During the last couple of weeks Tipevo made a strategic decision in favor of adjusting our directory curation process and publish program profiles even though a logo had not been available to us.
Up until now, we only listed programs coming out of our data process with a proven name, sport, location, logo and a digital footprint (website/facebook page/blog).
This is an intense process in both time and technology resources, and one that was yielding a solid number of programs into the directory, but was also generating quite a queue of programs with proven name, sport and location and a logo waiting to get approved.
We call this approving process “curation” and always thought of Tipevo as a “curated” directory.
Unlike other attempts to organizing the youth sports landscape, we did not want to simply throw in everything we could find just to say we have a large dataset of inconsistent profiles nor did we want our users to get that feeling out of Tipevo. We wanted everyone to immediately trust every profile they viewed, as well as the information and ratings about them. That took us through this path of curation: a process with multiple automated technology checkpoints that indicate that a program is in fact, a youth sports organization. This tells us, among other things, that they are called the way we think they are called, that the logo we found is in fact the program’s logo and that they exist where we believe they are located. We are now relaxing the one attribute that’s holding us back, the logo. Although the logo curation process deserves its own post, without going too deep, the level of image recognition software built into identifying a logo simply takes (way) longer to process than the checkpoints we use to identify a program’s name or location. In numbers, this means that we have 50,000 programs ready to go in, with every attribute checked, while only 10,000 of those have a curated logo.
The rationale is pretty straight forward: Our data process, which analyzes the internet in search of youth sports programs found around 100,000 programs (a.k.a. “Clubs”) in the last 12 months. We were able to curate and make available to the community 10,000 of those, which have every attribute fully curated. If we publish the ones whose logo is pending curation, we would take the directory from 10,000 to 50,000 programs
The context around this decision is not so simple: For us to achieve our mission of making youth sports more simple and transparent, we need everyone to trust what they find on Tipevo. We always thought that having a program’s logo was an essential piece of that trust component. So, what changed our mind? We believe that Tipevo is valuable for a user (program, parent, player, coach) only if they can find the right program, understand what they offer, connect with them and rate & review the ones they already know to further empower the youth sports community.
Why now? Due to the behavior we saw on the platform during the past 6 months, we decided the time was right to provide the youth sports community with 5 times the number of programs available for them to connect with and rate.
What now? It will take us a bit to catch up with logos, but 40,000 new programs will enjoy being discovered by the youth sports community. They can claim their profiles and confirm the information about them. Millions of parents and players will be able to discover those programs, connect with them, rate and review them and read what other parents and players are saying about them. Youth sports will become more transparent every day.