Major League Soccer

How Is Major League Soccer Getting Live TV Clips To the Sideline in under 180 Seconds?


Major League Soccer (MLS) wanted to provide sideline medical staff with real time TV clips to aid in the spotting of injuries in games. After evaluating several solutions, they selected SnapStream for its ease of use and speed.

The Challenge

Major League Soccer (MLS), the U.S. men’s professional soccer league, developed a Concussion Protocol in 2017 that allows doctors to administer the Sport Concussion Assessment Tool (SCAT) to quickly determine whether an injured player has suffered a concussion and should, therefore, be removed from the game.

Unlike other sports leagues, however, MLS allows for a limited number of player substitutions; if a player is removed from a game after three substitutions have already taken place, then his team must continue to play without replacing him on the field. MLS only allows doctors a three-minute time window to assess whether a player should be taken off the field for further assessment.

To aid in this process, Joseph Atkinson, senior manager for medical administration at MLS, hired and trained a team of “spotters” to monitor the live television feed of soccer games, identify potential instances in which a player has suffered a concussion, and quickly forward the video clips of these incidents to doctors on the field sidelines to use in their assessment. “The video was kind of my brainchild where we said, ‘If we see it, we might as well let the doctor see it too,’” said Atkinson.

“My background is as a paramedic, so if I can see how the car wreck happened it helps me figure out what happened and get a better diagnosis.”

Because of the high stakes of the concussion assessment and the extremely limited time to conduct it, Atkinson’s team of spotters needed a tool that would allow them to identify a potential concussion incident, edit a short clip of it, and send the clip to the doctor’s iPad, all within the three-minute time limit.

The Solution

Atkinson gave serious consideration to three different video capture tools. The first two, Snagit and PlayIt, were not able to deliver clips to the field within the three-minute time limit. “The problem with Snagit was that it has to run off MLS Live, which has a 30-second delay to begin with, so we were already 30 seconds behind,” said Atkinson. “And then the nature of having to cut, save it to some place, and go back into an email and send it -- it took anywhere from four-and-a-half to five minutes.” PlayIt was even more cumbersome.

After a demo and a thorough review, Atkinson ultimately decided to go with SnapStream.

“After SnapStream came along, when we saw an injury, we were able to immediately back it up 10 seconds, hit the clip button, and by the time we got done letting the doctor know it was there the clip was already sent and sitting in the inbox of the iPad.”

On average, it takes 2.5 minutes for the spotters to see a potential concussion incident, clip it, and send it to the iPad.

The setup and training for SnapStream went smoothly. SnapStream support staff trained Atkinson and four of his IT staff. “[The SnapStream staff] was very responsive,” he said. “If we had any questions, we’d shoot an email up, and usually within 24 hours we’d get a response back.” Atkinson’s spotter team consists of 11 certified athletic trainers, and he was able to train them on the SnapStream platform within four minutes. “By the time they sent it three or four times, they were pros at it.”


Atkinson incorporated SnapStream into his team’s workflow in March 2017 ,and on game days he has 11 spotters using it in the New York office to clip and share TV clips in real time with medical personnel on the sidelines of the various games. While not part of the Concussion Protocol, SnapStream has proven to be a great resource.

In addition to using SnapStream to assess possible concussions, MLS doctors and athletic trainers have leveraged the platform to review other injuries as well. “There are a lot of times on Mondays where we’ll have a couple of the athletic trainers who will send us an email saying, ‘Hey, so and so was hurt during X minute of the game, can you send us the clip?’” explained Atkinson. “And we have the ability to go back and pull that clip and send it to them so they can put it up with their medical records.”

He also immediately took advantage of the alerts feature in SnapStream and set it so he receives an email every time someone says the words “injury” or “concussion.”

“So when my boss comes down and asks, ‘Hey what happened in this game?’ I don’t have to watch every game, I just have an email that says what was said, and I can go back and review it,"

The MLS Disciplinary Committee also sometimes makes requests for clips. “If there’s a hard foul where someone gets injured, rather than going back and reviewing the entire game, 99 times out of 100 we have it already clipped, and we send it to them,” said Atkinson. “Or they’ll go back and clip it themselves.”

Atkinson cautioned that, while SnapStream is a tool MLS uses in its assessment, it’s not actually part of the Concussion Protocol.

In addition to Atkinson’s team, there are dozens of other MLS staff members across the organization’s broadcast and marketing teams that use SnapStream’s platform to cut, broadcast, and share game clips on TV and social media.


“So far, the feedback is great,” said Atkinson. “It’s a program that gives me the ability to clip a video and send it to a specific email address without having to spend a lot of time-saving, searching, and moving through multiple applications. It does exactly what we want it to do.” Would he recommend it to another sports league? “If there’s the same need, I would absolutely recommend that they use it.”

“It’s a program that gives me the ability to clip a video and send it to a specific email address without having to spend a lot of time-saving, searching, and moving through multiple applications. It does exactly what we want it to do.”

About Major League Soccer

Major League Soccer ( is the top-flight professional soccer league in the United States and was founded in 1996, after the country hosted the 1994 FIFA World Cup.

About SnapStream

Based out of Houston, SnapStream ( has been making broadcast TV recording, search, and distribution products for over a decade. SnapStream’s diverse list of several hundred customers include: almost all the talk shows, including The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, and the Late Show with Stephen Colbert; TV networks such as CBS, NBC, Golf Channel, MLB TV, and others; News/Entertainment brands such as Buzzfeed, Politico, New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Vice, VOX, Slate, and HuffPost; Sports leagues and teams such as several NFL, NHL, MLS teams, The PGA Tour, Major League Soccer, The LPGA, NASCAR, and WWE; the US Senate and the Library Of Congress; and many others. Learn more about SnapStream at

St. Louis Blues

SnapStream Gives the St. Louis Blues a Digital Boost

May 04 2016 by Eric Cohn


It’s time to put the old, laborious ways back on the bench, bring SnapStream into the game, and give fans the play-by-play posts they deserve. Social media connects fans with their favorite teams, but sharing action-packed visual content used to be a taxing process—long wait times, screenshots, numerous uploads and downloads.



Matt Gardner, Senior Director of Promotions and Digital Strategy for the St. Louis Blues Hockey Club, oversees a team of digital strategists that are leading the NHL in providing a comprehensive digital experience for their fans. At the beginning of the 2015-2016 season, Matt and his team began looking for a digital solution that was as user friendly and as real-time as possible.




Their previous solution to share content to their main social media accounts, Facebook and Twitter, took too long to deliver content and required long waits and tedious edits. Clips of the Blues’ big goals, incredible passes and huge saves by their goalies could take up to 20 minutes to become available to the digital media team, if at all.





The Blues found their solution in SnapStream. SnapStream provides a real-time solution for the team, and allows them to clip any and all moments they want to share with their fans quickly and easily. “The turnaround time is now seconds,” said Gardner. “We see it live and we immediately jump into SnapStream. It goes straight to Twitter from there in seconds.” With SnapStream, goals can happen in real time, and a GIF, image, or video clip of the goal can be posted natively to social media, almost instantaneously.




Whether the Blues are at the Scottrade Center or on the road, all of the video feeds important to the digital media team are now accessible through SnapStream. Even the in-stadium feed can be accessed, allowing the digital team to share fun moments like the Kiss-Cam and overhead shots of the beginning puck drop.

As the Blues continue into the 2016 post-season, their innovative digital strategy team continues to recognize that SnapStream is a powerful tool for keeping their fans engaged on social media. Now, fans can feel the real-time rush of the game at their desk or on their mobile device. And, the digital team has more time to interact with fans, making them a larger part of the game and a vital part of the experience.


Click the link below to request a demo of the SnapStream Software.

Request a Demo

Jacksonville Jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars create hard-hitting GIFs for Twitter using SnapStream Social TV tool

November 03 2015 by Joel

Houston, Texas, Nov. 3, 2015 ­- The NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars have chosen SnapStream to power its new social media initiative to create and share GIFs with its more than 230,000 @Jaguars Twitter followers. SnapStream was selected for its ability to quickly and easily create GIFs and clips from live TV and post them directly to Twitter in seconds.

The Jaguars are also using SnapStream’s TV recording and archiving capabilities, and will have the ability to track mentions of players’ names on TV.

“This season we have a major initiative to use animated GIFs as part of our social content plan, but we needed a tool that would allow us to capture and convert video clips,” said Chris Burdett, Senior Digital Media Manager of the Jacksonville Jaguars. “SnapStream’s ability to create GIFs quickly is exactly what we need. With SnapStream, we can get a video or GIF from TV to Twitter and Facebook in 19 seconds. Before implementing SnapStream, it took 45 minutes.”

Launched in 2007 as a DVR for business, SnapStream enables organizations to record and store thousands of hours of TV content, watch TV recordings from a PC or Mac, and search TV content like Google lets you search the internet. Earlier this year, SnapStream launched Social TV tools, which make it easy to share live TV content on Twitter and Facebook in the form of video clips, GIFs and images. SnapStream’s social tools also provide a unique way to engage with fans in real time by only showing tweets that are relevant to the specific show they are watching.

“SnapStream exceeded our expectations by doing more than simply create GIFs,” Burdett said. “Our PR team can track any time the team or players are mentioned on TV. Our digital media team will be able to tag key moments in the game on live TV, so they can easily go back and find them later.”

“TV clips and GIFs are becoming a staple on social media. If you aren’t the fastest at getting a GIF or TV clip to Twitter or Facebook, someone else is going to beat you to it. Being the first to post a ‘must­see TV moment’ can improve social reach and engagement,” said Rakesh Agrawal, CEO and Founder of SnapStream. “I’m excited that SnapStream is going to be a part of the Jacksonville Jaguars’ team. They are a fast-moving, hard-hitting team, and with our technology, their social team is going to be able to move faster and hit harder on Twitter and Facebook.”

The Jacksonville Jaguars join a host of successful shows, networks and government organizations, including “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver,” “The Daily Show,” MLB Network, and the U.S. Senate, that use SnapStream for clipping TV, content repurposing and video archival.

To learn more about SnapStream’s Social TV features, TV search or recording capabilities, visit or send your inquiries to [email protected].

Press Contact:
Brad Hem
The Dialog Lab for SnapStream
[email protected]
(281) 543-0669

Louisiana State University

Make the Most of Posting Constraints in College Athletics: Tips from LSU Athletics’ Todd Politz

July 22 2019 by Tina Nazerian

It’s not enough to post a video clip directing fans to a livestream

If you’re part of the digital media team for the athletics department at a college or university, it’s likely that you’re working with restrictions—your conference probably has an agreement with a television rights holder (such as ESPN) that limits how many videos can go on social media feeds while a game is live. And if you work in pro sports, you know that some leagues have their own posting rules.

Todd Politz regularly navigates those types of restrictions. As the director of digital media at Louisiana State University Athletics, he oversees best practices for all of the social media accounts for the school’s 21 varsity teams.

For each of those sports, there are one or two individuals who actually make the social media posts, as well as multiple others (such as photographers, videographers, and secondary communications assistants who are clipping from SnapStream) who contribute to content during a live event.

Throughout his 20 years at LSU Athletics, Politz has seen social media change how fans engage with their favorite college sports teams. He’s also mastered how to smartly work within the social media restrictions LSU Athletics faces as part of the Southeastern Conference’s agreement with ESPN so he can create genuine connections between fans and the LSU Tigers and Lady Tigers.

Here are his top tips on how you can do the same for your college or university’s athletics department to drive your fandom.


Use Video Clips to Drive Fans to the Livestream


A Twitter post with a video clip of an LSU Baseball game and a link to the livestream.

Specifically, ESPN dictates that the Southeastern Conference schools in its agreement can only post 10 videos and GIFs per live game for each sport, with the exception of football and men’s basketball, for which schools can’t put any videos or GIFs directly to their social media accounts during the live event window.

Politz notes that he and his team do their best to promote ESPN’s livestreams of their events. Typically, they’ll include a link to the livestream on WatchESPN (or the platform the game is being played on) when they post to Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

And although some sports at LSU can’t be streamed live, Politz says “there are certain allowances ESPN makes to let us use clips from a game that is going on as part of our social media strategy.”

Politz often uses SnapStream to clip parts of a live game and put those clips on different social platforms to drive fans “to either the livestream or the fact that an event is going on.”


todd-blog-infographic (1)

A look at the social media universe of LSU Athletics.


Be Selective About the Clips You Post

A video clip LSU Baseball posted on its Twitter account during a a game. 

Politz notes the importance of being selective about the clips you post. Just because you can post 10 videos per live game for some sports doesn’t mean you should. He brings up LSU baseball as an example.

“It’s rare that we will have 10 really strong moments in a game,” he explains. “Of course, we’re trying to not dilute our feed with every strikeout.”

He and his team look for moments that they think fans will appreciate, such as home runs, touchdowns, and other game-changing plays that put an LSU Athletics team in the lead.


Be the First to Get your Game Clip out There


LSU was the first to post this video clip (ahead of other organizations). 

Politz says that he and his team can put out a clip of a memorable moment within 45, 60 seconds of it happening and engage fans. 

“By the time they’re finished cheering and enjoying it with their friends, we can have it where they can relive it on social media.” 

However, he stresses that getting the clip out quickly isn’t enough. You have to be the first to post the clip. Timeliness matters.

“If you get your video out there first, you’re probably going to have the best opportunity for it to go viral,” he says.


Use GIFs to Turn Small Moments into Big Ones

An example of a GIF on LSU Football’s Twitter account.

Capturing and posting the “little things” that happen during a game can be extremely impactful.

“You can have a small moment that we create a GIF out of that is very ordinary,” Politz says. “However, it ends up having a big impact.”

He brings up a hypothetical example. If LSU’s baseball players stack hats on top of one of their teammates in the dugout, it would be great to create a GIF out of that moment.

“They stack 30 hats on top of each other, and you make a very quick GIF out of that to talk about baseball traditions or superstitions or things like that and use it not necessarily right after it happens, but later on, to talk about [it] being…. time to rally,” Politz says. “You can use something like that to re-engage what was a great moment from a previous rally into today’s game.”

And sometimes, certain moments that happen in a game can go on to define a narrative amongst fans, like the “rally possum” baseball game LSU played against the University of Arkansas in 2016. LSU was losing when suddenly, a baby possum ran onto the field. After LSU facilities staff captured the possum, LSU ended up winning the game. In fact, they won 12 out of their next 14 games.

“It’s still referenced when our team is behind,” Politz notes.

He says he and his team use SnapStream to create GIFs as much as they use it to create video clips. One benefit of GIFs?

“You can hold onto those moments that will be instantly recognizable to your fanbase, but you can use them two, three years later, and they still resonate.”

At SnapStream, we make video social, whether it’s from TV or an in-stadium feed. We’re what LSU Athletics and other college athletics and pro sports teams use to grow their fandoms by instantly capturing, creating, and sharing high-quality video clips, GIFs, and images to a variety of social media platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.