Look Beyond The ‘Unity’ Label

Another Sunday, another round of NFL players and assorted others kneeling, linking arms, raising fists, and doing who knows what else as a demonstration of their belief in…

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Aaron Rodgers and the Packers: Unified, or “unified”?

Well, you see, that’s the thing: it’s actually somewhat difficult to tell what all these players believe in; or, rather, what it is that they are demonstrating through their actions.

The motivations behind the various and sundry national-anthem-time actions appear to be as varied as the colors of the uniforms on those sidelines–not to mention the colors of those players themselves.

The overarching theme of the NFL actions seems to be centered around a vague concept of “unity.” But it is an open question as to just how far that idea of unity actually goes.

Continue reading Look Beyond The ‘Unity’ Label

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Say ‘Que?’

There’s been a lot of surprising and puzzling things going on early in this NFL season, but maybe the most surprising and puzzling thing is happening not on the field, but on your television.

Why exactly is ESPN broadcasting Monday Night Football in Spanish on ESPN2?

The standard bilge from the network will undoubtedly tell you that it’s a move intended to further build viewership in that oh-so-important demographic, but I suspect there’s more going on here than meets the eye and ear. And it’s at least as much about what’s going wrong with ESPN as it is about courting Spanish-language viewers for the network and its NFL partner.

Continue reading Say ‘Que?’

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The Song Remains A Pain

If you asked me why I tuned in to this year’s U.S. Open, I could probably enumerate 750 reasons for my viewership, and the words “Shania” and “Twain” would never come up.

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Shania Twain: another example of a terrible trend in sports broadcasting

Likewise, if and when I tune in to Sunday Night Football, I will do so with absolutely no interest whom they have singing their execrable theme song. (Possibly still Carrie underwood, but I make vigorous attempts to ignore and/or miss the opening, so I’m not entirely sure.)

In fact, I never care about someone’s music when I turn on any sort of sporting event–because I tune in for, you know, the sports.

Why can’t these broadcasters understand that? Continue reading The Song Remains A Pain