PGA Tour to test letting players live-stream practice rounds, pro-ams

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Call golf a hidebound sport if you like, but the PGA Tour will blaze a new trail by allowing players to stream live videos and post photos on Tour-approved social platforms during practice rounds and pro-am days.

Calling the trial "an initiative to help players further enhance their marketability via social media," the PGA Tour sees the live-streaming and social-media photo sharing as a way for the players -- often portrayed as a bland band of mostly white men -- to show their personalities.

"We feel it is important for the PGA Tour to continually look at ways for our players to showcase their personalities and connect with their fans," Tour COO Andy Pazder said in a statement announcing the initiative. "If the trial goes well, we believe this expanded social-media policy for our members will enhance how fans follow their favorite players throughout the season."

Some players such as Bubba Watson and Rickie Fowler already have robust social-medial followings. But on-course access brings fans another facet of coverage, as does PGA Tour Live, which is the tour's premium live-streaming service that will provide nearly 150 hours of coverage over the next four weeks, finishing with the Tour Championship in Atlanta.