The Utah Jazz are most commonly known for their excellent teams from the 90s. Led by a superstar tandem of John Stockton and Karl Malone, and coached the legendary Jerry Sloan, that Jazz team perennially made the playoffs and appeared in two NBA Finals. In fact, many believe that team would’ve won multiple NBA titles if it weren’t for Michael Jordan and those pesky Bulls.

"Where Are You Watching" segment allows Instagram photos from fans to appear on screen.
“Where Are You Watching” segment allows Instagram photos from fans to appear on screen.

With a team with such a rich tradition of winning, and a squad full of talented youngsters with massive potential, Jazz fans have much to discuss. It’s no secret that when watching a game, fans of a team love to comment on the action going on in front of them. However, there has never been a way to engage all people watching in the same conversation. Sure viewers can connect over social media alone, but this usually leads to several segregated discussions where only a handful of the audience is involved.

To solve this problem, the Jazz have partnered with Vidpresso, a leader in the implementation of social media into broadcasts. Because of this collaboration, Facebook posts, Tweets, and Instagram photos with the appropriate hashtag are featured on Jazz television broadcasts, as well as the video display system in the EnergySolutions Arena. Now anyone attending the game, or watching it elsewhere, can watch the social conversation unfold and have their thoughts read by fellow fans.

Say Trey Burke crosses up Steph Curry and hits a step-back jumper in front of the home crowd. Facebook posts and Tweets could come up on a ticker at the bottom of the screen, all from fans discussing the top-play worthy shot they just saw. Simultaneously, the video display system of the EnergySolutions Arena streams the same conversation. Also, throughout the duration of the match, fans can take Instagram photos and see them appear full-screen on the ROOT Sports television broadcast and arena displays.

Social posts appear on ticker at bottom of the screen
Social posts appear on ticker at bottom of the screen

To this point, the integration has been used in three Utah Jazz pre-season games and each regular season contest. During the season opener against the Houston Rockets, television screens and the arena’s display system flooded with social posts from fans eager to connect over the action. It was such a hit that #HOUatUTA trended nationally at #6, even while Game Seven of the World Series was being played.

The following night saw similar success when the Jazz traveled to Dallas to square off against the Mavericks. Throughout the match, #UTAatDAL trended high, but #HOUatUTA still ranked higher despite the fact that game had been finished for nearly 24 hours. These results go to show the impact of implementing social media discussions on TV and arena screens as opposed to solely over the television broadcast.

From here on out, The Jazz plan to use this technology throughout the remainder of the regular season and playoffs, if not eliminated from contention. Vidpresso hopes its integration continues its success so it can forge a long-term relationship that benefits both parties.

“I’m from Utah originally, so the chance to work with a team that I grew up loving is really a dream come true,” said Randall Bennett, founder of Vidpresso. “The Jazz are obviously forward looking technologically speaking, and it’s exciting to help their fan-base connect with each other.”