(Running notes from the 6th Communication Days conference in Bienne, Switzerland)
Martin Kallen runs the organization of the UEFA Euro2008 football (soccer) tournament, which will take place in Switzerland and Austria in June 2008, one of the biggest -- in terms of TV viewership -- events in the world, right after the Olympics and the Football World Cup.
He talks about how UEFA is selling media rights for the event -- "trying to both maximize revenues and maximize geographical coverage" -- and about the new media platforms that allows for dividing up media rights: pay-TV, free TV, video-on-demand, public viewing -- big screens in gathering places -- mobile DVBH, mobile 3G, Internet. He shows a slide that details the current status of rights already sold in Switzerland (to broacasters, to telecom companies, etc): the last line says "no official blogs nor social networking sites". That's because 60% of revenue is achieved from television (with mobile rights as a new add-on) and on the euro2008.com official site they will have live reports and "a full experience for fans" (starting next Spring) and -- Kallen doesn't say this, it's my speculation -- they will likely do everything to protect these revenues by cracking down on bloggers re-posting pictures and videos etc.
For the first time, the UEFA will be producing the whole broadcasting of the eveng in-house (traditionally, it was "outsourced" to the national television company, but UEFA wants more control -- and more latitude to slice up the rights and monetize the images).
Mobile television: these big events, he says, are a good way to launch new services (see this previous post). What can be expected on mobile television form the Euro2008? All the goals, alerts, highlights (intertwined with messages from sponsors).