Moj on @TSN1040, re: sports blogging: “I don’t know how hard it is, when all you have to do is set up a website.”
— Daniel Wagner (@passittobulis) August 2, 2017
This quote was taken from a snippet on TSN 1040’s afternoon show on Tuesday. There was a separate poll question that sort of accompanied that on Twitter which also was pretty interesting at first sight:
Poll: Does it bother you that conventional sports journalism is dying?
— B-Mac Donnie & Moj (@BMacDonnieMoj) August 1, 2017
It doesn’t exactly scream “Video Killed the Radio Star” but in the wake of a changing landscape in the media realm, this question was raised and it definitely irked a few people. First of all, conventional journalism isn’t dead, is it dying, possibly. A big problem many perceive to be happening is that people aren’t picking up a hard copy of a newspaper which means businesses are pulling ad revenue away from a once dedicated medium.
As social media has become the new way readers digest information, many journalists, writers, and content providers have adapted to this change and are changing themselves to stay relevant. It’s not exactly a new idea. Having a new voice that happens to be a “blogger” isn’t a terrible thing either. It’s challenging some of the media members to stay honest.
I wasn’t around when radio came out but I can only imagine newspaper companies were worried because the news that was read the next morning would be available as soon as someone could get it on the air. Same can be said for television, the Internet and so on. It’s a true shame that newspapers have lost their luster and many of the writers that gave us great takes, articles, thought pieces have been phased out because the paper buys just aren’t there.
Reading the local writers, national scribes and even the likes of Ken Rosenthal of MLB fame in the United States in a paper or even on a website has started to dissolve to video clips that just don’t intrigue the way the written word captures the imagination. Someone like Jason Botchford of The Province and the connecting online media channels has found a way to stay more than relevant with a feature like The Provies after Canucks games.
Everyone loves that bonus content and the feature inserts in the newspaper used to provide that but the Internet can do it so much better so why not embrace it? Maybe that’s easier said than done. Growing up as the Internet and the technology that delivers it has evolved has made it easier for the wait for it… MILLENNIALS to adapt but the ones providing the content aren’t necessarily the ones that know how to reach that same audience online.
Hopefully, the demand for more online written content grows and brings some of the writers back that had to forfeit their jobs because video took over. Botch is one of my relevant reads and I know there are plenty of other respected writers that I would read in passing in the paper back in the day when the almighty newspaper gave me as much of the information as was available until the online world opened up.
Unfortunately, we all want information as quickly as it’s available and somehow we’ve been gifted 90% of it for free. We used to pay for music and movies and then Napster, Limewire and torrent sites came out and for the longest time, no one had to pay for them. Itunes and a variety of other outlets took the power back and dare I say, made it cool, to pay for music again. Digital downloads were included with new DVD/Blu-ray purchases so everyone could have their content wherever they want.
Maybe that’s a conversation for another day but if we all want great content, these guys and girls do this for a living and need to be paid; if it’s all free eventually they’re out of jobs. That’s when journalism dies. There are sites that operate by paid subscriptions and if the big papers did what sites like The Athletic and many fantasy sports sites have done, the content we all crave would continue to flow from more voices that created the landscape we enjoy today.
Now the blogger argument is sort of old because many feel the stories and content on a lot of the sites are click bait or just help get retweets for that guy in his parent’s basement. It’s beyond that and it needs to stop.
Growing up, if I would have been told that this thing called the Internet would allow me to have a voice that even one person I didn’t know was interested in, I would have been thrilled. The beautiful thing about having an online presence is that if it’s a bad article/take/comment, you’ll hear about it. I imagine this post may fall on deaf ears but the fact I get to have an opinion on this is worth it to me.
Conventional journalism has taken a turn but it’s not the blogger’s fault or some random local website. Information is available instantly and as long as the powers that be continue to deliver that information at a moments notice, including sports radio, podcasts, and social media, the landscape will continue to change.
photo – youthtimes.com