A new video player – courtesy of Perform and Virgin Media – is just the start for Sport magazine’s ‘nascent’ website, Greg Miall, managing director, told Journalism.co.uk.
Traditionally television’s domain, online sports video from other media sites is a growing trend. By working with a third party, however, rights to the content are handled by Virgin, which supplies Premier League football highlights, and Perform, which handles video of cricket, tennis, golf and rugby fixtures.
“It’s a different way to supply a latent audience demand for this kind of content,” said Miall, adding that the BBC’s recent online coverage of the Beijing Olympics was a benchmark for online sports video.
“What it did [the BBC's Olympics site] was provide another way of viewing all this content and a lot more people ended up looking at content, which they might not look at usually.”
Improvements are lined up for the player and embedding it across the site’s other channels is also in the pipeline.
In addition, an online channel manager is set to join the magazine in the next few weeks and will bring in a series of changes to the site, Miall added.
The key thinking behind the video offering, he said, is to appeal to a generation of readers and viewers who aren’t watching television for prolonged periods or through a set anymore.
So is short-form, online sports video the freesheet equivalent of television?