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Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thursday Links (11/12)

Don't forget we're chatting live at today at noon. If you have Dawgs-related questions, you can head there now, submit your inquiry, then check back any time after noon for answers.

In addition to the chat, however, I also have football and basketball interviews and six stories to write today, so we're going to have to go a little light on the blogging. Sorry for that.

But I wouldn't want you to feel like you had to accomplish something at work today, so here are some links to help you kill that all-important time between your morning coffee break and lunch.

-- I have a story in today's Telegraph on A.J. Green's much-anticipated return to action after the first week off in his football career.

-- Andy Bitter has a story on what Auburn plans to do to slow Green down this weekend.

-- There will be pressure to perform on a lot of Dawgs this weekend, but Paul Westerdawg writes that it's the fans who really have to step up their game.

-- The Junkyard Blawger looks back at 10 memorable matchups between Georgia and Auburn.

-- Ted Roof is now an assistant coach at Auburn. Joe Cox is now the starting QB at Georgia. But the two were almost working together at Duke back in 2004.

-- Get the Picture seconds something one of my readers brought up in yesterday's mailbag... Georgia isn't alone this season. Oh, and you should really just check out all of GTP's posts today. Lots of good stuff.

-- Chris Low is predicting a Georgia victory this week. Considering my luck, I'm going to pick Auburn just to give the Dawgs a fighting chance.

-- Among many other bits of info from War Eagle Extra's notes is news that Gene Chizik has his squad prepared for Branden Smith's "Wild Dawg" package this week.

-- Track 'Em Tigers breaks down the game position by position.

-- If you're planning to attend the game this weekend, Dawgs Online says there could be some complications when parking due to the weather.

-- Next week's opponent, Kentucky, is extremely banged up but is managing to keep winning despite the injuries.

-- The best part about this story is clearly this line: "Kiffin has touted the discipline in his program and a clean arrest record as recently as Wednesday's SEC teleconference."

Given the severity of these charges at Tennessee and Dez Bryant's ouster from Okie State combined with the bad call that cost LSU against Alabama and Florida... what are the odds there's a Georgia Jinx going on around college football this season? Beat the Dawgs and dark days are ahead. Next thing you know, Rep. Corrine Brown will be arrested for performing unlicensed circumcisions with Timmy Tebow.

-- I've actually really enjoyed this season of "Top Chef." There have been just enough jerks on the show to keep in interesting. CNN talks to one of the judges who chats about this year's competition.

-- Here is a great post on why the spaceships used in "V" (and tons of other alien-centric films) are completely dumb. It fits well with my theory that when the aliens really do come, they'll be driving a 1965 Pontiac Tempest.

-- Judge Wapner will be spending his 90th birthday back on the set of "The People's Court."

-- The AV Club ranks its 30 best TV series of the decade and the only major complaint I have is that the list counts up from 1 rather than down from 30, thus ruining the element of surprise. But their choice for No. 1 would be mine as well, and there's really not any serious competition.

-- And finally, my soapbox moment:

I am officially done with reading Deadspin. What was once a fun and occasionally thought-provoking sports blog that dared to take on the big boys has now become less credible than most talk radio blowhards. It's a joke. It's an embarrassment.

You may remember just three weeks ago when the site decided to "unload the inbox of all the sordid rumors" surrounding the sex lives of ESPN employees. No fact checking. Just print whatever B.S. flew into it's email account all because editor A.J. Daulerio was mad he got scooped on the Steve Phillips story. What followed was a series of malicious attacks on employees at the WWL, one of whom was not even an on-camera personality.

Plenty of hate mail followed, and clearly Daulerio learned his lesson because this week, Deadspin upped its game by posting a story defaming Arizona State baseball coach Pat Murphy. The story was submitted by an anonymous reader, was never fact checked, Murphy was never contacted for his side of the story, and, you'll be shocked to learn, was completely and totally false.

So is Deadspin sorry this time? Of course not. They were doing you a favor by printing lies! Be appreciative dammit! You're just mad because you're old-guard newspaper fogies and hate the new hard-core blogger media!

Actually, here's exactly what Daulerio says about his borderline libelous publication:

-- It was the fault of the tipster for lying about the story in the first place. Apparently this is Daulerio's first foray into the Internets and he was unaware that anonymous commenters occasionally use misleading information.

-- It would be "ridiculous" to blame the writer for not vetting his story since it was part of a series of firsthand accounts about coaches being jerks. Absolutely right, A.J. Why would any journalist feel a need to fact check a firsthand account? Heck, I was told by a guy named Steve that he once saw A.J. Daulerio beating up a hooker in times square. And since it was a firsthand account, I'm sure it's all true and fit for publication.

-- A policy of not bothering to get both sides of a story is OK because, "it's been my experience, more often than not, that putting these first-person accounts on items reveal a larger truth or open the door to finding out the bigger story."

You see, Deadspin is doing you a favor, dear readers. By printing lies that seem to be true because the person the lies are about has been rumored to be a jerk, we're really all just getting at a larger truth, peeling back layers of the onion to get at the stories the traditional media won't tell you, simply because they're false. It's no wonder newspapers are failing the way they keep investing in facts!

-- But hey, at least the problem has been corrected, right? I mean, sure, Deadspin is shirking any real responsibility for the problem -- "the real culprit is the misguided fellow who emailed the bullsh*t story to begin with" -- and they're doing a much better job of it than those louts in the "traditional media" -- "unlike other traditional publications, I think we draw a lot more attention to our mistakes than just a 10 word correction buried on page A12." (Aw, that's cute. You went ahead and took an unsubstantiated meme about how traditional media handles errors and used it to defend your lack of any ethics whatsoever.) So clearly Deadspin has done its due diligence. Nice job, guys.

Yes, when a newspaper gets the time of a bake sale wrong or the number of RBI Jim Rice had in 1977, that gets corrected in a rather covert way. But when they slander a well-known public figure, even veteran, accomplished journalists like Dan Rather get canned.

Of course, there's no need for pinning the blame on Daulerio anyway. This is your fault for reading in the first place.

"Most people read Deadspin for various reasons but I don't think any readers come here with the idea that what they'll find will be something they'd find in magazines, newspapers, or websites that they'd find elsewhere. This site has been built employing both traditional journalism practices and non-traditional ones, which has tremendous benefits but plenty of risks as well. I don't think it's that difficult to distinguish between when we're practicing journalism and, especially, when we don't."

You see... you asked for this by reading their crap in the first place. By clicking on Deadspin's Web site, you unwittingly endorsed Deadspin's policy of printing whatever crap they feel like without worrying whether it's true or not. You told Daulerio it was acceptable to no longer abide by any sentiment of journalistic ethics or, to varying degrees, media law regarding slander and libel.

He says this is your fault because that's what you expect when you visit a site like Deadspin. So I say, stop going there.

Deadspin -- you're dead to me.


Anonymous said...

R/T to Deadspin comments
Stay Classy - DH!!!!!!!!!,
Stay Classy

gene said...

Agree totally re deadspin. When i first discovered it i thought it was the best sight on the web. The only thing i'm sure of now is i won't be visiting there anymore. I am sure that ABJ is is forming a lot of my indignation here, but i just do not think you have to invade people's lives(as deadspin is doing) to create "entertainment". I'm all about off the wall humor and can find something funny, or to make fun of in just about anything, but I think what ds has become is deplorable practice, in bad taste, and makes me somewhat guilty that i once enjoyed the sight. I don't know what daulerio calls that mess he puts out now but it sure ain't "reporting" or "journalism". Middle school rumor mongering, back stabbing and tale bearing come to mind though. Sadly, it seems a lot of people can't wait for his next installment. Surely they're all yankees(oh wait, you're a yankee. sorry. but you're our yankee now. so that's different. one eyed justification in place for me then, just not others) need this snarky kind of stuff to survive. Or maybe we all just can't stand not to stare out the car window when we see the bodies lying in the ditch.
This went way to long and i apologize Dave but i've been stewing over ds for quite some time and needed the vent. Good post on your part.

Anonymous said...

David, I've been teetering right on the edge of taking the exact same stand with Deadspin that you have, and yesterday's AZ State issue pushed me right to the brink. In short, Deadspin's been a piece of... well, I'm going to go ahead and cut the swears since you're moderating comments... poo ever since Will Leitch left. A.J. Daulerio is a f'n clown. He single-handedly affirms every stereotype that the old fogeys out there have about sports blogs in particular and the new media in general. To actually come out and put in black-and-white letters that it's his blog's policy to NOT vet stories, and that's supposed to be ok, is horseshit. I don't care if Deadspin's not intended to be TIME magazine. I don't care that you're trying to create some sort of "new" paradigm in media. Whether you identify yourself as a journalist or not, you're shredding the reputation of journalism and destroying reputations of real people everytime you post, A.J. Perhaps the damage to the ASU coach's reputation was mitigated by the later "retraction" article posted later in the evening (which, it should be noted, was simply a verbatim re-printing of an email from an ASU staffer, which didn't appear to have been vetted, either). But what happens if I'm not a Deadspin reader, and instead I'm an ASU recruit Googling the coach's name? I am not coming back to the site, and in the time that article was online, you've tainted my view of a coach who, apparently, is actually a decent individual. That's inexcusable, and it's vile. To make a mistake is one thing, and as a person who has spent time working in the media, I think we've all made a few. But to create a policy and culture that basically willfully makes these mistakes in order to drive pageviews, and then assume that you're going to be able to make it right in the end after those wronged come beating down your door with their side of the story, it's beyond being ridiculous.

Oh, and another thing, since Leitch left, Deadspin just hasn't been good. A.J. doesn't break stories. Deadspin's just a bunch of links to other sites now, with two or three sentence blurbs letting us know what others have already found out. The only stories unique to Deadspin are pictures of athletes drinking alcohol in public and talking to girls who (gasp!) want to have sex with athletes. Some reader, jealous of athletes and those who are having better lives than they, stumble across a famous person in a bar and spy them having a good time. Click! Send! Take that, Mr. Celebrity! Deadspin's not what it once was, and A.J. Daulerio RICHLY deserves the beating that he will one day surely receive when he crosses paths in New York with one of his blog's victims.

So yeah, David, you pushed me over the edge. No more Deadspin for me, either.

David Hale said...

Very well said, Anon. And the part that irks me the most is -- as you said, we all make mistakes. I have, and I'm sure everyone has at some point. But what Deadspin did was not apologize or promise better in the future. What it did -- and what has essentially been Daulerio's policy -- is to blatantly flaunt that they don't care about ethics while shifting the blame for their false reports to the sources they should have been vetting in the first place or the readers who they assume are too stupid to care about the difference between fact and fiction.

It's frustrating for me because I care about journalism and I'm rightfully worried about its future. I love blogs and I think the Internet has made our lives far richer than before.

But when people use the excuse that the Internet doesn't require the same ethics, care and diligence that other forms of media do, all that does is tear down an already fragile reputation of all the other bloggers out there who are doing an exceptional job at their work.