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No water in the press tent

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by James307, Jun 2, 2008.

  1. James307

    James307 Member

    UC Berkeley hosted the NCAA women's rowing championships at Lake Natoma, May 30-June 1. Two weeks prior, Sacramento State hosted the Pacific Coast Rowing Championships and the Pac-10 Championships, both at the Sacramento State Aquatic Center.

    It was 105 one day at the Pac-10s, but about 30 degree cooler at the NCAAs. Nice events, though. Accommodating coaches and athletes. The sport is cool and deserves press coverage.

    Here's my bitch: While the Cal PR guys and Sacramento State folks did a solid job of coordinating the event, it was never made known if the water or food in the NCAA officials' area was for the media or not.

    We even had to ask if we could get water in the makeshift press area.

    There were the officials eating nice sandwiches, fresh fruit, bottled water on ice, etc.

    Don't mind buying my own, if that's the deal. But to have to ask the policy seems rather pathetic.

    Late Saturday afternoon, the parents and other supporters of the Puget Sound University team had a barbecue next to the press tent. I asked the other guy left in the press area, a sports information director, if he'd had lunch. He hadn't.

    I went over to the guy cooking the food and asked if I chipped in $10, could I get something to eat. The guy was astonished. "Are you kidding? Please come join us. There's plenty. And bring anyone else in the press area. We saw some clean-up crew guys and we invited them, too. Please, you don't have to pay."

    It was a stellar moment for the university. What class.

    It was not such a stellar moment for the NCAA. Here's an organization that wants nothing more than to have its "minor" sports covered. Here's an organization known for charging $30 per day for Wifi access at the NCAA hoops tourney. And here's an organization that can't even provide water in the press area at one of its championships until asked. Amazing.

    James Raia
    E-mail: james@byjamesraia.com
    web site: www.byjamesraia.com
  2. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    Did we get water when we covered the freaking bike race from start to finish? I can't remember.
    Where the hell you been?
  3. pressmurphy

    pressmurphy Member

    You know, it wouldn't kill the host SID/school at these sorts s of events to stuff the envelope containing your credential with a one-page rundown on the essentials:

    -- Locations of bathrooms
    -- Food, beverages, availability
    -- Parking
    -- Etc.

    The guy running the pressroom at an annual multi-sport event I covered even went so far as to photocopy a map of the area around the main venues, highlighting the location of drug stores, Radio Shack (ever need a set of acoustic couplers in a hurry?) and, in more recent times, free wi-fi.
  4. D-Backs Hack

    D-Backs Hack Guest

    That is a sensational idea.
  5. Armchair_QB

    Armchair_QB Well-Known Member

    Breakdowns like lack of food and water in the press tent at this level of NCAA championship can be traced back to the host, not the NCAA. If the school has an SID worth a shit the media is taken care of in some form. If not, you're out of luck.
  6. James307

    James307 Member

    Bike race?
    Hell, the Tour de France takes care of the press . . . everyday a different press room, a dozen languages or so, complicated telecommunications stuff. Say what you want about the French . . . they do some stuff well. American cycling is pretty good . . . with Medalist and Amgen . . . others spotty . . . But one year (I'm aging myself), there was only the sponsor's beer (Coors) in a cooler in the press truck in a stage race. Come think of it, that wasn't too bad . . . until five hours later at the end of a stage, we had to write . . . Ah, the good 'ol days.
  7. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    These days reporters need to learn to purify and drink their own urine if they want to hold onto their jobs covering women's rowing.

    Get tough, people.
  8. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    Not in about 20 years, why?
  9. goalmouth

    goalmouth Well-Known Member

    I once spent $70 of the company's money on a cab ride to find an Atlanta-area RS selling acoustic couplers. Good times.
  10. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    I meant the Tour de Trump/duPont that we covered together a few times.
    Carry on.
  11. James307

    James307 Member

    Give me another clue or two? Former VN guy? Former Wilmington guy? Denver? Lots of journos is press trucks back then. Don't be shy.

    Cheers, James
  12. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    You're new, my bad (it has been covered here before).
    Think Richmond.
    Never rode in a press truck. Got myself from city to city.
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