Head-Mounted Cameras Capture Sports from a Referee’s Point of View


Some broadcasters around the world are starting to experiment with a new camera angle: the referee cam. By having refs on the field wear special high-definition cameras on the side of their head, the broadcasters are able to capture intense in-game footage that bring fans into the middle of the action.

Here’s a short segment showing Fox Sports Australia’s experiments with its RefCam for professional rugby matches:

Hockey referee Andy Thackaberry wore a GoPro Hero2 earlier this year during an ECHL game:

Jason Kottke notes that professional mixed martial arts fights have used ref cams since at least 2004:

This concept could provide for some fascinating footage for many professional sports, including soccer, baseball (e.g. seeing pitches from the home base umpire’s point of view), basketball, football. It’d be great, just as long as there’s a delay that prevents colorful language from filling the broadcast.

(via and Reddit)

  • Richard Ford

    Rugby players (Rugby – not Leaque) really are the consummate gentlemen of sport. Granted it is not like the amateur days anymore where they were all bankers, doctors, architects and surgeons. But the old history is still imbued in them to a degree. I guess if they are at the top, then soccer fans would be at the bottom of the cultivated totem pole? Just above Ice Hockey players…

  • Leonardo Abreu

    It’s football, not soccer. ><

  • Erik Lauri Kulo

    “It’d be great, just as long as there’s a delay that prevents colorful language from filling the broadcast.”

    Let’s get over with the morality and just implement this already. It’s an amazing thing and we all know the players swear, most people do. And some people swear a lot. Those are just words and today they have lost their meanings – especially when used in such an environment. I love this idea and the rugby footage was great.

  • nokcufigive

    framing and composition is bad

  • fckthebrits

    as long as a persoon is no toothless brit with bad breath.. im fine with it

  • Bobby Alcott

    Not that it matters all that much, but the hockey video is of the Red/White game that the Red Wings play during training camp. Because of the shortened season this year, the game was played at the Compuware Arena in January. Those aren’t ECHL players but rather the Red Wings (and practice squads) themselves — it was refereed by an ECHL squad (that did pretty well, I might add)