Articles about "Sports reporting"


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Bill Simmons’ ESPN suspension and the challenges of editing star talent

Whether you think Bill Simmons is the latest sacrificial lamb at ESPN, or that his suspension is really theater in the vein of professional wrestling, there are important issues behind the suspension that we could all pay some attention to.

  • Too much content, too little editing: From podcasts to blogs to social media posts, there is a fair amount of content that goes straight to the audience with very little editing. With small changes (see word choice, below) to his rant, Simmons could have stayed within the boundaries of ESPN’s acceptable journalistic standards. In broadcast, that’s the producer’s role. In writing it’s the editor’s role. There is editing and production that takes place. But do those people do their work with an ear toward editorial standards? It’s hard to say if that’s even possible with a marquee talent like Simmons (see Stars, below.) But they could and they should.
  • Word choice: Simmons was on solid ground when he called Goodell’s response “fucking bullshit.” Suggesting the football commissioner take a lie detector test was clever.
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ch13investigates100

Local TV Stations Investigate Football Helmet Safety: Get Results

One of the benefits of my job is that as I travel around the country working with TV stations, I see story ideas that spread like kudzu from one market to the next. One station in one city finds some success with the story, others hear about it, copy the idea and localize it.  I find most of these cut and paste ideas pop up around “sweeps” months and most are awful.  Here’s one that isn’t.  It is worth looking at where you are and it may keep some kid from getting hurt.

In May, WDIV in Detroit began investigating high school football helmet safety. The station found that local high schools routinely issued players helmets that helmet safety experts said didn’t provide enough protection.

They used information from a rating system developed at Virginia Tech that assesses the safety of different football helmets. WDIV found that in Wayne County alone (Detroit), 13 schools are using the 1-star rated helmets. Read more

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How Jim Brady plans to make money in local

mediawiremorningGood morning. Here are 10 media stories.

  1. Was SI’s LeBron James scoop legit? Sam Kirkland rounds up some thinkination from thinkinators and notes that SND’s Rob Schneider said the NYT’s celebrated sports section front on Saturday was inaccurate — James hadn’t signed at the time. (Poynter) | The “item did move on the sports AP wire, exactly as presented,” Margaret Sullivan writes. “I guess I can see his point, but it’s too literal,” Benjamin Hoffman, who designed the page, told her. (NYT) | James decided to go to SI rather than ESPN because 2010′s “The Decision” “upset America’s collective stomach and spoiled his reputation as a basketball god,” Robert Weintraub writes. “The average fan could read his moving, sincere announcement on SI.com and subconsciously think, Maybe it was ESPN’s fault, not LeBron’s, all along.” (CJR) | The “trade rumor — shorthand here for any offseason transaction news — has become the dominant form of NBA journalism.” (Grantland)
  2. How Jim Brady plans to make money in local: His Philly news startup Brother.ly will use a “mix of advertising, events and memberships,” Joe Pompeo reports.
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Team podcasts disappear from iTunes after MLB complains about trademarks

NBC Sports | Awful Announcing

A number of baseball podcasts disappeared from iTunes after complaints from Major League Baseball about trademark infringement, Craig Calcaterra reports for NBC Sports. MLB says it notified Apple about “infringing uses of trademarks of Major League Baseball and certain Clubs” and “asked Apple to have these trademarks removed from the podcast titles and thumbnails.”

A bunch of podcasts vanished after that, Joe Lucia reports for Awful Announcing. Ted Price, who hosts a Texas Rangers podcast, tells Lucia iTunes accounts for almost all his downloads.

An MLB spokesperson told Calcaterra it didn’t ask for the podcasts to get 86′d: “Given our many years of experience in notifying Apple about trademark issues on the Store, we trust that removing the podcasts was an oversight, and ask that you please look into this matter as soon as possible.”

At least one professional sports team has zealously protected its trademarks when it comes to media coverage. Read more

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Live chat replay: What sports journalists need to know to compete

In remarks for the College Media Association conference in New York on March 13, Associated Press Vice President Lou Ferrara issued a wake-up call for sports reporters.

He said traditional sports journalism is changing, that game coverage is waning and that general news coverage is what the AP and others need now. Ferrara joined us in a Poynter careers chat at 2 p.m. ET Wednesday to map out the needs.

Ferrara helps the AP orchestrate coverage of big-time sports events like the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi and he has some very specific tips about how sports journalists can get ready for the craft’s future needs.

A replay of the chat is below.

Visit www.poynter.org/chats to find an archive of all past chats.

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Custom camera-mounted device lets Toronto Star photographers file direct to live blog

The Canadian Journalism Project

It’s hard to file photos from Toronto’s Air Canada Centre, Toronto Star visuals editor Taras Slawnych tells Mark Taylor: “There are lights around the arena and every time these neon lights and billboard signs go on it creates a lot of interference. Traditional ways of submitting with a WiFi card or some other way just didn’t work.”

So the Star built its own device, called AWAC — for “Automated Web Access Coupling.” It sits “on the hot shoe mount,” Slawnych says, and “basically provides the Internet connection, the routing of it, and then sends the picture to an FTP site. There’s a (HTML) script here that handles it and then there’s another script that sends it to a ScribbleLive blog and the (Toronto Star) archive at the same time.”

Slawnych says he’s not sure whether the Star will patent the device — other reporters “are trying to figure out what the hell we’re doing,” he says — but did allow that it was 3-D printed and that the Star has spent about $2,500 developing it. Read more

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Joe Paterno, Mike McQueary, Matt McGloin

ESPN reports Mike McQueary was sexually assaulted, but says little else

In this photo taken Sept. 24, 2011, then-Penn State head football coach Joe Paterno, left, talks with quarterback Matt McGloin (11) as assistant coach Mike McQueary listens on the sidelines during an NCAA college football game against Eastern Michigan in State College, Pa. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Editor’s note: This column was revised and updated to include ESPN The Magazine Editor Chad Millman’s response to our emailed questions about the process behind the story.

ESPN The Magazine just published a long read about Mike McQueary, the man who witnessed Jerry Sandusky sexually assaulting a child in the Penn State locker room. The man who cost Joe Paterno his job and his legacy.

The story appears under the headline “The Whistleblower’s Last Stand” and describes widespread distrust of the former assistant coach and a life diminished since Sandusky’s indictment in the fall of 2011. But all anyone is talking about is this line near the top of the story:

“Finally, McQueary confided in his players something he hoped would make them understand how he’d reacted at the time. Read more

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USA vs. CHN Curling

Sochi photo coverage takes ‘patience, planning, logistics’

Harry Walker, photo director at McClatchy-Tribune Information Services, has a unique vantage point overseeing MCT’s visual coverage of the Olympic Games.

Raised in Savannah, Ga., Walker graduated from Morehouse College in 1980. He started his photojournalism career at The Columbus Dispatch, where he worked from 1988 until 1992. Before joining MCT, he worked as features and weekend photo editor at the Kansas City Star. He has served numerous organizations, with stints as a member of the National Association of Black Journalists’ Visual Task Force and as chairperson of the National Press Photographers Association’s Best of Photojournalism contest.

What follows is an edited version of our conversation about MCT’s ongoing Olympics photo coverage:

Me: So, Harry, you are nine hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time. How is that an advantage or disadvantage for your MCT photographic reports?

Walker: Having the nine-hour time advantage allows you to cover more events than in the past. Read more

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ESPN shuffles sports, news leadership

Broadcasting & Cable | Capital New York | SportsBusiness Daily

ESPN shifted the responsibilities and titles of top sports and news executives in a consolidation of its programming and production operations, reports Broadcasting & Cable’s Tom Baysinger.

News Director Vince Doria plans to retire early next year and his responsibilities will move to Craig Bengtson, vice president/director of news. Doria will report to Rob King, SportsCenter and news senior vice president, who shifts from digital and print to oversee the SportsCenter and newsgathering operations. King is a member of Poynter’s National Advisory Board. Read more
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This photo taken Aug. 2013 shows New England Patriots quarterback Tim Tebow throwing during warmups before a NFL preseason football game against the Detroit Lions in Detroit. There wasn't much reason to dislike Tim Tebow, who never pretended to be anything he wasn't. Blame him for the Tebowing craze, if you will, but even that was worth a few laughs in a league that doesn't always embrace fun. There wasn't much reason to like him as an NFL quarterback, either. Three teams tried their best to make use of his unique talents, but even Bill Belichick couldn't find a way to turn him into a competent QB. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

How Sports Illustrated reporter captured the athlete in ‘The Book of Tebow’

Earlier this year, Sports Illustrated writer Thomas Lake embarked on a challenging project: to profile Tim Tebow, an athlete who’s been covered as thoroughly as any in America and who didn’t want Lake to write about him.

With limited access to his subject, what Lake produced was a robust, seven-part, 15,000-word story. It explores oft-analyzed Tebow topics – his successes and failures, his inability to get a job, his faith – but in a much deeper way. It’s a story powered by the author’s voice and transparency.

In an email interview for the Poynter Excellence Project, Lake told us how he did it.

How did the idea for the story come about and what was the initial vision?

This all started last spring, around the time Tebow left the Jets. The editors and I wanted to understand how and why a quarterback could lead his team to the playoffs, win a game in overtime against the league’s top-ranked defense, and then find himself unwanted by all 32 teams in the NFL. Read more

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