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US Open to Display Real-Time Social Commentary on 50-Foot Digital Wall

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 21, 2013 10:43 AM

Furthering the relationship between social media and sports, the US Open, running Aug. 26 through Sept. 9 in New York, is erecting a 50-by-8-foot social media wall next to Louis Armstrong Stadium to display real-time social media commentary.

The wall, like a digital water-cooler, will aggregate posts from Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and put them on display for some 700,000 spectators expected to attend the tennis event. "It also connects our global fan base, combining them with the live event and the attendee," Nicole Jeter West, director of digital strategies and partnerships for the US Tennis Assocation, told USA Today.

Whether at the event or watching at home, fans can get in on the action by tagging posts with #USOpen. Fans can also access event-specific social news via the US Open's official website, as well as sponsor sites from Esurance, Chase and Xerox. The feeds will be monitored, reviewed and aggregated by IBM and IDS. 

IBM deployed a similar effort at last year's event. The 'Game Changer Wall' combined analytics and competition data.

But the US Open isn't the first sporting event to get the social treatment. MLB's San Francisco Giants have an @Cafe inside AT&T Park that displays trending Giants-related tweets, Facebook posts and Instagram photos as well as check-ins and polls on a 12-by-4-foot social wall. 

Photo courtesy USTA

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