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Thread: AMERICA the final frontier.
08-15-2005, 10:36 PM #1
AMERICA the final frontier.
That is how the International Badminton Federation views the United States in its bid to make the sport truly global, having secured the sports Olympic future till the 2012 London Games.
That was the main reason for giving Anaheim the right to host the 2005 World Championships and so far, it seems to have been the right decision.
Ticket sales have been brisk, coverage by the local media extensive, and this, said IBF deputy president Datuk Punch Gunalan augurs well for badminton in America.
"Currently, we are not looking at popularising the sport across America. We are targeting California, Miami and New York.
"If we can breach these three areas and popularise the sport, then badminton will be up and running in the United States," said Gunalan yesterday.
The IBF had hoped that this would happen after the 1996 Atlanta Games but despite badminton pulling in the crowd, it remains, as one taxi driver put it, "a backyard sport for Americans".
But Gunalan said this is changing.
"In fact, we can already see changes. Ticket sales, and this is before the championships have even started, have already breached US$400,000 (about RM1.5 million) and the organisers are extremely happy."
GUNALAN: Thinks America can bring the sport to a higher level.
The Championships will be played at the Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim and tickets are priced between US$15 and US$200 (season tickets).
"Media coverage, which is also very important if the sport is to succeed in America, has also been encouraging."
In fact, the Orange County Herald had front-paged the championships the last two days, including a lengthy piece on how its reporter underwent a six-week "course" on badminton.
More importantly though is the fact that players are taking the sport seriously, although the financial returns are nothing to shout about.
The US Badminton Association currently subsidises US$4,500 per player per year and most players play, train, study and/or work at the same time.
But the US has started to attract some of the world's best to their shores and Indonesian Tony Gunawan, a doubles world champion in 2001, is now donning US colours.
In fact, most of America's players for the World Championships are first generation Americans but Gunalan believes that with IBF focusing its sights on the country, the sport will pick up and more and more will play the game.
This, he reckons, will bring in sponsorship and more importantly, seal badminton's place in the Olympics for the long term.
08-16-2005, 04:39 AM #2
it was quite obvious when they announced US as the country for the WC that this is their intention. and it is a good one as well. it is true that US can be a very effective springboard for popularizing anything. it is not guaranteed however.
badminton have earned a bad name in the general US population as the backyard sport for old ladies. it will be a difficult reputation to shake off.
it will be interesting to pay attention to the demographic of the WC attendees in Anaheim. if the majority of the attendees are of Asian decent, then i think IBF has not succeeded. the majority of the US populate are caucasian, black and hispanic and it is them that IBF should be targeting. most Asian already know how cool badminton is.
08-16-2005, 04:46 AM #3
One key aspect to get more coverage is the need for sponsors. The best way to generate revenue from the sponsors = air time = commercials. However, this is Badminton's downfall, 2-3 minute breaks for commercials every...say...7-8 minutes of play is not heard of and would take away the edge, especially in singles where wearing down your opponent is a key strategy.
If the governing bodies can find a way to implement 2-3 minute breaks to allow for commercials, I think we (USA) will get a lot more sponsors and help Badminton grow.
08-16-2005, 05:09 AM #4
Smart thinking to target California: large asian immigrant population and one of the biggest economies worldwide on it's own. Now to get Bill Gates and the rest of Sillicon Valley hooked and let the $$$ flow
Come to think of it they should invite him for the finals (if he has any spare time).
08-16-2005, 10:52 AM #5Originally Posted by S4MadMan
Even simple consumer DVD-recorders today have "time slip" functions to continue recording while playing up material previsously recorded on the same stream... for example : http://www.home-entertainment.toshib...g?opendocument
The ads could just be inserted between points.
Also with modern digital techonolgy.. ads could be added to the court, sidelines etc digitally in real-time, to sell customized ad space on different areas, channels, etc..
If there is a will there's a technology :-)
08-16-2005, 11:02 AM #6
Twobeer: my focus was on commercials during live broadcasts; I should have made that more clear. This is the main and best way to generate revenue from Sponsors in the U.S.
For instance, at the extreme, during the Super Bowl (American Football), a 30 second commercial can cost $1 million or more.
08-16-2005, 11:58 AM #7Originally Posted by S4MadMan
Price money too low:
It is a joke by compare the price money with other sports like tennis, Champion price @ couple of thousand on a 5/6 star games. Do you think TV station, commentator do not know it?
Equipment too expensive:
Material: Graphite badminon racquet is simply too expensive, the amount of carbon fiber on a tennis racquet can make about 2.5 badminton racquets.
It is next to impossible to attract young kids who's exprienceon badminton sport is based on aluminum racquet, plastic shuttlecock, Is it fun?
Very few Good player
How you support a good player? Assume you are # 1 in US, won five grand slams a year (No body ever did it) , 2 star to 5 five star IBF rated game, your price money a year is less than $50,000.00 a year. it is enough for your hotel, airline, food, etc expense?
Pleople will think company/organization who profit from the sport will spend money on the sport? Think again. All larger equpment manufactues are public trade company either in Japan, US, Europe, Check their 2004 published profit/sales related to the badminton sport and how much they re-invest on the game you will know.
08-16-2005, 12:01 PM #8
08-16-2005, 12:42 PM #9Originally Posted by S4MadMan
With current digital-recording and CGI-effects technologies. there are however options to edit-instert "live" and do catch-up during live-broadcasts. Digital effects and overlays can also be done in real-time using digital technology. During Soccer games broadcasts on TV here it's getting more and more common to digitally replace side-line ads live-broadcasts to target advertisments to different markets having the same "feeds"..
doing digital overlays, time-shifts, catchup, etc are possibilites that exists today, and can be used to satisfy both the live audience, and the TV-viewers..
Personally I think it's a lot better to look into such options, than to try to change the game to better suit commersials!!
Another point is that having 10-minutes or so delay at some parts of a game on a broadcast to allow for commercials is probably a good tradeoff! People who want to skip commersials could pay-per-view and get no delay :-).
A small note is that on my cable operator i get about 10 seconds signal-delay when getting digital-channels to my home compared to the analog version of that channel to my home.. So one could argue that no broadcast from my operator is "live". It's always 10 seconds delayed (Due to the time taken up by digital-processing, encoding/decoding etc :-) )
Last edited by twobeer; 08-16-2005 at 12:46 PM.
08-17-2005, 05:20 AM #10
when a chinese reporter asked her if she had any autograph seekers , gao said no and that over here , they are not as famous as mickey mouse. which was kinda funny.
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