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SMG interviews Rick Maese ...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Evil ... Thy name is Orville Redenbacher!!, Oct 1, 2007.

  1. Twoback

    Twoback Active Member

    Oh, my goodness.
    Did he or did he not call for the NCAA to regulate freedom of the press?
  2. Flying Headbutt

    Flying Headbutt Moderator Staff Member

    What's the point of SMG making people register? For newspapers and all, I understand how it works, with the advertising and all. But isn't that site pretty much an industry type site for reading purposes, and not much else?
  3. Wow. A lot of what Rick said really, really struck a deep chord with me.
  4. Cadet

    Cadet Guest

    Hmm... and it's not registered on www.bugmenot.com yet, either.

    Who wants to volunteer to set up the SportsJournalists.com group login?
  5. Barsuk

    Barsuk Active Member

    For what it's worth, I've been registered for a few weeks and I haven't gotten any spam because of it. So it should be safe.
  6. Baltimoreguy

    Baltimoreguy Member

    I think it's a great idea to give a column to someone young. But I think it's a big mistake to give a column to someone lacking the foundation of knowledge that's a prerequisite for the creation of an informed opinion. And I think Maese has struggled in Baltimore when writing about the local sports scene -- he simply doesn't have the knowledge to write credibly about anything that happened here before he arrived two years ago.

    Maese says he was in the Albuquerque newsroom from the age of 14. I have no doubt he could write unbelievably good columns about Albuquerque. I wish The Sun had been able to find someone young who possesses the same kind of knowledge about Baltimore that Maese must have about his hometown.
  7. novelist_wannabe

    novelist_wannabe Well-Known Member

    I don't think his take on it is all that much different from anyone on here. We all think there's a disconnect between us and our readers. Whether it's growing, I don't know. I think they've always been suspicious of us because they think we're getting a free ticket while they have to pay.
  8. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    I think, and I don't mean this as a personal shot at you BmoreGuy, that Baltimore people need to get past the idea that no one can write about their city unless they grew up there. Newspapers don't have John Steadmans anymore. Either a columnist is able to understand a city's history and write credibly about it, or he (or she) isn't. Geography, in the end, has very little to do with it. No one in Portland says that John Canzano can't understand the Blazers because he's not from Portland. Or that Mitch Albom doesn't "get" Detroit because he grew up in New Jersey and went to Princeton instead of Michigan State. Or that Selena Roberts has no credibility writing about the Yankees, Knicks, Giants, Mets and Jets because she was born in Florida and went to college at Auburn. But people in Baltimore whine about this all the time. It is, in my opinion, a prime example of how provincial and insecure the city is. If Maese doesn't connect with his audience, that's an opinion and perhaps a fair one. But it's silly to say "well, it's because he's not one of us."
  9. Baltimoreguy

    Baltimoreguy Member

    I completely understand what you're saying, and I agree that Baltimore is amazingly parochial. But my point was more that for a columnist to be effective, he or she must first be perceived as (and be) a credible expert. If the columnist lacks expert knowledge, then who cares what his or her opinion is?

    Traditionally, writers spend long years on the beat before being adjudged expert enough to merit a column. In Baltimore, Ken Rosenthal eventually became a very popular columnist because his years on the beat served as proof that he had the requisite knowledge to make his opinion meaningful. I don’t think that’s the only way a columnist can be developed.

    I like The Sun’s embrace of younger writers on major beats. And I like the idea of giving a column to someone who’s not an older white guy jaded by two decades on a beat (I still like the occasional Sports Guy column – particularly when he sticks to the areas where he’s proven himself an expert, like all the funny and goofy shit you see when you watch televised sports for 10 straight hours on a Sunday). If there were some 25-year-old who knows Baltimore sports the way Simmons knows Boston, I would love to read his column.

    But to give a column to someone who has neither ever set foot in the city before, nor worked to amass a body of professional expertise upon which to draw, is – in my opinion – a mistake. Simply put, it's hard to care much what Maese says about the Orioles when he knows almost nothing about the team and his status as a credible authority on major league baseball hasn't been established.

    And I don’t think this is just a Baltimore issue. Are you telling me people in the cosmopolitan hub of Boston would enthusiastically welcome a columnist who had never once set foot in the city before the day he started writing for The Globe?
  10. Maese is ridiculously talented. I don't think not being from somewhere means you're devoid of knowledge or authority. Sometimes (note, I said sometimes), I think an outsider can have a better perspective than someone who has been in the area for decades because they bring new ideas and a different way of looking at things.

    Take down the road at the WashPo. Boz and Wilbon have been there for eons, but these days I'll take Mike Wise when it comes to the Redskins or the Wizards (I still go to Boz for all things baseball) because Mike does a little better job of calling out the locals and trying to shake the city from its Redskins and Gibbs-induced stupor.

    And Rosenthal, for all his talent, always seemed to be trying to be a 2-inch taller version of Lupica. And I'm not just saying this because at my first Opening Day in '97 I waited 40 minutes to get a good spot in front of Ripken's locker (conveniently placed in the back corner of the locker room so he could make a quick getaway if he didn't want to chat) and Rosenthal's butt came squirming through. OK, so maybe that is why I'm saying it. Then again, I'm petty.
  11. Baltimoreguy

    Baltimoreguy Member

    I don't want to turn this into a Maese-bashing session, but I think the names of the effective non-hometown columnists being mentioned in this thread are backing up my point.

    Mike Wise was writing enterprise and investigative stories for 10 years at the NY Times.

    Selena Roberts had been an NFL beat writer for a decade in Minnesota, then spent another 6 years writing for the NYT before starting her column.

    Canzano had covered some major beats and won an AP Award for Investigative Reporting.
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