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Bob Costas NOW


Ando Calrissian

I really wanted to post this in the MLB forum, because I thought it may add a relevant conversation to the mix, but since I was unsure, decided to post it here. If mods feel it's an appropriate topic for the MLB forum, please go ahead and do that voodoo that you do so well.

Last night I had the chance to watch Costas NOW on HBO before the Brewers game. The topic of the show was sports media and current issues that apply. I was particularly taken with the opening segment that addressed the effect of sports radio on sport, the fans, and on print media. If there was a conseunsus, it was that due to the fact that it thrives on negativity and controversy has added to the vitiriol with which fans respond to their teams. Why I thought this was interesting was because of the occassional topic in the MLB forum on excessive booing at Miller Park. Additionally, it got me thinking about the absolute disdain with which many people seem to harbor for Ned Yost and Derrick Turnbow (and others) and how admimately (frequently, I think, bordering on irrationally) they call for their heads. Now don't get me wrong, as I watch as much baseball as anyone around here, I understand valid criticism of Yost and any player that performs below our expectations or percieved talent.

I simply want to pose the question: has the dawn of additional sports radio in Milwaukee contributed significantly to the "dumbing down" of the "average" (or not so average) fan and therefore exacerbated beligerant behavior towards our beloved team and its players? Let's hear your thoughts.

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Of course the flip side of your post, should address the decades of sports radio homerism, where the home team is never wrong, the players never screw up etc....

 

I know the homerism irritates me as much as the negativity.

 

I don't like listening to much sports radio. I sort of like that Homer guy thats on in the late afternoon, he seems to straddle the line of rooting for the home team, yet not being oblivious to the teams problems.

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Good point FTJ. I've actually never been one to listen to much sports talk radio and so that's something I actually wasn't aware of. If anything, I'd listen to Homer on the way home from Brewers games. More than anything, I didn't want to start yet another conversation about the validity of booing but rather to try and have a thread that dealt with what seems to be a potentially declining fan experience at Miller Park due to the influence of sports radio. Though I do not regularly make it a point to listen to sports talk radio, I've listened enough to know that there are some decent programs, but a load of cruddy ones. As I said in my first post, I certainly understand the need for critical discussion/analysis of teams, coaches, and players, but when does it stop being helpful or informative cricitial discussion and start being blowhards yelling for the sake of yelling and really not adding an iota of enjoyment to anything about the sport?

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I think it is sort of like a pendulum.

 

You have years of radio guys defending clearly incompetent players/coaches/front office dudes, which pisses off the fanbase, but instead of finding a middle ground -- the fanbase swings way over to the other side, where you are negative for the sake of being negative.

 

The pendulum is the best way to describe sports fanbases that I am aware of.

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I listen to mostly all talk radio, in fact I don't even remember the last time that my car radio wasn't on an AM station. Personally, I can understand the concept that all of the negativity leads to less actual baseball knowledge for the casual fan. I think that most knowledgeable dedicated fans, which I consider myself, listen purely for an entertainment value.

 

There is often very little actual newsworthy info that you can get from most call in radio shows. If a casual fan were to listen and hear nothing about how bad Turnbow was last night or how Ned Yost is the absolute downfall of the team, it is easy to understand why they feel it is acceptable, even responsible, to boo the next time some game doesn't go well.

 

My best example was after we traded Gross last week, and a local station spent a lengthy amount of time just bashing him and his ability to play in the majors. Lo and behold the next game I was at, I hear some fan basically repeating what he heard on the radio and contributing nothing else. Him and his buddy go on to argue over how we got hosed by drafting Gross with such a high pick and signing him to a huge contract. I don't even know where some of their info came from but they ended up deciding that is was Yost's fault for picking him and if Gross got traded then Ned should be fired. This is an extreme example, I also overheard one of the guys explaining OPS as 'overall productivity stat'!! It has something to do with how well you hit combined with how many errors that you make in the field, that's how Braun's was so high last year.

 

Basically sports talk radio is just like any other kind of talk radio, you have to give attention to who is presenting the message and take it with a grain of salt. Their is almost always an bias coming from one side or another and I agree that most of it is usually slanted towards the negative.

Everything I've ever known, I've learned from Brewerfan.net....Seriously though
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I hated that episode of CostasNOW. They stereotyped everything. The fans as dumb and purely emotional and blogs as pure mudslinging and paparazzi.

 

I think that now with so many sources of media and points of view with voices, its up to the viewer to determine the validity of their source and the integrity of the journalism.

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The bit about internet blogging was awful. Costas hung Will Leitch (Deadspin.com) out to dry. Buzz Bissinger is a complete jerk, typical old-school journalist who is terrified that his craft is now obsolete.
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I simply want to pose the question: has the dawn of additional sports radio in Milwaukee contributed significantly to the "dumbing down" of the "average" (or not so average) fan and therefore exacerbated beligerant behavior towards our beloved team and its players? Let's hear your thoughts.

Yes--to a point. Just as I think political talk radio has been a divisive force on our view of politicians, sports talk radio can steer new fans toward thinking that "Yost is this", or "Turnbow is that".

 

But don't blame the media for fans beligerant behavior. If people behave in a manner that is antisocial, or even criminal, then that's they're own doing. A radio host or series of callers didn't make them do that.

 

But I wouldn't lump booing into that category, even if the target is "our beloved team and its players".

 

This team has given us so little for so long that now, when the opportunity seems right there, and someone does something that is boo-worthy, then there's nothing wrong with voicing displeasure.

 

The early days of baseball had fans throwing bottles and fists at players and umpires--but now if we so much as boo, we're criticized for being anti-team.

 

We boo because we care.

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Excellent topic Ando.

 

To me, it is the RESPONSIBILITY of journalists/media types to be honest and non-sensationalistic. I realize this has gone by the wayside with this new type of "entertainment media" but as FTJ mentioned it is a pendulum effect. Shows like PTI have given more folks the idea that they too can yell across the desk at each other and make a lot of money. Hopefully someday soon we will swing back toward sanity once people realize how shallow these programs really are. Sites like FJM and others are a good start; the folks at FJM really deserve their own TV spot.

 

Ultimately, we the consumer have to decide that we want the most knowledgeable people transmitting information to us instead of just big personalities with big mouths.

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Anyone know if this is being replayed at some time? Or what the actual name of the program is? I tried searching for it, but the new Time Warner digital box interface makes it difficult to find anything.
Everything I've ever known, I've learned from Brewerfan.net....Seriously though
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This goes into the whole purpose of the media thing...

 

Sports are entertainment, ESPN stands for "Entertainment and Sports Programming Network"

 

Thus, I feel like ESPN is justified in running a show like PTI because the purpose of sports is entertainment. Of course, the correct conclusion is usually the middle ground, but it is much more fun to have controversy--or even create controversy where there wasn't any for the sake of entertainment. People watch it, which is why that is the direction that ESPN has headed. There's animosity toward ESPN, but most of it is that it has a "east coast bias" and not that they are spreading the "pendulum effect". Look at the spread of "Mike and Mike in the Morning" recently. I (like many here) think the whole thing is garbage, but unfortunately, our whole society is generally heading in that direction. If they wanted to be a responsible sports journalism company, they could be (and they do have many great journalists). However, they are a corporation and they can't really be faulted for giving people what they want, which is sensationalism.

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I know PTI and Around the Horn are basically shouting matches rather than reasonable debate but they are entertaining if only because you want to see how ludicrious the arguments will be (and how far that person will go to defend them).

 

I liked the format of the show although I think they tried to cram too many segments in because the last panel sort of had no time to talk. Will Leitch was in a no-win situation. Braylon Edwards isn't going to defend blogs that use sarcasm and satire to mock athletes, That Buzz guy is just a bitter old dude who like many old people, hate new technology and Costas didn't do a very good job evening the playing field of that argument.

 

I think also we should remember that for every one truly great columnist in the papers every morning there are probably a dozen that stink and use shoddy information and a serious lack of objectivity to make their points. How many times have false rumors or easily debunked stories come out of newspaper columns as well? There is seriously no infallibility amongst the print columnists but somehow because most are more interconnected with the players due to the connections their media gives them access to, they feel superiority to other sources and thusly look down on anything different or new.

 

I do believe that Will was close to making a good point but backed off of it a bit when he was discussing how close these reporters are to players and blogs are more the perspective of the fan. Taking that one step further, while being close to the player gives insight as to the person involved, many of these reporters become chummy with players and use their pulpit to defend them from criticism. See: Ric Bucher, aka Kobe apologist.

 

There is a value to blogs in that it gives fans a place to speak their mind (not unlike certain message boards) but also it is a faster way to report a lot of news.

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Thanks for the link, Bucky. After watching that clip, I have lost a bit of respect for Costas. That whole set up seemed more biased and slanted against new media than most deadspin blogs are against athletes.
Everything I've ever known, I've learned from Brewerfan.net....Seriously though
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Thanks for the link, Bucky. After watching that clip, I have lost a bit of respect for Costas. That whole set up seemed more biased and slanted against new media than most deadspin blogs are against athletes.

It was an debate, with Costas as moderator. You can probably argue Costas didn't do enough moderating, but I don't think it was intentionally set up to be negative toward the internet.

Braylon Edwards needs a new agent.
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Costas showed that he surely wasn't an unbiased moderator when he read off the comments from deadspin about Sean Salisbury though. He had that info all printed out and prepped to use against Leitch. He didn't have, or at least use, any prepped stuff against Bissinger's points though. That's where I get the intentionally set up frame.
Everything I've ever known, I've learned from Brewerfan.net....Seriously though
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Saw the episode today as the replayed it on HBO. Leitch was ambushed, screw that Bissinger guy what a jerk. He rips Leaitch and Deadspin for using "foul" language yet he was dropping profanity all over that show. Hypocrite? I think so. Deadspin is a great blog I don't care what anyone says. Also he was not part of the debate but Ken Tremendous from Fire Joe Morgan.com was interviewed for the piece that aired before the debate began, it was good.

Formerly BrewCrewIn2004

 

@IgnitorKid

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