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The times they are a-changing: 'SportsCenter' credits Deadspin

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deadspinmcgwire.jpgWell, it finally happened.

I was halfway through an elliptical workout at the gym when one of the televisions flashed the quote from Jay McGwire talking about his more famous brother Mark's foray into the world of steroids on 'SportsCenter.' As interesting as this story may be, the really compelling part is who they attributed as a source: Deadspin.

ESPN, the self-proclaimed worldwide leader in all things sports, was crediting the most recognized of all sports blogs. To demonstrate just how much of a detour this is from journalism as usual, consider the fact that it wasn't long ago that ESPN employees were strongly discouraged from fraternizing with the proprietors of this blog.

Let's not pretend that this move comes out of left field. One of the reasons "SportsCenter" went to a live format was to stay relevant all morning and into the afternoon as myriad blogs continuously update.

But, if nothing else, this makes it official. And very real.
With the roles of newspapers shrinking at a time when public thirst for news has never been more intense, we're truly entering uncharted territory. No one knows exactly how this transition is going to play out, but ignoring the handwriting on the wall would just be irresponsible.

In the interest of full disclosure, I'll admit that we love Deadspin. We've interacted with the guys over there an a couple occasions and they are a lot of fun. And while guttural humor and pictures of beer-bonging quarterbacks attract the eye, it'd be fair to say they do a fair amount of reporting -- and they do it quickly.

Another popular blog, FanHouse, talked to Deadspin editor A.J. Daulerio about the historic day.

"Daulerio: I think there's been a better understanding about what we do and that, even though it seems like we're constantly bashing them, there is a bit more to the site. There is sarcasm and humor and standard blog irreverence, but Deadspin has always broken stories and done some serious, more "journalism-y"-type stuff. I think the McGwire stories we've done are an example of that and they recognized it.
Let's face it, we're getting to a point where people don't really care if they hear about a story from the New York Times or if they find out on a site hosted by Blogspot. They want the Cliff Notes version and they want to add their voices to the fray. If you put something interesting and funny on the Internet -- and you have the resources to promote yourself -- people are going to check it out.

And the longer the mainstream media ignores this, the harder it will be to compete against the little guys in the future.

My question to you is this: Where do you get your sports news from? Is it exclusively from ESPN and other mainstream sites? Exclusively from blogs? A healthy combination of the two?

And where do you see this going in the future? Will the transition of shared power, so to speak, ultimately benefit or hurt the consumer?




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1 Comment

I had never notice it before, but that picture of McGwire makes me wonder if he and Ed Werder are twins who were separated at birth.

Kyle responds: Very possible, I've never seen them photographed together.

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This page contains a single entry by Kyle Koster published on January 22, 2009 7:50 PM.

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