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Yahoo Sports "in chaos"

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by westcoast1, Aug 8, 2010.

  1. westcoast1

    westcoast1 New Member

    Two friends who work there says the Big Lead post was an understatement of how bad things have gotten with Dave Morgan no longer hands on in sports.

    They have a really gifted, hard-working team of writers but it sounds like a toxic environment - unhappy writers, a guy in charge of the department who doesn't know much about sports, squabbling between the Rivals.com guys and the new regime. They pay well - very well for writers - but the two guys I know there say the bickering and general dissent are at alltime highs.

    Anyone else hear anything? I always thought it would be a cool place to work. Not now. I have one more source than TBL did and they're reliable ones.

    In case you missed it:

    http://thebiglead.com/index.php/2010/08/03/chaos-at-yahoo-sports/
     
  2. apseloser

    apseloser Member

    I've heard the same things from my insider BUT man, do they have some great go-to guys on that site. It has become my Number 1 book mark. They have more scoops per writer than any national site, I'd guess.

    It does, however, sound like a dreadful place. While the ESPN model of bringing everyone (except some writers) under one roof has caused a lot of flak, it sure helps the communication flow to have everyone in Bristol. I don't know what the reason is -- housing prices in LA? -- but Yahoo apparently lets everyone live wherever they'd like. (Just found this out from an old colleague, whose editor coworker is going to Yahoo but doesn't have to move there).

    Can you imagine the problems associated with EDITORS living all over the place? I'm all for doing things non-traditionally -- the old newspaper model certainly has flaws, as we're experiencing -- but that's just downright asinine.
     
  3. Fran Curci

    Fran Curci Member

    I wonder what the editing structure is like --- how many assigning editors are there, for example?
     
  4. Jersey_Guy

    Jersey_Guy Active Member

    Curious why you say this. Today's technology certainly negates almost all previous disadvantages of having editors scattered nationally.
     
  5. Small Town Guy

    Small Town Guy Well-Known Member

    Aside from Esquire and Sports Illustrated in the 1960s - and even then people were bitching about Tex Maule - is there any magazine/newspaper/website that hasn't had the majority of people bitching about the work environment? Anytime there are writers and editors, there are going to be conflicts. I suppose it could be chaos at Yahoo! Not sure how that chaos would be any different than what's been at every other publication - print or online - that's ever existed.
     
  6. apseloser

    apseloser Member

    Technology, schmechnology, Jersey guy. We're not robots -- there is some actual upside to human interaction with co-workers, to staff content meetings, to yelling across the room when you need a quick answer on something, to going over a story with a writer while sitting next to him or her.

    I don't know the people at Yahoo or even the new guy my former coworker told me was heading there but it takes an awfully disciplined editor to do that kind of job from the living room.

    Editors out there, how many times have you needed an answer, called them and gotten voicemail? If you work in an office together, that doesn't happen. They're sitting right next to you.

    I didn't start this post and don't know a lot about this specific situation but I could certainly see where the term "chaos" comes in.
     
  7. BTExpress

    BTExpress Well-Known Member

    Fixed.
     
  8. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    apseloser - I've been an editor in a newsroom and and I'm an editor now in a "virtual" newsroom. You make very valid points. Face to face contact is always better. But the other can work, too, as long as both sides of it are aware of the hurdles a "virtual" newsroom faces and work to overcome them.

    I must say, a "real" newsroom - at least in the good ol' days - was often a "virtual" newsroom. I worked a beat that had me on the road a ton and much of my interaction with my editors was via e-mail and over the phone. Same as when I was an editor. Very little stuff was actually filed from the office.

    The difference is we knew each other so it wasn't just a voice on the phone. To help overcome that in my current job, we had a "team" meeting last month where we got together to plot, plan and socialize for three days. It was a massive help to put faces to names, etc., and I think the writer-editor interaction has been much better since. And I thought it was pretty good before, considering we didn't actually know each other.

    With a little effort, you can make a "virtual" newsroom work.

    But, as someone else noted, there's always going to be a degree of chaos in this business. It is chaotic by nature. That and the fact that we're all batshit crazy makes for some fun times.
     
  9. Fran Curci

    Fran Curci Member

    Does a core group of Yahoo editors always gather in L.A.?

    If so, that tells me that the editors working in other locations aren't as vital --- or at least couldn't work in scattered locations without the help of the editors in L.A. doing a little extra.
     
  10. Jersey_Guy

    Jersey_Guy Active Member

    My experience as well.

    I don't think there's any reason for everyone to be gathered in an office.
     
  11. Fran Curci

    Fran Curci Member

    The "real newsroom" worked because --- although writers were scattered everywhere --- the editors were all in one place.
     
  12. TigerVols

    TigerVols Well-Known Member

    I bet 98.7% of the regular posters on this board would trade whatever job they are in now for a gig at Yahoo sports, chaos and all.
     
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