Is Facebook Live a real challenger to traditional sports rights-holders?

In this blog post Crunch’s Jordan Spittle discusses the latest insights from the world of sport that has recently captured his attention.

This edition will focus on the rise of Facebook Live as a broadcasting platform and how governing bodies, teams and individuals are using it to bypass traditional sports rights market.

The first example is Table Tennis England, who just recently broadcast its European Qualifierwith Greece on Facebook Live via the SPORTbible. TheSPORTbible – one of the most visited sports media websites in the United Kingdom with over 8.5m likes on Facebook – received a remarkable total of 2.1 million. It was seen as a hugely successful strategy which usurped traditional media and went straight to where the audience is – http://digitalsport.co/2-1m-watch-table-tennis-on-facebook-live

Another fine example was the announcement of the USA mens soccer roster, whereby the head coach announced his line-up via Facebook Live stream on the Fox Soccer page, garnering an audience of 174,000 viewers. Facebook Live is appealing to audiences because it has very few barriers of entry, especially as the prices of television sports packages continues to rise. The format allows for discussion among fan bases and direct interaction between the broadcaster and the viewers.

Sports in America seem to be fully embracing broadcasting through Facebook Live, with NFL practice games and College Basketball games all trialling broadcasting through this platform – http://digitalsport.co/facebook-live-is-driving-the-next-wave-of-fan-engagement

Finally, away from Facebook Live, and onto an interesting article given the industry we work in, Sky F1 has revealed how their production team copes with the demands of broadcasting every Formula 1 race on the calendar. A new system introduced in the 2015 season and repurposed for the current season highlights the benefits of building a lightweight flyaway production unit – http://digitalsport.co/how-driving-innovation-has-led-to-big-savings-on-the-formula-1-circuit-for-broadcaster-sky

Jordan spittle