CHICAGO (CBS) — The couch versus the stadium; that’s the challenge facing many sports teams when trying to get more fans in the seats.
WBBM Newsradio’s Nancy Harty reports watching a game or race from your couch has become a lot more interesting than it used to be, thanks to high-definition televisions and social media, when you can often find highlights online within minutes of the action in real life.
“The at-home viewing experience has become very compelling. The graphics, the 3-D, the HD technology; but I would argue that nothing compares to that emotional experience you get onsite at the event,” said Scott Paddock, president of the Chicagoland Speedway.
Chicago Cubs president Tom Rickets said once fans are at a game, the challenge isn’t over, thanks to smartphones and tablet computers.
“Instead of having everyone looking down at their mobile device to get information, we like them to look out at the field, and get the information they need right up there on a scoreboard,” he said.
The Cubs’ proposal to add new video boards to the outfield at Wrigley Field has been tied up in negotiations with the owners of rooftop clubs across the street from the stadium and city officials.
Ricketts said he thinks the team will make progress on that front soon.