By Brett Shweky/Sports Director
Traditional sports-media coverage is rapidly altering into a millennial-driven industry. Media outlets are trending toward content that appeases well to social media users and on-the-go consumers.
Technology is mainly the underlying reason to why the sports-media industry has chosen to select a new route.
Innovative options such as live streaming on social media and virtual reality presentations have become drastically more popular than traditional television and are being used on a more frequent basis.
Sports leagues from around the world, such as the NFL, have found success in live streaming their games on social media.
In 2016, Thursday Night Football games were additionally streamed on Twitter to go along with the live broadcast. For this upcoming football season, Amazon will be live streaming the games as a result of winning the rights for $50 million.
Even as the pinnacle of sports-media coverage, ESPN had to transition the way the company covers the sports-media landscape. ESPN has changed their focus to revamping digital content with the WatchESPN app and ESPN3.
In the last couple of years, ESPN has seen a drastic decline in supporters with more than 10 million people having dropped the subscription, according to the nytimes.com.
Ironically at the same time, the network committed a significant amount of money to sporting leagues to continue their premier coverage.
In 2011, ESPN and the NFL managed to reach an eight-year, $15.2 billion extension, which was just one of the recent lucrative deals made by ESPN. Along with the NFL, leagues such as the NBA and NCAA College Football were also entities that secured big money contracts with ESPN.
A combination of the innovative media options and the high-priced networking contracts resulted in ESPN to lay off more than 100 employees back in April 2017.
Some of these firings included long-time employees such as NFL insider John Clayton, NFL reporter Ed Werder and NBA reporter Marc Stein.
The former long-time ESPN employees were terminated because of the ever-changing landscape of sports-media. Networks such as ESPN, Fox sports, CBS sports are all wanting to find staff members that appeases better to the younger generation.
As an entire entity, the sports-media industry will continue to feature an abundance of innovative changes that will affect the way people will receive content.