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GigaTag helps drive engagement around sporting events

Posted 4/26/2011


By Mike Wisniewski 

The way we view and consume sports has changed. Sporting events are now becoming more sociable and content generated from these events are now extremely shareable with different apps and platforms. 

A recent example is from the The Portland Timbers, a Major League Soccer franchise, and The Oregonian. The Oregonian recently utilized a dynamic application the utilizes Facebook photo tagging for fan engagement. Photographer Bruce Ely, leveraging the technology of GigaPan, created a vivid panoramic shot from the Timber’s home opener on Thursday, April 14th. Ely utilized over 600 individual photos captured during a 45-minute span. 

This type of technology for fan engagement has been gaining more and more momentum over the past several months. The photo was posted on the Oregonian’s website and fans were encouraged to use the GigaTag feature to tag themselves in the photo via their Facebook accounts. What’s different about this image versus traditional photography from a news channel is that it is extending audience engagement through a user experience that is incredibly unique after the event happens. 

In addition to being visually appealing, the technology allows others to see fans' tags, find and tag their friends and have an opportunity to customize a message before they post their tagged photo to their Facebook stream. Users can also use the GigaPan Snapshot feature to share additional smaller photos from the larger composition. The Oregonian launched a similar engagement tactic for a sporting event earlier this month during a Trailblazers vs. Lakers game. 

Other publications have used this technology during major sporting events including the World Series and The Final Four. Even other MLS teams, such as the Vancouver Whitecaps FC, have leveraged this technology. The possibilities for this technology and the opportunities to make it social and shareable are endless. From concerts, public gatherings, sporting events, festivals, to tradeshows, any number of brands could execute this as part of their social / web engagement strategy. Plus it will also give the opportunities for journalists and publications to cover the game in a entirely new way. 

 However, similar to my recent post about the photo app Color, I wonder if people will be concerned about their own privacy and not tag themselves in the photo. What do you think of this technology? What types of engagement do you see this being leveraged around? Would you tag yourself in a photo? Do you think this will help drive web site traffic for publications?