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The NBA's new Playmakers Network helps fans create professional-quality videos

And you can get in on it, but you have to apply first

The NBA is putting the talents of its fanbase to good use with the NBA Playmakers Network, a new program that supplies creators with special footage, assets, and other exclusive material for use in their videos. If the products are promising, the league and BroadbandTV will help promote and distribute the videos through their social media channels and a dedicated YouTube feed. In exchange, creators will receive more than just visibility: they'll get a cut of the resulting ad revenue and increased access to players, equipment, and production tools.

Unfortunately, you can't just click your way to exclusive footage and graphics for use in your own videos — not yet, anyway. The NBA and BroadbandTV have hand-picked the first group of creators making and sharing content, but they've also opened up the Playmakers Network to the public through an application process. If you want in, you'll have to email the league and prove your bona fides first. The resulting videos don't necessarily have to resemble ads, either: they can be reaction videos, comedy clips, recaps, instructional sequences, and anything else you can imagine.

It sounds like everyone benefits, so that's nice

It's easy to see the appeal of the Playmakers Network from the NBA's perspective: they can tap into the creativity of the league's fans and enable the creation of superior organic promotional material, all at a fraction of the cost an in-house ad campaign would require. And because fans have a chance to profit and gain access to superior tools, it's not a raw deal for them either. (Put another way, it's not like this is the bane of every young writer's career: the gig you take that pays in "exposure.")

You won't have to wait much longer to see the network's first videos, either. A wave of videos based on the NBA's existing "Every Second Counts" promotion — which features an original song by Timbaland — are going to premiere through the league's social media channels during the NBA Finals in June.