Why Care About Football?

We do care about the beautiful game of football, but this piece by Seth Godin is about some other televised sport, played with the hands whilst wearing full body armour, weirdly called “football” in just one country in the world.

The tribal culture is a common theme, sure, but I disagree on several points.

  • The tribe can be, and is, much wider, more positive, than any one team / club against another. The allegiance is to football.
  • TV suits real and fake football because it provides multi-angle replays – but this feature is common to any televised sport or any other event. Games that take place in smaller spaces, or where the action is highly static or localised benefit even more.
  • TV being asynchronous, of course you can see multiple games, including those you are unable to get to live (see live below).
  • The TV advertising model does NOT suit real football timing-wise, and that’s because:
  • TV beats live football, only if you can’t get to the game. You can’t be at two games at once. It is difficult, inconvenient and time-consuming and expensive travel-wise to get to multiple-games in any one day / week. Otherwise live beats TV – see tribal culture above. With real football, TV is no substitute for the real thing.

Yet real football does benefit enormously from TV investment, for the quantitative, multi-game, multi-angle, non-real-time benefits – even though the real thing is infinitely, qualitatively, better. Wonder which is actually the bigger business – the real thing or the fake version?

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