Live surf viewing is a growth industry!
The just wrapped Stab High was a wonderful event, something I was very happy to watch live across the vodka-cocos from David Lee Scales, and comment upon. It was the first vision of broadcast professional surfing we have seen since the Association of Surfing Professionals transgendered into the World Surf League and I was hungry, starving for a new, different interpretation.
Oh it was fun and of course just an airshow and in a pool but different and new. We all wag our tongues at what we are given for free by the WSL. We all wag our tongues and complain about blah blah blah and blah blah blah and sour grapes and Joe Turpel’s vacuousness because we are bastards. And bitches. All of us are bastards and bitches.
But how would different look? How would new look?
How many people spend either $9.99 (pre-book) or $14:99 (day of) to watch an airshow in a pool?
I enjoyed every second until the Acid Drop bit, though I did have a few heartfelt critiques, but overall was over the moon because it was different and new and hoped that hundreds, maybe even a few thousand, were enjoying with me. Hundreds maybe even a few thousand seeing a different, new interpretation of professional surfing.
Well guess what?
The numbers Stab is telling brands absolutely dwarfs anything the World Surf League has ever done aside from Mick Fanning getting bumped by a Great White Shark in South Africa.
20,000 people logging on at either $9.99 or $14.99 starving, hungry for professional surfing.
Oh the number absolutely crushes anything the World Surf League has ever done (aside from Mick Fanning + Great White Shark) and we have Facebook to thank for that or at least Facebook to thank for some visibility here.
Of course we are talking concurrent viewers here but still, the WSL has never seen that windfall and especially not for people willing to part with money. An incredible number an amazing number and it gives me hope that our future is bright. That surf websites can harness an appetite for humor-filled good times and earn near $200,000 or $300,000 in pay-per-view revenues alone.
We’ve all made fun of the World Surf League’s response to lower than awesome numbers enough. The league’s “these-are-regional-representations” etc.
Let’s just all be transparent. Let’s just all let the freak flag fly.
Why not? We live in a beautiful world where plucky media properties can dance with billionaires.
We live in paradise.