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Gambling on a sport/event you cover

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Dick Whitman, Feb 26, 2011.

  1. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    Breaking this one off from the NASCAR thread, because it is definitely a tangent.

    I say that reporters should not gamble on a sport they cover, and that there is an absolute ethical bar to doing so because you can theoretically affect the betting line with your coverage.

    Others say that, practically speaking, reporters can report with integrity and gamble on the outcome.

    Here is some of my posts from the other thread:

  2. holy bull

    holy bull Active Member

    Dick, I think you needed to make a distinction in the first place between betting on a sport you cover, and writing, in advance, about an event you intend to bet on. There's potential for unethical behavior, especially among professional handicappers, because they're affecting people's opinions. But the most obvious scenario -- picking a horse in the paper that you don't believe is going to win -- is ultimately self-defeating to the handicappers, whose bread and butter is winning percentage and ROI.
  3. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    Here's one for you: Not reporting a key injury in a team sport because the line now has value for you that it won't have if the world knows about said injury and the line swings.
  4. holy bull

    holy bull Active Member

    Call me naive, but I like to believe that if one little score based on something that you alone know is that important to a supposed journalist, that person is so fundamentally not equipped to do the job that they're going to be exposed soon enough.
  5. derwood

    derwood Active Member

    SI profile of Crist and Beyer.

  6. TheSportsPredictor

    TheSportsPredictor Well-Known Member

    Because gamblers are so ethical.
  7. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    In some cases - it's the equivalent of insider trading. I've heard of instances where someone would hear what a strategy would be from a coach and bet the over/under accordingly.

    It's funny though - whenever I watched Eight Men Out - I always identified with the ballplayers. Now players who can change a game, make too much to make fixing a game worthwhile to them.
  8. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    And that's exactly why you shouldn't be allowed to serve two masters. The readers are deprived of information so the reporter can take advantage of an overlay/underlay that he had the power to correct.
  9. dixiehack

    dixiehack Well-Known Member

    If you are my horse racing writer, I'm good with it. Otherwise, a lot more skeptical. And that includes March Madness brackets for college hoops writers and fantasy sports with cash prizes for leagues a writer covers.
  10. waterytart

    waterytart Active Member

    I've never seen anyone on this board advocate homer-ism. How can it be clear that an emotional interest in the outcome is unacceptable, but a financial interest is immaterial?
  11. SoCalDude

    SoCalDude Active Member

    This thread should have the Long Beach columnist squirming ...
  12. Cousin Jeffrey

    Cousin Jeffrey Active Member

    Not letting hoops writers do brackets seems pretty silly, but to each his own. One thing you can bet on, being an "expert" means very little. Dr. Z wrote about his disastrous foray into football gambling a few years ago.

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