Blog Entry

The Social Aspect of Fantasy Sports

Posted on: May 26, 2009 11:24 am
I'd argue that Fantasy Sports, in it's most basic form, needs to include these 6 features:
  • Draft
  • Set Lineup
  • Transactions (Add/Drop, Trade)
  • Live Scoring
  • Stats
  • Content (Draft Prep, Player News, Analysis)
If you want to play fantasy, you can get that done as long as 1)your draft runs well, 2) you have no problems seting a lineup on a regular basis, 3) you can conduct all of your transactions without issue, 4) you can check live scoring and it is accurate, 5) you can check and sort stats anyway you need to in order to analyze your team/players, and 6) some player news to help you make those decisions never hurts. 
I'd even argue that content is not fundamental to the game. Sometimes it can just be added noise when trying to do your own analysis. Often times I've swayed my decision according to the experts only to kick myself for not following what I knew to be true in my own head.  But, we'll leave it in because at the very least, it is good to know if a player is injured and will not be playing for a while. 

We've spent a lot of time working on these 6 features of the site.

But Fantasy has evolved into something much more social than just player analysis and decision making. If you've been with us for a while, you've undoubtedly noticed that we've been trying to enhance some of the more social aspects of the website.  We had always included a League Wide Email Address, a Message Board, the ability to post a league story, and a chat room within the draft.  But in recent times we've added Sticky Notes which allow you to leave a note for someone on a specific page in the league, we've enhanced the league history which provides fodder for more social behavior around Fantasy,  we've added the ability to post video content to your league news stories, and we've improved the chat rooms and added them to the live scoreboards of your league. 

To be honest, we've had varying levels of success with each of these items. Some are too new to tell, and others may have been implemented poorly (in my mind) and I get the feeling people don't even know where to find them.  But we can't deny the data that tells us that the chat room has been very well received.  Sometimes though, our users are so thirsty for a feature, that once we get it out there, they will consume it no matter how it is implemented.  Basically, they will use it despite its shortcomings and we'll never know that it is not doing the job it could be doing. 

So what I am asking here is 1) Is your league using the chat room? 2) Are you getting all you that could be out of that experience?  3) How would you like to see chat evolve within your league?  4) Are the social features within your league adequate?  5) Would you like to see the social features of fantasy evolve outside the contexts of your leagues? 

And really, I'd be happy to hear any other input you might have about how you feel that Fantasy has and will continue to evolve socially.

Category: Fantasy

Since: Sep 4, 2006
Posted on: May 28, 2009 10:43 pm

The Social Aspect of Fantasy Sports

Chat was fun this year however it didn't store enough history if you wanted to read what you missed (some of us attend games then come home for the later games, etc).  I agree with the other comment regarding being able to watch scores and chat at same time instead of scrolling back and forth.  I have no idea what a "sticky note" is... guess I should check that out.

Things I would like to see
1-Chat work from all screens, not just the scoreboard
2-Less mock drafts, rankings, etc.  Maybe there could be levels to choose from, controlled by the commish.  We're old school and prefer to find this info the old fashioned way.  i.e not at our fingertips.
3-Online draft capability that doesn't show stats or best available rankings.  Our league does a live draft simply because we consider it cheapening the experience to have the best available player on the screen at every pick without doing any research. 
4-Polls would be nice to know who has voted and who has not.
5-Socially, I think we're as far as we need to go.  It might be cool to have a team page where each team could load pictures, blogs, etc but no big deal either way.

Since: May 26, 2009
Posted on: May 26, 2009 10:39 pm

The Social Aspect of Fantasy Sports

We used to be able to see who, from the league, was on the league page at that time.  I miss that...  Also, the coaching ratings have not worked for us for a long time.  Critical smack talk tool.

Since: Feb 10, 2008
Posted on: May 26, 2009 5:41 pm

The Social Aspect of Fantasy Sports

Chat:  Let us pop it out so I don't have to scroll up and down to watch my team and the chat board at the same time.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or