Tag Archives: sport

TheGame: How World Cup journalism works

The phone goes. It is the newsdesk. “We need you to go and find North Korean fans now,” comes the instruction. “There aren’t any,” I helpfully reply. “Don’t care. There must be at least one. Go and find him.”

Hmmm. I am in Soccer City, the North Koreans are at Ellis Park across the City. I have only a couple of hours to kick-off, no North Korean contact – but then, who has? – and no ideas, except for simply standing outside the ground and waiting for a North Korean to arrive. This is not time quibble because the message from the newsdesk is that this is a “must-have” story. Foreign correspondents in South Korea and Japan are filing dispatches and Jonathan Clayton, our correspondent in Johannesburg, has been stationed outside the team hotel. I have 800 words to write on the mysterious North Korean fans. Oh dear.

Times reporter Kevin Eason gives a great, first-hand account of tracking down stories – and North Korea fans – at the World Cup. It’s a story of shoe leather, pressure and a little bit of luck as a reward for doggedly chasing leads. Would be interesting to know if any World Cup reporters are using social media shoe leather too?

Full post at this link…

When Saturday Comes: How Twitter has changed football reporting

Football magazine When Saturday Comes looks at how Twitter use by football journalists is changing football reporting, as it encourages debate around news and makes journalists more accountable to fans:

Before social media created a two-way conversation on the internet, a journalist would only have had their editor and probably the manager of the club they reported on to answer to. They could print stories knowing they would not be asked to justify them to the ordinary football fan. But it’s different now for those who have chosen to set up Twitter accounts. They are pulled up on any factual errors in their stories, asked to reveal their sources and generally badgered by their followers (…) it’s a great way of taking the temperature of a club’s fans. You get to understand how they feel about certain players and managers, and what they believe are their biggest issues and concerns.

Of course, journalists should probably know this kind of thing but you can sometimes get caught up in the bubble of press conferences and talking to colleagues, and not realise what the real problems are.

Full story at this link…

Sports section revamp for Northcliffe – building a sporting community

NorthScreenshot from SportHull.co.ukcliffe has brought its standalone sport sites in the north east onto the same platform as its newspaper websites for Hull, Grimsby, Scunthorpe and Lincoln – as reported by HoldtheFrontPage – e.g. the sports section on each of the thisis sites for these areas now redirects to SportHull.co.uk, SportGrimsby.co.uk etc.

There’s a big push for interactivity with a Virgin Media video player of sporting highlights alongside in-house videos; CoveritLive blogs for match days and an aggregated feed of local sports news from a range of sources (see left).

Sports coverage is a huge traffic driver to regional newspaper websites and breeds interaction and buzz (one story on the SportHull page posted yesterday morning had already attracted 113 comments at time of writing this post).

The section is more differentiated from the rest of the site now in these four examples, so will it have an impact on traffic to other news areas that may have benefited from the traffic generated by the sports channel. While the sports sections do have a link back to the main website they are more heavily demarcated than previously.

With the new features these pages offer a one-stop shop for local sports fans – I can’t spot a link to a message board or forum on the new sports’ sites however. Other Northcliffe titles still use this format – are the new sites hoping the other interactive features will replace these?

Media Release: Schibsted titles to livestream Norwegian football matches

Interesting deal between Level 3 Communications and Scandinavian publisher Schibsted, which will bring live streaming of Norwegian Football League games to the group’s newspaper websites.

Users will be able to watch matches on a pay-per-game basis.

“A truly interactive service merging video, text and community functionality,” said Dag Wigum, CIO, at Schibsted ASA, in the release.

Full release at this link…

Video is just start of online for Sport, says MD

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?

Goodbye with a bang – another football site to go

Echoing yesterday’s news that Whoateallthepies.tv has struggled to get advertising, founder of outwithabang.com and myfootballwriter.com, Rick Waghorn, reports that they have decided to give up on their Colchester United site.

Waghorn feels that it would be ‘a bit rich’ if he didn’t mention their own ‘death in the family’, given that they have charted the rise and impending falls of many media organisations.

He writes, “[I]t’s not an ex-site. That’s wrong; it’s just having a rest, a breather. But it has closed down. For now…Why? Well, the reasons are many and varied, but mostly financial.”

Waghorn praises his site’s editorial strength but he says that their ‘local advertising network never caught up; never made it that far.’

In March, Journalism.co.uk reported that while Waghorn’s Norwich United site attracted 33,000 unique hits in January 2008 alone, Waghorn emphasised that the important thing was to create a ‘melting pot’ of revenue from Google, local advertisers, subscribers and content syndication.

In January Waghorn told Journalism.co.uk about his hopes
for myfootballwriter.com to expand into the US with proposals for sites covering American sports teams.

Journalism.co.uk’s other blogs about Rick Waghorn can be read here.

UK media sign up for new Virgin and Perform video player

e-Player, a new ‘multi-channel video player delivering sports highlights and video clips’, is to be used by a raft of UK media organisations, Sinead Scanlon writes for Journalism.co.uk.

ITV Sport, Telegraph Media Group, the Daily Mail, News International, Trinity Mirror, Evening Standard, Metro and Bauer are all set to deploy the player, which has been developed by Virgin Media and sports and entertainment company Perform, a press release on the launch said.

The player will be free for the media groups and will provide sports highlights and updates from UK football and European leagues, as well golf, tennis and rugby clips. Advertising revenue will be shared between Virgin and Perform and the media sites, based on the amount of traffic generated to the videos.

“We have secured distribution with many of the highest traffic, most respected online publishers in the UK, making e-Player the most exciting online video advertising proposition in the market,” said Oliver Slipper, joint-CEO of Perform.

Express & Star using Qik for football reports

The Express & Star is using Qik, allows reporters to live stream video footage from a mobile handset on the paper’s website, to produce post-match video reports from football games

The resulting videos offer a short, sharp analysis of the games, and their immediacy – they’re clearly filmed just after the final whistle – will surely appeal to football fans.

Reports this weekend came from Wolverhampton Wanderers’ victory over Sheffield Wednesday and West Bromwich Albion’s opening Premiership game.

Ole Ole expands football blogs network

Ole Ole – the network of user-generated football sites – has acquired six independent football blogs, paidContent:UK reports.

Team blogs The Lord of the Wing, Chelseablog, Harry Hotspur, Fans del Real Madrid, Real Madrid Talk and Boca Juniors Fans will all feature on the oleole.com site.

The new additions follow the recent acquisition of Arseblog by the network last month.