Premier League Contemplates Using 3D Technology To Replace 39th Game Concept

The Premier League has announced that it’s in discussions with Sony to develop a unique immersion technology. The end result will be to allow soccer fans from around the world to put on headphones while watching a match and feel as if they’re sitting in the ground watching the game in person, when they’re actually at home in front of a 3D TV set.

The technology is still a few years away, but Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore is excited about the prospect and sees it as a more realistic alternative to the 39th Game, which was vehemently dismissed by many in the British media.

To read a more descriptive explanation of Scudamore’s thoughts as well as more details about the technology envisioned, read the article over at The Guardian and then come back here and share your opinion about whether you think it’s a wise idea or not.

Here’s my opinion:

Using American vernacular, Scudamore needs to get off the crack pipe. This is a horrible idea for many reasons.

First, 3D television sets have been a dismal failure. ESPN made a big deal about the 2010 World Cup being shown in 3D, but do you know anyone who watched it in 3D, or were you able to see it demoed?

Second, the only reason why Sony is interested in working with the Premier League regarding this technology is to sell 3D TV sets, which are expensive. Sure, prices will come down as technology improves, but why is the Premier League spending so much time regarding this technology (based on the level of interest and obvious meetings that must have happened between Sony and the Premier League, as can be surmised from the article in The Guardian)? Can’t the Premier League see through Sony and realize that they’re just trying to find ways to flog their expensive TV sets, which are a failing product right now?

Third, and most importantly, no one is asking for or wants this technology. Sure, it’d be a novel idea to try the technology once so we can be transported to our favorite Premier League ground to watch a match, as if we were really there. But, this is not something we want on a week-in week-out basis. Who wants to be tied down to wearing headphones (and presumably 3D glasses)? I want to have the ability to do whatever I want during a game on TV. Sitting for 90 minutes motionless isn’t how I experience a Premier League match. If you’re like me, I often watch two games at once (either split-screen, or one of our TV set and one on our laptop, iPad or phone). Or I’ll have Twitter or a chat open during a game, to read what other people are thinking about the match. And if it’s my team who are playing and they just scored a goal, I may find myself running around my room in hysterics after seeing a beautiful goal hit the back of the net. I do not want to be tied down by wearing headphones and/or glasses that inhibit the way I enjoy matches.

3D technology sounds wonderful, but no one is asking for it. Watching Premier League matches on a flat-screen television in HD is simply perfect for me. Nothing more is needed, thank you very much.

And if we want to see Premier League games in person, I would much prefer to either (a) save up and go to England to see the real thing, (b) wait for the clubs to come over on their preseason friendlies and then see them in person, or (c) keep on hoping that the 39th game will eventually happen. I don’t want to be sold an expensive technology that makes me feel that I’m at the ground. I’m not willing to suspend my disbelief to suck me in to a 3D avatar world that I know simply doesn’t exist in reality.

What do you think? Share your opinion in the comments section below.

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