beIN Sports Wins In Spanish-Language Cable

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Sustaining a strong viewership trend, beIN SPORTS en Español scored another ratings victory, with three of the top five sports telecasts of the day among Spanish-language cable networks on January 24, 2016. According to Nielsen Media Research, the Real Madrid vs. Real Betis match delivered a total average audience of 454,000 viewers on beIN SPORTS en Español. The other two of three beIN SPORTS en Español telecasts to top the day included the Atlético de Madrid vs. Sevilla match and the Network’s studio pre-game show, “The Express Preview,” which aired prior to the Espanyol vs. Villarreal matchup.

“We’re thrilled to see the continued viewership and positive reaction from our fans”

“We’re thrilled to see the continued viewership and positive reaction from our fans,” said Antonio Briceño, Deputy Managing Director of beIN SPORTS. “Satisfying our viewers’ thirst for the highest quality sports programming and content is our goal, and we couldn’t be happier to see the continued success of our LaLiga coverage and original beIN SPORTS programming.”

The Real Madrid vs. Real Betis match outperformed the “Somos LMX” original studio show on Univision Deportes, and prior to the Real Madrid matchup, an audience of 193,000 average total viewers tuned in to watch Atlético de Madrid vs. Sevilla on beIN SPORTS en Español. In fact, all beIN SPORTS en Español’s LaLiga matches which aired on January 24, 2016, including Deportivo vs. Valencia, averaging 125,000 total viewers, out-delivered competing network broadcasts including: Univision Deportes’ Liga MX match featuring Pumas UNAM vs. Puebla match, which delivered an average of 114,000 total viewers, Fox Deportes’ Bundesliga match featuring Frankfurt vs. Wolfsburg, which delivered 64,000 total viewers and Fox Deportes’ NFL NFC Championship broadcast featuring Arizona vs. Carolina, which delivered an average 104,000 total viewers.

Rounding out the top five Spanish-language sports telecasts of the day on January 24, 2016 was beIN SPORTS’ “The Express Preview” pre-game show airing ahead of the Espanyol vs. Villarreal match, which drew in an average 107,000 total viewers. All beIN SPORTS original studio shows feature a team of star-studded talent and commentators, providing in depth analysis and predictions of the anticipated matches.

Translators for Major League Baseball Clubhouse Interviews

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This piece of baseball news may have slipped by you in the avalanche of TwinsFest media coverage last week. But for players from the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Puerto Rico or anywhere else where Spanish is primarily spoken, it means the world.

Beginning this season, Major League Baseball will require clubs to hire translators to facilitate interviews with Latino players. The Twins, with so many more Latinos in their clubhouse these days, say they’re sifting through resumes and hope to hire someone by Feb. 21, when pitchers and catchers report to spring training in Fort Myers. MLB is subsidizing the program, founded through a joint effort with the Players Association.

For those of us with long memories of Latinos struggling to express themselves in interviews, it’s something that MLB should have done a long time ago.

Veteran Yankees outfielder Carlos Beltran, originally from Puerto Rico, spearheaded this. It’s tough enough for young players to establish themselves in the majors without worrying about mangling a second language in front of English-speaking reporters, armed with television cameras and digital recorders.

Beltran remembered his discomfort while breaking in with the Royals in the late 1990s. “When I got to the big leagues, I knew little of English and it would have been great to have someone next to me helping me,” Beltran told MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez. “I couldn’t really say much other than, ‘I feel good,’ and, ‘I had a good game,’ and, ‘I am happy I helped the team.’ Just simple and short stuff, so I didn’t do a lot of interviews. But at points, I felt I wanted to express myself a little bit more but I couldn’t, and I didn’t want to look bad with broken English, either.”

While Japanese and Korean players travel with translators, often paid for by their agents, most teams let Latinos fend for themselves. That’s what the Twins do, sometimes to their detriment. There was no translator to help Venezuelan reliever Juan Rincon in 2004, when he gave up a game-breaking home run to Ruben Sierra of the Yankees in the American League Division Series and said, infamously, “No one wants to be in my pants right now.”

Here’s how these things usually work. Say a group of reporters needs to interview a star of the game, the starting pitcher, or someone involved in a critical play who isn’t comfortable with English. If the player agrees to talk (not a guarantee), a reporter or media relations official tries to flag down a teammate or coach to translate.

The quality of the translation can vary from excellent to preposterous, particularly if the translator summarizes or spins on a player’s remarks. Back when I worked in New York, Yankees first base coach Jose Cardenal’s attempts to translate for the notoriously cantankerous Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez were borderline comical. A protective Cardenal often reduced a 45-second El Duque rant into a couple of benign sentences.

Former Twin Chris Colabello, who speaks Italian (his father played professionally in Italy) and Dominican-accented Spanish, translated wonderfully for Latino teammates during stints here in 2013 and ’14. He has a future at the United Nations, or in a Telemundo novela. But last season, the Twins left Eduardo Escobar, Danny Santana, Miguel Sano, Eddie Rosario and the other Latinos on their own. And that’s not good for anyone.

Twins general manager Terry Ryan insisted the club would have tracked down someone to translate if a player asked. But players don’t ask. They’re encouraged to try and speak English, no matter how poorly. The Twins provide mandatory English instruction at their academies and at their Fort Myers complex, and some in the organization fear some players wouldn’t learn English if they relied too much on translators.

Jose de Jesus Ortiz of the Houston Chronicle, my former colleague at the Newark Star-Ledger and a past president of the Baseball Writers Association of America, never forgot what Mets star Edgardo Alfonzo, whose English wasn’t the greatest, told him in Spanish in 2000. “He said whenever he did something great, while he was still on the field, he started to worry about the postgame interview,” said Ortiz, who now covers the Astros. “A lot of guys worry about how they’re going to come off.”

So, Ortiz said, most resort to simple phrases and clichés if they agree to talk at all. Who wants that? Not the players. Not the media. And certainly not fans eager to learn more about these guys. There are great stories out there waiting to be told, and many players willing to share them.

Media companies can do their part by hiring more Spanish-speaking reporters. I regret not studying Spanish more diligently in high school (that sound you hear is my high school Spanish teacher yelling from New York, “NOW he gets it,”) or in my first job in Miami, where I had Cuban friends to practice with. Bilingual reporters like Ortiz and James Wagner of the Washington Post hold a significant advantage, and their readers benefit. Still, Ortiz believes Latino players should learn English for their own good.

The language barrier concerned the Twins enough to hire two Spanish-speaking coaches, Eddie Guardado and Rudy Hernandez, for Paul Molitor’s staff, but not to hire a translator. Bobby Cuellar, Ron Gardenhire’s bullpen coach his last two seasons, also spoke Spanish.

Before that, things were shaky. “When we got Escobar (in 2012), I don’t know if he realized he was going to Rochester,” Ryan said. Four years later, Escobar — originally signed by the White Sox out of Venezuela — still struggles with English.

Now, at least, he and others will have some help.

“It’s going to be a relief for many, many players,” Ryan said.  “In the minor leagues, we stress the importance (of learning English) going back to the day they sign. Some take to it better than others. Some get it in a couple of years. Some don’t. This is an important piece that obviously the commissioner’s office and the association feel is important, and I can see that. So we’re going to move forward on that path and see if we can help the cause.”

Footgolf, A Sport Rapidly Increasing In Popularity

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Twenty people on a field try to knock a ball in a hole using as few “strokes” as possible; however, it is not a round of golf but a game called footgolf, a sport that combines soccer and golf, and is rapidly gaining popularity in Argentina and throughout the world.

The first World Cup of this new sport, which was officially created in the Netherlands in 2009, took place in Hungary in 2012 with 80 players from eight countries participating.

The second was played earlier this year in Argentina, with 230 footgolf players from 26 countries participating.

“It is a sport with great potential, it has no limit. The difference between the first World Cup and the second was huge. We believe that in the near future there will be an acknowledgment of the International Olympic Committee as a sport,” Javier de Ancizar, the president of the Argentine Association of Footgolf, told Efe.

“In Argentina, the Confederation of Sports has already recognized it (Footgolf). Even if it doesn’t make it as an Olympic sport, we think that soon it will become one of the top sports on an international level,” De Ancizar said.

The game is played using the same rules as golf: the person who uses the least amount of strokes to complete the circuit, which includes water and sand bunkers, wins.

The main golf courses in Argentina modify their fields so that at least one or two times per week a person can play footgolf, which is not a phenomenon exclusive to Buenos Aires, but is being played in most Argentine provinces.

Gabriel Henzie, Ariel “Burrito” Ortega, Juan Sebastian Veron, Maximiliano Rodriguez and Marcelo Gallardo are among the former Argentine national soccer team players who have tried the new sport.

In addition, a local television station airs a program each week on which popular athletes play footgolf while being interviewed.

“There are various former soccer players who play. The most noteworthy case is that of Sergio Vazquez, who played in the 1994 World Cup in the United States and recently participated in the World Cup of footgolf. Every week, he plays in the different tournaments and each Wednesday he practices,” De Ancizar said.

The soccer player has the technique necessary to dribble the ball, but the footgolf player relies on concentration and the ability to better analyze the field,” De Ancizar, who is also a member of the board of the International Association of Footgolf, said.

Matias Perrone, one of the best footgolf players, represented Argentina at the Hungarian World Cup and told EFE that “the popularity of this sport is rapidly increasing.”

“One day, they suspended me from a soccer game and I went to a footgolf tournament. It was the second time that I played and, therefore, as if by destiny, I won. It was Friday and the following Wednesday I went to Hungary to play in the World Cup of footgolf. From this point on, a great part of my life was changed by this sport,” Perrone said.

Perrone, who finished 13th out of 100 participants at the Hungarian World Cup and 9th out of 230 participants in the Argentine competition, said he was sure that soon the sport would become professional and the competitions would offer large cash prizes.

The second World Cup of this sport’s short history was held in Argentina Jan. 5-10 and the champion was Argentine Christian Otero.

In the team competition, the United States won and Argentina came in second.

Players from Germany, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, El Salvador, Slovakia, Spain, France, the Netherlands, Hungary, England, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Norway, Paraguay, Portugal, Sweden and Switzerland also participated.

00.Soccer, which had already dominated the streets, plazas and fields, has now invaded golf courses.

Got Your Game Face On For Copa América Centenario?

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Dieste is a leader in multicultural marketing and diversity in the workplace – and we have the faces to prove it!

 

Dieste gears up for Copa
Dieste gears up for Copa América Centenario*

Employees at Dieste, like the teams soon to vie over the Copa América Centenario, come from many places. Diversity is one of the things that make Dieste unique, with a variety of faces representing the U.S. as a whole. We thought it’d be exciting (and we’re not the only ones) to show off some of the countries we have a personal connection to by showcasing our pretty mugs wearing some of the participating national colors.

CopaCentenarioPhoto credit: Copa América Centenario

True, it’d be awesome if we have someone from every of the 16 countries playing (we’re looking at you Jamaica, Haiti, Paraguay, Bolivia and Panama) and we have many more people at our offices whose country won’t be at Copa América Centenario, but the point is: If you’re looking for a team deeply knowledgeable and committed to a multicultural audience, then look no further and visit us at dieste.com.

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Why Should Marketers Care about Copa América Centenario?

  • It is the oldest international continental fútbol competition, celebrating its 100th anniversary
  • This is the first time the Copa is played outside of South America
  • The projected per game audience on Univision will be larger than the 2014 FIFA World Cup (the World Cup final set a U.S. record with 26.5 million viewers)
  • Virtually every major team of interest to U.S. Hispanics is represented
  • Star power – think Messi, Neymar, James, Chicharito, Dempsey. The top 10 players in Copa América have a combined 750 million follower fan base in social media
  • 32 games will be played in 10 of the largest U.S. cities in stadiums with 50K+ capacity

Don’t forget, Copa América Centenario kicks off this Friday with the U.S. playing Colombia. games will be played in 10 of the largest U.S. cities in stadiums with 50K+ capacity

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