DG_Now

The Sports Media Thread

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3 hours ago, CS85 said:

I'd be surprised if there wasn't a snarky version of The Athletic with many of these cast off Deadspin, Sports On Earth, Onion/AV Club/etc writers to do their own thing.  I'd subscribe, as I imagine would others.

 

I hope so, but I think the jury is still out on whether that's a sustainable model, too. Less of a house of cards than video ads that nobody watches, but I think the paywall subscription fee has to be way higher than the Athletic's current charge to sustain an entire operation and pay decently. Seems to me the model in terms of revenue has to be diversified.

 

Either way, the scale play of anodyne clickbait seems to have been pretty well discredited by now, so I'm not sure why any smart exec would want to nuke a site with a loyal, defined audience in favor of another probably-unsustainable SB Nation or For The Win or other Generic Sports Meme Blog.

 

if the site was going to get ruined anyway, I’m glad the staff at least torched the place on the way out.

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I feel like that self-mythologizing only started when they started to fight against the owners. Before that it was just Deadspin and they did Deadspin things. I like Deadspin, I don't like Barstool, and I like when people call out The Ringer for being so in their own ass. If they all find another place to congregate I'll read them there. 

 

Speaking of those MTV shows about MTV (and speaking of the mid-aughts), I used to watch all of those shows and I hated how they chose to have the subjects tell stories in the present tense. Actually, I think I just hate it when people tell stories in the present tense. I find it irritating and presumptuous as if they're saying, "let me, the grand storyteller, set the scene for my amazing story". Those shows were all like "So I'm running backstage trying to get Snoop Dog his chalice or else we can't do the big chalice joke and I trip into this table of hot dogs and" ugh. 

 

 

19 hours ago, DG_Now said:

Bill Simmons is launching a new Book of Basketball...but as a podcast, obviously.

 

Question is whether I have the patience to listen to him whine through the "player empowerment" era and underrate LeBron (who he would otherwise love were he a Celtic)?

 

Write it in a :censored:ing book, Bill. Jeez louise. He's not even a great conversationalist or interviewer nor does he have a voice that's pleasant to listen to. When he started to get "aggressively 50" as they said on the latest episode of the Deadcast is when he lost me. I'm not a basketball fan and I read 2/3 of the Book of Basketball (I read it all the way through, I just skipped the pyramid stuff because it was boring and overly statty. I don't care how he ranks the 20 best basketball players ever). I might have picked up the update, I won't listen to the Podcast version. 

 

It bothered me more than it should've that a really entertaining World Series Game 7 was happening and he was ferociously tweeting about an October regular season Celtics game as if that's the only thing going on. We're allowed to have our own interests, but if you're going to call yourself "Sports Guy" you should watch the sports. If the Red Sox were in it he'd would've watched it. 

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6 hours ago, CS85 said:

I'd be surprised if there wasn't a snarky version of The Athletic with many of these cast off Deadspin, Sports On Earth, Onion/AV Club/etc writers to do their own thing.  I'd subscribe, as I imagine would others.

I'm not sure there is an investor for such an outlet.  They could pool together and create material behind a Pateron just to test the waters and try to prove there is an audience. 

3 hours ago, Digby said:

 

I hope so, but I think the jury is still out on whether that's a sustainable model, too. Less of a house of cards than video ads that nobody watches, but I think the paywall subscription fee has to be way higher than the Athletic's current charge to sustain an entire operation and pay decently. Seems to me the model in terms of revenue has to be diversified.

It's seems unsustainable.  This week, they had another 40% off offer available for first time subscribers.  They seem to be using the razor/cartridges or printer/ink method of revenue

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52 minutes ago, dfwabel said:

 

I'm not sure there is an investor for such an outlet.  They could pool together and create material behind a Pateron just to test the waters and try to prove there is an audience. 

It's seems unsustainable.  This week, they had another 40% off offer available for first time subscribers.  They seem to be using the razor/cartridges or printer/ink method of revenue

 

I think it's the same as the halcyon days of print newspaper subscriptions: hook them in with a low rate and hope enough people are too lazy or don't notice the eventual hikes to cancel. The more things change, etc.

 

If they run it like a co-op or a nonprofit, maybe it'd work?

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Deadspin was one of my staple sites. Would go there multiple times a day, along with some of its sister sites. If I wanted strictly sports news and box scores, I'd go to ESPN. I enjoyed the side snarky commentary. I'm really disappointed that I won't get to read any of their stuff for a while, and not likely collected in one place in the future.

 

It's very ironic that of all the sites reveling in the downfall, it's another site with "sports" in its name that is basically the exact same thing, but with a very pro-MAGA bent—Barstool. (See also Turtleboy Sports if you live in Massachusetts). Portnoy is a huge misogynist douchebag, and his site caters to that crowd. So it's fine that they co-existed. But out of the crawlspace come all the other MAGAheads supporting Portnoy and laughing at Deadspin's demise. Deadspin really didn't have one face behind the name like Barstool does. And while it was definitely the polar opposite of Barstool, the most visible name that was currently writing on it was likely Drew Magary. But, like many of the other writers, Drew also posted on other sites. He wasn't strictly Deadspin. Unlike Portnoy, who is 100% Barstool.

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5 minutes ago, slapshot said:

Deadspin was one of my staple sites. Would go there multiple times a day, along with some of its sister sites. If I wanted strictly sports news and box scores, I'd go to ESPN. I enjoyed the side snarky commentary. I'm really disappointed that I won't get to read any of their stuff for a while, and not likely collected in one place in the future.

 

It's very ironic that of all the sites reveling in the downfall, it's another site with "sports" in its name that is basically the exact same thing, but with a very pro-MAGA bent—Barstool. (See also Turtleboy Sports if you live in Massachusetts). Portnoy is a huge misogynist douchebag, and his site caters to that crowd. So it's fine that they co-existed. But out of the crawlspace come all the other MAGAheads supporting Portnoy and laughing at Deadspin's demise. Deadspin really didn't have one face behind the name like Barstool does. And while it was definitely the polar opposite of Barstool, the most visible name that was currently writing on it was likely Drew Magary. But, like many of the other writers, Drew also posted on other sites. He wasn't strictly Deadspin. Unlike Portnoy, who is 100% Barstool.

I, like you, looked at Deadspin multiple times per day,  It lured me to Gizmodo, Jalopnik, The Root and even The Takeout. I go to Jalopnik most overall I stopped going to Gizmodo  as they stopped making serious reviews circa 2014, then Deadspin post-Gawker saw me visit less daily, then The Takeout recently had writers leave, like Kevin Pang, and The Root only looks to have folks leave since us as Black folks cannot be seen as the first to leave, yet not wanting to be seem working for "The Man".

 

When it was good, it was great, but I'll never say that for Barstool, since every four months, they have editor issues with the same dude.  Barstool is more an audio business with Sirius/XM and podcasting than it is blogging, those page hits don't count nearly as much in 2019.  If Sirius/XM dropped them, Portnoy would instantly panic to cover his gambling debt and his horse stable costs, and NJTank and his food reviews would not save him. 

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14 hours ago, Digby said:

If they run it like a co-op or a nonprofit, maybe it'd work?

 

Jacobin seems to have money lying around, they can relaunch Deadspin as an exciting new vertical. Jockobin.

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I think this hits why I liked Deadspin all this time. Sports are great, but many of the characters and the owners are huge f****** a*****s and there's a lot of internal conflict you have to put up with just because you like baseball or hockey or football, even. Lots of other sports fans are stupider than s*** and for a while it was like "I like this too. Does that mean I'm stupid?" It's okay to enjoy them, but also don't be a wanker dork and carry on about enjoying them, The Ringer. They also always recognized the inherent irrationality in supporting a specific team of professional mercenaries who aren't from that city while also fully embracing the rationality of ":censored: you if you're a [blank] fan". 

 

 

 

Is there another site like Deadspin that I can visit? I always feel like I find out about these websites 16 months after everyone else does and it's almost exclusively from here or when they get dropped into conversation by someone as if they're some world famous conglomerate that I should already know about. People Be Like, "So I was reading Metchell Jurgenson, who I normally can't stand, on BEANSPILLER and he made a good point blah blahblah". No I haven't heard of Beanspiller or whatever!

 

EDIT: I'm surprised one of the blogs in the Gawker family was not called Beanspiller. That was a good made up name by me. 

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21 minutes ago, McCarthy said:

 

 

I think this hits why I liked Deadspin all this time. Sports are great, but many of the characters and the owners are huge f****** a*****s and there's a lot of internal conflict you have to put up with just because you like baseball or hockey or football, even. Lots of other sports fans are stupider than s*** and for a while it was like "I like this too. Does that mean I'm stupid?" It's okay to enjoy them, but also don't be a wanker dork and carry on about enjoying them, The Ringer. They also always recognized the inherent irrationality in supporting a specific team of professional mercenaries who aren't from that city while also fully embracing the rationality of ":censored: you if you're a [blank] fan". 

 

Deadspin was great because I discovered it about the same time I started having a bit of an existential crisis (if you will) about my own sports fandom. The older I get and the more I get into the real, working world, the more I look at pro sports and think to myself, what is this really adding to my existence? There was a stretch for YEARS where my sports fandom basically defined who I was (At least, I thought it did), and it wasn't until I saw "my teams" win titles where I truly realized it wasn't going to fundamentally change a single thing about my life other than draining my already limited funds on cheesy, ill fitting championship merchandise I'll never wear.

 

Maybe it's kind of pathetic to admit that pro sports really had such a huge hold over my self-worth well into my 20's, but I got to the point where I felt pretty lost and sort of embarrassed that I had essentially "wasted" so much of my time putting my energy and emotion into something that not only didn't give a single :censored: about me, but didn't even know I existed. Deadspin was one of those outlets that kind of put that all into perspective for me and helped me to discover that I wasn't alone in feeling like that. I'm not going overboard and saying that "Ohh Deadspin changed my life!" or anything, but in a way it sort of did. It opened me up to some of the things that were problematic about being such a loyal sports fan, and exposed a lot of the warts within the entire culture that just maybe weren't the most healthy outlets. 

 

I used to always say that "Oh, sports are just entertainment and I'll never let it effect me so personally", but that was me just lying to myself. Sites like Barstool really do try and put up that façade that your passion is all that matters and questioning anything about it is stupid. Deadspin was one of those sites that (While I understand their own flaws) sort of forced you to do a bit of self evaluation when it came to how you look at and consume sports. Personally, I feel like I'm better off for having an outlet like that, and while I understand how it had gone off the rails a bit, I'm sad to see it going away. 

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Deadspin's corporate overlord G/O Media published some statistics to back their argument and prove their "stick to sports" mantra was valid.

 

Turns out those numbers were, um, wrong.

 

 

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Not surprising.

Chernin exploring selling Barstool to gambling company.

 

EDIT:  It's probably MGM Resorts since they sold Bellagio to Blackstone Group two weeks ago for $4B and will lease back the hotel/casino for $260M/year for 30 years.  The MGM Grand hotel itself is now up for sale this week as MGM Resorts tries to sell all real estate including a percentage of their own REIT (which holds Mandalay Bay, Luxor, Park MGM), reduce their $15B debt, and have some cash ready for a Japan project.

Edited by dfwabel

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Per the Barstool blogging discussion, I think their real cash cow now is podcasting and the more visual/audio content, along with merchandise, instead of the blogging.

 

From what I understand, it's also kind of the nature of the beast with making money through internet content. It's more about the sponsors and merch than actual clicks or views.

 

This is probably for another thread, but I wonder if there's going to be a podcasting/Youtube/internet sponsorship bubble burst soon. Someone like Barstool has the history with major companies that sponsor content or put ads on their podcasts, but it seems like every Youtuber or podcaster is sponsored by Audible or whatever VPN is hot in the streets. How much money is there in these ads and how much money do these smaller sponsors have to spend?

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It's actually kind of interesting Deadspin didn't do podcasting outside of the Deadcast. The Ringer may have reading content, but their bread and butter is absolutely their podcasting network.

 

Deadspin's worth was in its editorial slant and its community. There's money to be made from that; I wonder what a non-invasive, static ad presentation could look like and how much that could support a well-trafficked website.

 

No one likes auto loading audio/video, or ads that load after everything else and change your postition as you're scrolling (and often right as you're about to click something).

 

A static page with static ads and a good community of writers and commenters has to be worth something. Several million per year? Who's to say.

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25 minutes ago, DG_Now said:

It's actually kind of interesting Deadspin didn't do podcasting outside of the Deadcast. The Ringer may have reading content, but their bread and butter is absolutely their podcasting network.

 

Deadspin's worth was in its editorial slant and its community. There's money to be made from that; I wonder what a non-invasive, static ad presentation could look like and how much that could support a well-trafficked website.

 

No one likes auto loading audio/video, or ads that load after everything else and change your postition as you're scrolling (and often right as you're about to click something).

 

A static page with static ads and a good community of writers and commenters has to be worth something. Several million per year? Who's to say.

The inability to pivot to digital buried Sports Illustrated, and Deadspin/Gawker/Current Ownership failed to go to podcasting as well.  There was money with Drew podcasting Jamboree or answering Twitter questions on The Takeout or Jalopnik.

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17 hours ago, monkeypower said:

Per the Barstool blogging discussion, I think their real cash cow now is podcasting and the more visual/audio content, along with merchandise, instead of the blogging.

 

Of course it is, they all write at a third-grade level.

 

On 10/31/2019 at 12:02 PM, McCarthy said:

 Actually, I think I just hate it when people tell stories in the present tense. I find it irritating and presumptuous as if they're saying, "let me, the grand storyteller, set the scene for my amazing story".

 

You didn't like Rabbit, Run?

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22 hours ago, the admiral said:

 

You didn't like Rabbit, Run?

 

Never read it.

 

I think I just mean in conversation. It's like "OKAY. GATHER ROUND. ALLOW ME TO A PAINT A PICTURE AS I PUT YOU IN MY EYES AND EARS WHILE I SPIN THIS YARN. So I"m on USS Constitution and I see this guy..."

 

I know a godawful storyteller who does this and it drives me up a wall. 

 

On 11/2/2019 at 5:32 PM, DG_Now said:

It's actually kind of interesting Deadspin didn't do podcasting outside of the Deadcast. The Ringer may have reading content, but their bread and butter is absolutely their podcasting network.

 

Deadspin's worth was in its editorial slant and its community. There's money to be made from that; I wonder what a non-invasive, static ad presentation could look like and how much that could support a well-trafficked website.

 

No one likes auto loading audio/video, or ads that load after everything else and change your postition as you're scrolling (and often right as you're about to click something).

 

A static page with static ads and a good community of writers and commenters has to be worth something. Several million per year? Who's to say.

 

The staff was/is arguing that if they were purchased by one of these vultures and simply left alone to their Deadspin devices they would make money for their owners and every move that Univision and the new vultures have made in the pursuit of larger profits has been almost universally counterproductive towards that end. And now their moves have stuck G/O Media with a damaged brand, probably broken beyond repair. 

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39 minutes ago, McCarthy said:

Never read it.

 

I think I just mean in conversation. It's like "OKAY. GATHER ROUND. ALLOW ME TO A PAINT A PICTURE AS I PUT YOU IN MY EYES AND EARS WHILE I SPIN THIS YARN. So I"m on USS Constitution and I see this guy..."

 

I have a feeling I do most of my recounting in present tense, often including the unacceptable "go" for "say." It's more lively that way, n'est-ce pas?

 

Everyone's already mad enough at me for not being in lockstep on properly mourning Deadspin, so I really should quit while I'm behind, but I remember that they tried to half-pivot to video under Univision and it was all crap. At best, it was "Children's Sports Movies You Liked Are Actually Bad," which itself was Actually Bad, and at worst, it was Kaufmanesque anti-content like taste-testing milk. I'm pretty sure they were sandbagging all of it because they didn't want to do it. This is fair in the sense that they all had the presence and charisma of cottage cheese and surely knew that if Deadspin were to do video well, it would not be by putting alienating twerps like Tom Ley and Barry Petchesky in front of a camera. On the other hand, it took a loooong series of wrong turns for Deadspin to get to this point and I'm pretty sure taste-testing milk to own their boss was one of them.

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22 minutes ago, the admiral said:

 

I have a feeling I do most of my recounting in present tense, often including the unacceptable "go" for "say." It's more lively that way, n'est-ce pas?

 

Everyone's already mad enough at me for not being in lockstep on properly mourning Deadspin, so I really should quit while I'm behind, but I remember that they tried to half-pivot to video under Univision and it was all crap. At best, it was "Children's Sports Movies You Liked Are Actually Bad," which itself was Actually Bad, and at worst, it was Kaufmanesque anti-content like taste-testing milk. I'm pretty sure they were sandbagging all of it because they didn't want to do it. This is fair in the sense that they all had the presence and charisma of cottage cheese and surely knew that if Deadspin were to do video well, it would not be by putting alienating twerps like Tom Ley and Barry Petchesky in front of a camera. On the other hand, it took a loooong series of wrong turns for Deadspin to get to this point and I'm pretty sure taste-testing milk to own their boss was one of them.

 

That's not at all unique to Deadspin; from Buzzfeed and HuffPo and even some of the legacy newspapers on down, all kinds of media companies have been pivoting to "people with faces for newspapers perform stupid human tricks" as a cheap way to enter the supposedly higher-margin world of video. Deadspin was one of the few media sources to ruthlessly trash the pivot-to-video movement before/while they were forced into doing it themselves. Of course we now know more than ever that they were right -- there's no demand for this sort of useless content, the execs care more about short-term profits than what their audience would actually like, and Facebook was defrauding its clients with B.S. numbers. This, again, is not Barry Petchesky's fault.

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Checking Deadspin yesterday was like reading its Chinese knockoff version. Each post was the barest of facts, supplemented with embedded tweets, signed by "DEADSPIN," with comments turned off.

 

What a way to die.

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