Professional basketball has grown on me over the years. I’m not much of a sports buff, as it’s been the white noise on the weekends when I’m at home. Many of you might agree that the sport challenges the mind and body of the players. I’d like to share my passion for it, and extrapolate some similarities between the game on the court and the game on the Web.
I’m a fan of basketball because the players exert and push themselves past their limits every game. More importantly than the physical endurance in the game, is the ability to stay mentally focused despite all the distractions. They’ve got the fans, their coach, their peers, and the media coverage (and can’t forget the challenging team) to contend with. I also value the teamwork used by the players — there aren’t any single dependencies, thus you succeed (or fail) as a team.
Same holds true for the Internet. There are a lot of distractions for online companies — you aim to succeed in your niche, continually assessing your performance, adding new features in your product or service, and tapping in on the surge of advertising revenue, all while embracing new technology.
Like with a good basketball game, the underdog team has just as much of a chance of winning if the player’s heads are in the game. An IT company is the same — they must be focused on continual development and adapt to the industry and even disrupt it once in a while to gain industry acceptance. Also, when a basketball player travels or pushes another player resulting in a foul, they get penalized. Same for on the Internet, when a company doesn’t obey the laws and rules, they get penalized (like when Xanga was found to be in violation of COPPA).
I’m not necessarily saying that other professional sports can’t relate to playing on the Internet. More derogatorily, spammers are like football players, always trying to rush the defense (spam filters) to score. Only kidding, I don’t want to upset my passionate football fans … but you see professional basketball balances a variety of the skills needed to bring success.
What other analogies or similarities can you find between professional sports and the Web? Sound off in the comments.