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Inside Track

How Dizplai Helps Broadcasters Give Audiences More

Think for a moment about how you watch live sports.

You may be gathered around a primary large television somewhere, but in between the action, you could be surfing social media or texting with friends on your mobile device. Perhaps you even have a laptop or tablet going as well.

Today, fans are craving a much more interactive experience when consuming sports. Our secondary devices have augmented live sports by allowing fans to chat with family and friends and even surf trending information about the games we watch play live. Savvy creators and producers are now tapping into various tools that can create dynamic content to offset the live play-by-play broadcasts. Dizplai is an example of a company helping to give audiences more content that creates a universal community experience from anywhere in the world.

Ed Abis, CEO of Dizplai, is helping build a world where creators and producers can create an environment that captivates sports fans before, during, and after the live event.
We had a wide-ranging conversation about how Dizplai works and Ed’s thoughts about the current sports tech trends.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
Yep. So you’ve got a fascinating career arc that basically, you know, I imagine, when you started working at Burnley, like you, you started to see the mobile device kind of come into view.

Ed Abis, Dizplai
It was astonishing. Yeah, I remember, I was working for a web design agency for the club. There was one computer in the club and it was on dial-up. No one would touch it unless I went into the office. So I’d sit down with the communications team and I’d help them to put stories on the website. I’d sit down with the retail department and help them publish products to the online retail store, but I was the only one who operated this computer on the internet.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
When did you have this light bulb moment, maybe even before what you’re doing at Dizplai, but when did you start to realize that the audience, this passive audience, is going to become kind of this utility, this tool for broadcasters, creating an entirely new industry, essentially?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
I was chatting about this recently because fan engagement has become a real buzz in the last 12 months. People are now saying, ‘This has got to be a fundamental part of our strategy.’ Before, it was a nice-to-have, I was joking the other day on a podcast, and I said, ‘Yeah, who knew maybe it’s a good idea to to engage your fans! Like why would anyone ever do that?!’ Because it used to be about how we sell more shirts? Well, no, now you’ve got to take people on a journey. You’ve got to tell a story. When I worked at the club (Burnley FC), every year, we would create a campaign for people to get behind. Probably the pinnacle one for me was the one that we did, which was called “More than 90 Minutes” because when you support the local football team or soccer team, it’s about more than Saturday afternoon. Having your season pass is your passport to life almost, it’s your badge of honor. And “More than 90 Minutes” was about lots more than when you turn up to the game. It’s everything else around it. We created T-shirts that we gave out to fans to seed in the community two months before the season tickets even came out.

We got to the point where people were going into the club store asking to buy merchandise with this brand on which we created – the reality was that it was just our season ticket campaign. I realized at that point that if you can tell a story and excite people and engage them, they will do pretty much everything you want because while people are still savvy, they’ll come along on the journey with you.

I think that I’ve taken that all the way through my career. Whatever I’ve done, I’ve created a brand and a bit of excitement, it makes the whole experience for everyone better. And that’s where we are with Dizplai now – this pivot towards being a creative business. We are creative technologists, we got to the point where we were doing a lot of these things for a long, long time. But the execution was never quite how we wanted it to look, the mechanic was never quite what we wanted it to be. And, we always felt like things were being done but probably a small percentage of what we wanted. So we made the call that we wanted to create a one-stop-shop strategy, design, marketing, mechanics, the whole thing, the technology, and actually be able to go in and show this is how you do it. If you listen to us, we’ll show you how to do it. We’ll work with you on it, and we’ll help you to deliver it.

And since we rebranded the business two years ago, we’ve seen that creativity wins every time for us, when we are our most lethal almost – when we are confident and creative about the execution that we are telling partners and clients that they need to do.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
So it sounds like from my understanding, you have two kinds of audiences or two verticals, you’ve got the broadcasting side, and then the creative side. So how, how do those differentiate? And how how do you who’s your who are your customers and of Dizplai?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
That’s absolutely right, you’ve got Dizplai Solution, and Dizplai Creative. Dizplai solutions is the business that already existed where we’re working with content producers that already produced content, but ultimately want to be able to add an engagement layer to their content. Dizplai Creative is a relatively new – we launched back in February, which is our creative agency, where the goal is actually to go to everyone else. And it could be brands as well and saying, you could be creating live content to be able to activate your audience, you are a fashion brand, Okay, well, you have lots of touchpoints throughout the year, and ultimately you rely on everyone else to tell your narrative. Well, actually, you can do it yourself. And we’ll show you how. So you’ve got a traditional client base that could be football clubs, or sports clubs, or broadcasters. But then you’ve got the rest of the world that ultimately wants to know how to engage but just don’t know where to start.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
So there seems to be a sea change in the way that people consume content and, more importantly, how consumers have now become producers. When did you start to feel this change in the production world, and how does that play into this place’s products and offerings?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
So there’s a YouTube football fan channel called The United Stand, which is run by a guy called Mark Goldbridge. We started working with him about three years ago now, and it was coming out of COVID lockdown, and he was having a lot of success. And we want him to help him with his live streaming on YouTube. We ended up speaking to him about, how good it would be if we could integrate what the fan’s opinions were into their live streams alongside the actual data as well because that would give them credibility, and also making it look amazing would give him the credibility that would attract brands and sponsors. We’ve learned a lot from him in the same way, I’m sure he’s learned a lot from us. And I think that opened our eyes that someone who started out essentially in their bedroom with an idea could become a huge broadcaster because that’s what he’s become. Because people always think of the word broadcast as some outdated word. But it’s just casting broadly, and you can do that anywhere, right? And he’s done that he now has 3 million subscribers across his two YouTube channels. He’s the biggest soccer fan content creator on YouTube in the world. And, you know, he had a vision of how he wanted to do this. And it’s just simply him talking to camera, he’s not got any rights to anything. And I think that opened our eyes to the opportunities. And I think we’re still at the early stages of where that kind of content can go. I really do.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
Most fans are global. Like for the Green Bay Packers, they may not be living in Green Bay, you grew up somewhere, you cheer for somebody, or now you’re a younger fan, and you have no connection to a city, you have a connection to a player. But there’s all these out-of-market people that are floating around. My point is that there’s this fascinating universe of content creators, like for the Packers or for teams that are doing this that may not know about this play or like, the way you can sort of build this production layer that makes you authentic, and but also takes you to a fidelity that didn’t exist years ago.

Ed Abis, Dizplai
Yeah, Let’s call them audiences in this capacity. The younger audiences have been brought on with a certain level of production quality that they just expect. If they’re going to watch a Twitch stream, right, and it doesn’t look great, it just doesn’t fit. You know, you just know that when something looks crappy, feels crappy, right? And then that’s just reality. So what we say to people, always, if you look amazing, you’re already halfway there. Because people like, things that have a professional operation.
You can still do the quirky stuff around that, make it look professional, make it look like you care. Making an experience that I’m going to want to be part of is a starting point. But to your point there Taylor, there’s no wrong way of doing it, there’s no bad idea sometimes just timing things right. In a lot of ways, in my earlier career, we were pioneering streaming with sports federations, but the internet wasn’t there. The channels were there, it was just the start of Facebook, where we were trying to sort of get in bed with them a little bit as a distribution point but they weren’t playing ball it was almost too soon. It’s now designed to do that and I find it interesting that it’s seen as disruption in the streaming world, I was doing that stuff 15 years ago!

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
So is the ideal end user an individual creator, are you also working with broadcast-level studios or teams? Who are you working with? Break down what that workstream looks like and who the consumers are of your product.

Ed Abis, Dizplai
So the beauty of what we do is it can be a tier one broadcaster like a Sky, or it can be YouTube content like The United Stand (Mark Goldbridge), who, you know, I would argue he’s becoming a tier one broadcaster, because of the sheer scale of the audience that he has. And it’s a different kind of broadcasting. But ultimately it’s what the audience wants and it’s proven by the fact people are watching it. So yes, we’ll work with those tier ones. And we work with a number of them around the world. We work with soccer clubs. In the UK and in the Premier League, there are a few we’re working with already, there’s a few challenges working with it, we’ve understood what works and what doesn’t.

There are a lot of untapped rights, you’re just not using what you can do with your manager’s press conference, what you can do pre-match when the interest is starting to build in the game, and post-match too with things like fan forums. You can do as many live stream executions as you want, you can go live as often as you want, as many times as you want, and you will have an instantly captive audience and what does that mean? That turns into pounds and dollars because brands will get on board with that because, ultimately, they want you to activate your audience and they want to get their brand and their messaging associated with your brand.
Ultimately, sporting federations are having the same challenges and one that will be announced that are going to start working with us (who will be at the Olympics this summer). They have come on board with us as we are able to do their broadcast graphics for them. But ultimately the real reason they can board with us is because they want to do all the engagement things that they know that we can do and they’ve seen what we do with the YouTube content creators. They have a really, really engaged audience because people are so passionate about these sports that exist, and they want to be able to find ways to directly communicate because they know they’re not going to get the time on air with the tier-one broadcasters.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
Yeah, you know, that brings up a good point. In America, the NFL drives everything. To some extent, I think the NBA would slot under their Major League Soccer is really rising. NBA is its own animal, they’ve done successful things like monetizing audiences and fan engagement. But there are pockets like I’m a big college basketball fan so we have March Madness right now and got these mid-majors they call them which are kinda like your lower league soccer teams maybe that are trying to compete and rise above. And there’s just so many fan engagements with like these audiences, it’s almost untapped.

Ed Abis, Dizplai
I worked at Burnley over 20 years ago, when we were lucky that we were at the start of the Football League Interactive, a centralized deal with a company called Premium TV that then became Perform and then DAZN/StatsPerform. And what it did is it trained us, they created a platform for us where we could upload videos behind the scenes, something that never happened for clubs of our size. And they took us off to London and they trained us how to film and edit and things like that. So we were wearing many hats, but the technology just wasn’t there back then; you needed expensive kits and expensive editing software. The internet was what the internet was but we achieved a lot. Nowadays, there are so many content opportunities. You don’t need to have a TV channel to be a broadcaster – the distribution points are there; they exist already.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
How do you watch television programming at home with family and juggle live sports experiences so they remain experiences and shared ones at that? And how does the primary screen in the home alter that?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
I’ve got a 13-year-old daughter, right? So it’s interesting watching how she watches the big – let’s call it the big screen in the room. Let’s not call it TV. Right? She watches the big screen in the room with us. There are other screens available that she uses, but there are certain programming content that we watch together as a family. And it’s usually like we’ve just had Traitors in the UK, which finished recently. If you didn’t see Traitors when it was live, you had FOMO because all your friends are telling you what’s happened. You don’t want to miss that. And the same happens for football as well. I only want to watch it in the moment or watch the highlights afterwards. But the actual thing itself, I want to watch it at the moment. And there are plenty of key touchpoints that you need to watch live. And I think what we’re seeing what live experiences do is they create community, they’re a shared experience. And people like coming together for shared experiences. As humans, we want to share experiences. It’s just psychologically a part of who we are. It’s alright to be able to watch stuff on catch-up, but it’s not the same as watching it together with someone.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
There was a minute when TiVo kind of came around, and you could record a game, and then you wouldn’t be interrupted unless you ran into a fan and you’re just like, ‘Don’t tell me!’ But not anymore. Now it’s almost impossible to record a game and watch it. I mean, YouTube has done some things where you can hide the scores and stuff. But, what’s the point unless you absolutely cannot watch the game to not watch it?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
Okay, so I’ve missed the game. But, we’ve seen this with some of the soccer clubs we work with now. And the pre-match programming that they’re doing is every bit as good as what you would see on linear, but it’s totally biased towards their team. So they can say what they want. And they can be all about them. And they can go in-depth in a way that a tier one media organization won’t do. But it’s not to replace, it’s just different perspectives because I still want to watch the tier-one broadcaster too. Now we’re doing and fans are doing these, like watchalongs, these alternate streams. You’ll have the situation where I’ll have the game on one screen, and I’ll have my tablet open, I’ll turn the audio off the game, that’s to want to watch the game, but actually want to hear this guy or gal talking about it and one doesn’t cannibalize the other.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
You mentioned on LinkedIn a thoughtful post about the “second screen” phenomenon. So, let’s break down how the modern sports fan watches a game—they’ve got linear, they’ve got a handheld device, a laptop, and an iPad—how are you seeing people consume sports? And what are the opportunities in those alternate screens for Dizplai, brands, or monetization?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
Now what we’re seeing more of is they’re still trying to keep their mobile free because they still want to have the opportunity to communicate with friends. But they’re having the main event on the big screen. And then they’ve got a laptop or a tablet where they’re watching the alternate stream, which might have overlays of people’s comments and questions and observations and polls.

But ultimately, when you start doing all of that, you’ve got eyeballs there. So then you see now brands, having sponsored areas like the fan channel United Stand, he regularly has QR codes on screen on a YouTube livestream for the brands that are sponsoring that particular week’s streams or broadcast. He knows people are now watching it on either their laptop or tablet or even on the big screen in the room and keeping their mobile free to scan that QR code. I think he said that 40% of his audience are watching on a tablet, or a laptop, rather than the actual mobile device. There are enough people who have got their mobile device free to be able to scan that QR code to then send them to whatever offer his sponsors are selling. There’s a real monetization opportunity there.

And we’ve seen this now with the soccer clubs that we’re working with, that they’ve realized now that. You can only get 30, 40, or 50,000 bums on seats on a Saturday afternoon in your stadium. But your fans are millions and millions and millions. So, create this alternate live-streaming experience, which is not the same as watching the game because we’re not going to have the rights – but none of these fans care about that. They want the the fan culture you’re creating around it and giving them a live experience that somehow they feel part of.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
I’m curious about how you measure – you come from a content world. I’ve seen you talk about content marketing on LinkedIn – the way brands and content teams were expected to measure the metrics and the KPIs, they had to like measure success have changed drastically. I imagine for you, it’s audience engagement, what are your metrics that you think about? And now you’re seeing like, how do those physically translate? You’ve talked about the QR code?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
Yeah. So ultimately scanning those QR codes and how many leads that is generating, the scale of the content that people are consuming and are we seeing an uplift. But more importantly, in the engagement as well. Are we seeing more engagement from doing these kinds of things than not doing these kinds of things.
So we did some assessments of one of the Premier League clubs that we work with. And we saw that the scale of the content that they were streaming had gone up, like close to 70% compared to when they weren’t using us. So we know that people are certainly more interested in wanting to watch content when it’s presented in a different kind of way or more fan-centric kind of way. But then we ultimately see engagement go up as well, because people want to be part of that experience. If I’m watching my favorite NFL team, but I live in London, and I can’t get to the game, if the club says to me, ‘share with us your pictures and videos of where you’re watching the game.’ And I’ve got a room that’s totally Packers-orientated. Of course I want them to share that video or a picture of me before the game as part of their live experience that they’re sharing with fans around the world. It just leans into that community experience.

So interestingly, another member of the cohort who we were talking to in a moment – how do we get them to sort of next-level help us to show the value in what we’re doing, because they are experts in that. And we’re not experts in that, you know, we focus on the content marketing; the analytical side of it is not our area of expertise. So that’s been great for us as part of this cohort to find someone like those guys that as soon as we met, we were like, ‘Oh, you do that? Or should we work together?’ It was like instant.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
So when you’re creating, what is the branding or the physical assets you’re creating look like in the back-end? Is that produced and sent to a client and then able to be published on a production stream or YouTube? How does that work?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
The process is very, very simple. Our platform is cloud-based. It sits on AWS, so it’s accessible everywhere. So the good thing about that is whoever’s using that – the producers don’t have to be in the physical location of where the production is actually happening. The graphical output that comes out of the platform, what you see on screen, is HTML-based. So it’s a URL with transparencies like a web page with transparencies. You take it into whatever production technology you are using, they can all take web sources, and ultimately, you are live and then our CMS is the thing where you are triggering those graphics, some of those things you can set up to automatically rotate. Some of those things you would manually manage like you would definitely be manually moderating fan content because you don’t want that to go on air without anyone checking it.
One of our clients, William Hill, the bookmakers, you’ve got this running in their retail stores, you basically got this area at the bottom that’s constantly updating with red cards, yellow cards, scores, substitutions, it’s just a web source that they’re taking via a URL into their production technology – any production technology now can take a web source, it’s going in at at source where the content is being produced. But again, the person controlling it doesn’t have to be in the same location as the playout.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
So essentially, it would be like if I were watching a basketball game or football game, it’d be like that ESPN layer of constantly updating the feed or the play and the outcome, the score the clock, and you’re pulling that?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
From third-party data sources and lots of different data sources together. So sports data, fan-generated content that could be coming from X or could be coming from Instagram could be coming from a web application that we’ve created. It’s embedded in the clients application. So the boxing scorecard we do for Sky that you have probably seen – an interactive boxing scorecard that we started working with a couple of years ago on this. They came to us and wanted to do a boxing score and interactive scorecard on Twitter. And we were like, well, that’ll never work. It’s not built for that it was called Twitter (X). We talked about, what if we built you something that you embed in the SkySports app? And they were ‘okay show us what that looks like.

We went away, did some designs, and worked together with the Sky product team, who were amazing. But none of us were boxing experts, necessarily. So we all had to learn about the nuances of scoring a fight – they’ve been using it now for the last 18 months, I think they’ve done over half a million different scorecards, since we’ve been doing it over that 18 month period, they have a fight night, pretty much every week.

But we’ve made it really, really easy for them because basically they see all the scores coming to our platform that’s aggregated together, they just press a button and it triggers their graphics. And they bring on what they call the viewers verdict, which comes across the screen. And it’s just a scorecard as if it was the judges scorecard. But then they compare and contrast. And we all know that judges never get it right in boxing! So actually, we’ve heard this said from some of the boxing pundits that the fans score it better than the judges do. And when the fans do it, they really care about getting it right. I mean, I’ve sat there watching the boxing, knowing that we do this, knowing how it works, and I’m still engrossed in doing it, because I want to make sure it’s right when I’m scoring it.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
A common thread in your product and on LinkedIn is storytelling. And I’m curious, how important is that like a mantra or a core of your brand in what you do?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
I think sports fans have great stories. So it feels obvious for us to talk about storytelling. But also, we always say this, and I’ve just just did a post today actually about this, look, we don’t want to do vanity engagement. This is not about asking someone to share something, to throw it on screen or join the conversation to send them off somewhere else. If you’re asking them to engage with the content you’re making, you better acknowledge that you’ve asked them to do it because people will soon realize that you’re not being honest and truthful. And they will not engage with it unless they feel like their opinion, their observation, their comment is being used and considered and also acknowledged. And ultimately what we all say about this storytelling is you should use that audience engagement to drive the editorial narrative of the content you’re making. Ultimately, they’re all telling you what they want you to say – well listen and do it. Like I always say to content producers, don’t think of yourselves as a content producer, think of yourselves as a marketeer. Because I can go and buy someone else’s product if I want to. So ultimately give the people what they want, sell to them the thing that they’re asking to buy from you.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
The holy grail for every company is to say, who is our customer? And what do they want? Well, the holy grail has been reached when they’re telling you what they want. They’re literally advocating for telling you everything you need to know,

Ed Abis, Dizplai
I know, I’m not the only person that sits watching. You know, we have political programming here on a Sunday morning in the UK, and I’ll sit there and for an hour, all I tend to do is rant at the TV, my wife and daughter just go out of the way and leave me to it now because it just fed up of hearing me, but I’m doing it because I’m seeing the person who’s interviewing the guest, not asking the right questions. I sat there, knowing what the right question was. And you’ve got an engaged audience that if you just ask them, they would tell you and ultimately, as a presenter, it’s less on you because I understand you don’t want to upset the person you’re interviewing. If you’re going to say, well, this is what my audience think rather than what I think it also de-risks your position as the presenter interviewer because ultimately, you’re using the audience’s opinion to ask a question, not your own. And also when we know we can do this, you just need to change production. When the politician answers the question, get an immediate response from the audience at home, whether they agree or not, with what that politician just said and throw it back at the politician holding them to task. I just don’t see it happening. So I’m looking for a brave political production team who wants to do that. Because we know the mechanics of how to get the audience to engage that immediately and also how to give that opinion back immediately so we can do that in seconds.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
I was just gonna ask what other sports is it obvious vehicle for what you do local broadcast television like here in the States, I know you’ve got your BBC and kind of main programming here. And I live in Denver right now we’ve got like, four smaller affiliates like ABC, NBC, CBS that do their own local news, like at 10 o’clock and six o’clock and seems like this as a production research opportunity could fundamentally change the way they operate. Are there other vehicles for Dizplai to kind of work into politics and news?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
As I got older, I guess I’ve become more interested in politics and news. I think that’s just the reality of when you age, and I started to become like my father in that sense that only ever seems to watch political and news-based things. I think local issues for local broadcasters are really, really important. And this is an opportunity for local broadcasters in mind, you have an opportunity to really grasp what the burning issues are of the local electorate, and use that in a way to hold politicians to task that we just don’t do right now. If I see a politician being interviewed right now by a presenter, I want them to be held to task and I want that presenter to ask the questions that everyone else is asking and the presenters just not quite grasping, because they’re working from a script. And again, it’s hard. I’ve only done a very limited number of interviews myself as its not my day job, and it’s hard to listen and follow the script, I get it. We can present what the audience are thinking within seconds to what that politician just said, and put it right in front of the presenter. Surely that’s a better way to go with it.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
There are these tentpole moments that galvanize the sports world like the World Cup, the Olympics and the NFL draft is another. The NFL Draft is an interesting one, because for essentially four days and 300,000 people now watching in the audience, and you have millions watching it around the world and everyone is waiting for their team selection. And then they’re all online going, “Is this the best pick for our team?” How do you think about these tentpole moments? And what are the opportunities for Dizplai?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
Similarly, we have cricket in the UK, which is not quite as big as the NFL but a big sport for us in the UK and England. And last week we had the The Hundred draft. So The Hundred is one of the formats in cricket. And we did that live with the English Cricket Board (ECB) whereby it was a combination of live data, but also fan generated content fans were asking questions of the studio guests. You’re absolutely right – for large parts of that draft experience, there’s nothing happening. What do you do to fill the gaps in between? Ultimately, it is a talk show of sorts. But what we are using there is fans to help to drive that editorial narrative of what they want to see. We’ve done a similar thing with TNT sports in the UK. We’ve worked with them for nearly four years on this, they have rights to the UFC, but they have rights for the weigh-in as well. Now what happens is every so often someone stands on the stage, and stands up (flex muscles) and walks off again. And like okay, so at face value, that’s not very exciting, is it? But what we’ve helped them to do is they now do that as a live stream, which has now become a live broadcast. And now on linear TV but it started on YouTube, whereby we’ve wrapped it all with engaging graphics. So as those fighters are coming on the stage, and you get their weight we create these nice graphical solutions that appear down the left hand side, you know what the weights are for the fighters, they’re running polls throughout this about who’s going to win the fight and they’re bringing in questions. You’ve got three pundits who dial in live from wherever they are in the world, and it becomes a talk show for that hour and a half – then it becomes an experience.

And the reality is, it started out with people who just go onstage standing up, but it’s turned into a whole talking experience that’s been so successful, that it’s not just on YouTube, now they put out on linear as well. When I talk about these rights that exist that people are not tapping into – actually those are the things that the fans really want to see is behind the scenes, the things they never get to see. That’s fascinating.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
There’s like an example here in the United States with Travis and Jason Kelce. Jason just retired,Travis may play another year, but there’s talk that they may outpace their career earnings as players in terms of their opportunities to now turn their experience into a media entity. I’m kind of curious what you think about this evolution of the athlete as a media entity and creating their own content, and how do you think about Dizplai playing into that with the work that they’re doing?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
I think the one thing fans see from the way they do things is the authenticity that they bring, like they are authentic – you can see how much they care about each other in each other’s careers. You can see how open they are. And they’ll talk about anything, right? I think people want authentic experiences. They want the type of content that in a lot of ways has always been pushed away from because everyone’s so media trained.

I totally get how they will grow their own media network of sorts, but they’re not bound by the conventions. I always said this: Whenever you’re doing this, don’t limit yourself to YouTube, just cast everywhere. You’ve got audiences everywhere. You can go out to as many different places as you want.

I’ve seen some really great examples recently. The ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) did it the other night where the draft was streamed live on The Hundred YouTube, it was on the ECB, it was on SkySports YouTube – they made sure that was being seeded in lots of different places. I did a post about this recently as well, like, you know, Overwatch have done the same thing. They’ve gone out to like 15 to 20 different channels when they do this, it’s just casting broadly. We call it decentralized streaming. Because your audience is so fragmented in so many different places, it will give lots of opportunities to find the content you’re making. And this is what I mean, the Kelce brothers have realized that they started with a podcast that has become a vodcast, right? Because we really want to see the video. Well, from our perspective, what can we do? We can bring the engagement layer to it, we make it easier for you to be able to source, the fan content that really makes it pop, we can bring in the stats as well, which backs up any point you’re trying to make, we can then create the monetization opportunities on screen as well. Because ultimately, you know, you want to monetize it somehow. And that usually means some kind of brand wanting to either badge it or wrap it or be somehow involved in it. And we can make it all easy because everything we do is in the cloud.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
What are some of your sports tech predictions for this year?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
My frustration is almost like sports technology never moves fast enough. Like I said, I was doing streaming 15 years ago, I only feel like now we’re getting to a critical mass of people actually now doing it at scale. None of this feels new to me. And, you know, we’ve been around for a while in a different guise. And it feels like now that the market has started to catch up with us. I think I’m seeing more and more like Mobii, you’re part of this cohort, some of the stuff they’re showing me with low latency streaming that feels like it’s now starting to get to a point where it can become a thing that’s been around for years by the way those guys have, but what they showed me and how they’re going about it now – you can see every shot at every hole using low latency streaming.

That brings all sorts of opportunities around engagement around betting, you can see where that goes. I’d like to think what we do is starting to have a critical mass, ultimately, engaging our fans around non-traditional broadcasting opportunities, activating those rights. And again, we’re not the only people who do these kinds of things, right. And people will find other ways to do it too. And well, that’s great.

So yeah, those are interesting things that I’m seeing at the moment. There’s a great company out of Manchester called Rezzil. They’re working with the Apple headset and other headsets as well, and I know they work in the NBA and a lot of the NBA teams use them in terms of coaching as well, you put the headset on, and the live game that’s going on, you can actually look at your coffee table, and you can actually see it as if you’re part of the game. I know that Sky Sports are using it on Monday Night Football where one of the pundits puts the headset on so you can go and stand in the pitch and see where the players were when a particular action happened. Again, the Apple headsets are a bit too expensive at the moment. But as that cost starts to come down in the next few years, you can see how I might be a Manchester United fan who lives in Mumbai, I never get to go to the game. But I can put a headset on. And they’ve sold me my digital seat. And that’s always my seat and I’m sitting next to my friend who’s also bought that digital seat. And I feel like I’m there and I’m watching the game with a headset on. I’m waiting for that to arrive. I thought that would have arrived before now and obviously the new media rights deals have been uncertain for the Premier League and none of that is part of it. So it might be the next time around but I feel that’s coming. But like I said things never move as fast as you think they’re going to move. We might be five years away from that. But I think that’s coming. I think there’s opportunities with that. I really do.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
I know you’ve met some great companies in this cohort, so you can’t use them but give me a brand that’s doing something that you get really excited about?

Ed Abis, Dizplai
There is a company called Scenic that I really like. They do some stuff with the YES Network. What I like about those guys is it’s watchalongs, but in a different kind of way, where you’ll be in a watchalong with your friends. And there’s few people doing this kind of thing now, but ultimately, it might be you watching the Packers, and then they can bring in an ex-Packer player for 10 minutes to come and talk to you and your friends about what’s going on in the game. All your friends are dotted around the world, right, but you’re watching the game together. And you’re all in this chat and you can see each other on videos, it’s like a Zoom. But then this ex- player comes in, and he spends five to 10 minutes with you talking about the game. Now that’s hard to do for everyone. But I’ve seen them do that kind of stuff. And they’re doing it now with comedy as well, which looks amazing. Like, you know, you’re watching a live comedy show, and they bring comedians into, I think those kinds of experiences and they’re different ways of doing engagement.

Taylor Pipes, Boomtown
Well, thank you. And you’ve been very kind of giving me your time. I know you’re busy. And I really, really, truly appreciate it. This is really awesome to hear your chat about Dizplai. I’ve learned a lot and I’m kind of fired up. So thanks so much.
Ed Abis, Dizplai

Ed Abis, Dizplai
I appreciate it.

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