Sunday, March 7, 2010

accountability for the msm

in the post-game analysis of today's 5-2 flames victory over the minnesota wild, either john shannon or mike brophy (i wasn't watching, just listening, so i'm not sure who actually voiced it) made note that jarome's improvement in the past few games has to do with all things olympic being behind him. while i have no problems with that theory as speculation on his current (two game... it's only a two game) upswing, they announced that now that "jarome isn't busy doing olympic ads" in his downtime, his focus is back squarely on his nhl club....

um.... WHAT ???

the MSM has been under a microscope for some time now by the blogging community, largely for presenting opinion as fact or for disregarding statistics when supporting their theses. longtime commenter, R.O, called out fan960 overtime host, pat steinberg, over on flamesnation a few days ago, for ignoring the advanced numbers when he suggested that langkow "hasn't played well enough to earn a spot beside Jarome" in response to a caller post-game on friday.... steinberg continued (in the comments of the lefebvre column) that "he hasn't been playing well. He's not creating, he's giving up the puck, and he hasn't been great in his own zone." when challenged by both R.O and yours truly with my two cents, steinberg then defended his stance by using catchphrases like "stating an opinion," and by insisting "I'm NOT an expert, nor do I have any great knowledge of the inner working of the team or the game. Never played, only have watched as a student."

[note: steinberg spent a bit of time defending langkow today on the fan, using at least one of the excuses i served to him two nights ago on FN when he discussed part of #22's troubles of late having to do with a "cavalcade of wingers." ... well done, pat. you made it more about opinion while still maintaining your position... also ? he totally mentioned "a guy on flamesnation" jumping all over him for saying langks wasn't very good.... and then called him a great two-way guy and, essentially, a bonafide 2nd liner.... ;) ]

the problem is (and i'm certainly guilty of this at times, as well ---but i don't have thousands of people reading/listening to my opinions) that when he argues with folks, he doesn't often make it sound like an opinion, he makes it sound like a fact.... and i'm only using steinberg as an example, here. many of the panelists/pundits/talkingheads do the exact same thing (i like to think bob mckenzie, kelly hrudey and to some extent ron maclean are pretty successful in describing a VIEWPOINT).... hey, i'll be the first to admit that the line is a fine one.... but there SHOULD be some accountability for the time-filling "falsehoods" propagated by so many media personalities.

and to shoot down brophy and shannon's allegation about iginla's on-camera distractions, i'm not even suggesting that iggy DOESN'T shoot commercials during the season, i'm saying that he DIDN'T.... the nike "destiny" spot was filmed in toronto in august (where, fyi, he threw a slapshot down the barrel and obliterated a camera)..... every other commercial currently on-air with jarome was filmed in september: samsung on sept 8th:

scotiabank on the 9th & 10th:

and coca-cola on about the 11th or 12th when jarome's bit was shot on a greenscreen at a studio in the northeast.... [ps: why was jarome in whistler in this spot ????] [pps: there is no youtube video of this spot that includes jarome eating a sandwich.... i'm not sure why.... meh. at least we all saw it during the games. ;) ]

i'm pretty sure that it's possible to get a couple of hours of printshoot stuff on a day off, but i don't think a lot of in-season time is spent doing this kind of high-end press with pro athletes... additionally, the sponsors and the player agents/handlers work out the number of hours they spend on set, and you absolutely cannot exceed that. on a 12 hour shoot, i believe we were allowed jarome for 6 (and if i remember correctly, we had wickenheiser for 8). i remember working with catriona lemay doan once and she had a very low number of hours in her deal (i think it was like 3 or 4), while i did a GM ad with jordan staal when he was still in the OHL and i think we had him for about 8...

anyhow, i guarantee you that neither mike brophy NOR john shannon have a clue about the stuff i wrote above, and yet they certainly didn't hesitate in offering it up to the general public as newsworthy information. i get pretty annoyed when the talking heads present these myths as FACT. because it’s not a fact, yet nobody is there to correct them, and (inevitably) someone will turn up at work tomorrow and suggest around the watercooler “hey, so jarome was so tired-looking because he was doing all these commercials in january —-he shouldn’t be sponsored so much.” and the rumour will propogate itself.

....and even moreso when it's a hockey-related opinion stated as truth..... i mean, seriously. is it THAT hard to drop an "in my opinion" or "i think," "i see," or "i heard" every once in awhile ?

responsible commentary would be preferrable, please and thank you.

rant: over.

[sutter(s) dismissal countdown: day 4]

1 comment:

RobWoolley said...

Good Lord! Stop the blasphemy, accountable journalism? A media that reports based on facts and is poised to announce when they offer opinions?


MSM is laughable on all levels these days not just sports. Toyotas are death traps! Dodge uses plastic gas pedals! The frightening thing is people buy into this crap with frightening ease. While the MSM is lacking credibility, so are the consumers of this 'misinformation'.

I love your post. This is where the real journalism is.