ESPN, YouTube Link Up for Promo Campaign

Now almost anybody can get on SportsCenter.

ESPN and YouTube on Wednesday (Sept. 8) will launch a joint promotional campaign, Your Highlight, which will encourage viewers to submit top amateur sports highlights—the best of which will be showcased on SportsCenter.

ESPN has been a YouTube partner since July of last year, when parent company Disney struck a larger content distribution deal with the Google-owned video site. But until now the ESPN/YouTube channel has consisted entirely of ESPN-produced content. But now ESPN is looking to tap into the thousands of sports-related user-generated clips on the site.

During the program, which will conclude on Dec. 8, SportsCenter anchors will encourage fans to upload video clips to ESPN’s YouTube channel—including anything from high school football highlights to corporate softball clips and videos of kids skateboarding in the backyard. Each week ESPN producers will select clips to be highlighted on air and online; by the end of the Your Highlight promotion four final clips will be chosen, with fan voting helping to select the winning clip.

That clip will be shown repeatedly on SportsCenter. Plus, the athletes featured in the clip will be flown out to ESPN’s headquarters in Bristol, Conn. to watch a SportsCenter taping.

AT&T has signed on as the official sponsor of Your Highlight. To kick off the program, will run a home page takeover ad on Tuesday, encouraging users to submit video highlights.