Fake Crowd Noise in Televised Sport

Last week the NRL season returned in front of empty stadiums. However, as part of their televised broadcast, crowd noises and cheers have been added in order to try and create an authentic atmosphere, as if fans were in attendance. The use of the fake crowd noises has been likened to a laugh track in sitcoms, with many viewers having mixed reactions to hearing the sounds. The AFL recently posted a poll on their website regarding this issue with 54% saying it’s ‘better than silence’ compared to 46% believing it’s ‘too weird’. 

However, whilst this issue seems only temporary whilst restrictions are in place on fans attending games, critics have highlighted a danger with using the technology in the future to sporting matches that have low attendance, in order to change the television product. 

2SER spoke with Dr Michelle O’Shea, a Senior Lecturer in Sport Management at Western Sydney University.

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