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The demise of SI

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by apseloser, May 14, 2010.

  1. apseloser

    apseloser Member

    Occasionally — every 3-4 issues — they'll knock a feature out of the park. I can't remember the last time they knocked an ISSUE out of the park. I think they've fallen as hard as a lot of sports sections. Too much Andy Staples and Albert Chen (guys who'd never even get paid internships at SI in its hey day), not enough of the big boys, the guys who make you want to keep reading.

    Their latest cover, which most subscribers got by mail yesterday, is just puzzling. They took a huge gamble — and lost, bad. The magazine is irrelevant before it even arrives at any newsstand.

    The headline:

    Good, Old Shaq
    Can he deliver a ring to the King?

    Uh, no. He cannot.
  2. Cousin Jeffrey

    Cousin Jeffrey Active Member

    I got it by mail on Wednesday, but I get your point.
  3. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    I thought the UVa lacrosse story was good, but I read it online the day before my issue arrived. For the five billionth time, SI, why?
  4. smsu_scribe

    smsu_scribe Guest

    Poor timing on the Shaq cover, sure. I did like Ballard's story, though. Funny, I thought the issue as a whole was very solid. Good stories on the Virginia lacrosse murder and Dallas Braden's perfect game. Epstein's feature on genetics was nice, too.

    I've actually been thinking the issues have been better recently.
  5. Pete Incaviglia

    Pete Incaviglia Active Member

    I get my subscription for next to nothing. My wife bought it actually as a gift through a fundraiser for a local school. Dirt cheap.

    Anyway, I find there's one story per issue I'll either want to read or read and am surprised at how good it is.

    Other than that, noth much to it.

    The back page is often average. Dan Patrick is horrible. And a lot of times I find myself wondering why some Scorecard items aren't full-blown features because they're interesting.

    Just my two cents.
  6. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Cover stuff happens. On the SI Golf Plus Players Championship issue, Anthony Kim and his entourage were on the cover. Kim withdrew from the event due to injury.
  7. apseloser

    apseloser Member

    Agree on UVa lacrosse — good but not great. Thorough but no how'd-they-find-that-out? parts. Decent lede but not one that showed me something or told me a great anecdote.

    Old SI had those anecdotes and tidbits no one else did, those stories no one else told, that must-read back-page column. They came to town to do a story on your beat, you trembled.

    New SI? Bring it; any story you can tell, I can tell ... well, pretty close, if not better. I don't even know what that back page is anymore. Don't read it. Seems to be a revolving door of stories by above-average but not Reilly (or Telander, Deford, Posnanski, etc.) on obscure high school athletes or people with heart conditions.

    If that genetics story gets better after the first couple paragraphs, someone please let me know so I can go back and read it. It certainly didn't suck me in the way SI features used to.
  8. Mark2010

    Mark2010 Active Member

    The rise of the internet and talk radio has made event coverage almost irrelevant for magazines now. I grew up reading Sports Illustrated and learned a lot about writing from reading their stuff 25-30 years ago.

    They can still do some tremendous features and that is what they should concentrate on, IMO.
  9. Armchair_QB

    Armchair_QB Well-Known Member

    Have not received this week's issue yet. I guess the guys down at the post office haven't finished reading it.
  10. Herbert Anchovy

    Herbert Anchovy Active Member

    I hung out at Joe Maddon's luncheonette about two years ago, a few days after SI had parachuted in there. They were about as underwhelmed by SI and their arrival as people can be. That alone to me was shocking.
  11. Cosmo

    Cosmo Well-Known Member

    Loser, no one is talking in Charlottesville. Not Starsia. Not the players. No one on either side in respect to the Love family. And the butcher job the MSM did on the Duke story in 2006 has the lacrosse community completely wary of any national media.
  12. RickStain

    RickStain Well-Known Member

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
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