Pro jabs the PGA Tour media rights – and reposts a video of his meltdown

Keith Mitchell and caddy John Limanti on Friday’s 5th hole at TPC Sawgrass.

Keith Mitchell’s video is alive.

Thanks to Keith Mitchell.

Mitchell started it all, of course, and this is where it feels full circle. On Friday at the Players Championship, Mitchell hit his tee shot on the par 4-5 on Friday at the Players Championship. at TPC Sawgrass, he cut right and into the water, he slammed his driver onto the turf, the bad-weather horn signaled the postponement of the second round — and Casey Bannon of Golfers Journal recorded everything from the PGA Tour Live broadcast and shared it with the crowd via Twitter. And people were engaged – the clip had attracted 3.7 million views.

But then it was gone. Bannon’s tweet now only says, “This media has been taken down in response to a report from the copyright owner.” And people were furious.

But then the video was there again. On Sunday, Mitchell tweeted it himself. He added this note:

“Personal foul, *media rights scrubbing* (apparently that’s why it was shut down, I’ve just been informed) 250 yard penalty, retake 3rd shot from point ball last crossed the earth!”

Thirty-two words does a lot of work there. Let’s start with the “roughing up of media rights”. GOLF’s James Colgan summed up the issue brilliantly last February in a story aptly headlined ‘What media rights does the PGA Tour have? And how do they work?” – and for the purposes of this story we will republish these two paragraphs:

“Today the tour generates money from national and international television deals (NBC/CBS and Sky Sports respectively), national and international streaming deals (ESPN+ and Discovery). The tour also owns the rights to all of their digital and archival footage, which generates royalties and other small revenues. These agreements generate nearly half of the tour’s annual revenue, according to documents reviewed by

“Central to the value of every media rights deal Tour signs is their status as the sole ‘owner’ of the content created. This is why the PGA Tour requires players to cede their media rights at the start of each season, and why the Tour is so stingy when it comes to posting unauthorized videos on social media and elsewhere.”

pga tour tv

What are the media rights of the PGA Tour? And how do they work?


James Colgan

It seems Mitchell had a conversation, and he reposted it with a little jab. Then he made fun of himself.

To summarize his breakdown, as shown in the 32-second video (which GOLF’s Kevin Cunningham summarized here):

– Met Mitchell.

— His ball flew to the right and towards the water.

— Before his ball peaked, Mitchell slammed his driver into the tee box.

— From the right side of the tee box, Mitchell’s caddy, John Limanti, backed to the left to see where the ball would go in the water.

— The bad weather horn was sounded.

— Mitchell’s ball bounced down.

— Mitchell asked Limanti if it covered the water. “It didn’t,” he said. Mitchell asked if it went into the water. “Yes,” Limanti said.

— Mitchell went to the right.

And millions watched it all. And it seems millions can see it again.


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Nick Piastowski

Nick Piastowski Editor

Nick Piastowski is Senior Editor at and Golf Magazine. In his role, he is responsible for editing, writing and developing stories across the golf community. And when he’s not writing about how to hit the golf ball further and straighter, the Milwaukee native is probably playing the game, hitting the ball left, right and short and drinking a cold beer to wash away his score. You can contact him on any of these topics – his stories, his game or his beers – at Pro jabs the PGA Tour media rights – and reposts a video of his meltdown

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