ESPNU Regional Television, on behalf of the Big 12 Conference, will be engaging fans on Twitter during the entire Big 12 tournament. Their twitter name is @Big12Network, and they will be accompanied by one of their on-air personalities, Doug Bell.
Doug Bell's Twitter name is @DougBellESPN. They will be sending out messages throughout the tournament. Bell is a sportcaster from Birmingham, Alabama. Doug has been the host of Studio 66 for 12 years and also does play-by-play for ESPNU college football and basketball.
I asked Mike Moore, Executive Producer of ESPN Regional TV, about the network use of twitter as a communication medium. Moore has worked for ESPN for 17 years and have coordinated ESPN Regional TV Big 12 coverage since 1994.
- What do you hope to accomplish by using twitter during the Big 12 tournament? Why twitter instead of, say, live blogging?
We want to use Twitter to engage Big 12 fans at home, at work and in the arena. Unlike blogs and Facebook which tell us "what happened," twitter enable to find out "what's happening." We hope to get the pulse of the fans during the games and then react on-air to their questions and comments. It also give the fans a chance to interact directly with people connectly to the Big 12 Network.
- Doesn't the use of twitter violate NCAA blogging restrictions?
The rules only apply to NCAA sanctioned Championships. Not regular season or conference tournaments.
- There are a lot of fans (like myself) who don't really understand how the "Big 12 Network" works. What areas does the Big 12 Network cover?
The Big 12 Network is the name of the conference's regional syndication package and airs on 40 stations in the Big 12 territory. ESPN Regional and the conference work closely on the distribution and content.
I would have liked to ask more questions, but we were working within a very short time frame.
Big 12 fans might find twitter a useful alternative, as it can be used to send updates to mobile devices, for comments, or score updates. Remember that all SB Nation sites can be accessed by mobile device, using the address http://mobile.domainname.com. for Corn Nation ---> http://mobile.cornnation.com.
You can follow our twitter feed @Cornnation.