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YouTube creates deal with NBA

Discussion in 'NBA Dish' started by Faos, Feb 27, 2007.

  1. Faos

    Faos Contributing Member

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    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/27/sports/basketball/27sandomir.html?_r=1&ref=media&oref=slogin

    YouTube Has New Fans in League Offices



    By RICHARD SANDOMIR
    Published: February 27, 2007

    YouTube, only 2 years old, has grown so rapidly as a cultural force that it is difficult to recall its roguish roots when folks uploaded their videos and those they pulled off television and sent them to the Web site.

    The outlaw-like beginnings have given way to a spate of friendly and official deals with some of the same outlets that once sent their lawyers to demand that YouTube remove those copyright-infringing video clips.

    The National Hockey League succumbed in November to YouTube’s video-sharing charms, and the National Basketball Association yesterday announced its betrothal. The deal creates an N.B.A. channel on YouTube (a tunnel through which the league will send authorized video); sanctions fans’ uploads (while still allowing the league to reject those it wants removed); and lets users post videos that show their best moves, which will be compiled into a weekly top 10 and shown on the channel.

    “We’re looking for new and interesting ways to engage our fans, and YouTube has a fabulous audience,” said Steve Grimes, the vice president for interactive services for the N.B.A. He added that inviting fans to flaunt their best moves was “a way to share their passions for the game, and it fit our strategy for YouTube to be differentiated from what we have on NBA.com.”



    The N.B.A. and the N.H.L. covet YouTube’s community, a global gathering of people who upload videos, watch what others post and provide running strings of commentary. “One hundred million videos are viewed each day on YouTube,” Grimes said. “You can’t argue with those numbers.”

    Chris Maxcy, the head of business development for YouTube, said that its first two league deals would not be its last. “We see this as a trend,” he said. “Our partners are using the YouTube platform and learning and learning.”

    He said that one goal of league arrangements was to give fans “deeper levels of interaction” with the sports, much as ESPN boasts that its hugely popular Web site, ESPN.com, does with viewers of the sports it televises.

    Bernadette Mansur, a spokeswoman for the N.H.L., said that the league’s channel on YouTube ranked 50th among the thousands of channels available to the Web site’s users. “When we put up our Swedish twins promo,” she said, referring to a league commercial featuring Henrik and Daniel Sedin of the Vancouver Canucks, “it went to YouTube’s top 10.”

    She attributed the league’s quick success on YouTube — and on its parent Google, where fans have downloaded 800,000 full games — to its young, well-educated, tech-savvy fans.

    Mansur said the league “never lawyered up” to press YouTube to remove N.H.L. clips before teaming up with the Web site. For a league starved for attention, at least on television, the restraint was smart.

    The National Football League is less of a fan of YouTube, having placed some marketing footage on the site but little else. Major League Baseball has no relationship, said Rich Levin, a league spokesman.

    “We’ve done nothing with clips, which are the golden goose,” said Brian McCarthy, an N.F.L. league spokesman. “It’s mainly been our legal department that YouTube’s been dealing with” to remove unauthorized uploads. He said that the league preferred to stock its Web site, NFL.com, with video, and that it has not found any type of business model with YouTube that makes “strategic or economic sense.”

    YouTube has revenue-sharing arrangements with the N.B.A. and N.H.L.

    Grimes said the N.B.A. began talks with YouTube shortly after Google acquired it for $1.65 billion in October. He said the decision to seek videos of fans’ court moves and to let fans rate them — a kind of “American Idol” for slam dunkers, between-the-legs dribblers, head fakers, no-look passers and 3-point shooters — was based on a desire to differentiate the league’s YouTube channel from the offerings on NBA.com, where a feature letting fans mix their highlight packages was recently added.

    The N.B.A. was also mindful of Tostitos’s recent promotion letting fans create their own Super Bowl commercial; the winning ad was shown during the game.

    “Consumers will tell us if it’s a good idea,” Grimes said, adding that inclusion in a top 10 is as big a reward as the best submitted videos will receive. “We’ll monitor it, maybe change the theme as we go along, but we think it will be popular.”



    Maxcy would not say whether the N.H.L. channel would follow the N.B.A.’s lead and ask fans to upload videos of their slap shots and kick saves.

    “What will we do with the N.H.L.?” he said. “It’s tough to know. But will we continue to innovate? Yes.”

    One measure of the impact of the two leagues can be measured in the viewership of certain videos. As of last night, a two-month-old promo involving San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton, in which he has trouble making toast, had been viewed 144,967 times. A video of Shaquille O’Neal, LeBron James and Dwight Howard dancing during an All-Star Game practice had been seen more than 400,000 times.
     
  2. Dave2000

    Dave2000 Contributing Member

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    i wonder if they'll delete my vid in Miami and San Antonio, because "technically" you are not suppose to bring digital cameras with video recording function.... :p
     
  3. Jeff

    Jeff Clutch Crew

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    Smart move by the NBA.
     
  4. A-Train

    A-Train Contributing Member

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    The No Fun League will probably never strike a deal with youtube
     
  5. Lil Pun

    Lil Pun Contributing Member

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    Ain't that the truth.
     
  6. rockHEAD

    rockHEAD Contributing Member

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    Finally they see the light!
     
  7. SwoLy-D

    SwoLy-D Contributing Member

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    Not really... :( I don't like that fans will be having their compilations and fan videos pulled off the site... or... do you think NBA will not try to do it?
     
  8. Enron

    Enron Member

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    This is more than likely bad for fans like us and the result of an out of court settlement for Youtube to avoid being sued by the NBA.
     
  9. Wangdoodle

    Wangdoodle Member

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    What's amazing is how long it's taking businesses to come around.

    Media businesses and organizations (like the RIAA and MPAA) must realize that they must change business models as technology changes.
     

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