Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Getting Beat to the Beat

I'll let you all in on a little secret, I have no idea who Red Smith is, or why anyone would name their kid Red. I don't think it makes me a bad journalist, or less of a person. Would I be less of a 'true' comedy fan if I'd never heard of George Carlin? Negative, Ghost Rider.

In the first article I read, by Dave Kindred, I found myself agreeing to some extent. It is a hectic life journalists live. Working for the Athletic Communications office this year has shown me the underbelly, if you will, of sports journalism. I have to show up four hours early to Temple's football games, and usually end up leaving 2-3 hours after it finishes. It's a full time job. I don't do much during the games, but I see all of the sportswriters writing and rewriting their stories in between tweeting about the game. 

As the games have changed, so has journalism. Like I've said early in the class, people don't want huge in-depth stories like they used to. Maybe a select few do, but journalism, and especially sports journalism, is a business. Give the viewer what they want. They want live tweets and lineups posted the second they come out. In this instant gratification day-and-age, we don't crave long stories, we crave instant info. 

In the second article, by Malcolm Moran, he talks about how all of these jobs that sportswriters have to is diluting the real reporting. I agree, for the most part. I do enjoy reading something other than recaps and previews, but I want it now. Now or never. It may take a few days to verify a source, or write up a poetic, beautiful story, but even if I read it right now, it wasn't quick enough. Someone else probably has the story. 

What bothers me about going into the field of journalism is this constant pissing contest to see who got what first and who tweeted what, when. WHO CARES? As long as the information is accurate (which it often isn't), why does it really matter who got it out? If 12 guys (or girls) are getting the exact same information, like the lineups, then it really comes down to who can type quicker on their cellphones, and that worries me a bit.

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