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Broadcasting Monday Night Football to Chinese Audience

To most of Chinese I know, American football is difficult and distant. At Shanghai Scrap, Adam Minter interviews Zhang Nan, Monday Night Football’s play-by-play man in China, who tries his best to engage more Chinese into the sport.

Sure, the NFL has a small audience in China (roughly 20,000 viewers watch the weekly simulcast), but Zhang – as the play-by-play man – has a key role in helping the NFL expand it. And in doing so, it’s partly his responsibility to figure out a way to translate this most American of sports to a Chinese audience that has almost no knowledge or experience with it. The challenge is technical, cultural, and linguistic, and on Wednesday afternoon I spoke to Zhang (to the right of his broadcast partner, Guo Aibing, in the photo below) about how he handles the responsibilities.

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. China Law #

    For a million reasons, I do not see American football catching on in China. Basketball, yes, that has happened. Baseball, possible. Golf, yes. Football, very very unlikely.

    November 19, 2009
  2. David #

    Indeed, looks like it could take years for an average Chinese basketball or soccer fan to even want to learn the rules of football. But let’s be optimistic. :)

    November 19, 2009

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