Twitter and NFL have recently struck a deal in which a slate of Thursday Night Football games will be streamed on Twitter. This deal came about in an effort to reach more viewers on alternative platforms to cable television. The target audience of this attempt is Millennials, who today, are increasingly not subscribing to cable television, but instead, are utilizing other forms of communication, such as streaming services, in order to entertain themselves. Ted Leonsis, owner of the Washington Capitals and Wizards, recently commented on the Twitter and NFL’s recent agreement in the following, “If you want a sobering experience, walk around college dorms, they have their iPads and they don’t have TVs anymore.” Leonsis continues to explain that these same students replicate these conditions once they graduate college and are not subscribing to cable television plans.
How can a single generation change an industry so greatly? By following the most recent trends. As Millennials continue to further technological application and advances, we see the capabilities become available to live-stream and involve the viewer more during a broadcast. By attempting to create the next new innovation, we see the ways of life change for the follower. Hence, why the way Millennials act and think today is so vastly different than the generations before them. Millennials also take in information differently, such as through Twitter and online news sources, where technology is a more pliable medium for the live update platform in which a vast majority of people get their news. To translate live-tweeting into a viable viewing platform for sports may create an innovative viewing experience for fans alike. Once football season begins again in September, we will see the capabilities of Twitter as a live-streaming platform as well as its impact on the ratings of Thursday Night Football, which may or may not create a new opportunity for other sports franchises to expand their viewing base beyond the television.