SnappyTV clips can be sent to blogs, websites, Twitter or Facebook
Tennis Channel has partnered with S.F.-based technology firm SnappyTV to conduct an experiment on viewer sharing of video clips from the channel's coverage of the French Open. Viewers watching the tournament can share up to a minute of footage they just saw live with anyone else by going to SnappyTV.com, with clips then sent to personal blogs, user-chosen websites, Twitter or Facebook. The deal is the first high-profile pact within sports for the startup outfit after an initial entry into entertainment programming, including several Fox series, and a prior test with FS North. "The big opportunity we're targeting is the social conversation through video," said SnappyTV CEO Mike Folgner, a former exec with Yahoo and Jumpcut.com. "Our platform is basically you see something great on TV and then you share it right away. So to that end, sports really showcases the core functionality of the service and is a very big target for us." Though the company is based upon an advertising-based model, the French Open effort does not include ads and will be free to users. "We see this as more of a usage experiment," said Tennis Channel Senior VP/Marketing Robyn Miller. "But we're trying to give as complete an experience as possible and are excited about the possibilities here. This will definitely be a key tool in helping drive awareness and tune-in of the Open." Similar video-sharing technologies to SnappyTV have previously run into legal battles with networks. But SnappyTV is seeking to work more deliberately through official licensing partnerships with content owners.