Friday, July 13, 2012

Livestreaming Worlds Part I

It was sometime in the fall of 1999 when Charles Kerr, the father of the Callahan Rules, Callahan Award and godfather of NC State's 1999 College National Championship, kicked around an idea to me of an online national newspaper for college ultimate. Eventually we teamed up to write and produce the College Ultimate Reporter which basically had no chance.

Kerr did a lot of work on it and I wrote some stuff and we tried but 1999 was just too early to fund an unfunded sport with an un-sponsored magazine.

One direction we wanted to go was live internet streaming of Nationals. It made so much sense for ultimate to go there -- tech-savvy players who graduated from college, niche market, lower costs.

But lower costs in 1999 meant thousands of dollars, maybe tens of thousands. And the bandwidth wasn't so favorable.

About 7-8 years later USA Ultimate (then the UPA) finally got lucky in broadcast when a small niche cable television channel based in New York (Chelsea Piers, to be precise, I visited a few times and even pushed the idea as best I could) called the College Sports Network contacted the UPA with a pitch to shoot and cover the College Championships in 2004.

This wasn't an internet thing -- it was broadcast television, shot mostly live-to-tape but not live. And the UPA paid for it, an estimated $50,000 in fact. But the UPA's player-base had been pining for this sort of thing for years so the money wasn't a problem.

Failing to watch live was a problem however -- watching sporting events days or weeks later is a deal-breaker.

Internet was always the solution... part II next, I swear I have a point here and some analysis of NexGen's Worlds Coverage.

No comments:

Post a Comment