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Asking for an autograph

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by arnold ziffel, Aug 3, 2006.

  1. BillyT

    BillyT Active Member

    Am I reading correctly: This is a three-year-old story?
  2. Just wondering: what does an adult need an autograph for? I thought their prupose was to have proof when your 4th-grade friends don't believe you had an encounter with a celebrity.

    I've yet to come back from a game and tell a buddy, "I talked to David Ortiz!" and get "No, you didn't! Liar!" in return.
  3. joe_schmoe

    joe_schmoe Active Member

    Cuz people like to do stuff? People stand in line for hours at book signings....meet the player days...meet a singer. People flock outside the Academy theater just to catch a glimpse of a celebrity walking out of a limo.

    It's a fascination with celebrity thing, and sports writers aren't immune.
    Heck I've heard other sportswriters make "I remember when I covered him in high school...." type statements.

    That's why I just ask for autographs while these guys are still in high school. :) And if it's a female athlete....of course I always say stuff like "Wow you're awesome, and gonna be famous one day....is there any chance you'd autograph one of your bras for me?"
  4. KJIM

    KJIM Well-Known Member

    What was the circumstance? Was this while on the job?
  5. Gator

    Gator Well-Known Member

    firstly, i dont see what the big deal about autographs are. secondly, i remember the first time seeing nomar garciaparra when i was covering a sox game four or five years ago. i admit, i was star struck. now, its no big deal, and i dont see what the big deal about being around these people. call it maturation, but they put their pants on the same way i do.

    a few months back, i had to explain to an intern that going up to dan shaunessey (whoa, spelling?) and telling him that he's a big fan is a bad idea. in a professional setting, acting professional is what you need to do.

    getting back to the topic, i would never do anything like that, and while the person in question shouldnt be reprimanded, he should be made fun of in the office until the end of time.
  6. CentralIllinoisan

    CentralIllinoisan Active Member

    I covered the WSOP this past weekend and I knew going in that I was going to get a program and have many pro poker players sign it for me, as a birthday gift to my dad.

    I had my wife get most of the autographs and made it a rule to never get a signature when I was "working" or had my credential on, of course.

    After working, I'd take off the credentials and walk around to get a few signatures; I found nothing wrong with that.
  7. I'm with Gator. Never saw a big deal with in autographs - not since I was about 10.
    However, When I got to do a sit down interview with Sam Snead I asked our photographer if he would take a few pictures of me interviewing Snead that I could have. He was taking pictures of Snead for the story, so I wanted him to try and work in a few shots of me doing my job with one of the greatest golfers of all-time.
    I have the picture hanging up at home.

    Rather than an autograph I prefer photos of myself doing an interview with Snead, Joe Paterno or Jerry West.
    I feel that it allows me to maintain an air of professionalism, but at the same time maintain that kid-like sense of awe.
    I would feel very awkward trying to be a pro and then switching to fanmode and asking for an autograph.
  8. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    Years ago, when I was just starting out, Pete Rose did a meet-and-greet at a casino here. I covered it, and got him to sign a baseball card as a birthday gift for my dad (he was a big Phillies fan). My editor was also there and before I did it, I asked him if it was OK. He said yeah. I got the autograph long after my interview was over and while Rose was still signing.
    Obviously, getting autographs from people you cover on a beat is a huge no-no. But in that setting -- a once-in-a-lifetime type meeting with an icon, at a meet-and-greet where they're there to sign autographs -- is there a little more leeway?
  9. Overrated

    Overrated Guest

    I would never ask for an autograph, but hypothetically, let's say you've covered a team for 15 years and there's a guy or two who's been on the team nearly as long. Hypothetically, remember? You know everything about the guy and you have a professional relationship. You've had your ups and downs with the guy, yet there is respect on both sides and you still chit chat and carry on like professionals. You have a basement set up like a sports bar, only with better memorabilia. What's the harm in asking him for an autograph to complement it after the season is over?
  10. Hank_Scorpio

    Hank_Scorpio Active Member

    If it's the same situation that MGoBlue and myself are thinking of, then yes, it is at least three years old.
  11. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    A few years ago I was standing in the tunnel at a shootaround as Shaq was walking in. I've dealt with him before and while I don't think he knows my name, I think he recognized me. He grabbed my notepad and pen and autographed it and then tossed it to me. I thought it was funny and strange at the same time. I saved it, more because I thought it was funny than anything else.

    I asked John Wooden for his autograph when I was in college and I wasn't covering the event. I haven't done it since...
  12. Knighthawk

    Knighthawk Member

    I've gone through PR staffs to get stuff for charity events, but I'd never ask an athlete directly.

    I was seriously tempted a year ago - my dad was in critical condition in the hospital, and it was not at all clear if he was going to make it. It was really tough, and if I could have gotten him something from Favre or the Packers, it might have cheered him up for a little while - he'd been a fan for 60 years.

    I didn't. I wish I had.
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