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Is what we do demeaning?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Pulitzer Wannabe, Sep 27, 2007.

  1. Just turned in from another night of begging 18-22 year olds to explain what it would mean to beat State U this week in a conference game ... and just can't shake this feeling that I get quite often, that we have to look like the world's biggest bunch of douche bags to the people we cover. That we're herded in and out of practices at their discretion, told when to jump and how high to get together for a five-minute interview that the players and coaches simply try to endure, not engage with us ...

    Sure there are a few stories a year, enterprise pieces where you somehow get to involve some real people, maybe former players on your beat or maybe you dip into the preps scene and it feels like you're human again ... but, again, just constantly have this feeling of shame about having to grovel and cajole kids and control freak coaches for answers to simple, mundane questions every week.

    I'm not explaining it very well, though. Anyone else want to give it a shot? Or just want to chime in and tell me I'm nuts, this is the world's greatest job?
  2. forever_town

    forever_town Well-Known Member

    Any job is what you make of it.

    There are certain times when I genuinely enjoy interviewing players. I can think of one player for the major D-IA football team I cover who made me feel like it was just a conversation when I was talking to him.

    For me personally, I get to engage in two of my biggest passions at once and get paid for it. The fact that I get chicken feed for it matters less than the fact that I make my living doing what I love.
  3. spnited

    spnited Active Member

    So in addition to being unhappy with your salary (based on your other thread), you think the job is demeaning. I have some career advice for you:


    You have the nerve to call yourself "Pulitzer Wannabe" and post shit like this.
  4. We're often forced also to ask obvious questions in order to get a quote we need. If you're on a beat, you probably already know the answer to any question you might ask for a gamer, but you need the answer in a fresh quote. They must wonder why we keep asking.
  5. Wow.

    What a fucking prick.
  6. txsportsscribe

    txsportsscribe Active Member

    i tend to agree with spirited. do you have anything good to say about the profession or do you just want to moan and depress everyone?
  7. BillyT

    BillyT Active Member

    The people we cover don't mean a rat's ass.

    We are in it for the reader.

    You need to ask those questions to give the reader what he/she wants.

    We are not here to be liked.
  8. maumann

    maumann Active Member

    Hey, you can go months of listening to nothing but complaints about what you do and don't cover, killing yourself with long hours and low pay, losing every argument over space and color with the ME and writing good stuff that nobody notices.

    As my mentor told me, "If you got into this business expecting a pat on the back, you'd better find something else to do right away."

    Then something will happen that makes it worthwhile.

    Rocky Mount used to host the ACC Men's Golf Tournament. College golfers rarely have a gallery, unless their families are there, so we tried to make it special with a tab and daily features. It was a lot of work with little return.

    I ended up doing a piece on one of the Georgia Tech guys after Friday's round, just a quick post-round interview and by the numbers feature, a good story but nothing contest-worthy.

    The next day, I'm sitting outside the clubhouse when the kid sees me, comes over, shakes my hand and thanks me for the story, then asks me to meet his parents. They wind up talking to me for another 20 minutes about how wonderful it was that I wrote about him, and he winds up giving me his lunch.

    You never know when you might end up covering the next Stewart Cink.
  9. mike311gd

    mike311gd Active Member


    I've never felt that way in this business. I've been disrespected and had some complaints, but I've never felt like what I do is demeaning.

    I think it's all in your mind. Maybe this job really isn't for you. You might want to ask yourself if it really is something you'll enjoy doing for a long time. Of course, that might just be a phase you've got to muscle through.

    It's no fun being told when and where you can speak with athletes who are younger than you, but that's most of our jobs. It's just part of our business.
  10. Yeah, that's a good way of putting it. I think that's the part that just gets to you after a while. But you have to be a professional about it and look at it that way - I'm sure that the Stones don't love having to play "Jumping Jack Flash" for the one millionth time, but they soldier on.

    And, also, some of you are really, really self-righteous, particularly in using the salary thread against me on this one. Seriously. Like it's so wrong to think about. I'm sure you guys never do, being such purists.
  11. Stone Cane

    Stone Cane Member

    nope, not a prick at all

    he speaks wisely

    get over yourself and grow a set or get the hell out of the industry
  12. txsportsscribe

    txsportsscribe Active Member

    geez pulitzer, just how thin-skinned are you?
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