd.
As Cooke pointed out: “Hockey barely touches the radar on media coverage in the UK, apart from every four years at the Olympics. There is an interest in the sport, but it is not very well catered for.”
Byrd ended by commenting about the breadth of opportunities that there are with this technology. “There is a lot of exciting things that can be done with it, particularly combined with our current business and all the event data,” noted Byrd.
Hockey taking advantage of new web TV technology Cooke believed that hockey as a sport, is “a prime case for getting involved in internet TV because they have no real value to a broadcaster but could be an effective narrowcaster.” In this respect, content could be provided to people have a passion for hockey. England Hockey is already `kind of’ in the TV area as it funds TV productions, for example the Indoor Championships.
Showcase 2: Andrew Cooke, Managing Director, Simply Sports Simply Sports is one of the largest providers of digital video in the UK. The sports division is responsible for producing, creating and distributing content for online distribution. “We took a gamble about four years ago in setting up an internet golf channel called GolfBug.tv which was inspired by cycling TV which had been set up and done some remarkable stuff in capturing internet rights to major events,” said Andrew Cooke.
Cooke pointed out that England Hockey already spend money on TV. “Interestingly, the website as a result of this lack of national TV coverage does exceptionally well,” says Cooke. To highlight this, England Hockey gets approximately 90,000 unique users per month. Further to this, Cooke pointed out that with hockey, internet
Cooke explained how Simply Sports has created a number of sites,
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 A lesson from Henry Ford
rights are pretty much accessible as broadcasters do not fight over rights for this sport. Another benefit to internet TV is the cost of setting it up which is manageable.
Ian Munford commenced by questioning whether the industry is geared and able to turn chaotic issues “into building a sustainable future for our industry for tomorrow.” In light of this, Munford aimed to outline some key developments which BT Media and Broadcast is looking at.
Following a sports video for EHTV, Cooke noted how, “unless you are a hockey fan, that is not something you will be looking for on the TV schedules, but if you are a hockey fan, then this is of interest to you.” The key to this, is the narrowcast content that a broadcaster would not go into.
In terms of the business of BT Media and Broadcast, Munford commented that: “First things first, we are a media business, we don’t do anything else, we don’t do telephones, we provide services and technology and creative capabilities to our customers on a global basis.” Munford outlined the company’s three key areas as being; a global media network (linked to most sporting stadia in the UK); software and content processing services (helping clients to connect with their consumers) and also a state of the art post production company. “A lot of our technology is for relevance in the market,” said Munford.
The benefits that England Hockey gets from this, according to Cooke, are that the governing body connects with the grassroots in a very dynamic and new media environment. “This has been received exceptionally well by the hockey fraternity,” said Cooke. Another benefit is that this acts as a good marketing vehicle, as it shows it off in a positive manner. Furthermore, Cooke noted how “as a communications platform it allows England Hockey the chance to talk to its membership and get their views across about how the game is developing.” Finally the kudos that is gives England Hockey among governing bodies, including international audiences is working well as it promotes the sport.
Mega trends Munford started with the good news that we are starting to see the benefits of true multimedia engagement by the consumer market. For example, Major League Baseball increased its subscriptions for its online offer by over 46% this year, generating significance revenues.
A key aspect that Cooke pointed out is that it also provides more commercial opportunities. “Most advertisers and sponsors are looking for digital opportunities and this is the latest stuff. This is somewhere that a new equipment sponsor can put its adverts, and can engage directly with a hockey fan,” said Cooke.
At the opposite end of the market, Munford pointed out there are also benefits such as what Andrew Cooke discussed prior to this and also a client BT Media has to deliver boxing events for to various parts of the world where rights have not been taken by local broadcasters.
Showcase 3: Ian Munford, Business Development, BT Media and Broadcast
“However what we are seeing is an acute downtrend in advertising, very much double digit in TV advertising,
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 and pressure in sponsorship opportunities,” said Munford. This said, Munford believed there is an opportunity to keep a vibrant, well invested business moving forward, but this needs to be done differently.
hold,” noted Munford. This technology has been created for both large and small organisations and it is delivered as a service over the internet, and very securely. CLOSING KEYNOTE ADDRESS: BERNARD ROSS, Head of TV Production, UEFA Media Technologies – Multiplatform strategies for the EURO Championships
In relation to digitisation, Munford believed there are three key points to note. Firstly it allows the chance to do things very differently; secondly it provides interesting and innovative ways of commercialising; and thirdly it produces huge challenges in covering live or syndicating sports content.
Bernard Ross aimed to outline to the audience some of UEFA’s multiplatform strategies used for EURO 2008. “UEFA have a unique way of providing their rights. It is a platform neutral approach which means UEFA organise the competition, they define the market rights and they define the strategy which is that the broadcasters get all the rights,” said Ross.
Munford noted how speed, reliability and flexibility are all paramount to allow for quick response to commercial opportunities allowing you to seize any opportunity that presents itself. “The issue we face right now is that most of processes, interfaces and commercial transactions are broken. Meta data that powers the intellectual property within a piece of content is very difficult to understand, what rights do I own, where can I exploit those rights?,” commented Munford.
From this, Ross explained how UEFA Media Technologies grew out of the fact that UEFA was facing a more complex and sophisticated world. “We provide UEFA with the solutions and tools to develop European football, we preserve and develop UEFA’s leadership and we want to preserve UEFA’s independence,” said Ross.
What we need – a big pot of glue Munford believed that there is a need to focus on the consumer and audiences in order to provide an excellent experience for those engaging in content.
UEFA Media Technologies’ first creation was the UEFA.com website. Then the division integrated IT in 2004 for the EURO tournament. By 2006, UEFA was delivering on video streaming (55,000 per night for the Champions League).
“In effect what we need is a big pot of glue and what we have done with BT Mosaic is develop that pot of glue,” said Munford. BT Mosaic provides customers with all the key applications that they need to create, manage and distribute their content through whatever format, anywhere in the world. “It is acting as the interface between the technologies that we all use today, but equally what it is doing at a process level is making sure the value change is operating as a single
Ross commented that in 2008: “My job was to come along and deliver the host broadcast of EURO 2008, so the last piece of the puzzles for most companies was the first piece of the puzzle.” Ross outlined how UEFA Media Technologies covers content, web, IT, mobile, video and broadcast. According to Ross: “Prolific content
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 was created for UEFA.com and Euro2008.com meaning that we have got a huge amount of information, a huge amount of data that we do in 10 languages.” A key challenge that Ross pointed out was how to address the social networking that is currently prevalent.
to organise and you have to pay back to the federations,” noted Ross. The production plan for the event therefore, had to live up to the expectations of what broadcasters had paid a significant amount for. In order to do this, UEFA integrate the expertise, rather than build it.
Football Administration Management Environment system (FAME) “It is exciting to UEFA as it manages every aspect of UEFA, it doesn’t just serve broadcast. One thing that UEFA Media Technologies does for UEFA is that it has to consider every one of the stakeholders,” said Ross. When delivering an IT solution, it is not just about broadcasters. FAME was used at the EURO 2008 tournament for the online booking system and dealt with 42,000 bookings from broadcasters very well.
On the broadcast side, one thing that was key to success was the meta-data and the stats. “We started as the first federation, to do tracking on Champions League in 2006/2007,” said Ross. Stats are delivered to the coaches, the referees and to the broadcasters, however it is not just a broadcast tool.
LIVEX at EURO 2008 Ultimately LIVEX was a pilot during EURO 2008, to integrate delivery platforms for content. “It was delivering broadcast quality to the broadcasters across the internet effectively, It used a web interface, to allow broadcasters not to come all the way to Switzerland and Austria but to access the content from home,” said Ross.
However, as Ross noted, one of its original purposes was to deal with what UEFA does, which is effectively to deal with all of these groups and deliver everything that they require through the same platform. “With this in place you can imagine the power that UEFA have through technology to deliver other services, putting it through the same applications and exclusions that FAME offers,” said Ross. FAME offers the ability to provide one parameter for the players and another for the broadcasters. “When you control the various aspects that you have seen so far, one thing you can see consistently is that the pictures tell the story. Technology is fantastic but behind it we wanted to control the broadcast itself,” said Ross.
Broadcasters are not too keen on IP, however they found that this was very useful and somewhat of an eye opener. “We don’t always need the high end HD coming out of the venue to capture that and get it back to the broadcaster, there is a lot of material we can share,” noted Ross. In summary, Ross ended with mobile which since 2003 has been the “ugly duckling of the multi platform, whereby nobody knows when it will turn into a beautiful swan.” Ross commented how UEFA Media Technologies has to deliver the rights to the broadcaster and help them do this. LIVEX was used and will be integrated for the content distribution. “We had a system called the digital
In relation to the television rights, Ross pointed out that UEFA made 800m Euros, and from the whole 2008 tournament including sponsorship, 1.3bn Euros. “These are massive figures, but it is a massive tournament
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 video library which is now going to move over to LIVEX,” said Ross.
2012, whatever we do for UEFA has to have the view that it is closer to the game. It cannot be just about it is good to do, it is fun to do. New technologies will be embraced when their secrets can be unlocked for UEFA.”
Ross summarised by commenting how mobile is the next step whereby UEFA Media Technologies needs to find out how it can take advantage for UEFA and the broadcasters of the technology (such as using Flash).
Ross commented about the importance of learning from IT specialists, web specialists and multi platform specialists. “We need to deliver more from the source and we need to exploit more of the information that we have captured at the venue whether this is for archive or for live,” added Ross.
Rachael Church-Sanders brought the conference to a close by thanking everyone involved in the conference, the speakers, particularly Max Adams for how well he answered the questions, the sponsors, the control room staff and the media partners. Finally Rachael thanked her team Exeter City FC for the fifth year running, and projected, based on recent back to back promotions that, the team would be in the Premier League by 2011. Delegates were all invited for drinks and a presentation by double Gold Olympic medallist from Athens 2004, Dame Kelly Holmes.
Furthermore, Ross explained how UEFA Media Technologies needs to treat broadcasters more as home delivery, and also concentrate more on the integration of meta data which has become critical to UEFA. “Finally for
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 APPENDIX 1: PARTICIPANTS AT SPORT AND TECHNOLOGY: THE CONFERENCE 2009 First Name Jo Max Olusola Lily Olivier Peter Charles Will Paul Adam Paul Karim Chris Andy Emile Morris Chris Stewart Marie Tim Tim Luke Laura Sabin Thomas W Michael Lisa Matt Maurits JeanMarie Alan Jonathan Steve Theo Paul Rachael Roy Adam Andrew Aidan Fiona Andrew
Last Name Adams Adams Aiyapaku Andrews Anthamatten Baker Balchin Banbury Barber Barker Barter Bashir Beadle Beale Ben-Atar Bentata Bignell Binns Bloomfield Boden Boden Boyle Braun Brooks Broom
Company JAM Consultants Trent College, Nottingham SELSPORTS Ltd Smiths Detection Swisscom Broadcast AG BT Media and Broadcast Show time Arabia Sports Recruitment International Tottenham Hotspur FC SportBusiness Group BT Media and Broadcast Catchsport SportBusiness Group BT Media and Broadcast SportBusiness Group Sheridans XL Communications Crystal CG Screen Digest BT Public Sector BT Media and Broadcast PA Sport SportBusiness Group BetNow IMG Media Limited
Broughton Brown Brown Bruggink Brunet
Nolan Partners Eurovision London Limited PA Photos PMU
Burns Butters Byrd Chapman Charles Church-Sanders Clements Colthorpe Cooke Cooney Cotterill Cox
Swisscom Broadcast AG Observe Outside Broadcasting Manchester: Knowledge Capital STATS Inc. BT 2012 Team Aviva Stadium ZagZig Media/Major Events International STATS Inc SportBusiness Group Simply Sports Opta Alfi Media ESA Group
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 Trevor Matt Bethan Fabrice Mark Cyril Julian Stephen Annette Martin Ed Steve Simon David Michael Daniel Ben Daniel Philip Coral Mike Chris Charles James Mark Lee Cat Russell Laura Niels Dirk Laura Alfred Nina Tom Kelly Ged Karl Kay Jim L Paul Rasmus Philip Keith Mark Amy Ian Kieron Alistair
Crotch-Harvey Cutler Deakins Delaye Donovan Dujacquier Dunn Ebanks Ellingham Ellis Elworthy England Evans Folker Forescue Forsgren Fraser Gidney Goldsborough Grainger Grassick Gratton Greenwood Grigg Habgood Hamill Hawkins Hay Head Hilbrink Hinrich Heilmann Hodd Hofer Hollington Holmes Holmes Holmes Hudson Hutchison Irving J Jennings Johnsen Johnson Johnson Keenan Kemp Kibble Kilbride Kirkwood
Fenbrook Consulting Ltd SportBusiness Group BT Media and Broadcast Bilan BBC SportBusiness Group BT Media and Broadcast Ricoh Arena BT Media and Broadcast PA Photos Nike UK RE:MEDIA PLC Bluhalo Limited Football DataCo Ltd NTT Communications Protracer AB IMG Media Limited Ricoh Arena Pinsent Masons LLP Manchester: Knowledge Capital Bluhalo Limited LeoSport Nike UK Sportech plc PA Photos BT 2012 Team Communicate Sport Sports Unite SportBusiness Group NTT Communications VHB OC Group Greentube I.E.S. AG Nina Hollington Photgraphy BT Media and Broadcast BT London 2012 Ambassador Opta Sports Data Ltd The Forest Studio Belle Media Delta Tre Media Crystal CG Wembley Stadium ACTIVE institute Populous Miomni Ltd Real Wireless Ltd Kempster ltd Simply Media FL Interactive NFL UK
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 Cas Juliana Tim Simon Debra Mike Stuart Scott James Natalie Andy Adam
Knight Koranteng Lacey Lau Lestrade Lewis Lewis Longley Longmore Loughran Lulham Lynch
Paul Daniel Paul Kevin Martin Randal Louella Dennis Jon Will Ian Martin Helena Rod David John Shona Alfonse Richard Tony Grant Matthew Joonas Caroline James William Gareth Chris Will Cecil Michael Liz Kevin Ross
Mace Marion May McCullagh McGahon McLister Miles Mills Mobbs Muirhead Munford Murphy Murray Newing Norris O'Connor ODonnell Orji Padula Page Parkinson Patten Pekkanen Phillips Pickles Pitt Plummer Porter Queckett Richards Robb Roberts Roberts Rossiter
Chelsea Digital Media JayKayMedia Ultimate Rugby Sevens Leaders in Football SportBusiness Group MEI Radio SportBusiness Group Gambling Compliance Wembley Stadium Pinsent Masons LLP Betfair Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews Macesport UEFA Media Technologies SA ECEBS ltd. SportBusiness Group BT Media and Broadcast Scotcomms Technology Group Writers4Management Major Events International BT Media and Broadcast Sportech plc BT Media and Broadcast Observe Outside Broadcasting BT 2012 Team Financial Times Mindshare BetFred SportBusiness Group MobsVentures Ltd BBC World Service Sport Delta Tre Media BT Media and Broadcast The Lord's Taverners Floobs Oy BT 2012 Team SportBusiness Group BT Media and Broadcast StadiaTech Eurosport Ticketing Technology Systems Ltd MobsVentures Ltd Betfair Sports Unite SportBusiness Group City of Hamilton, Community Services UEFA Media Technologies SA Alfi Media
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 Paul Phil Linda Hugo Jeremy Misha Miriam Seb Debbie Rob Helen Ben Rory David Charlotte Jenny Colin John Francis Andrew Paul Daniel Sara Brett Dr Dave Neil Luke Marit Barnaby Robert Kim Susie Richard Chris Richard Alfred Jeremy Neville Helen Louise Brian Bill Mark Mark Ian
Santos Savage Scott Sharman Shepherd Sher Sherlock Shorr Simms Smith Soteriou Speight Squires Stubley Symington Tait Tanner Taylor Tellier Thomas Thomas Thompson Tindall Tonkyn Treharne Tyler Upton von Stedingk Voss Walker Walker Walker Walton Wandell Wareing Waring Way Wheeler William Williams Williams Wilson Wilson-Dunn Wilson-Dunn Young
SportBusiness Group SportBusiness Group BT Media and Broadcast Fast Web Media Major Events International Soccerex SportBusiness Group London Business School Australian Sports Commission BBC Freelance SportBusiness Group PA Sport SportEnt Capitalize Scotcomms Technology Group Mastercard Sports Impact HBS France Oxford University BT Media and Broadcast PA Photos Oxford Internet Institute IMG Exeter City FC Components in electronics SportBusiness Group SportBusiness Group London Business School UK Trade and Investment Pinsent Masons LLP OC Group Rocketseed UK Ltd London Business School Velocity SportBusiness Group Mindshare Cisco Press Association Liverpool John Moores University SportBusiness Group BBC BT BT Media and Broadcast Applied Image Recognition Ltd
Sport and Technology: The Conference 2009 APPENDIX 2: SPONSOR AND PARTNER DETAILS SPONSOR BT MEDIA & BROADCAST For further information visit: www.bt.com/media-broadcast EXHIBITOR GREENTUBE AG For further information visit: www.greentube.com ORGANISER SPORTBUSINESS GROUP CONTACT: LUKE UPTON TEL: +44 (0) 20 7954 3439 FAX: +44 (0) 20 7954 3511 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org URL: www.sportbusiness.com MEDIA PARTNERS MAJOR EVENTS INTERNATIONAL CONTACT: AMY JENKINSON Email: email@example.com URL: www.majoreventsint.com SCREEN DIGEST CONTACT: FAY HAMILTON TEL: +44 (0) 207 424 2847 FAX: +44 (0) 207 424 2838 Email: Fay.Hamilton@screendigest.com URL: www.screendigest.com STADIATECH CONTACT: GARETH PLUMMER Email: firstname.lastname@example.org URL: www.stadiatech.com TV SPORTS MARKETS CONTACT: PAUL SANTOS TEL: +44 (0) 207 954 3483 Email: email@example.com URL: www.tvsportsmarkets.com/
Published on Jun 17, 2010
A review of the Sport and Technology Conference on 4th June 2009, in association with BT Media and Broadcast.