Tuesday, May 6, 2008

What's All The "Buzz" About?

First off, let me tell you why I write a blog.

I write a blog mainly as a hobby and hey, it sounded like fun. It gives me something to do with any spare time I may have and I enjoy it. In a way, a blog is even my own personal diary.

Pretty much everyday, I watch sports on TV, attend sporting events, read magazines, newspapers (yes newspapers!), etc.

Sports always brings controversy and opinion. Whenever I would talk or write about (in mass emails) sports with friends or strangers, for the most part, people would listen. And a lot of people appreciate my comments and opinions and I've been told many times I should get into writing.

I graduated with a degree in Journalism and Mass Communications but decided to travel more down the television path. Sometimes I think I may have made a mistake.
Who wouldn't want to be a sports writer? I mean, the sporting world writes itself. Take the Yankees/Red Sox. There's 100 years of stories in that rivalry alone! And all the stories are played out on and off the field.

Like I said, I write a blog as a hobby and for fun! Most of the time, I'm probably writing to and for myself.

Like Will Leitch said, "Writing a blog is hard work." I can only begin to imagine how much time and effort he has put into to "DeadSpin.com."

When you write your own blog, it's very similar to owning your own newspaper. But with your blog, you are the sole editor, columnist, reporter, statistician, photographer, even try to find video to support your post. So you get the idea how much work goes into one small post.
I sometimes wonder how some bloggers write such a large quantity of posts and live their everyday life. It almost seems like they spend their whole workday working on their blog (I won't say any names...Ummm...MacGsWorld).

Lately, all the professional writers have been attacking blogs. Why?
They say blogs aren't professional or credible. Blogs are killing newspapers.

Michael Wilbon, cohost of ESPN's Pardon the Interuption and many other shows, constantly complains about blogs being the new medium and are killing off the old fashion newspapers. Wilbon defends newspapers because he is first and foremost a newspaper writer and that has been his career.

Wilbon complains there are a lot of bad blogs. Yes, very true. But hey Wilbon, I think you would agree there are a lot of bad newspapers.

The internet gives everyone in the world the opportunity to read any local newspaper from across the nation. A person in Blair, NE can read Wilbon's article in the Washington Post. This probably helped Wilbon to become a host on PTI and continue as an analyst for the NBA. In a way, the internet helped create Wilbon's popularity. Did you know who Michael Wilbon was before 2001?

I'm sure a lot of people quit reading the nightly newspapers because they can come home from work and get their sports information from shows like PTI and Around the Horn. What do these two shows have in common? That's right, they revolve around newspaper columnists voicing their opinions on TV. So maybe, these columnists are ruining the same medium (they so seem to care about) that launched their careers.

Hey Wilbon, be sure to thank the internet for your new illustrious lifestyle. You know, having a house in D.C., Phoenix and Chicago. Getting to jump from city to city and being seen at ritzy places like NoBu (which he made sure he opened PTI by bragging to Kornheiser about his lime life). I wonder what is really more important to Wilbon right now, professional journalism, or his so called "cool guy" image and reputation?

While we're at, lets not forget how the nightly news killed the morning paper.

Let's not forget good ole Buzz Bissinger. This guy ruined his lifelong credibility in one night by attacking bloggers. Anytime we see someone become hostile or irate, we'll say, "They just pulled a Buzz Bissinger." I wonder what would happend if you googled Buzz Bissinger today?

Like I said, I read newspapers. I always like to read my local fishwrap to see what's going on in my community and any other local newspapers which cover my favorite sports teams.

I also read the USA Today for many reasons. I started reading the USA Today because they have the most informative Sports section in the country. I love reading the box scores. I would rather read the box scores in the paper over reading them on the internet any day. Reading them on the internet, you have to click on each individual game and most of the time this tends to be very time consuming. In the newspaper, there they all are on one page.

Great writers make great newspapers, the same great writers make great blogs. People become accustom to newspapers and develop a relationship with the writers like they know them personally. Maybe the newspapers can learn something here and start hiring writers of good blogs.

Some of the great writers I like include: Mike Vaccaro, Joel Sherman and Kevin Kernan from the NY Post; Rick Reilly and Steve Rushin formally from Sports Illustrated; also Bill Scheft from Sports Illustrated and The Late Show; Asa Baber formally from Playboy; Tony Kornheiser from the Washington Post; Will Leitch and Big Daddy Balls, or uh, Balls Deep from Deadspin.com.

Do you mean to tell me all print medium will soon be extinct? Not if the USA Today constantly sends free copies to hotels across the country to put in front of every hotel room. Do you think Sports Illustrated, Playboy, Maxim and Time Magazine are greatly hurting because of a huge decline in subscriptions? Heck, for magazines like Playboy and Maxim, you would think they would be dead because of all the porn on the internet.

If blogs should be outlawed because they lack credibility, than explain to me why at every grocery store in America you can buy a number of different Tabloids?

Hey, lets also attack coffee shops everywhere and other social establishment with WiFi. Heck, lets attack WiFi in general because now instead of going to Starbucks to read a newspaper, we can get the news on our computer.

Lets attack video games, TV and even movies for that matter because kids are readin less.

What about ESPN and its global monopoly on sports. I may not want to get my information or catch the highlights from ESPN, but where else can you go. They have like a billion channels, even ESPN Deportes. Every bar you go to has ESPN on every one their 30 flat screens, but the volume is never on. So are we really listening to what all their witty anchors say? Like I mentioned before, ESPN puts local newspapers writers on television to voice their opinions. Do you think some of these guys write near as much as they used to, or do you think they're more worried about their mug on TV and their new found celebrity?

Maybe these guys are worried because other people are starting to get all the attention and now they're worried about being replaced?

Blogs are a form of news and entertainment. They add more opinion and color. People write about what they did or watched last night, about something funny or interesting they saw on the internet, or maybe even another writer's article they found provocative. Even more, blogs can be hilarious and they're fun!

Do you think a college student today is studying English or Journalism because they one day hope to write for a blog?

We live in America people! We have the freedom to choose.


Johnny Utah said...

nice tirade. the tree of liberty needs to be....

Mac G said...

My day to day life consists of being stuck in a cube and your day life is changing diapers, cussing out Hank Steinbrenner and the whole Dolphins organization.

Dont hate. :)