TMCnet Feature
July 15, 2021

Digital Advancements of the Sports and Media Industries



The advent of digital technology has transformed the landscape of sports over the years, making it pretty easy for fans to know exactly what’s going on in a match without actually having to sit and watch, although that’s likely preferred.



The sports and media industries have undergone a remarkable facelift, with advancements being unveiled every so often. Nowadays, it’s pretty commonplace to see a highlight make it to social media platforms right after it happens. In years past, fans would have to wait a lot longer, probably after the game was done, to catch a clip of the action.

Thanks to avenues like WSC Sports, this is well and truly a thing of the past. The digital media company, based in Tel Aviv, Israel, is the official highlight content creator of the NBA but serves over 150 clients.

The AI video provider created 67,290 highlights during last year’s playoffs in the NBA bubble and they were all immediately sent to various social media outlets, apps, and other subscription services.

The amazing thing about this is it’s all done automatically, without human interference. As to how a computer is able to determine which plays in a game are worthy of being made into a highlight is pretty hard to understand.

“Well, that’s the automagical part,” WSC’s Director of Marketing and Business Development Galit Shiri explained in an interview with Talkbasket.net. “We use advanced algorithms that analyze video, audio and data feeds to identify each and every action that occurs throughout a sporting event. Those algorithms determine the perfect “In” and “Out” points for each such action clip – as if a human video editor has cut it – and give a rating to each clip, determining the importance it holds in terms of interest and storytelling. It also includes all the metadata to each event, so that all the information is attached to the clip.

“While the game, match, or just plainly – the event is being played, the platform indexes the actions in this manner – which makes it possible to retrieve any action to compile any sort of highlight.

“Leagues and broadcasters offer fans much more content surrounding games than ever before on more platforms and devices. For example, you’ll likely see short clips on Twitter (News - Alert), longer highlights on YouTube, and then vertical video highlights on Instagram stories. Not to mention footage shared on team and league apps and sports subscription services. Essentially each and every type of fan is being served the content they desire for the platform they use the most making up for any dip in TV ratings.”

The business comes from humble beginnings, having made its start a decade ago. It was eventually able to land a contract with the NBA’s developmental brand, the G League, before working its way up to the big time.

“WSC Sports started developing its automation solution back in 2011,” Shiri revealed. “The first stage besides building the technology was also getting right into the market to understand the real needs and use-cases, and finding product-market-fit – meaning to solve a real pain or problem that exists.

“In 2013 the company raised its first round of funding which, as most startups know, is as hard as can be, especially back in 2013 when sports tech wasn’t as popular and common a sector as it is today. By 2014 we’d already started utilizing the platform with Big East Conference and the D League (which later became the G League). Fast forward a year later and the NBA became our prized client, with which we continued to develop the technology and added various more functionalities to the initial content automation solution.”

As pointed out above, technological breakthroughs come around pretty often. That’s hardly limited to sports, with online sports betting also benefiting from certain trends. Betting on the result of a game or other outcomes is pretty simple now and it could be done via smartphone. The introduction of platforms such as blockchain has also made betting on sports or playing games in online casinos a whole lot easier.

Many betting sites now accept cryptocurrency payments, with digital assets such as bitcoin, ethereum, and DOGE now able to fund transactions.

There’s also a lot of focus being placed on the mobile side of things as it pertains to sports betting and online casinos. Folks are no longer required to go into a betting house or stay in front of a computer to bet or participate in various casino games as that can all be done on the move.

To that end, companies are investing heavily as they want their apps to function as quickly as possible while operating with relative ease.

The sports and media industries have been very positively impacted by the digital age yet things could still look very different in the next four or five years.



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