Photo: Justin Sullivan, Getty Images
Are we about to see a cardboard cutout of someone very bad at a San Francisco Giants game this summer?
The San Francisco Giants will play games at Oracle Park without fans due to the coronavirus pandemic, but the team informed season ticket holders in an email Thursday that fans can submit photos of themselves that will then be turned into large cardboard cutouts and displayed in empty seats during games.
The cutouts, putatively made of “weatherproof material” in case it rains, will be placed as close as possible to the seats of season ticket holders. Non-season-ticket holders can also submit images to be used as cardboard cutouts for a $99 fee.
While the move could possibly improve the ambiance of an empty Oracle Park, there is certainly precedent for it going poorly.
The English Football League’s Leeds United had to issue a formal apology after a fan submitted an image of Osama bin Laden that appeared in the front row of a crowd at one of the team’s games. Leeds United stated team officials “will ensure there are no more offensive images” displayed at future games. At an Australian National Rugby League game, fans spotted a cardboard cutout of Harold Fredrick Shipman, a British serial killer with approximately 250 victims.
Other teams and leagues have used mannequins to fill empty seats, but a South Korean soccer team was fined by its league after some of the mannequins were later identified as sex dolls.
The Giants employees with the unenviable task of screening the fan-submitted images will likely have their work cut out for them.
Eric Ting is an SFGATE digital reporter. Email: email@example.com | Twitter:@_ericting