The ASP: It's on but who's watching? - Part 2
This article is the second in a three part series. Read part one here, or part three here.
Back in May Swellnet published an article that tracked the viewership of each World Tour contest since ZoSea assumed control of the ASP. ZoSea's business model – Dirk Ziff's benevolence notwithstanding - presupposes a large live audience to attract corporate sponsorship, yet the live webcast traffic has been far below expectation making ZoSea's job a tough sell.
Since that article there have been four World Tour events – The Billabong Rio, The Fiji Pro, the J'Bay Open, and the Billabong Pro Tahiti – each held in very different time zones and surf conditions thereby attracting a broad range of fans. This article will disclose and compare the numbers from all those events. There's also been one Big Wave World Tour (BWWT) event – the Billabong Pico Alto. In the previous article it was stated the BWWT has the potential to reach more viewers than the World Tour, so we'll assess that claim given the traffic the Pico Alto event garnered.
Before addressing the above issues one matter has to be attended to: The ASP's reaction to Swellnet's last article. Two weeks after the last article was published the ASP issued a press release to Surfline – no other outlet received it – titled “ASP Update: After four events, ASP releases webcast viewer stats + more.” The press release was unprecedented and it's hard to avoid the assertion that due to its limited release and content it was a rebuttal to Swellnet's article.
The press release included a 'by the numbers' breakdown of the ASP webcast, the first point being: “Over 1 million uniques to the event during window.” The insinuation being that over a million different people watched each event. However the use of the term “uniques” requires clarification, because the term on its own is somewhat ambiguous and as an internet metric can mean several things. Swellnet tried to contact the ASP to clarify the claim without success. At any rate, we'll revisit that number at the end of this article.
The last four ASP World Tour contests
Swellnet's first article covered the first three contests of the 2014 World Tour, each held in Australia and each in similar time zones so it was unknown if they were true representations of the ASP's global reach. Convenient viewing time is an obvious restriction to a live webcast, so how many fans weren't tuning in because of unfavourable viewing times?
Following Bells Beach the World Tour travelled to Rio which aligns favourably with South American viewers and North American viewers, both significant surfing markets, each anecdotally as large as Australia. Australian viewers could watch the competition late in the evening, European and South African viewers could wake to it in the morning.
Despite the low expectation for quality surf Rio could be watched conveniently by a large cohort of fans and so has a potentially large audience. The peak concurrent viewers for Rio occurred in the Final with a count of 37,687, which is comparable to the three Australian finals. However, the Rio Final was 20% below the peak concurrent viewership of 47,000 reached during a Quarter Final heat at Bells Beach featuring Kelly Slater vs. John John Florence. The average viewership for Rio was approximately 25,000 which was roughly in keeping with the Australian leg.
From Rio the tour moved to the Fiji Pro. Fiji's timezone makes it ideal for Australia and American viewers but inconvenient for much of the rest of the world. It is, however, a popular contest due to its consistently good waves and so makes for an ideal experiment. The proposition? That good surf attracts the fans. The experiment has its limitations but the numbers watching the 2014 Fiji Pro contest suggest the hypothesis is true; peak viewership occurred during the Final with 55,216. That's almost 20% above the previous 2014 peak of 47,000 at Bells Beach, and it should also be noted the Fiji Pro didn't get great waves this year, at least relatively speaking.
The average viewership throughout the Fiji Pro wavered between 25,000 and 30,000. By comparison Margaret River peaked at 25,781 and averaged considerably less. Also, the 'Kelly Slater factor' didn't come into effect quite as much in Fiji. As stated in Swellnet's last article, during the Australian leg the live viewers “jumped significantly whenever Slater surfed. Typically the figures would rise 25%-30% just before his heat and drop off soon after.” At Fiji the same pattern was observed though the rise was only between 15%-20%. Viewers, it seemed, stuck around to watch the waves.
Jeffreys Bay was arguably the most keenly anticipated contest of the year. Its cancellation two years ago was met with dismay by fans who conversely rejoiced when ZoSea announced J'Bay was back on the calendar. It presented another intriguing scenario: would the welcome return of J'Bay mean viewers flocked to the webcast?
For most of the competition the concurrent viewers of the Jeffreys Bay Open sat around the low 30,000s. Then on the final day, curiously just after the Final between Mick and Parko finished, the viewership peaked at 43,739. Again, that was very much within the range set by previous Finals. The resurrection of J'Bay didn't bring any extra eyeballs.
The Billabong Pro Tahiti was the most recent contest and everyone knows how that event unfolded. “Best contest ever,” said Kelly, and Occy, and a hail of online punters. It had incredible performances in amazing waves, and the ASP knew what they had on their hands. From the time the first positive surf forecast was written the ASP PR machine went into overdrive priming the audience with regular updates across social media.
The online blitz worked. Day 1 of the Billabong Pro Tahiti peaked at 57,721 viewers topping the 2014 record set at Fiji. Except for one webcast outage – which we'll discuss shortly – the viewership plateaued all day hovering between the high 40,000s and mid-50,000s.
The webcast outage (which happened during a heat between Mick Fanning, Mitch Coleborn, and Alejo Muniz) gave an insight into viewer patience. The broadcast went down at 6:23am (AEST) and by 6:28am the numbers had halved. Also, when the webcast returned – it was down less than 10 minutes - it took an hour to reach the previous viewership (see graph below). The take home lesson? Stoppages, even short ones, hit the audience numbers hard.
As it happened the Day 1 audience, although a 2014 record, was insignificant compared to finals day. A better campaign scenario couldn't be imagined: great waves were approaching, the winner would be decided, and the ASP knew the day it would happen. All the viewers had to do was tune in to be entertained.
And from the opening heat of finals day they did. The viewership started around 60,000 concurrents and steadily headed north, curiously tapering off just after the second Semi Final between Kelly Slater and John John Florence. The numbers then spiked sharply and peaked near the end of the Final. The viewership topped out at 118,911 concurrents, more than double the previous record.
Once again the Kelly Slater factor wasn't as pronounced, the Kelly vs John John Semi Final garnered 20,000 people fewer than the Final. And if the 'good surf attracts fans' idea was suspected after Fiji it was proven, overwhelmingly, at Teahupoo.
The Finals for each ASP World Tour contest are as such:
- Snapper Rocks - 32,633
- Margaret River - 25,781
- Bells Beach – 40,417
- Rio - 37,687
- Fiji - 55,216
- Jeffreys Bay - 43,739
- Teahupoo – 118,911
(Note: These numbers are for the English speaking stream only. The Portuguese stream is generally 10% of these numbers. During the Tahiti Final, however, they rose to approximately 25% no doubt on the strength of Gabriel's victory).
For the first three contests of the tour the peak viewership occurred outside the Final and always during a heat featuring Kelly Slater. Curiously that trend didn't continue for the following four contests where the peak viewership occurred in or around the Final. This may be a result of the ASP's social media campaign getting traction.
After seven contests the World Tour has been spread across many time zones allowing us to gain a more accurate picture of their concurrent viewership. Average numbers during a 'normal' contest waver around 25,000 and peak around 40,000. At a spectacular contest such as Teahupoo they rise exponentially regardless of the local viewing time.
The Big Wave World Tour
In Swellnet's last article it was said the BWWT (along with the XXL Awards), “arguably have the potential to reach a larger audience than the World Tour.” In early July we had the first opportunity to see if that argument is true. A deep low pressure system formed in the far South Pacific Ocean skirting the South American continent as it raced northwards. Both the Quiksilver Ceremonial at Punta Lobos, Chile, and the Billabong Pico Alto in Peru went on amber alert. Winds associated with the weather system ruined the waves in Chile but they eased in Peru. On July 3rd the first BWWT held under the auspices of the ASP with all the concomitant resources they provide was held.
Contestants had four days notice the contest would be run, and in that time the ASP orchestrated a campaign across social media platforms and their website notifying fans of the impending contest. On the day waves between 15 and 25 feet (surfers height, not face height) broke at Pico Alto, a mile offshore from Punta Hermosa on the coastline south of Lima.
The first heat started with less than 5,000 concurrent viewers watching the contest. After an hour and many Tweets and Facebook posts from the ASP this number reached 10,000. It steadied around 11,000 viewers and remained between there and 12,000 for most of the day. The Final attracted the most viewers and the numbers peaked at 12,829 at around the same time Makua Rothman was celebrating his win.
So despite its potential the viewers of the Billabong Pico Alto were approximately half of the worst performing World Tour contest to date, that being Margaret River, and less than a tenth of Teahupoo. Part of this is can be attributed to the type of wave Pico Alto is. It's a shifting, grey, crumbly peak, that lacks the striking aesthetics of Hawaii's blue water or Mavericks' pitching lip. There's also another explanation: this was ZoSea's very first BWWT contest so it was a work in progress. Marketing and promotion being part of that exercise. Real answers will be found when (or if) the Peahi contest runs this season. The waiting period begins on October 15th.
How do these numbers check out?
The numbers that we've provided in these articles are for concurrent viewers, a quick snapshot of how many people are watching the contest at a particular moment in time. They aren't the total viewers although there is a relationship between the two. We have no way of knowing the exact total viewership for each contest as the ASP won't release those figures. The closest number we have is the somewhat rubbery “over a million uniques for each event” issued in the press release following our last article.
Although ZoSea assumed control of the ASP in 2014 they acquired it back in 2012. They spent all of 2013 doing market research with the help of sports marketing firm Repucom. "One of the first things we did was invest heavily in research by Repucom,” Paul Speaker said to Marketing Daily this year. According to their website, Repucom “Understand target markets through focused research,” and provide “Comprehensive market analysis.”
Last October ZoSea's Chief Marketing Officer, Michael Lynch, was interviewed by Marketing Daily and said of surfing's fan base, “the ASP found through research via Repucom that there are 130 million “hand raisers,” and 120 million bona fide fans of the sport.” As for the future, Lynch said in the same interview that “we are in business to celebrate and grow the sport worldwide; there's a potential to have some 250 million real fans.”
By any measure 120 million bona fide fans is way beyond any previous estimation. In 2012 the Kelly Slater Wave Company gave a very generous figure of 35 million surfers worldwide, yet the “120 million fans” discovered by Repucom has become part of ZoSea's media lexicon. See the number quoted by ZoSea staff and industry figures here, here, here, and here.
Obviously there's a huge shortfall between the surveyed “120 million bona fide fans” and the “million plus” that reportedly tune in, although of equal interest is Michael Lynch's current employment. After securing sponsorship with Samsung, GoPro, and Orbitz, no doubt on the strength of the reputed huge audience numbers, Lynch left ZoSea after just eleven months in the position. His current employment? Head of US Consulting at Repucom.
The ASP: It's on but who's watching? – Part 3
In the third part of this story we'll analyse the concurrent viewers of each of the final four contests on the World Tour, plus any BWWT events if they happen. We'll also investigate the shortfall in viewers further. Lastly, Swellnet has discovered a way to track the location of the ASP's traffic – where their audience is located. We'll breakdown the numbers for each of the surfing markets. //STU NETTLE
This article is the second in a three part series. Read part one here, or part three here.
Good article Stu. Loved the Scooby Doo- esque revelation of Michael Lynch's relationship with Repucom. Great sleuthing .
Can whoever is physically closest to the guy that wants to see a world with 250000000 surfers in it please kick him in the nuts for me ? Cheers.
The interview with Michael Lynch opens with a fact about the ASP's CMO: "...Lynch, who isn't a surfer (yet)"
That's who we're dealing with now Blowin. Someone who doesn't surf but is selling surfing 'for us'.
Never mind, we'll all be too busy watching webcasts to care about crowds...
Yes-believe it was a Freudian slip on their part when they named it Zosea-- (Zoo at sea)-- its probably exactly what Harder- Speaker ect. would like to see--a zoo at sea-- all 25ooooooooo tuning into the asp
So I wonder what the ASP/ZoSea's marketing rebuttal will be for this one Stu.
Good work Stu.
Fascinating reading - congrats Stu! Look forward to Part 3.
In this new media era, Zosea could win a few more fans if they responded.
Did the ASP come to Swellnet or put out a bid for forecasting companies to be the official forecaster for any event/year?
I see Surfline was the forecaster and Coastalwatch bought some advertising rights for chopes
Swellnet has previously provided forecasts for world tour events (did the Quik Pro and Bells for many years), but in recent years forecasting services have been absorbed into media partnerships, usually with the presenting sponsor (and from this year, directly with the ASP).
Sometime in 2013, ZoSea put out a bid to all surf publications to be media partners. Swellnet wasn't approached.
Interestingly, during every event this year we've been approached directly for forecast information, either from event staff, presenting sponsors, or surfers.
love your work stu cluso! I would love to hear from zozea too??? Come on boys, wade in? BTY if I was running their start-up, I would be over-the-moon with the 3X views at To'o. By memory from your 1st article 45k viewers was BEP at a $ level, albeit across all contests? So that number, as you say, underwrites the assumption that great surf is the best eye-ball dragger. In turn this should give hope to the BWWT gathering eye-ball momentum and - not to get too excited - but maybe less grovel surf for the WCT tour too???
It's long been suspected and now is proven true: big waves bring the punters. When Dirk Ziff's kick runs out ZoSea will be saddled with the commercial imperative, which makes it hard to see them persisiting with poor wave venues.
Fuel TV viewership not included?
No, not in this instalment mk1. There's also another small cable channel in Hawaii - Oceanic - that runs the comps live. I understand many people watch it on Fuel and Oceanic though I don't know the numbers.
Dunno if it's big surf Stu, more big quality surf.
Pico Alto was big and poor viewing, as I suspect many of the other BWWT venues will be.
Fiji and Chopes are of a different order to that.
Big, visually appealing, and life threatening too. The mugs triumvirate!
btw, part of the business model will include, as per the old ASP model, presenting sponsors offsetting costs through investment in the comp. In Australias case that is the taxpayer through various Govt bodies, primarily to bring bums on seats to regions to boost tourism revenue.
Those contracts will make it harder to shift to choosing venues purely on wave quality.
Further to Repucom's "120 million bona fide fans": In July Samsung and ZoSea made a surfing ad for general release - 'Every Day is Day One'. On the day it was launched it was shown on every single surf site I know of, big American sites, small Scandinavian sites, and everything in between. It's also been spruiked constantly on the ASP live webcasts. It's the most widely broadcast surf clip I can think of.
As of today it has been seen just over 1.3 million times. And that's not 1.3 million people either, it's 1.3 million views. The number of people who've seen it will be less than that.
Stu good point-and if you go to Stab Mag. -the ad got totally ridiculed-it was hilarious just to read their comments.on the ad......
i havent seen it
'Tis OK. I watched it five times to make up for you missing it.
So if good waves means viewers, its about time they fuck off with the Rio slop and put back Keramas.
The question looks like it will quickly become how, given these figures, can public companies justify their investment in these events? And then, if they can't, is there any business model that will support professional surfers in the style to which they have, perhaps unwisely, become accustomed to?
bindboy--good point--even if there 200,000 viewers --it seems like a drop in the bucket to the number of people public companies would want to reach-to try and sell their wares.--It seems there might be a growing resentment from real surfers-towards the surf industry companies also-as line-ups get more choked and clogged-thanks partly to the surf industry and their advertising...
Those questions get right to the crux of the matter BB. Pro surfing currently exists on the generosity of a non-surfing billionaire, and the new owners have gone to market with viewer numbers that are now being proven to be hugely, massively, inflated. From a pool of 120 million bona fide fans just 1 million tune in? How can that be explained? More importantly, at least for the genuine fans and athletes, where will pro surfing be left once the philanthropy runs out and it has to fend for itself?
You boys have opened your third eye (sorry Blind Boy, couldn't resist). The exclamation point to all this hubbub is that the hubbub is still just a tiny hub full of bub. Everyone doing cartwheels over cracking 100k viewers in "the contest of forever" forgets that number doesn't come close to registering with any minor niche sport audiences. Forget the fact that we're likely to return to a pedestrian 30-40k at Trestles, what does 100k mean to anyone wanting to support a "sport" where all the "rebels" do is try to paint lines on the ocean?
More "deals" with YouTube? More "deals" with ESPN where the highlights of a contest are shown a month after the fact in between women's bowling and tractor pulls?
Shoot, this "contest of all time" couldn't even break out of the ESPN "XGames" basement of non-relevance to the mainstream world. (hint: Garrett McNamara and Laird have done so many times over... and KS has had some token pieces written about his Lance Armstrong-esque dominance).
Is this a bad thing?
I think not. Look, I unabashedly would love to see the ASP completely demolished and any thought of painting lines on the ocean deleted from our memories. But it ain't. So why not embrace the niche, within a niche, within a niche that we are and turn it into Pirate Radio? Forget Dirk Ziff. His pockets are already running low and how many more suits are going to be willing to throw 30 million into the toilet? And why the hell would you, as a surfer, want to see another suit do that anyhow?
What the fuck does "professional" have to do with the word "surfing."
I'll let Derek Hy.... I mean Blind Boy tackle that.
For now, I applaud Stu for doing what I consider the only REAL journalism in the surfing sphere right now. There is no second place. Or third.
Looking forward to the demographics portion in the 3rd installment. As we can see by the commentary on surf blogs, Twitter, and Youtube, old white males have a LOT of webcast time on their hands. Perfect demo for all aspiring spopnsors, eh? :-)
Peace and love to you all.
Excellent article Stu. The number of future participants in surfing is scary. Maybe Webber wave pools is onto something but the "surfers" won't " know the feeling" like us grey nomads / baby boomers. Love the whole swellnet site, service and stoke.
Stu, great read - really appreciate the work that must have gone into collecting and collating all the stats and figures.
I just saw this afternoon the the Cape Solander contest as been given the green light for this Saturday, is there any way Swellnet would be able to gather the same stats from this event for comparison to the ASP / ZoSea viewer numbers? Given the supposed 'spectator lockout' from the national park it will be interesting to see how many people tune in to the webcast...
Stu , can't speak for everyone , but I stopped watching after the JJ - Kelly Semi .
Now this was mainly due to work commitments in which I could only choose to not work for so long during that day . I won't join the Gabe bashing , but lets just say that prior to what he did in the final his lead up was less inspiring .
I'm not singling him or his surfing out , its just that the Kelly - JJ semi was the competitive crescendo in my eyes . Unfortunately I think the only other inspirations ( for my eyes ) were Hog and Owen . Both of which peaked too early " competition wise .
Anyway , I just don't think that the seeding helped , Gold singlet or not .
I'm almost certain that Wimbledon amongst other grand slam events and perhaps some golf events choose their own seeding regardless of " world rankings " ... Perhaps the sheer anticipation and eventual scoring crescendo could have seen numbers tipping 150,000 peak in the Final ...
Whilst we are at it , perhaps the TDF could be copied again . And there should be other " things going on carried on throughout the year. Perhaps a green rashie for the highest scoring season long " Tube rider " , a blue rashie for the highest scoring accumulative "Aerial " surfer , and a white one fro the leading rookie .
all other competitors should be in either red , black ........ and "skins" for the three man heats , things might be interesting at Bells during those heats !!!???
It seems this type of ongoing / accumulative " points score " contest could give the commentators to drawl on about in quiet heats . I did notice how much they went on about the " rookie " comp , and Andy award etc .....
Agree Southey, Medina has defitely got lucky with the draw after seeding 1 after Quikky Pro.
His round 3s have been
JJF in Margarets (JJF had a round 2 heat)
Bede in Bells
Logie in Rio
Freddy P in Fiji
Arritz in Jbay
Hog in Tahiti
Only Logie challenged him with a buzzer beater in these heats. He will get rookies for the rest of the year. I'd say the title is his unless he gets injured.
I've said similar comment to this in a previous posts. Get rid of the 1 on 1 with priority. Too often, I'm sitting there watching perfectly good waves go unridden, often after the priority surfer prevents the other from catching a wave. So boring. Bring back 4 to 6 person heats and finals, inside having right of way. Better still, increase the length of the heat and make it best 3 to 5 waves. Then you will have action.
Awesome Stu-I'm almost in shcok --some one in the surf world who is not afraid to stand up and speak and show the truth...Gotta pull out my Dora quote--"These few Wall Sreet flesh merchants--seek to unify surfing-only to extract the wealth". It seems to fit Zoosea -Terry Harder and Paul Speaker to a T.......
Dora was closer to the mark than you realiseTony. ZoSea has recently established an office in New York - not Wall Street but close enough.
The problem with ASP is their media strategy.
The events are great, they are world class live broadcasts.
The online view figures are very good for a sport.
I imagine the cable figures would be good as well.
'If' they want to appeal to a broader audience they need more of the event to go on live 'free to air' TV (not cable).
i.e. The first days are on cable and the last day is on free to air live.
For this to happen though, the event format has to change.
The events need to be finished in four surfing days (max) and there is simply to much dead time in the telecasts.
They would have to look at three or four man heats and cut out the 2nd chance rounds to fix this.
But at the moment, it's kind of cool having the feed up at work !
Bring back G-Land!!! Remember those epic contests from the 90s? I was only a kid but a friend had the 1997 (I think) Quicksilver VHS of the comp which we'd watch over and over. I can still remember the biggest floater I've ever seen - courtesy of Danny Wills.
What I can't believe is that there isn't an Indo event every year. In its dry season it has to be one of the most consistent surf regions in the world. Probably more reliable than the South Pacific, which has two events. No doubt there are easier places to live stream from than a remote national park in East Java, but I reckon satellite links would do the trick and if the good waves / viewers correlation is correct, there should be plenty of people tuning in.
Not that it was a WCT event, but did anyone have much interest in the US Open at Huntington Beach? Grovelling out air reverses in 3ft? Not me.
surfers watch surf contests and that's about it . the broader viewing community just aren't going to embrace a sport that is in the hands of the gods for its playing surface . can you imagine a lay day in the US Open of Golf !
I wish you wouldn't mention golf as a sport it is a pastime and the most boring one on the planet to watch. To use a well worn dysphemism, I would rather watch paint dry. Now Motogp there is one sport that rocks not sure on the viewers on that one but it would be huge. The numbers Stu has be quoting seem to me to be minuscule if they want to prop the thing up. One AFL footy club probably has a bigger budget than the entire ASP and there are 18 of them from a piddly little country like Oz. Time to go the grand slam route. 6 big prime surf events then others on another level.
Yeah either increase the scoring waves or go overlapping heats. I think it went to two wave counts to slow the hassling down but now with priority , it would be great to have the scoters increased, and I did like the idea from an earlier comment that maybe they should have to claim one scorer, that would make them think twice be fore they put their arms in the air after every wave!!
Call the Titanic! 100k viewers. We've found a new ship to sink our money into!
...and the one thing that hasn't been mentioned in these two articles is women's surfing. Touted as the saviour for pro surfing, and supposedly a large reason Dirk got on board - Mrs Ziff being a huge fan. Yet the numbers for the women are staggeringly low. Many people won't want to hear it but the viewers drop significantly (think between 50%-70%) when the broadcast crosses from men to women. Only had the Aussie events and Fiji to make that assessment but that's a fair sample.
more than 1.5 million people turn their tellys on to watch home and away every night
I guess that makes Daryl Braxton Australia's most famous surfer.
For some perspective, if there were really 1 million fans actually watching this contest... the ASP would be in the mix with Saturday Night Live for ratings. It's fucking true: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/25/business/media/nbcs-ratings-plummet-fr...
Just use common logic and look at the latest top 25 Neilsen ratings and look at what the bottom feeders in the TOP 25 get for an audience. If the ASP was even SNIFFING these numbers, sussed by real IT people unnauseated by doing actual research (read, not asking their mailman if he watched the show) - they would be overwhelmed by sponsors sucking their weenies hard enough to get them live NETWORK TV coverage.
Instead, they can't even get a readable rating on Fuel TV Australia... which, by it's own admissions, has never, even with it's top MMA matches, cracked much more than a million plus viewers on one-off events.
It just marvels me mind there are so many pro surfing tragics who live an alternate life as existential surfer / fisher / writers... the ultimate paradox indeed.
Bring back the Rip Curl Search: Lennox Head.
See who shows up without their cheerleader costume.
Thanks Stu for the informative articles.
Oh how the wheel turns.
Wascally Wabbit, the previous pied-piper of Swellnet criticism has become an unlikely swooning fan of the editor.
Why do you you and your "ilk" want me to be so wrong? Put aside most of your paychecks for a moment...
Although, I do find the "paycheck" accounts lacking this evening. I'm sure Patty Hurst will turn up tomorrow.
It sure seems like someone is doing the equivalent of comparing the sales number between donuts and kale shakes. they both make money irrespective of each other.
Did the invention and popularity of traction pads dent the sales of surfwax?
bunny boy, this old media you speak of, and work for, are they not dying a slow death? checking THEIR respective Alexa numbers for obvious clues, mate. it sure looks that way...
They are trending quite the opposite direction of the new tour.
Speaking from experience, Alexa data is wildly inaccurate (for Swellnet at least) so I wouldn't use that information as a basis for anything.
First of, Yew! for Swellnet!!!
Plenty other sources for web traffic figures, Stu.
As to these entertainment comparisons, everyone must be aware of Hollywood accounting. yah? Rotty, maybe you can write a wiki entry for surf accounting. Or something.
Has something been lost in translation...?
The concurrent figures I took straight from the ASP's YouTube page.
The "miilion users per event" is a quote from the ASP.
The "120 million bona fide fans" is also a quote from the ASP.
The shortfall between the two was calculated by me. Is that the accounting you have a problem with?
Most crew I know watch it on Fuel and often in Pubs with large numbers.
Also, my cuzzy told me he watched it live on TV in NZ - why you don't include this Stu?
Have you really done your research on whether TV is running across all the major surf regions, Surely Brazil runs live? - or do you think the world is now just web???
OK, fair enough. I don't know many people who gather in pubs to watch it (what pubs are open at 6am?), but we all have different experiences. Oceanic Cable in Hawaii has a small viewership, Fuel I'm not so sure about, nor your cuzzy's NZ hook up. At any rate if they made a dint in the shortfall between the 120 million and 1 million I'd be very surprised.
If you find a pub that is open at 6 am and playing the surfing live could you please be kind enough to let me know about it. ?
To quote the Rottmouth
The exclamation point to all this hubbub is that the hubbub is still just a tiny hub full of bub.
That's Californian Hubba bubba Gold!!!
ASP could pull through with Gopro and Red Bull....if Billabong can pull through then there is still hope for the ASP.
So you don't know these things - Have you dug in and researched -- go get the NZ network, check the forum on your own website when J'Bay was on - lots of fans talking about watching on Fuel (me included) - that timezone certainly suited watching from the pub.And what about Brazil? They running live on TV? Your heading says "It's on but who's watching? -- - to run a heading like that and only focus on web I think is flawed on your behalf - be fair and research, TV still gets a lot of eyes I think.
I'm one of the Fuel TV viewers, guessing from online comments I've seen, that perhaps the greater percentage of viewers do watch the contests online.
There are more than a few (although hard to gauge actual numbers) who do watch the asp feed on Fuel TV in surf clubs and yes pubs too Bob's 2, esp in surf-orientated areas and even some surf shops have Fuel TV for the frothers.
I watch on Fuel. More reliable than the stream by far.
hmmmm --- Stu and BunnyBoy --- maybe change the title to ASP It's On but who's watching You Tube??? That works, then you won't have to do any research!
On October 15th the ASP issued a press release stating "Respective international linear broadcast deals will be finalized and announced in the coming weeks." Nothing was announced except Fuel TV. Oceanic Cable in Hawaii has run a few comps but I'm not sure if they've run all of them - they have a tiny audience anyway. There are no media agreements in NZ that I'm aware of, or that Google is aware of. The ASP is usually very proactive about announcing these agreements.
In my last article I outlined the ASP's focus being online. For instance, "The webcast is the key interface an ASP event has with its fans," said the ASP's Dave Prodan (there's more to prove the point if you go back and reread it). Regardless, the shortfall in numbers, as is the main thrust of this article, is far beyond anything television could make up for.
Lastly, I'd be wary about taking comments from friends and forum boards as indicative of the wider audience.
Yes its on, but who's watching on youtube - brilliant
Research skills incredible.
try this heading - It's not on Google so it's not live in NZ
Never mind the research, try this maths: 120 million bona fide fans - 1 million fans who tune in = 119 million mystery fans.
Total population of New Zealand = 4.5 million.
My mama's 90 and she's a fan Stu and Bunnyboy. She saw John John on the news the other night - he's her favourite surfer. Is she watching it?
...and this is the question upon which the whole argument turns!
See ya Bob.
Never mind the research
Does anyone watch the show that each event runs on channel 9 after each event?
Is that show, which has USA commentators only run in Australia?
Never mind the research says it all
There's no way it was on in NZ, we are still watching the replays from Saturday nights Beldisloe Cup.
Largely the Fuel numbers would be insignificant I would suspect
I reckon I watch Fuel about 10% of the time, only when I'm at home and it's on. The rest of the time I watch it at work online. I haven't watched Fuel since the Margies comp ended on a Sunday afternoon.
You *yawn* Stu but as ridiculous as it sounded I tell you my mama is a fan and saw john John on the prime time tele -
Perhaps it's time to go back, dare I say research, to your connection from part 1 - "For this article I spoke to the Managing Director of a Sydney media buying agency." Maybe read his wisdom there.
There is a world out there beyond youtube and prime time tele is one hell of a eyeball world - I saw Tahiti on every sport news channel news this past week and I watched it and took interest, like mama - If you think that is not watching well I suggest you yawn and ask your Managing Director media connection about those types of eyeballs.
And while you're google researching, could you also google the population of Brazil?
You get the surfing on the News sports all the time in Oz, which reflects the fact it's a fairly mainstream endeavour in this country.
What about the US? Did Teahupoo get thirty seconds on the mainstream news broadcasts there?
To answer your question: no. It ran on ESPN 2News which is their sister channels and got about 20 seconds of coverage. If it doesn't happen in 'Merika then it really doesn't happen :-)
Of course, you could say the same about Pipe. Which no mainstream networks care about, aside from the highlight reel and footage of someone almost dying.
That's the key.
Great article Stu.
Aside from the fuel debate, is there any info on 'after the fact'...all the guys I surf with, watch surf with, have an arvo drink with, are usually to busy at work to get more than a 5 minute look at the live feed on a work day. But it has become a bit of a custom to gather and watch the heat analysers together-do we rate? I'd guess from anecdotal evidence on building sites that there could be as much as a 10% rise in audience after the fact....still along way from 120M hey!
Heat analyser is a funny one Woohcs. It appears to be popular with fans but, at present, there's no way to advertise on it, therefore no income derived from the views. In theory you can watch every wave of the event and not see a single advertisement, and that's simply not sustainable.
That tells me either heat analyser numbers aren't terribly high or something on that front will change soon.
Bob's 2... companies dont pay advertising $$ based on the chance that it may get a small segment on the evening news... because it is not guarenteed to happen and your only getting 1min tops of coverage time... better to just buy a 30 sec ad on tv, rather than stump up a lot more to sponsor the whole contest and even if it does make the news, what if the winning surfer is sponsored by another company? then you're paying money for their ad space and may only get one mention of your brand name... or none if you are samsung and its the billabong pro... would samsung have got any mention in the evening news for their support of the asp? the answer is no and thats the problem
do you know what channel your mate was watching it on in NZ? because it wasn't on any tv program guide
there are around 2.5 million foxtel subscriptions in australia... and if you look on ozTAM then fuel doesnt even rate a 0.1% rating for viewers across australia
if the asp and zosea are trying to sell advertising to people based on viewers watching the evening news to get 1million people then they have no chance
as for the population of brazil... if sooo many of these people were watching then wouldn't the viewer numbers for the portugese webcast be higher?? because again their is no tv channels which hold the rights to braodcast it there
Uhhh, yeah. Marketing 101. Surf brands got away with telling people they had millions of viewers for 30 years before called to the floor. Network TV? Not so much.
That's why RedBull hides their numbers.
They're about 10x smarter than any surf corp.
Comment of the thread. Hands down.
hey Stu, reckon you'll be able to get numbers for the Red Bull thing on at Solander?
Nah, I think Red Bull will be streaming that through their own media player which doesn't have viewer stats.
Stu and BunnyBoy - 5 minutes research - http://www.skytv.co.nz/tv-guide-search.aspx?category=Programs&search=Sur...
"There are no media agreements in NZ that I'm aware of, or that Google is aware of. "
Prediction: Start bagging the network and numbers --
What of Brazil?
I didn't get the chance to watch the US Sport News Freerider! Next event I'll fly over and check out all the networks
For what its worth Sky Sport in NZ decided to pick up the Fiji comp this year probably because we had 2 NZ girls in the event. From all accounts it rated pretty well and so they picked up the Tahiti Billabong event too. Everywhere I go this week in NZ people are talking about having watched Chopes on Sky and that includes lots of non surfers. It also got more than a minute on channel 1 mainstream news which never happens. I'm guessing Sky must have been pretty happy with the numbers because they've yesterday announced that they're going to do Trestles as well. Plenty of stoked punters in NZ
Great research Stu!
I think Pooman meant that it was a late inclusion and an unusual event for NZ. Not likely to attract many viewers? (internationally speaking)
Ouch, looks like the kiwis are watching,
not according to google!
of course ABC -- NZ -- they are a pests...4.5mill.....why even research, they are not part of the international community - very unusual, 1 event, then two then 3! And 1 minute prime time - come on, it's NZ - they also a mainstream endeavour - it means nothing to Stu, BunnyBoy and Freeride
Bob 2 Bobs:
You're trolling skills stopped in Encinitas. Go back to school child.
Damn the Kiwi's hey, always dropping in and spoiling the party - and damn TV as well and never mind research, let's just talk Youtube - thats where it at.
Bob 2 Bob:
Do you, honestly believe the ASP tour contest could get 1 million plus viewers yet not be able to secure ANY sponsor for JBAY or FIJI - two very high profile and high quality waves?
Also, what network coverage did you see Teahupo'o coverage on? There was zero in California, Oregon, or Washington. Not a second. It was on ESPNX Games footage... the equivalent of nothing.
All the Fuel TV rankings have been put on TV: @SUrfMediaTruths
You need anything more to fulfill your laycheck, cunt?
I'm not taking sides here, stu your research is focussing on web casts, I know what you said, but how do these other mediums get there content, fuel, sky, nightly news anyone who wants to broadcast,
I was lucky enought to watch it on the net, because I work for myself and just happened to be in the office, funny that, but in the past I've seen it at the pub on fuel, usually not live, but replays,
I don't think you can dismiss all of the other ways to watch, a lot of small audiences may add up.
There lies the problem, really how many can watch it live on the interenet, compared to how many would watch it when they can.
I'm not a fan of competition surfing in its current form. It's not fucking tennis, it's not man on man
I want to watch the best guys surfing waves, not prioritizing position to stop the other guy from surfing,
2 hr heats 10 blokes in the water, depending.g on conditions, no hassling next guy in line, just blokes surfing 5 wave score,
Then I would watch it more,
Also, Bob, why do these small numbers hurt you so much? I mean, if they were so obviously high before, why not back in their glory instead of begging Dirk Ziff to bail out a bankrupt orginaization?
Are you illiterate BunnyBoy - read up -I saw it on all networks where I live and cuzzy Greg saw it in NZ and I told FreeRide I couldn't get to the USA to check the networks - Damn - I'll buy tickets tomorrow and fly over for the next event just to check it out - or maybe I don't need to --- I'll just believe your dribble.
Those numbers are too small to quantify. That is a fact. Until YouTube, the ASP never existed as a quantifiable unit either. Hard to believe. I know. Like New waking up from the Matrix. But not all surfers care about pro surfing. Let along non surfers. In fact, of the 100k who watched the peak of Chopes, I would guess less that 10k were people who didn't work for or were related to people in the surf industry or its media.
Japan has a huge surfing population.
I searched and searched and not a blip on free to air tv or across the 6 sports channels I have on cable.
I had to see it on the net.
Right on brother. We can watch the Trestles numbers, live, together. Share a few beers. Enjoy. The Decline.
China will say ditto.
Also, ask how many Brasilians watched the English feed over the Portuguese feed.
I know the Poto feed surprised me the most, how small it was.
We've always been told it's a huge market.
I saw on Twitter than some prefer English to Porto broadcast for consistency and they hate the Porto broadcasters. Ironic. But, in the end, how big is the Brasilian market?
Their pockets don't seem as deep as Dirk Ziff thought, obviously.
Rot guts, that's not what I asked, and untill all mediums can be collated, accurately we won't know for sure the exact number, I'm not quoting for or against, just what is the real number.
I won't watch trestles, well a couple of heats maybe, but if it was replayed at a time in real time, every wave, but cut out the sitting, the priority wave stopping, and endless turpel waffle I'd definatly watch it.
Stew told you the online number.
Feel free to research the Fuel and Oceanic TV numbers all you want. Nothing thusfar is recorded. Nothing under a million is listed because... well, obvious.
The rest of your comment is a fun read into the mind of the stereotypical surfer.
Brazilians and Kiwi's hey -- who needs them BunnyBoy.
Never mind research but I'm gunna google Brazils population - one day!
Sounds like some fine scientific calcs. Right next to, " The milkman next door said he saw it" extrapolation.
Keep trying Bob.
Dirk needs you.
why is it so hard hard for some people to understand that surfing is what it is? Surfing.
Surfing doesn't exist in ANY scaleable form in the real world.
If surfing doesn't exist and no one is making any money from it, then what are we taliking about
I am just talking about surfing. You're obsession with capitalism is another story.
The active NZ survey claims roughly 150k kiwis participate in surfing/body boarding, from that figure you would lose 80% whose level of participation consists of grabbing the kids body board and getting washed through the flags at Whangamata on new years day. So we have a regular surf population of 30k tops and of those how many are interested enough to sit and watch a contest that runs erratically over 10 days? Maybe 20%, so we have 6000 kiwis possibly watching a surfing contest, what would you pay to reach this audience? I've seen more people at an All Blacks training run.
To claim NZ as a bastion of hope for the surfing business model is folly. Remember this is a country where the top ranked surfers resort to crowd funding to get to contests. I believe Quiksilver only sponsor a 15 year old school boy and shapers resort to seasonal fruit picking to get by in slow years.
Why the fuck bring facts into it mate?
And to to the lad below me... way to pass reading comprehension 101 in OZ.
Me into capitalism, you narrow minded deusch,
I want to watch the best surfers surfing waves
Can't you read, I think not
Your hatred of pro surfing clouds the reality of what really is,
The asp may flounder, but it will never go away, Huntington beach and the circus that it is is proof.
If you bothered reading my earlier comments you could have saved yourself an entire comment.
I imagine Gromfull curing Cancer during that time he took writing that ignorant comment.
What a world that would be...
Poor old rotten breath, you need to clean your teeth, it's getting a bit smelly.
I want to watch the best surfers , surfing waves, in a contest, but not the way it is now,
Coulnt give a fuck if they earn 2 mil, or 2 dollars, if their is 2 mil watching it or two,
But I do know they will always be around competing in one format or another, hopefully man on man gets thrown out the door.
Imagine another quicky pro being held over the last couple of days at Kirra with only 2 guys out, farking joke, what a waste of waves it would be
We did. And the views didn't top 40k. Kelly & Parko. Lulz.
Bahahahaha, open your eyes there more to the world than wingin about pro surfing, I was watching the footy,
Didn't realised I meant that much to you, thanks for your attention, your waiting for my response
For Bob / Roller:
The relish the number of people that tune in for whatever youtube considers to be long enough to consider them a view. Not unlike savvy pro surfers and their marketeering peers. Probably less than 4 minutes (prove me wrong), maybe as little as 90 seconds (taking a Stab at reality). So if you watch for 90 seconds, see that it's lully, and that it's an Aussie Journeyman heat and think time is better spent taking a shit, turn it off, and come back an hour late to watch Kelly, that's 2 views.
If, during the gap between the semi's and the final, you and 20,000 other people switch off the feed to get a drink, and then log back in 20 minutes later, that's 20,000 more views accumulated.
When you consider that most people were watching the event during work, and therefore logging in and logging off in between actual work, possibly as much as 8x each, you can start seeing how the view count increases way beyond the concurrent viewership.
And then there's things like the NFL, which provide really interesting numbers regarding the total viewership vs their concurrent viewership, and there's not nearly an 8x gap as we've seen here, yet an NFL game goes for just about four hours = half a days surfing.
So... blah blah blah....
yea, competitive surfing is getting zero ESPN coverage in the States.
and no sponsors are tossing crumbs their way. no one's getting filthy rich off of these facts.
Way to read Bob.
You could have saved all those links and just read my comment:
The ASP is relegated to ESPN X-Games Basement. I could add to how far down in that basement they reside, but your excellent Alexis analysis would cover that. Because.. you know who owns Alexis.
AT the end of the day, it's good to have these discussions. 15 years ago no one challenged the status quo or the cartel that SIMA formed. Stu published the facts (that were published on Twitter months and years ago) - but with the clout of non-Anonymity.
Bob knows all about SIMA. Dontcha Bob?
You might want to cite something besides the Liquor Store tabloids for your "sources" on highest paid athletes.
King Kelly falls somewhat short on this list: http://www.forbes.com/athletes/list/#tab:overall
When I'm at the pub at the next event, I'm going to win on the Trifecta -
Stu, BunnyBoy and Freerider
"Never mind the research!!" quote from Stu - makes him a certainty for 1st place.
Let's meet up at Trestles with Nug and share a few.
Good times will ensue.
Meanwhile, enjoy the fucking surf!
BTW - I'll use my social security money to place the bet, then use the next few cheques and the winnings to get the airfare to USA to analyse the sport news - Just sayin!
I am somehow attracted to the fact that these articles inspire no name Amerikans who are part of Steve Shearer's 'surf tragics' into endless debates.
Stu Nettle must be the happiest man in Australia right now.
Which makes him the 2,100,001 happiest man on earth! Yew! ;-)
Much as I enjoy writing these articles and the subsequent debate, the ironic thing is that they don't do much traffic, relatively speaking. Compared to cyclones, wavepools, Billabong's corporate woes, and mid-pack freesurfers towing into outsized slabs, the large majority of surfers just don't care. Seems they'll take pro surfing or just as happily leave it, and that says more than any article could.
surf tragics unite!
nothing defeats corporations except the power of community: the tragedy of BlasphemeyRottmouth.com. Opportunity lost when RedBull spruikers moved in.
btw, on Day One of the New Dawn when Pro surfing finally topples over into the antediluvian slime, to be dug up and theorised over by generations as yet unborn, what liquor will pass your lips?
hahahaha Stu......thats hitting below the belt.
of course you are right Stu, you dont watch it, nor does Free or bunnyboy and you never mind the research --- absolutely brilliant!
Actually Bob I was telling you not to mind the research, because amongst your histrionics you've been conveniently dodging it, the repeated quotes from the ASP that the webcast is the single most important broadcast tool etc etc. This isn't me saying it but the ASP. Yeah, there are other ways to watch it, but the numbers are tiny compared to the webcast and so don't change the shape of the argument. Which is: the ASP needs as many people to view the webcast as possible because that's where their sponsors advertise. Not on Fuel or Oceanic. Geddit?
But never mind all that, I'll have some more reserach for you to ignore shortly.
Good update Stu.
Just caught up with all the comments here, and it seems the key point has been missed by some ... that is, there is a HUGE GAP in the 'number of viewers'. What's promoted and marketed as compared to actually watching ...
So, we're back to the issue of the 'product', and as the concurrent viewer numbers show, the better the product, the more eyeballs looking at it, so again, I'll dig up the idea that the WCT "tour" needs a revamp.
Less surfers, surfing an event that runs in the peak conditions at epic locations. Run live for the tragic fans, and then compressed for the mainstream ...
Make the CT something to really aspire to, make 'em fight to get there, and fight to stay there ...
Now, there is a very different "product".
noting what you've spoken about with your upbringing and all, rottie, my condolences for how you've turned out, with all of your negatron outlook on all things in general...
the "help" you've been "offered" over your lifespan was nothing but shitehouse to 'da max. but, it's never too late. and just maybe a logical person such as Stefan can help you... maybe not.
but, it's worth a try.
call or email me. we can talk.
it's your only hope.
I'm feeling all nostalgic
Titos's vodka rocked and poured in a hi ball is all I need. For a few minutes.
Stu has nailed it. Shut.
I look forward to part III.
Peace and love.
I believe I said about five years ago that the only surf websites that make any money are the ones who excel in surf forecasting... Ie ones that have the planet completely surveyed. (Don't worry, the us government has your back).
The rest of the surf websites are living off dead meat... Either old surf companies dolling out the ends of their contracts or start ups who bought into the whole charade.
Stu at least tells it like it is.
People love to talk about wave pools, Tahiti, and last year at Fiji as the future of pro surfing. Tragic.
Cliche warning, ma'fuckers
The future is tomorrow morning.
Rottmouth says "at the end of the day, it's good to have these discussions" - I agree and I prefer they are civil. Some of this Rottmouth Vs Bob2Bob dialogue - just to name two - is really tiresome and childish. It would be great if the (interested) surfing community got it's head out of the gutter of bile and personal insult and starting looking to the horizon of intelligent debate.
Stu has presented some interesting facts, some would say ground-breaking. He hasn't claimed their irrefutable, nor complete. How about encouraging him to develop his analysis?
BTW read the Billabong results on-line today. Key points from my perspective:
1. Their turn-around strategy is showing momentum - real business people know that "Rome wasn't built in a day." In context, if I were running ZoZea I would be thinking To'o has given me a lot to work with, across all distribution channels.
2. Their greatest failing is they don't have consolidated ERP's (data platforms) that allow them to compress and analyse what's really happening in their customer base? Sounds like the surfing industry doesn't it? 20 years behind best business practice.
It might take Stu 2-3 years to come up with a strategic viewpoint on the ASP - at least he's started the process. All I ask is that some of you have the decency to stop throwing sand in his eyes or alternatively using his viewpoint to pre-load your personal, unsubstantiated vitriol on to others. I for 1 am very interested in seeing this story develop.
the only thing worse than a guy who mixes alcohol with his psych meds ... is a narcissist on said meds and brand named sauce.
rotty explained. Yew!
great article Stu....amazing how many people are not watching Live.
Is Live surfing watchable for people who are not passionate Surfers.....me thinks not?
the debate should be is $800 K per event for Live webcasting really worth it.....??
It seems to me the broadcasting is for the peripheral audience which alienates the hard core surfer viewers......but does not have enough of a non-surfing audience to make ends meet.....or even attract enough surfers.....
It's interesting to note that in Australia surfing Australia claims there are 2 million surfers,but if my memory serves me correct the Census showed only 300K surfers who surfed once a week...
so what are the real numbers........its pretty obvious that the marketing divisions of the surf Co's who have been running surf comps have been bullshitting the accounting dept , justifying the spend of a couple of $million per comp...
I actually spoke to Claw last month in France and he told me that there were 3 million viewers for the Bells final..........hmmmmm
Great comment radiation. As I said before I think the real issue for both Billabong and Quiksilver is that as public companies they can no longer afford to invest in promotional events that fail to reach a significant audience. More fundamentally their success was based on an authentic and original culture which no longer exists in the same way, so they are now out there in the clothing market competing directly with everyone else. The surf clothing industry rode on the back of a new attractive youth culture. You cannot buy that or develop it through a marketing strategy. The great advantage they once had has now gone, forever.
Sorry Stu, why should we doubt your research skills? Google tactics superb - you were right onto the NZ thing and even found out NZ's population! Great research.
Did you follow up with your marketing executive about prime news coverage and eyeballs? Don't bother - it's only in Australia according to Free -- NZ, doesn't count, that was just a random thing and being Kiwi's we worked out that they don't count...it's not happening anywhere else - especially places like Brazil - My trifecta is safe!
Over and Out this time.
A quick bit of reading before you shoot off. The following compilation constitutes a small part of the research that went into this article, along with compiling and reading over 10,000 data points, numerous phone calls and emails, and observations built upon years of media viewing. There are several reasons why TV viewership was not included in these articles. To start with, the only data publicly available is - in our minds - fraught with undersampling and therefore dubious in accuracy, compared to the YouTube concurrent viewership numbers which we’ve independently tested away from the ASP World Tour broadcasts.
Also, the channels won’t release detailed (i.e. time series) audience numbers so any top line number stated (“X million people watched the competition on channel X”) doesn’t allow any analysis of the peaks and troughs associated with each event - which is one of the most interesting part of this discussion.
But regardless, every single piece of evidence we have is that the ASP are trying to channel prospective viewers to their website to view each event live. And that would make complete sense, the ads by ZoSea's overarching sponsors - Samsung, Orbitz, GoPro et al - need to be seen by the surfing fans to make their spend worthwhile. The same ads don't run on TV screenings.
Also, at the start of the year when we kicked off this project, the ASP had given no indication that they had any TV broadcasts agreed to. Consider this timeline of events:
15th Oct 2013: "ASP is pleased to announce media/distribution agreements with ESPN [which isn't screened live], YouTube and Facebook across the linear broadcast, digital and social media spectrums. ESPN teams up with ASP as the exclusive U.S. domestic broadcaster for professional surfing in 2014 as part of a three-year agreement to showcase the sport’s elite events. The rights deal will allow surfing fans to see highlight shows immediately following the events." (source)
18th Feb 2014: "All WCT events will be webcast live on www.aspworldtour.com and www.youtube.com/ASP. In addition to the LIVE digital offering, there will be linear broadcast coverage on ESPN in the US and in respective international markets as well – partner announcements forthcoming.” (source)
25th Feb 2014: "In another world first for professional surfing, FUEL TV this week announced that in 2014 they would televise every stop of the men’s and women’s ASP World Tour LIVE plus every event on the Big Wave circuit in a landmark broadcast deal for surfing.” (source: Fuel TV press release)
So, the first announcement for a Live TV broadcast partner was made (by the channel, and not the ASP) just four days before the start of the first event. Since then the ASP have not issued - as far as we are aware - any press release announcing new TV broadcast partnerships.
And consider this: if the ASP do have international broadcast TV partners (besides Fuel TV), then they’re not doing a very good job of letting the world know where they can find the vision.
Firstly - nowhere on the ASP website does it list anywhere that each event can be viewed, other than the website. Surely this would be an ideal place to list any broadcast partner’s channel details?
Most other sports have this information readily available: see for example the AFL’s website, which has a “Broadcast Guide” page where you can find each and every match’s broadcast details, itemised via Free-to-air TV, Subscription TV, IPTV, Radio, Web and Mobile. It also lists Domestic Broadcast Partners, International Broadcast Partners, plus full Broadcast Rights info, International Cup Streaming, and an "AFL Grand Final Overseas Party Finder”.
The other place where the ASP could let everyone know is via their daily press releases. However, the information has been digitally focused all year. Here are a bunch of press release excerpts from this year:
So, the first three press releases listed Fuel TV as well as ASPWorldTour.com as places to watch the live vision. The last four events didn’t list any TV partners. In contrast, last year the ASP would frequently list all broadcast partners. For example, the ASP press release from the 2013 Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach included the following byline:
"The 2013 Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach will be webcast LIVE via www.live.ripcurl.com and broadcast live on Fuel TV in Australia and Portugal, ESPN in Brazil and MCS Extreme in France, Luxembourg, Belgium, Switzerland and Africa. You can also watch the event live via the Rip Curl Pro iPhone app, available free in the iTunes App Store.”
Want more evidence? Let’s take a look at non-TV and non-ASP sources.
On 25th Feb 2014, when the ASP officially announced the GoPro sponsorship of the World Tour, the GoPro press release stated:
"The first stop on the 2014 Samsung Galaxy ASP World Championship Tour is the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro Gold Coast from March 1 – 12. The event will be webcast live via aspworldtour.com and youtube.com/ASP”.
On 25th Aug 2014, when Target announced that that they were the title sponsor of the Maui Women's Pro at Honolua Bay, the Target Press release included the following line:
"The ASP is the world surf league. The ASP organizes the annual tour of professional surf competitions and broadcasts each event live at www.aspworldtour.com”.
If the ASP does have an international live TV broadcast network, they’re not doing a very good job of letting the general public know. Again, every single piece of evidence we have is that the ASP are trying to channel prospective viewers to their website to view each event live. This is backed up by a huge range of commentary from the ASP themselves, as recent as last month when the ASP toured New York (source: press release):
"This is the first U.S. professional surf tour coordinated by the new ASP -- which now broadcasts competitions live from www.aspworldtour.com -- where fans can immerse themselves in the athleticism, drama and adventure of surfing anywhere and anytime it’s on."
No, what about the Kiwi's??
just joking, but balanced view I think is valuable - it's not all about youtube, that I'm sure about and living in a coastal community with kids and their peers who surf, lots of them, correction most of them, are actually watching on Fuel - the landscape on Pay TV has changed dramatically in Australia.
5 years ago I never thought pay tv would hit in this country but now I ask about and most of my friends and myself actually have Pay TV! That landscape changes without me ever knowing. Fuel might indeed be an example of a pay tv success story on the back of their ASP coverage -
Maybe ASP are pushing their web side hard because there's a potential web tv merger coming our way - I don't know.
I'm just as sure the NZ example is relevant and would not be isolated to this little corner of the world - that sounded successful judging by Cuzzy's enjoyment of watching it and the enthusiasm demonstrated by the guy who backed up that example on this thread.
And my mama - as crazy as it sounds, those examples are relevant to the entire package of reaching fans and despite condemnation of that type of example, I think your marketing advertising guy sort of alluded to that sort of exposure as well -- Newsltd used as an example -- did you also check out the daily Telegraph throughout Tahiti?
Anyway - I have Kiwi hertiage and we are relevant, sometimes.
I know TV. Worked in the industry for two decades.
Pro Surfing "contests" has not, is not, and has never even been discussed as being put on their radar.
So dream on, Bob.
which goes against quite a few comments inbound here, but, as highlighted earlier you are illiterate!
The Tv world of 2 decades ago that you worked in has changed Bunnyboy - and is further changing with lower audiences spread across more options and channels - quality content required
I have worked for FX for seven years.
I love that you always have something to say. Just don't make a fool of yourself with things way out of your league. Stick to low cost motrgages sold with higher rates to low income peeps. You got that game! SUrfing, you're a big meh...
People, Bob's anecdotal 'evidence' is what him, his granny, a few mates, and the sheep do at a pub in goddamn New Zealand! I'm now absolutely convinced Bob knows what he is talking about.
Please , I implore you to get blind boy to do your missing data research .
To quote him " he's all about the raw data " ....
Atleast if you get some info on TV numbers , it may stop these two idiots from turning everyone off what was truly great work by yourself ...
And you won't get many kudos deliveries from me , it's not in my DNA . So soak it up .
Well done ...
I think Stu can handle it southey. I wouldn't know where to start looking for media numbers!
Pro surfing will always be awesome.
Not in hindsight, but in the experience for the surf fan today, it will always be next level. Always has been like that.
It matters little, how many eyeballs watch it.
In fact, it seems surfing is stronger with fewer.
So long as there are enough to motivate a performance.
The ocean will always deliver, and people will always try out do each other.
Whether it's for a million dollars, or simply for the title of champion.
The fact is it will always be the best it can be on the day.
But what does that even mean? Is the surfing talent pool of today severely stunted because of the lack of financial incentive compared to say, Soccer? Probably. Actually, yes.
Did that matter one iota on Wednesday? No.
When the Coke Classic was held, it was epic. When Teahupoo just ran, it was epic. Why?
Because it was elite surfing on today's stage battling for victory.
So what of it?
Of 1 mil or of 120 mil?
How does that affect the the performer and their performance?
Pro surfing is not on the verge of collapse, of zero interest.
This argument really to an end is about Gabriel & John Johns future salaries.
The eyeballs and money argument, in the end, is about the return to the athlete, and the return for Zosea.
So what if it collapses?
World travel is cheap and it's easy.
Pipeline will pump, and surfers will assemble to see who is best.
Bank on it.
Kirra used to pump off its head with 10 guys out in the 70s, now it's a warzone.
But what's the call now?
Best day ever!
See what I'm saying?
Relax man. Even when it appears worse, it is experienced as better.
The salaries may stumble.
The pros will be spewing, too, of course, having just missed the gravy train.
But the surfing, and the competition, will always get hotter.
It will always be on, and if you are watching, that's all that will matter.
The best waves ever ridden on the planet-by a so called pro or anyone-will always be the waves you catch and ride yourself.....whether its 2 feet or twenty
Well said shoredump, if they ditch man on man priority stooging, I'll watch even more of it
you can bank on that shoredump, day one of the Apocalypse and the only things surviving will be cockroaches and Pro Surfing.
& credit where credit is due.
@rotty, welcome back I hope you stay, despite everything, you have proved yourself & your opinion to be one of the most insightful and foresightful in surfing.
@stunet, this 3 part story has shone the light on a situation where most were blind. Holy shit, no matter how I play this out in my head, I can't see anything other than a pretty severe collapse of pro surfing as we know it. This article is ballsy, and will become part of pro surfings story, I think.
"Lastly, Swellnet has discovered a way to track the location of the ASP's traffic – where their audience is located."
Thats ballsy, tracking swell, tracking people tracking........!
Tracking your thoughts Welly. And when we do we'll take over the world!....mwahahahahahahaha
Heard you say numbers can't be tracked for the RB Cape Solander/Ours/Cape Fear contest tomorrow Stu.
Would be interesting to know viewer numbers for that though.
The thoughts of Sydneyites on one of their National Parks being closed to the public, taken over by a Thai company for that event?
Whether it is being taken seriously by the surfing fraternity in Sydney and wider community?
BR - Any lowdown on the viewer numbers for American Horror Story?
Tell me over a bottle of Caduceus Sancha 2012 while you munch your organic carrots..
-Lewis Samuels-I think- summed it up pretty well....."The surf industry is not surfing. My brief forays into the dark, sickly heart of the matter-- have reminded me of that.".....
I wonder if he was speaking about the Surfboard Industry...which is at opposite ends of the Spectrum to the Surf soft good Co's??
I have no idea why anyone would say something like that about the surfboard industry..I can only assume he was speaking about the industry-- Quickdollars- Hurl- Billabong- Volcom--(now owned by a French fashion company) etc. Samuel's comments also got him fired from Surfline . These companies and their greed- just seem to be in it for the bucks today-They could care less who wears their tees now-as long as they make a profit...
hey TTC....its funny that when we all think of the surf industry...we think of greed,bubbles,unsustainable...blah blah......
the Public Co's lose money hand over fist,and pay people obscene amounts of $'s to work for them...there is no profit in the non-hardware side of surfing and then there's us s/bd makers...who do it for the...???..but certainlt not the $'s...
so if they are not making a profit...what are they doing???
It is worth making the distinction between those businesses focused on producing the things we actually need to surf and those who make the bulk of their money by trading on the image of surfing to sell clothes and assorted non-surf items. Most of us have great sympathy for those struggling to turn a profit from the former and none at all for the latter who are currently pissing their investors money up against the nearest available wall.
Ya- I believe we need to make the distinction..Believe most people see the surf industry as basically- t-shirts and clothing- (non-essentials).--I believe it was Glen Henning who said-- the surf industry, with all the outside help they have had from Ceo's- from Disney- etc. --are not really surf companies anymore--just clothing companies--with a good hook. Think about it-makes some sense I think.
then there's us s/bd makers...who do it for the...???
...and we all whinge about the cost. Surfers are notorious tight arses and spending anything more than $700 on a board is a no go where I come from. I went to Bali recently and couldn't believe the boards Channel Islands were churning out and if you are in the know they can be purchase considerably cheaper than the list price. Couldn't do it I think it is great supporting a local home grown industry so I am going to put a plug in for Bean and Balin (believe me he isn't making a fortune).
Australia is the most expensive country in the world to make a s/bd...we have to import the resin, blank materials,fibreglass,etc...plus our wages are the highest on the Planet.....
cheap bds like C I made in Bali are good stock bds but old designs as Al hasn't shaped in 7-8 years....and C I don't have a designer shaper anymore ...they just use Al's old designs , and have monster marketing budget....
So I think C I are not representative of the s/bd industry .........
yeah surfers are pretty tight......I even wonder if a lot know the difference between an average board Vs the best bd of ya life.....buying stack bds gets ya good bds ...working with a shaper and getting a custom bd built to suit ,and getting the bd of ya life........I guess its just how good you want to surf?
Totally with you there Brutus as I have been getting boards from Balin since their inception (late 70's) have strayed a few times but now well and truly in the fold. As you say working with a good local shaper for a board that suits the local waves, your ability, age, etc.. is the way to go. It is one of the few things you do in life where you can get that working relationship with a craftsman. Custom motorbikes and perhaps pushies maybe but to a far lesser extent.
Speaking of numbers, inn't the most informative part in this comment section that fact that after pulling down massive amounts of capital for two full decades in the entertainment industry writing dick jokes, old Rottmouth and his entertainment executive wife, are now running around dressed as anti-capitailist?
They got there's!
If any of you ASP lovers haven't seen it on Rush TV, do so.
Watching it on Rush TV on a big screen is an entirely different experience to peering at the webcast on your device. It is astoundingly better. I don't subscribe myself, but I have friends who do. Do yourself a favour.
That being said, in May I was having a beer at the Rainbow Bay Surf Club. The women were on in sensational Cloudbreak on the very big screen. It was fantastic. The time was about 11:30 am. There was about 45 patrons at the club, most in the 20 to 40 age bracket. There were only 2 people watching. They were both smokers and I think the TV's proximity to the smoker's veranda was the main attraction.
I couldn't persuade my group to walk around the other side of the bar to watch.
Let’s get this all into perspective the best comp surfers in the world take surfing to the highest limits and are always pushing the boundaries of what is possible on a surfboard.
While doing that the surfing public ‘U’ puts the surfer in such high regard that a company sees an opportunity to profiteer from the surfers talents. Company ‘C’ gives the surfer ‘S’ money so ‘S’ can push the boundaries in surfing by surfing full-time and ‘C’ can sell product through ‘S’s’ profile and make money.
Then a bunch of non-gender specific, multicultural diverse group of well doers see an opportunity to make money from both ‘S’ and ‘C’. Hey presto a governing body ‘N’ is born. ‘N’ creates a World Championship Tour so all of the ‘S’s’ and ‘C’s’ from around the world can compete together to see who is the best surfer/company in the world.
‘C’ then approaches coastal communities ‘T’ around the world and promises that they will profit from their event being held in their ‘T’.
Hang in there kid’s I’m getting there.
Ok, S’s last wave was scored too high, or to low but the surf was epic ‘S’ may have won or lost and debate continues amongst those that care, in the wash up the ASP will say the judges did the right thing. They made judgment based on criteria and the prevailing conditions.
And so the show rolls on and the entertainment continues. So If you want to keep all the ‘C’,’U’,’N’ & ‘T’s’ happy go out and buy a new, wettie, board, shirt, shorts, mag etc. Oh, and don’t forget you can watch it all live!
@Stunet: Keep up the good work
Never mind research Bunny Boy , but what can you tell us about this from the ASP site - Sunday, September 7 at 2:30 p.m. ET/11:30 a.m. PT ABC's World of X Games will feature the epic competition in Teahupo'o. ASP fans in the U.S. can tune in!
Calling in your US TV 2 decade experience.
Pretty simple Bob - content is King, punch it out there while you have it.
those would be interesting ratings figures to get hold of.
Thats free to air in the USA.
Yes but never mind research, Stunet is only interested in Live Youtube -- nothing else is watched. Amazing journalism?
Is there any figures on where the viewers are in the world?
On another note Fuel TV (and the rest of foxtel) is a waste of time, they have so many programming problems you end up missing half the comp if you try to record it, if there is a comp worth watching these days and your t.v has a usb port you can just plug ya lap top in and hey presto! live chopes on the big screen
Google chromecast $48 - no hdmi cable , cordless connection from your computer to TV
Say you're a TV exec who's looking to get some ratings and score some ad revenue. Say you believe Tahiti was the best contest of all time like everyone else in Surf Media. Let's say you even believe the ASP's released numbers from the Tahiti contest were true.
Would picking the middle of Sunday afternoon on the opening weekend of the NFL be the place to put those highlights (another hint: they don't run any surfing live on ESPN)?
Second: you're fired.
If anyone wants to know about the Fuel TV numbers you can look up @SurfMediaTruths on Twitter. Stu Nettles research hits the ONLY thing that matters: concurrent viewership. The rest of the BS issued by the ASP to blow smoke up their own arse is jerk off material for guys like Bob or naive idiots who went down with the Surf Industry ship at Billabong, Quik, and soon, Rip.
Looking forward to the "market correction" at Trestles.
excellent analysis -- youtube is all that matters!
Actually, think about this --
Never Mind Research and this thread has brilliantly written off newsltd owned Fuel TV, Free To Air ABC in the USA nationally, the entire nation of NZ and my mama watching prime time sport news - amazing.....You tube is all that matters!
Why don't you enlighten all of us on the concurrent viewership, or even single viewer numbers of Fuel? Or even the numbers for highlights shown a month later on ESPN?
Surely the @ASP wouldn't be hiding their goldmine from everyone!
After all, it was only the @ASP who chose YouTube as their primary source of distribution...
Sorry, Bob. Facts hurt.
But let me know if you have any inside info on IPO's.
IPO's??? -- Must be an insider TV industry thing built on two decades experience. I have no idea!
Bob meet Ropes.
Fuck me dead, go off-line for a winter, come back and lo n behold, they've let rottgut outa the mental health ward.
How is the ol' pineal gland rotto ? What pills they got you on now ?
It's deja vu all over again
.......it's a miracle they are coming back from the dead!
Hi Stu,how many million viewers???
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 5 September, 2014 - Following the Billabong Pro Tahiti, the seventh stop on the Samsung Galaxy ASP World Championship Tour, ASP are pleased to announce that the event generated the largest live audience in the history of professional surfing. The ASP webcast delivered 2.2 million hours of live competition and reached more than 12 million households on live television.
“We’re just returning from the extraordinary shores of Tahiti and the event was a tremendous challenge for the athletes and a big milestone for the ASP,” said ASP Chief Strategy & Marketing Officer, Graham Stapelberg. “We are striving to connect more and more people globally to the action, adventure and athleticism of professional surfing, and these figures show that there’s a steady improvement in audience engagement and growth across all sectors.”
The sport and surfing world tuned in to watch the world’s best surfers face 20+ foot swells at Teahupoo, one of the most dangerous and remote waves on the planet. During the Billabong Pro Tahiti 1.9 million unique visitors logged on to ASPWorldTour.com a total of 6.1 million times. They, along with viewers on YouTube and other online platforms, watched 2.2 million hours of the live webcast, with 45-percent of the online audience watching on a mobile device.
Are the 1.9 m unique viewers watching??
Anyone who runs a website knows that the real, actual, flesh-and-bone viewership is less than the 'unique viewers' but there's no point nit-picking, Tahiti was an extremely popular contest - the best ever - and the viewership would reflect that.
Would major business such as Visa Express and Pizza Hut be stroking checks these day if the numbers were lacking? Heard that there was an advert of Kolohe ordering a fucking pizza in the barrel at Teahupoo. All during prime time TV, Sunday night football.
As has been stated before, good management makes all the difference. Yew!
The Visa commercial had nothing to do with the ASP. It was a FREE surf!
Derpa derpa derpa
Kinda like the Laird and Gmac commercials of he olde...
But no ones watching bunny, not tv, not news, not youtube and definitely not in NZ. I saw it on SportCentre ESPN which is on foxtell in Aust., does anyone watch that? No?
Bunny, a ferret has you by the neck.
Bob, I don't think even the ASP knew it was on in NZ. No mention in their press release today
- More than 12 million household reach from our broadcast TV partners that include: FUEL TV (Australia), ESPN (Brazil), Time Warner Cable (Hawaii), MCS Extreme (France/Europe), Sport TV (Portugal) and more.
And if you follow down the page, I'm guessing they really really want you to watch it online.
We encourage you watch all our events live, see competition recaps and more at www.aspworldtour.com.
Graham Stapelberg Chief Strategy & Marketing Officer
Fog of War!
OK, lets not watch it on TV because ASP dont want us to.
Hey bru, how about this modern world? Apparently there is a game called Depression Quest. A text based, non-video "interactive fiction game where you play as someone living with depression".....
Anyone else never hear of Depression Quest? Sounds like a big heapin’ basket full o’ fun!
If I was sitting home alone in the basement on a Friday night, I can’t think of anything I’d like to do more than pretend I was depressed.
Clearly, it's a modcon world. And if one happens not to dig online streaming top shelf surf contests, there's something for everyone. Yew!
And, on a appropriate second note, Brew, do you recall that old film where Marilyn Monroe's character observes the party full of aging, egomaniacal directors, producers, and writers, and famously states,....
"Why do they always look like unhappy rabbits?"
ehhhhhh, what's up doc?
Dafuq? Na fluffy, not a cartoon..... you're in the industry. You know quite well of what's spoken of.
STAB have just posted a good article about the latest happenings at ZoSea/ASP/WSL/WTF. Worth a read:
Interesting read Stu. It all sounds bloody precarious to me. Hindsight is wonderful thing but not signing Red Bull for the first year was a blatantly bad call.....
Great article by Jake.
Interesting to note that he's a full time journalist with ESPN - one of the three global media companies the ASP announced "Landmark Media Agreements" with last year (the other two being YouTube and Facebook).
However, Jake has written this piece for an independent publisher.
WE all love surfing and we want the ASP to flourish but it looks like it needs assistance. All interesting comments, but seriously it all lacks excitement as a live event, if you have wi fi or unlimited broadband, good but if not it chews up your gigs while you listen to fill in commentary and surfers letting waves go. The obvious answer is to make an hour highlights special, advertise it, broadcast soon after the event and the public will watch it, plus it will attract major sponsors. Make it two hours, put it on prime time and do interesting interviews with the surfers, do a doco on the surfsite and local culture and show all the great waves whilst building excitment about the changing scores.
But as a live event, even tahiti, where waves went through unridden, is not going to succeed. we live in a world of action now and people want action and entertainment. I thought todos would bring viewers, but it failed, why, hardly any waves were ridden. even have the show within a week of the contest and then announce the winners, best wave scored, best wipeout and give the audience a fantasy surf comp where they could win a prize at end of season, the viewers have to feel a part of the scene. four surfers to a heat if need be, score them for radical waves in shitty conditions, minimum of 6 waves surfed, 3 scored. c'mon, we have got the package, we have got the athletes, lets get this done, but include the public, let them feel as if they are a part of the greatest show on earth, surfing, only a surfer knows the feeling, let us now share that with all peoples everywhere. L.et's be visionary.
Dave- You're hired!!
Sorry Dave, highlights packages are boring as batshit.
You watch sport, any sport, to see things unfolding live.
Thats where the drama is.
But they do need more action, way more action per heat, as a minimum.
They keep saying the "product" is fine, but no-one keeps watching. They've market tested this product for forty years including twenty with the best surfer who has ever lived and will likely ever live.
The product is no good.
Keep putting the same product out there and get the same result.
ergo change the product.
Surfing just doesn't have it as a mass market sport and never will. It has always been an insignificant niche interest that the surf clothing companies were happy to fund as a tax deduction for the decades they were turning a profit. Those days are gone. Get used to it. In many ways the real tragedy is that they ever happened at all. The next tragedy is the hangers on, power junkies and wanna be celebrities trying for the Olympics.
Totally agree even as a surfer it can be very boring waiting and waiting for 5 to 30 seconds of action, imagine if you didn't surf.
If we ever get quality wave pools it could help in the fact that you could actually have comps advertised for a date and time and stick to it and produce action without long waits and produce an even playing field, but even then i couldn't see it being much bigger than it is now and its not like a wave pool is every going to produce a wave like pipe or something.
BB very interesting to hear your take on the situation. So do you think professional surfing will cease to exist & if so how long do you think it will take?
Based on this years profit & loss you would think it's going to be sooner rather than later.....
At this stage Rabbits the business plan seems to be " find some rich bastard who thinks it's worth 30 mill a year to hang out with Kelly and the boys and suck hard". Now this might not sound like much of a plan but there's a lot of super rich dickheads out there wondering what to do with the rest of their lives now they have more money than they and their assorted hangers on, parasites and exes can possibly spend in one lifetime. Sad, but whatever works eh?
On youtube alone, 150,000 people were watching the Women's final @ Honolua....
The reports of comp surfing's death have been greatly exaggerated.
No they weren't. I don't want to spoil the next article, but the first few days of the event hovered between six and ten thousand, while the last day doubled that number, reaching a peak at the end of the Final just over twenty thousand concurrent viewers.
Sorry to disagree, Stu, but whilst watching the Women's final on Youtube the number of viewers kept reading well over 149,000 on the live feed.
Have you got a screenshot? Like the one below, taken one hour into Day 4 (Tues, Hawaiian), which shows 1,234 concurrent viewers.
Out of interest, this particular day peaked at 7,300 concurrent viewers however if you go to the archive page of Day 4 on YouTube, it shows an 'accumulated' number of 61,580 views (i.e. same viewers watching multiple times).
This is where I think you're getting confused. If you look at the archive page of Finals Day on YouTube, it shows an accumulated number of views currently at 144,405 (which is in the ballpark of your number). This has nothing to do with concurrent viewers and is merely the total number of 'page views' of that video - that number will continue to increase slowly over time as people watch it.
No need to apologise for disagreeing, Roller. You can apologise for getting it wrong - 149,000 would make it more popular then even the best mens event, and by a long shot. However I wont be offended if you don't apologise, we all make mistakes, that's why we set up program to record the numbers, which we check manually along the way.
No apologies needed Stu, various videos will show varying viewer numbers for each individual video. While watching the full blown quarters, semis, and finals the live feed read upwards of 149,000 plus!
Even the boys and girls on the desk mentioned the combined sources and that world wide numbers were thru the bloody roof!
BTW, did you see Rosie Hodge,... at the desk, in the commentary booth, beach interviews, and on the back of the ski... Wouldn't be surprised if we were told the ASP had her picking up rubbish and scrubbing the loos....
Rosie, THE hardest working person in the biz! Yew!
Stu brah.... Yea now!... check the numbers.
144,451 folks tuned in right to the beautiful end.
Numbers were even higher earlier on on that final day of the comp.
Hey roller, stu and ben ... do you mind if I weigh in on this?
Roller, as stu and ben have noted, there is BIG difference in the YouTube stats of "viewers" for live and recorded footage ... what the swellnet team are publishing is the CONCURRENT VIEWERS for the LIVE event ...
What you have linked to here is the recorded footage, not the live event ... and yes, it does show upwards of 140,000 viewers, but that is the accumulated total of how many times that particular video footage has been watched ... think of it like the odometer on your car, clicking over the kilometers (or miles) as you drive ... the number will continue to rise ... and to complicate matters, if a viewer watches it several times, each time they watch it will count as another view (i.e. duplicate counts)
The 'concurrent viewers' for a LIVE event broadcast is a record of the viewers watching AT THAT PARTICULAR POINT IN TIME ... which fluctuates as people login and log off etc. This concurrent viewers is the key statistic for assessing the 'eye on screen' and the determining measure for the level of interest ... the trouble is, you can only get that 'concurrent viewers' stat during the live event and have to take screen shots like Ben posted above.
Is that as clear as mud?
NOW, stu and ben ... when's the next installment of this awesome info due?
Has anyone thought that the use of YouTube by the ASP (or whatever they are called now) is perhaps, was actually, a very bad move ... I mean, if they had their own broadcast platform they could have maintained the illusion, but now, with public info and concurrent viewers splat on the screen, it's a bit hard to keep the bluff going ... ;)
Good work swellnet team ... :)
Jeez Roller, that's the exact same URL Ben linked to in his comments, that also has the explanation attached (see also Wingnut's comment). Your credibility is taking a hit here.
@Wingnut, gonna post it in a week or two.
I reckon the ASP have gone a bit backwards this year when calling a lay-day. I mean we are on day 7 of 13 for Sunset, 6 of those days have been lay-days and I have no idea why - is it too big, too small, too windy?. Personally I wouldn't mind reading a short article or seeing a short clip of the surf so I can see first hand why they've called a layday. They don't even seem to have a link to the morning show? Get the audience involved all that kinda stuff. Gotta be better than nothing.
Did you surf brothers and sisters actually watch live on Youtube?.... Those 150,000 numbers were what was rolling all day during the last day of the Women's Honolua live event.
As to the Sunset laydays,... wait until tomorrow. 6-8 foot West swell due to hit.
Pipe will be more than alltime.... And Sunset will have many a competitor ditching boards on takeoff, backing out of heavy wedging 15 foot face peaks, and failing to go on the big sets... and basically soiling their boardshorts tomorrow, and tonite before anyone actually paddles out for the event!
Along with the other 150,000+ that will be tuning , i can't wait! .... How about you?
Err, hate to break it to you Roller, but you weren't watching it live but on a recorded feed. As for the numbers, you can believe what you want to believe. Me, I'll stick to the facts.
Stu, where, if at all, did you watch it live? ASP site? youtube? or any of the other places couch surfers could have squizz?...
that YOutube link was to the replay. Now, if you were watching it LIVE on Youtube, you'd have seen, and known for sure what the LIVE facts were, mate.
so, yea, tune in to the live youtube feed tomorrow. see what the live numbers say.....
6+ foot westy @ proper Sunset will blow minds...
and soil boardies.
FYI - tomorrow (Monday local) will probably start out very small and slow in the surf department. There's likely to be a good kick in new energy throughout the afternoon but biggest waves will be on dark. The solid incoming W/NW swell is due to peak Tuesday (local) with sets in the 8ft+ range (12-15ft+ faces) and fresh trades, so it should be great viewing.
My prediction for concurrent viewer numbers on Monday - after a slow start, it'll probably hold between 14,000 and 16,000 for much of the day, possibly increasing into the afternoon towards 18,000 or maybe even 20,000 (if the surf pulses well and word gets out across the web).
Tuesday should see higher numbers around 20,000 - 22,000 for most of the day (again, starting off much smaller and taking 2-3 hours to level out in this range).
It might even push towards 25,000 concurrents if the surf is fantastic and there's a high percentage of 'CT surfers still in contention.
Stu, true blue bru, swell is on the way.
have a squizz.... those numbers on the youtube cast look rather numbery.
The numbers look numbery?
Roller, ya brains rolled out of its skull. Put it back in.
Ben, Stu, any comparisons between the live numbers of surfing v other youtube broadcast sports?
When I tuned into the women's final it was about 5000 from memory.
Haven't been able to find a great deal of other live sports webcasts like surfing, let alone that of the peak global sporting body. Most popular sports are locked down to complex TV broadcast rights deals which disallows a live webcast, or similar.
For example, AFL does have a live webcast but it's restricted to mobile devices, and only for paid subscribers at $5 per week - that's $260 per YEAR to be able to watch live footy on your phone.
In any case if they are broadcast online, they often use streaming services - i.e. not YouTube - which doesn't disclose the number of concurrent viewers.
Oh, and the Womens Final of the Target Maui Pro started around 15,000 concurrents and peaked around 21,000 just as the last hooter sounded.
OK Roller, here we are. Almost halfway into the second heat of the day, and we're at 13,220 concurrent viewers.
Just another 137,000 concurrent viewers - 11 times the current number - and they'll reach the figures you claim the Women reached in Maui (and surely the Men would see a larger audience than the Women? It's certainly the case with most other sports). I'll keep an eye on things and post screengrabs during the day.
ah yea, the sanctity of math.
what viable online biz would not be digging on 144,503 Youtube views, (one of a few other platforms), right around finals time... concurrent of otherwise?
So is that an admission that you're wrong?
The only other sporting event that was streamed live on youtube was the yachting (another niche sport). One of sports greatest contests for the oldest trophy in world sport had less than 1 million viewers, but was live on various cable tv around the world. Here's the link.
Its looking pretty standard Sunset too. Good to see the young crew like Leo riding longer boards. It definitely helped in that heat.
Heat 5 for the day; 17,581 viewers. Actually a couple of thousand under my prediction, although we're only two and a half hours into the webcast:
"Tuesday should see higher numbers around 20,000 - 22,000 for most of the day (again, starting off much smaller and taking 2-3 hours to level out in this range)."
we'll wait for the finals, and the concurrents, but right now, that's 17,000 more than actually currently on the beach!
What size boards are they riding Mick - Free ?
I have no idea but they look like stepups. Chris Ward was on a short one though....maybe the commentators have said something...Sorry been surfing will get back on the web now.
Seth Moniz was on a 6'4" but I think he's an exception, most board seem a few inches longer than that.
" ... AFL does have a live webcast but it's restricted to mobile devices, and only for paid subscribers at $5 per week - that's $260 per YEAR to be able to watch live footy on your phone ... "
Wonder how many subscribers they have?
No doubt Zoseas would love an income stream from the live ASP events, but, I can not see it being accepted well ... using say, chopes final, at say 120,000 concurrent viewers, IF, big if, say 50% were prepared to pay, at say $5 ... a nice $300,000 income hit to the cash tin?
So, how many of us would pay?
$5 per week........an AFL season is how long ?
wingnut, beautiful site, bru. would love to own one of your crafts.
As to the numbers, those pesky numbers... 203,662, cumulative or not, they most likely will read well over a million once the Van's Sunset World Cup connie is done and dusted.
can we get a Yew?
I suppose one of the sadder aspects of this debate is that even if roller was right, the numbers are still too small to generate any serious advertising dollars. They are failing to attract enough interest to justify the present investment. You might once have been able to argue that surfers were fashion leaders and so were worth more per head but these days that is not something that could be seriously considered.
Maybe the ASP could offer Gina or Twiggy a few free surfing lessons with Kelly & Steph & in return they could stump up $30mil/year for the next 20years.........
whatevahs, skeptics and haters of free streaming live surf comps,
the cumulative numbers increased by another 3,.200 + in just the last hour or three. and we are only on day one.
when this test match is over will we see over a million?.. or what?
Word to 'da braddahs.
I would pay off all your insider trading fines just to hear you pitch "cummulative views" for a live sport event to a single sponsor.
The LULZ would be everlasting.
Rotty, insider trading? pffffft....
that's exclusive ground for career politicians.
Sorry for my ignorance, but what does LULZ stand for?
The teacher never made it to school the day we were meant to learn social media acronyms.
Apparently the horse she usually rode to work got its head stuck in a fence.
Anyone seen a schedule for the WSL for 2015 yet?
It's pretty strange Surfline have the scoop (again) on the schedule. But not even on the asp site (that I can find anyway).
2015 Men’s WSL Championship Tour
Event 1: Quiksilver Pro, Gold Coast, Australia, Feb 28 – Mar 11
Event 2: Rip Curl Pro, Bells Beach, Australia, Apr 1-12
Event 3: Drug Aware Pro, Margaret River, Australia, Apr 15-26
Event 4: Rio Pro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, May 11-22
Event 5: Fiji Pro, Tavarua / Nomotu, Fiji, Jun 7-19
Event 6: J-Bay Open, Jeffrey’s Bay, South Africa, Jul 8-19
Event 7: Billabong Pro, Teahupoo, Tahiti, Aug 14-25
Event 8: Hurley Pro, Trestles, California, USA, Sept 9-20
Event 9: Quiksilver Pro, Landes, France, Oct 6-17
Event 10: Moche Rip Curl Pro, Peniche, Portugal, Oct 20-31
Event 11: Billabong Pipe Masters, Oahu, Hawaii, Dec 8-20
2015 Women’s WSL Championship Tour
Event 1: Roxy Pro, Gold Coast, Australia, Feb 28 – Mar 11
Event 2: Rip Curl Pro, Bells Beach, Australia, Apr 1-12
Event 3: Drug Aware Pro, Margaret River, Australia, Apr 15-26
Event 4: Rio Pro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, May 11-22
Event 5: Fiji Pro, Tavarua / Nomotu, Fiji, May 31 – Jun 5
Event 6: Trestles Pro, Trestles, California, USA, Sept 9-20
Event 7: Cascais Pro, Cascais, Portugal, Sep 29 – Oct 4
Event 8: Roxy Pro, Landes, France, Oct 6-17
Event 9: Maui Pro, Honolua Bay, Maui, Hawaii, Nov 22 – Dec 6
even surfline are doubting the finances too
No mention of Samsung?
1 heard it was a 1 year contract with Samsung
Released through ASP on the 29/11, couldn't find a link on their website but google knows the way...
right here Steve-O: http://stabmag.com/the-wsl-is-30-milli-in-the-hole/
Looks like another year of the same ol' titty sucking.
Only question: who will pull out their teet to sookle? Don't think Dirk is in for another bath.
Rotty, you're a Hollywood insider.... do you know anything about accounting?
On a second note, the numbers for today's event just increased by another grand plus., and it's only day one!...
You keep linking to a youtube clip that is currently on DAY NINE of ACCUMULATED VEWS.
Sell that to someone and make yourself a fortune. I'm sure roughly 20k "views" a day of a live sporting event will knock down all the doors at the netw3rks that care about one thing: concurrent viewers.
You're right on top of the surf media internet. #WINNING
And Roller, even if the ASP got 200k live concurrent viewers today, which would break all their previous records forever, it wouldn't get them a commercial at a WNBA game.
I said it.
Rotty, you and your Hollywood colleagues must be soiling your banana hammocks over not this...
hey, no one can hack a live event! Maybe that's why the numbers are so massive. Yew!
Good reading article - uncovered far more than is covered. On a somewhat different track. Roxy Pro - Gold Coast 2014. Over 3 days ASP articles had Stephanie Gilmore from USA. Onwards into our current year and Dimity Stoyle was also listed as being from the USA within a press article. 18 girls in 6 heats. It is amazing how such a mistake can take place. We are not dealing with Olympic formats and large competitor based events.
I was further surprised when another press article reached me covering Mr Medina, covering his chance at being our next World Champion. The headline started with Media. It is not that hard to have someone proof read your articles. We are branching out to global viewers, however with such simple mistakes we look far from professional. To close. I was surprised that Bruce Irons did not get a start at the Pipe Masters or at the very least a slot into the Trials. Thank you. Bushy.