Thursday, July 15, 2010

Just call it 'Tweetcapping'

I wasn't very active on Twitter until recently, when Sid Fernando -- that's @sidfernando to his "tweeps" -- did a little name-dropping on my behalf just a few days ago.

In the span of 36 hours, I went from having about a dozen followers of my tweets, to more than 60. At this writing, that number is 84 (you can add to them here). And am I ever glad that Sid spurred me to participate, because the interaction -- both personal and certainly horse- and racing-related -- has been entertaining and enlightening.

One of the most noteworthy happenings over the past few days could be a real innovation in the sharing of handicapping tips and information, not to mention a potential addition to the dictionary: "Tweetcapping."

One of my new tweeps, James Hritz (@jameshritz, of course), recently purchased an iPad. Among his potential uses for the gadget, Hritz admits, was to see whether it could help him with his handicapping hobby.

"After playing with the device for a few weeks," Hritz blogged today, "it struck me that the killer application should allow a handicapper to: Download past performances on the fly to the device from DRF or Equibase; mark and notate these past performances just like you do with paper and pen; (and) share your handicapping notes socially or at least share via e-mail."

So Hritz came up with the rules of engagement for enabling an iPad to be a social race-handicapping tool. And he freely shares those tips at his blog.

It's potentially a striking advancement not only in handicapping, but for sharing the wealth among handicappers. Some horseplayers want to keep every long shot and live horse to themselves, but most I know are quick to pass along a hot tip to their friends.

A test run by Hritz on Wednesday night showed how readily an entire, marked-up-in-color sheet of PPs can be shared as a downloadable PDF through social media with a few taps of a touchscreen and/or clicks of a mouse. And thus was born, from Hritz's fingertips to our Twitter feeds, the term "Tweetcapping," for which (despite a sparse three prior mentions by other users among content searchable via Google) I agree Hritz deserves full credit, at least in the sense of making the word meaningful. (Another of our Twitter friends, Chris Hernandez, aka @tencentcielo, added a second term to the potential lexicon: The "Twipsheet.")

According to his bio at the blog, Hritz is currently vice president of Strategy & Business Development for Fox Audience Network. His expertise is in "online advertising and new media business with deep experience in performance display advertising and social media." Add in a dash of horseplayer and Hritz seems like exactly the man to pioneer this sort of handicapping advancement.

The early results are encouraging, and more than a little bit cool.


  1. Great I will add you as a twitter.... I have done this same...... surfdogMichael is my handle and so I will add you and follow your tweets

  2. I will add you...... my handle is surfdogMichael

    and I have done the same for the So. Cal. Tracks


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