Sports Betting, Tech Advancements in Live Sports Broadcasting, and Adaptive Athletics: Sports Track Sessions for SXSW 2019

The Sports track will dive into topics such as diversity and equality in sports, the implications of legal gambling, and athlete entrepreneurship.

“The Sports Track explores the intersection of sport, technology, and culture with a focus on the future of the industry. Expect to hear stories of perseverance from athletes; how new developments, such as legal betting, impact the industry; and how technological advancements are changing the way we consume, play, and talk about the world of sports,” says SXSW Programmer Meaghan Hermann.

Dive into the Sports Track from March 8-10 to learn about topics like the changing landscape of sports betting, adaptive athletics, digital marketing for sports franchises, and more. Join us at the 2019 SXSW Conference and enjoy Sports Track sessions with primary access for all Badgeholders.

Sports Session Highlights

Adaptive Athletics: The Rise of the Super Athlete

Speakers: Scout Bassett (Athlete), Brian Frasure (Ottobock), Alena Grabowski (University of Colorado Boulder), and Blake Leeper (Athlete)

Paralympic athletes are breaking records at an unbelievable pace. At the 2016 Paralympics in Rio, 132 world records were set, and more than 200 records were broken during the first six days of competition. Paralympic athletes are using sports-specific prostheses to run faster, jump farther, and lift more weight than ever before. In the age of adaptive athletics, is technology providing an unfair advantage or is it increasing access to sports for a wider range of people with disabilities? Current and former Paralympic athletes will discuss the controversy that is reshaping the landscape of competitive sports with academic and prosthetic experts.

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How Gen Z is Changing the World of Sports

**Speakers: Jeff Toney (Dude Perfect) and John West (Whistle Sports Network)*

Young sports fans are consuming content differently from every generation before them. Given this group consists of 2 billion people globally, it’s increasingly important that content creators and brands understand the demographic they are trying to connect with and engage. Gen Z is no longer beholden to long, live sports games and commentary from old men in suits. They are re-imagining sports and entertainment media. Learn more about how to target and reach the Gen Z audience from Jeff Toney, chief business officer of the YouTube sensation Dude Perfect that boasts over 32 million subscribers, and Josh Grunberg, head of content, partnerships and talent at Whistle Sports, the media company that creates content for the post-millennial audience that entertains, engages and inspires.

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Pressing Engagements: Digital Interaction in Sport

Speakers: Shahbaz Khan (Minnesota Timberwolves & Lynx). Erik Nelson (Minnesota Timberwolves & Lynx), Julian Valentin (Colorado Rockies), Samantha Wood (Philadelphia Eagles)

Bring together an All-Star cast of social media professionals from across major sports leagues to discuss running the social media accounts for professional teams at the intersection of sports and business. Discuss trends in team and league social coverage, innovations and content differentiation across platforms. Explore best practices within the area as well as talk about the biggest challenges each panelist faces from the team side of the business. Highlight how the panelists and organizations determined their social voice and vision, then discuss how that voice and vision is implemented by an entire social media team across all social platforms. Panelists will also give their backstory about getting into sports social, and give advice to attendees looking for a career in the industry.

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Capturing the Beautiful Game

Speakers: Kevin Egan (beIN SPORTS USA), Pawel Kopczynski (Reuters Pictures), Shanna Lockwood (USA TODAY Sports Images), Lucy Nicholson (Reuters Pictures)

From goal cameras and aerial footage, to drones, virtual reality, and “going live,” capturing the sights and sounds of the largest sporting events require expertise and precision. During this panel, we’ll dive into new technology being used to showcase the beautiful game to fans worldwide. We’ll discuss what’s ahead including what we might see at the Women’s World Cup in June.

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Sports Betting is About to Change Sports Forever

Speakers: Laila Mintas (Sportradar Us), David Sargeant (iGaming Ideas) and Daniel Shapiro (William Hill US)

Americans like to bet on sports. Estimates are that 5% of us bet regularly creating an industry with revenues up to $400bn. But since 1992 sports betting was ILLEGAL in most states of the USA. In May 2018 SCOTUS changed all that and said states can decide for themselves if sports betting is allowed. States have reacted quickly with 8 states legalising betting and 15 more in the process of regulating. Regulated, and transparent, betting will reveal previously hidden scandals. The money coming in will change how we consume and engage with sports. The media and advertising landscape will dramatically alter to the demands of sports betting. Sports will be more entertaining. Legalised betting will change professional and college sports nationwide forever. This panel will discuss all this.

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Join Us For SXSW 2019

Purchase your SXSW Badge and reserve your hotel today to experience these sessions along with 10 days of screenings, showcases, exhibitions, networking, and more this March 9-18 in Austin, TX.

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