" 'I like to compare us to what TV networks were back in the '50s,' said John Bower, one of four partners who started SSN on a shoestring budget six years ago.It's a great honour to contribute at SSN over the past year, most recently with the Bower-produced (and -hosted) CIS Touchdown. You're all clicking over there to watch it, yes?
" ... 'They were breaking in a new medium, and so are we.
"Webcasting is indeed in its infancy, but it is growing and many are looking at it to increase audiences without eating up expensive TV time. CBC found that out during the Beijing Olympics when the success of its online live streaming surpassed all expectations. The CTV-Rogers consortium plans to air every minute of the Vancouver Games online and it expects record audiences.
"SSN (is) ... pretty much a mom-and-pop operation, with volunteers providing the camera work and play-by-play.
"Audiences are small, though have already exceeded expectations. Last weekend's OUA soccer finals, for example, averaged 700 viewers a game. Viewers, who include alumni living around the globe, are tending to watch entire games.
" ... The schools pay for coverage, though at less than $1,000 for a maximum of 100 games it's a pretty good bargain. Many schools have embraced the concept, and not just so they can watch their teams play.
"Carleton University women's hockey coach Shelley Coolidge calls SSN a 'great recruiting tool.'
" 'It gets the word out and gives prospective players a good idea of what we're about and what level we're at,' she said."
CIS fans given plenty more options online (Chris Zelkovich, Toronto Star)