Cricket’s future in social media: Srikkanth

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Senior Selection Committee Chairman Krishnamachari Srikkanth today said there was “terrific” cricketing talent in the interior parts of the country and stressed the need for taking the game to these areas rather than confining the game to the metros.

The fourth edition of the FICCI’s Media and Entertainment Business Conclave conducted an interactive session on “Sports and Entertainment- Cashing in on the second screens” that discussed the rapidly changing trends of sports viewership on alternate platforms and the emerging technology available to the industry.

Krishnamachari Srikkanth, R. Sridhar- General Manager, Media Services Team, Tata Communications; and Praveen Sharma- Head of Media Sales, Google India participated. Srikkanth, at his trademark humorous best, spoke about the role of the internet in facilitating educational development citing the function of “edustrokes”, a website that teaches Math and Physics to children through the medium of sport.

He highlighted the tremendous potential Cricket holds for the future through the tools of digital and social media. Recognizing the need to adapt to change, Srikkanth branded the internet as “the best invention” since the aircraft and stressed on the importance of innovation in Cricket. An admirer of the western philosophy for exploring the unknown, Srikkanth said that “exploration results in innovation”.

Going along the same lines, R. Sridhar brought to light the way and manner in which mobile phones have changed the face of modern networking. With the advent of the Smart Phones and Smart TV, people from different corners now access to any information at the click of a button.

Praveen Sharma stressed upon the advantages of online viewership, particularly with regards to interactivity and customization. He highlighted that more users are getting comfortable watching live sports online and that it offers “strong catch-up monetary” benefits. He predicted that by 2014, the data consumption from smart phones will have increased vastly. Interacting with the audience, the panel members touched upon the issue of TV rights and the impact it has on the game.

Though agreeing that alternate delivery platforms could completely change the way we see and interpret sports, all three panel members insisted that the “spirit of the game” would not be compromised because of technological change.

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