POSTED: Thursday July 16th 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

USGA’s DIGITAL MEDIA TECHNOLOGIES LEAD TO UNPRECEDENTED U.S. OPEN COVERAGE

The USGA brought the 2009 U.S. Open Championship at Bethpage State Park’s Black Course closer to more golf fans than ever through multi-platform coverage employing the latest technology.

Aided by corporate partner IBM, the championship’s official Web site, USOPEN.com, attracted a record number of viewers through Sunday, June 21, and ended the championship with a total of 5.7 million unique users. “Not only did more fans come directly to USOPEN.com to follow the championship action, they were also provided a fully interactive experience through enhanced applications for mobile devices and social networking sites in real-time,” said Alex Withers, managing director of Digital Media for the USGA.

Among the specific technologies and applications involved in coverage of the 109th U.S. Open Championship:

  • U.S. Open LIVE! Webcast Coverage – Fans watched first- and second-round U.S. Open LIVE! Webcast coverage of the Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson marquee groups, resulting in a total of 1,792,742 streams on USOPEN.com. Monday’s rain-delayed final-round Webcast coverage of Lucas Glover’s victory drew 863,886 streams. 
  • iPhone Application – iPhone owners watched U.S. Open LIVE! Webcast coverage, with more than 465,000 streams delivered during the championship. A peak concurrency of 10,215 users watched the stream on Monday.  
  • m.usopen.com – A mobile version of USOPEN.com was available for users of Web-enabled phones, and 123,446 fans took advantage. 
  • USOPEN.com Widget – A snapshot of USOPEN.com, the widget received nearly 200,000 unique visitors throughout the championship, allowing fans to place scoring, news, photos and course information on their Facebook, MySpace, iGoogle pages and more.
  • Facebook – The U.S. Open Facebook fan page enabled people to connect with other fans and share their U.S. Open experiences.
  • Twitter – Fans followed the 2009 U.S. Open on Twitter at www.twitter.com/usopengolf. The online community voted to choose the three players who were followed on Twitter during the next day’s round.
  • American Express CourseCast TVs and Radios - American Express, a USGA corporate partner, provided Cardmembers exclusive access to hand-held televisions that delivered a live telecast of the championship and enhanced the on-site viewing experience. Fans also enjoyed free American Express CourseCast radios to listen to the play-by-play commentary and live updates on Sirius XM while they watched the action from the grounds.
  • Virtual U.S. Open Championship - More than 187,000 players from 181 countries entered the qualifying rounds of the inaugural Virtual U.S. Open Championship, a free online golf game featuring an ultra-realistic HD simulation of Bethpage Black that was produced by World Golf Tour and played at USOPEN.com. A total of 234 players made the cut at even-par 70, and Wayne Stopak of Ohio was crowned the 2009 Virtual U.S. Open champion with a final-round score of 4-under 66.
  • ESPN360 - The total hours of U.S. Open coverage consumed on ESPN360 was up 39 percent over 2008, and Monday’s final-round coverage on ESPN360 was the third most consumed event ever (using hours as the measure), trailing only the 2008 U.S. Open playoff at Torrey Pines and the 2009 UEFA championship game.

About the USGA
The United States Golf Association is golf’s governing body in the USA and Mexico, a combined area that includes more than half the world’s golfers and golf courses. We are passionate about, dedicated to and expert in the game of golf. Based on a shared love and respect for golf, we preserve its past, foster its future and champion its best interests for everyone who enjoys the game.
 
Each season, we conduct the U.S. Open, U.S. Women’s Open, U.S. Senior Open and 10 national amateur championships, including the U.S. Amateur and the U.S. Women’s Amateur. The USGA also writes and interprets the Rules of Golf, regulates and tests golf equipment, provides research-based turf management expertise, maintains the USGA handicap and course rating system, celebrates the history of the game and supports grassroots programs through its “For the Good of the Game” initiative. For more information about the USGA, please visit www.usga.org.

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Keywords · Alex Withers · U.S. Open Championship · USGA · iPhone


Name: Chris Wightman
Organization: USGA - United States Golf Association
Email:
Phone: +1.(908) 234-2300
URL: http://www.usga.org/home/index.html


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