NBA video mashup site falls short

From Om Malik’s TV hub NewTeeVee comes word of a smart move by the National Basketball Association: the NBA has reportedly done a deal with online video-editing service Eyespot (to be announced Tuesday) that will let viewers and Web surfers remix game clips into their own videos and post them. Other registered users can then rate the videos with a star system, and see the top-rated clips with a click.

nba remix.jpgWhile this is a great idea, however — and is likely to get some good takeup from rabid NBA fans and would-be highlight reel makers — like Paul Kapustka of NewTeeVee I think it falls short in one major way: namely, the videos that are created cannot be easily shared, making the site a bit of a walled garden. I think that is a pretty serious failing for a site that presumably wants to create viral-type interest. How far would YouTube have gotten if it tried to keep all the video on its own site? Not very far, I would argue.

Paul, who got a preview of the site from, says that the company will have other similar deals to announce soon, and is also apparently involved with Sony in some way in a music video capacity (although Sony is also working with Brightcove). I would expect to see plenty more sites engage in the same kind of user-generated remixing that the NBA has — but hopefully more of them will widgetize their content rather than trying to keep it hostage.


Katie Fehrenbacher at NewTeeVee says that the National Hockey League, which did a deal with YouTube last year to put hundreds of hours worth of old game videos up on the site, has started disabling embedding of its videos — trying to force people to watch them at YouTube. Hey NHL: Three minutes for being stupid.

Update 2:

A spokesman for the NHL told Steve Rubel that the league is still committed to letting people share videos, and that the NHL is looking into why some people were told otherwise. I take back that penalty ๐Ÿ™‚

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About mathewi

I'm the chief digital writer at the Columbia Journalism Review in New York, and a former writer for Fortune magazine and the Globe and Mail newspaper.

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