Changes in Sport Media Consumption: Then, Now and Where It’s Going

The sport communication environment has gone through seismic changes in the last decade, with the pace of change accelerating every year. My sport media diet consists of watching my favorite teams on YouTube (YT), following them on Instagram (IG), other websites everyday, and occasionally radio. Also, following my favorite players and coaches on Instagram is a good resource to fill my appetite. I check IG feeds and post several times a day to stay updated, it’s somewhat of an addiction.

Five years ago, I didn’t get sports information on IG and radio. The majority of my consumption was through legacy formats, which consisted of cable television, YT and website. I had a very lean diet of sports communication maybe a couple of times a week, because I wasn’t working in sports like I do now.

Over the next five years, I predict sport media will change drastically. I think streaming live games on the team sport app or social media and making the fans pay-per-view thus cutting out the TV networks. This will allow teams to control broadcast and generate more revenue, as well as engage fans before, during and after the game. Also, podcasts and radio will allow fans more access to information that isn’t broadcast on TV and social media similar to Mixhalo, a company that delivers “next-generation audio solution that send high-quality, real-time audio from the playing field to the attendees device…for an immersive multimedia experience,” as described in A New Playbook for Sports Media article. There will be more integration of TikTok and Snapchat as a reliable source of sport communication.

If I had a magic wand, I would change the way TV broadcasts live sports. I think live sports should be live on social media and streaming service like Amazon and Hulu as pay-per-view option. This would allow fans the option of streaming games instead of paying for a cable subscription, as 33 million households have quit their multichannel video programming distributor (MVPD) as of 2018, according to data from eMarketer, in the article A New Playbook for Sports Media. Also, teams could generate more revenue by controlling content creation and distribution as well as engaging with fans during games. I already have a subscription to multiple stream services which in Amazon Video, Hulu, and Netflix so it would be very convenient to watch live sports as well.

Read more about innovations in sport media in A New Playbook for Sports Media

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