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#pounditMonday, December 6, 2021

How to Improve Sports Broadcasts

It’s so simple, so basic, so easy, I can’t believe it’s never come up before. I can’t believe I never before thought of this. I can’t believe no companies have actually done it! How many times have you had to press the mute button on your TV because a play-by-play guy or analyst was ruining the game for you? How many times did you wish a mild case of food poisoning would send one of the broadcasters into the bathroom for the duration of the event? I know it’s happened with me, I know it’s happened with many friends, and I certainly know there’s an entire website based on this dream, and one based on their blunders. So check it: how awesome would it be if networks allowed you the option to choose your audio feed for a game, giving you the ability to mute the play-by-play guy, the analyst, the crowd noise, whatever you want.

Imagine a world in which ESPN gave you the ability as a viewer to mute Joe Morgan on Sunday nights and just let the soothing sounds of Jon Miller tell the story. How happy would you be to hear him say, “and what do you think about that, Joe?” only to hear silence. I know that would put a smile on my face. Can’t stand homer calls by guys like Rex Hudler? Select just the Steve Physioc audio. Had enough of Bryant Gumbel botching names? Cut him out. Sick of Billy Packer pronouncing games over before halftime? No more! I might not be an audio engineer, but I know all the different audio sources are fed into the same audio mixer — the broadcasters, the crowd sound, etc. Now if they separated each of them and then allowed the viewer to choose his/her own feed of choice, how money would that be?

I know it can be done — and networks are always looking for new ways to get their audience to be interactive, so this would be perfect. They could even market a new gadget or something and get people buying special sound systems that allow this option. Whatever. I just know that sports fans across the country would be clamoring for the opportunity to hit the mute on Morgan or Madden or even Gumbel. How awesome would that be?


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