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Media and Athletes as friends...a question...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by BadgerBeer, Jun 16, 2008.

  1. BadgerBeer

    BadgerBeer Well-Known Member

    "Also way back in the day, sportswriters were more buddies with the players than they are now."

    This was written on a thread on Vander Meer's back to back no-hitters. My question is when did it become a no no to befriend the athletes that you cover? Was there a moment or situation that led to this change? The term Fanboi is often used on this board and I certainly understand why, but would some of the sportswriting greats from days gone by be termed "fanboi"? Did this inhibit their ability to cover a game or a story? If not, what has changed?
  2. BrianGriffin

    BrianGriffin Active Member

    I have several athletes I've covered who I have a friendship with, though none in my "inner circle," so to speak.
  3. Diabeetus

    Diabeetus Active Member

    "Be friendly, not friends" is one of the better pieces of advice I've ever heard.
  4. It does inhibit your ability to be (or at least appear) objective. To me, it's really that simple.
  5. Petrie

    Petrie Guest

    Agreed. Establish a friendly rapport, which makes getting access and the interview process easier. But don't try to be tight with your sources, because then it turns into "BadgerBeer likes School A more" or "Diabeetus likes the point guard more than the center" or things of that sort.
  6. Some Guy

    Some Guy Active Member

    When they started making a lot more money than us.
  7. Smasher_Sloan

    Smasher_Sloan Active Member

    Aside from the obvious, the other concern is that when you work your ass off to get a story, people will assume your friend the third baseman gave it to you.

    Just bad business all around because it can cause problems on both sides.

    BTW, Roger Kahn has a scene in "Boys of Summer" where Duke Snider wants to kill a couple of the beat guys. That's when the Dodgers were still in Brooklyn, so it's at least 50 years ago if you're trying to pinpoint a time when things were less chummy.
  8. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    In these times, it might be good to cozy up to the players. Who knows? You may need a loan or a job as a go-fer.
  9. PeteyPirate

    PeteyPirate Guest

    If Derek Jeter invites me to the champagne room, I'm not going to say no.
  10. TheMethod

    TheMethod Member

    Not me. I'm going.
  11. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    Good advice.
  12. PeteyPirate

    PeteyPirate Guest

    We'll just have to agree to, uh, agree.
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