Oakland Live!


Live broadcasts in Oakland are normally limited to town council meetings broadcast live on cable channels 45 and 77; but, with the launch of Facebook Live Streaming this spring a new platform for community engagement is starting to build out.

Facebook Live Streaming is one iteration of a technology that has been available but under utilized by the majority of social media consumers. Now, with an implementation that simplifies the streaming and the sharing, only time can tell how it impacts our lives on a basic, primal level. The Facebook Live Stream maintains all the benefits of the preexisting video share available on Facebook — but now allows for live sharing of video, and live interaction with those viewing.

Grandparents in Florida, family is other states, friends who have moved away are no longer relegated to sharing the event postmortem – but can share it live; and, if they don’t have access during the scheduled event — the live streamed video is still available for viewing at their convenience.

Oakland Recreation gave the new Facebook app a test run with a recent dedication of a new scoreboard for the Swenson – LaBarba baseball field (field 8). The new scoreboard was made possible through the collaborative efforts of Father’s Club of Oakland, The Oakland Recreation Commission, the Sports Association of Oakland and through the volunteer efforts of Marty O’Brien and his company’s matching dollars for hours program.

While in Oakland, “men of a certain age” presenting a dedication of scoreboard at the recreation fields might hold the same excitement as a live council meeting for younger audiences — the work Oakland volunteers do lays the foundation for a lot of excitement throughout the year. The work of the Oakland Rec Commission, the Fathers Club, the Sports Association – even for the volunteers – is not as exciting as a perfect pass, a great catch, a clutch goal, a key hit, kick, run, block or basket during a game. However, seeing that scoreboard light up after that key hit makes the behind the scenes work all worth the effort.

The first run at Facebook Live Streaming from the Oakland Rec Fields is another effort working toward keeping the Oakland Rec program one of the top in the state of New Jersey. It lays the foundation, gets the ball rolling, for future live streaming of Oakland sporting events. It’s now easy and accessible for folks to not only “share the moment”, but “share the experience”, by live streaming to friends and family who cannot attend a sporting event live.

In addition to live streaming, the opportunity for “crowd sourcing” an event also becomes easier with Facebook Live Stream. Individuals live streaming for their own circle of friends can tag their videos and become part of a crowd sourced video record of a game. Independent action can become part of a team effort by tagging videos of the same event, same team, same sport, to create a real digital library of Oakland sports.

Local cable on television provides easy access for sharing live events locally – but in the year 2016, people want to share across towns, states, and national borders – Oakland Rec has brought Oakland sports to far flung family and friends — and to people living somewhere else but still call Oakland home.