Many of the Boston Red Sox fans who witnessed the team's dramatic comeback in the American League Championship series and a four-game sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series, have propelled a 20-fold increase in video downloads of sports coverage from Boston.com during October.
Just in time for the ALCS, the New York Times Digital-owned site ramped up its video offerings with the addition of a World Now video encoder at Fenway Park from which partner New England Sports Network (NESN) fed pre- and post-game interviews with players and coaches, as well as other sports-related packages to Boston.com editors who packaged clips for distribution on the Web.
Prior to adding the World Now encoder and Video Producer streaming solution, the use of video on the site was “nothing substantial,” said Jeff Moriarty, Boston.com vice president of product and technology. It required telephone requests for video footage and tapes to be shuttled via cab from NESN, a Red Sox-owned cable TV sports network, to Boston.com. Now, the site’s Web editors simply log in to a clip server through their browser, select material to be recorded by setting in and out points and publish it.
To NESN, the new process is essentially transparent, leaving its workflow unaffected. To Boston.com, the ease of the system has translated into a substantial increase in volume of posted video clips and in the number of visitors streaming sports video. To date, there have been 200,000 video plays of NESN material from the site. Moriarty expects 1 million videos played this month between NESN sports clips and video news stories from the New England News Network, a 24-hour regional cable network that’s also partnered with Boston.com.