Sports Mashups

Remix Culture is typically thought of in relation to popular media forms such as music and television, but I believe that sport can also be thought of as a recombinant art! Some of the most well known sports mashups include ultimate frisbee and disk/frisbee golf .Borrowing from Gibson’s work on ‘sampling’, YouFo is one of the worlds newest sports, or shall I say mashup sport! YouFo, a part of the European sport innovation project, is a remix of lacrosse, ultimate frisbee and soccer. The creation of YouFo has been an ongoing collaborative process, which is now crowdfunding the remainder of its development.

youfo

Similar to Barry’s article, The Gamefication of Music, the ‘gamefication’ of sport breaks barriers between officials and athletes, creating a participatory nature in the production of sport, their structure and  rules. Sport mashups allow for athletic expression and distributive creativity (Axel Bruns), as any number of athletes are given creative autonomy to appropriate and create intriguing new games which is what athletes find ultimately attractive about the process. Similar to the ways in which Bruns speaks of ‘produsage,’ sport mashups are never ‘complete.’ Their structure, place of play, rules etc., are constantly in flux as new users enter the into the game, however, unlike other artistic mashups, the artistic genesis of remix sports are harder to trace.

There currently exists a network of unique sports athletes and creators alike, that have complied a public list of mashup sports and their associated rules of play. Remixing sport involves a layers of athletic texts, take Rugby for example, the sports traditional form is a combination of soccer and football. The sport has been further modified to be played with fewer people (i.e. rugby 7’s), and now there is even bicycle rugby 7’s!

Athletic creators and participants belong to a tight knit network, or what could be viewed as a subculture, as their athletic practices lie outside of traditional sports such as football, baseball, basketball etc. Some sport mashups may eventually become mainstream, shedding their subcultural status. The best example of this is BASEketball, a combination of baseball and basketball that was made popular through the 1998 film Basketball

b-ball

Remix sports culture, or sport mashups also appears within a virtual network, as sports fans take great pride in creating mashup videos of their favourite sports teams, or ultimate sporting moments. This participatory fan-culture is made possible through computer technologies, and increased access and availability of content. Platforms such as Youtube and  also play a pivotal role, as they provide a public space for sport mashup videos to be created, distributed and displayed.

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2 Comments

  1. I think this is an interesting real life example of mashups. As I brought up in my presentation, mashup is often limited to digital media through our obsessions with mashup music, and meme culture. Often, we forget about the real life exams of mashups. Sports, cuisines, and games can all fall under the umbrella of mashup.

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  2. This post makes me think of the continued ways individuals and fan cultures merge multiple interests together to create new exciting activities and hobbies. If you think of the game Quidditch, this game combines an individuals interest in Harry Potter and sports together into one. This amalgamation also works to blur the lines between fantasy and reality, playing a game that was originally part of the fantasy world in a book, into a real life competitive sport.

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