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mlb.com writers toe company line

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#1 gunnarthor

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Posted 20 March 2014 - 01:39 PM

Not really a surprise but deadspin has a nice article on how mlb.com writers are expected to not be negative toward their teams.

http://deadspin.com/...-way-1548072328

#2 Guest_USAFChief_*

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 10:56 AM

Nice find.

#3 JB_Iowa

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 11:43 AM

I did kind of laugh at this part:

[FONT=Georgia] (One former writer for a league website [not MLB's] recalls the weeks leading up to the trade deadline, when one of his team's most popular players, who was on fire at the time, was on the block. He says he was told by his editor, "I can't tell you what to do, but both our lives will be a lot easier if you downplay his scoring.")

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[FONT=Georgia]
Seems a little strange given that virtually anyone can watch everything -- it's not like they could really keep someone's good (or bad) play a big secret. [/FONT]

#4 Kwak

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 12:00 PM

Teams have PR directors for a reason. It only makes sense that they would use all forms of the media to promote their product/brand-name.

#5 nicksaviking

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 02:10 PM

Anyone who's read a MLB.com affiliated article could tell this. Heck, just look at the headlines from any given moment at the Twins mlb.com site any it's easy to see the stuff is written by employees.

Still, it's nice to have this out there. There should be no ambiguity, this stuff is PR, not actual journalism.

#6 Thrylos

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 03:31 PM

I would have to say that it extends beyond mlb.com. Most beat writers are toying company line because if they do not, they lose out on "scoops" (i.e. ballclub staff go to others instead of them with events that are about to happen.)

"Access" has a heavy price: Neutrality and the ability to say things as they are. Wonder why you do not see any main press outlet in the Cities e.g. criticizing Gardy & Co for the 99+96+96 and asking for some accountability from somebody for the last 3 years?

Radio and TV broadcasters are even worse: They are Twins' employees...
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#7 Jim H

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 05:07 PM

I agree with what all of you are saying. But true neutrality, if that is what you are looking for is hard to come by. Since it is available when I drive to and from work, I often listen to The Fan on the radio. Just because they take shots at the Twins, doesn't mean they inpart in real journalism, insight or knowlege about the Twins. I would rather listen to or read some of the more "homeristic" stuff by people who have some actual knowlege about what they are writing or talking about.

#8 TheLeviathan

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 05:47 PM

I agree with what all of you are saying. But true neutrality, if that is what you are looking for is hard to come by. Since it is available when I drive to and from work, I often listen to The Fan on the radio. Just because they take shots at the Twins, doesn't mean they inpart in real journalism, insight or knowlege about the Twins. I would rather listen to or read some of the more "homeristic" stuff by people who have some actual knowlege about what they are writing or talking about.


That's the problem though...this is acknowledging there is no knowledge or expertise here. Just puppeteering.

I don't think this is about having a proper percentage of negative thought or a balance of positive/negative conversation. It's about having independent thought. Journalism should be independent and should be disconcerting that it's not.

#9 gunnarthor

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 08:06 AM

I honestly think our local sportswriters are pretty good. They aren't perfect but LEN has taken some pretty good shots at Mauer, for instance. But thylos hits the problem right on - if they are too critical they'll lose some access which means less views at startribune.com etc.

That said, I think the NFL is much, much worse at this than mlb.

#10 TheLeviathan

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 08:40 AM

That said, I think the NFL is much, much worse at this than mlb.


Very true. I hate the whole notion of pretending you have independent journalists but they are really just shills. It's really becoming common in sports today.

#11 mike wants wins

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 07:42 AM

LEN is great on the radio, but in print? I don't even get the STrib anymore.....they largely report what sports teams and big companies tell them. And no, there is no hierarchy of purity in sports reporting. the NFL reporting is not worse. Heck, the play by play guy for the Vikes rips them during games. When have the Twins announcers ever done that?
Lighten up Francis....

#12 Hosken Bombo Disco

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 08:53 AM

Why would beat writers need to be critical anymore when they've got us?

#13 spycake

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 01:40 PM

Unless it deals with stadium demands, or public figures in legal-type trouble, does this really matter? It's not real "news" anyway -- it's all for entertainment.