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The Pac-12 launched a beta test of its redesigned conference website today. The new site at beta.pac-12.com features enhanced video capability, an improved mobile experience and new social media features and content, both through its own site and links to school sites through the Pac-12 digital network. While NeuLion powered the relaunch of nine school sites last week, Pac-12 Digital VP & GM David Aufhauser said the conference is using its own code, software and publishing platform for Pac-12.com. “Last year was the coming-out party for the (TV) networks and this is really the coming out for the digital part,” Aufhauser said. The conference wanted to launch the beta site now so that it could incorporate fan feedback into the site for its formal launch just before football season next month. The conference site will have a “hyper focus on events,” Aufhauser said. “Every Pac-12 event with have its own pre-, post- and live home and it will live there, rather than a game that’s here today, gone tomorrow, like you have with most sites.” Pac-12.com will use links to in-depth stories and features on the school sites as well. “It’s truly a network of sites linking back and forth to each other,” Aufhauser said.
Manchester United launched its official Twitter feed yesterday, becoming the "last Premier League club to join the micro-blogging site," according to John Reynolds of the GUARDIAN. The club at 8:30am local time sent out its first tweet, which read, "New era, same spirit. The season starts here. Let's do this." The feed had "accumulated almost 200,000 followers by lunchtime." The account "will initially launch in English, with [a] foreign-language version to follow." A possible reason for "now launching on Twitter is that the club is thought to be close to appointing a social media campaign manager." ManU yesterday also "launched on Sina Weibo, the China-based micro-blogging site" (GUARDIAN.co.uk, 7/10). The FINANCIAL TIMES' Aglionby & Blitz report ManU within two hours of debuting its Twitter feed already had more than the "combined following of Hull City, Crystal Palace and Cardiff City, promoted from the championship last season." ManU's sights "may be more set on" La Liga clubs FC Barcelona and Real Madrid, which have almost 9.5 million and 8.16 million followers, respectively (FINANCIAL TIMES, 7/11).EPL CLUB TWITTER FOLLOWERS AS OF JULY 11
CLUB HANDLE FOLLOWERS Arsenal @Arsenal 2,509,071 Chelsea @chelseafc 2,393,641 Liverpool @LFC 1,778,285 Manchester City @MCFC 996,803 Tottenham @SpursOfficial 523,392 Manchester United @ManUtd 359,507 Newcastle @NUFCOfficial 258,336 Everton @Everton 216,668 West Ham United @whufc_official 191,254 Aston Villa @AVFCOffical 182,098 Fulham @FulhamFC 144,869 Sunderland @SAFCofficial 144,172 Swansea @SwansOfficial 132,792 Norwich City @NorwichCityFC 124,723 Southampton @SouthamptonFC 121,366 Stoke City @stokecity 118,839 West Bromwich Albion @WBAFCofficial 83,980 Cardiff City @CardiffCityFC 49,661 Crystal Palace @Official_CPFC 46,764 Hull City @hullcityteam 38,849