Jenny Kirk and Dave Lease denied Press Credential at SLC event

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by AJ Skatefan, Aug 28, 2013.

  1. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    I absolutely loved TSL' s recap videos which had me ROFL several times. Again, I'm ROFL at a lot of the comments here that complain about the negativity in their segments. People, you need to revisit any FSU event thread from the past ten years and you will see far cattier comments about outfits, music, hair, weight, sexuality, you name it. Many skaters in the past have talked about reading threads at this very site and being affected by it. I don't think I had ever even heard the word "snark" before I began posting and reading this site. I lurve FSU and TSL but to come to this very board and be shocked and appalled at harsh critiques is just :lol:
     
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  2. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

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    I guess some people think that a message board and a duo trying to have some journalistic credibility are different. Also, since FSU is pretty heterogeneous, the people complaining about TSL may also be the same ones appalled by some of the PBP threads and cattiness on FSU (even if they don't say it). But someone did bring up a good point about Phil Hersh doing the same thing, but he's very much maligned here too. However, he's had a background in journalism and supposedly professionalism before he got "comfortable." Plus, it helps him that he's one of the only people left who even care to cover figure skating on a regular basis. Some say USFS should take advantage of TSL because of this, but maybe it's telling that the USFS isn't even that desperate . . . yet.
     
  3. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I <3 Kozuka

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    Phil Hersh gets in because his newspaper, with its reputation and readership, qualifies for a credential. Were TSL part of a major newspaper -- were Kirk reporting for the LA Times -- it would be a different matter, just as Michael Buckley got into US Nats because Icenetwork sent him.
     
  4. Willowway

    Willowway Well-Known Member

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    How one equates a message board open to all posters (most are anonymous) and cattiness by two people who aspire to be professional media journalists beats me.

    What I find sort of amazing, and this does not relate just to the poster above, is that people find this cattiness and nastiness (and Aunt Joyce is notable for being nasty not just to the skaters but to their families and non-skaters too) is that some people can never get enough of it as entertainment. From time to time we all laugh (even if we're not proud of ourselves for doing so) at someone else's expense (and someone does pay for it - we just may not know how) and while it does happen, it's not admirable (we tell our children not to do it - or at least I did). But a steady diet of it in print or on line? I'll never get that.

    These are young athletes, working hard and doing their best - we don't have to say they were brilliant when they weren't or that a costume is wonderful when it isn't but there are fair and respectful ways to critique and then there's "I want to be unnecessarily personal and nasty to someone else just to inflate my own sense of myself." One can comment with intelligence and wit on skating, performance and results without that approach. I give TSL the benefit of the doubt and think that they have the skills to take their commentary to a higher level.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2013
  5. BittyBug

    BittyBug Kiteless

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    I have enjoyed many of the TSL segments and appreciate the significant effort that Jenny and Dave are making to deliver their many interviews, so I'd love to see them succeed in their venture. I do not think their coverage of the SLC event furthered that goal, however. In fact, I only watched their day 1 recap and decided not to watch any more not so much because of what they said, but how they said it. Maybe their adrenalin was overflowing from the excitement of reporting from their first competition, but they were far too frenetic to be watchable. They talked over each other, they repeated phrases multiple times ("So here's the thing," "So here's the thing," "So here's the thing") and their on camera mannerisms were excessively frantic (Jenny's shimmying into the camera in particular does not create a professional image). Maybe their delivery improved as the event went on, but that first clip was enough of a turn off that I did not return to find out if it did. Rather than appear as professional commentary, my impression of the clip was as if a spy cam had dropped in on a hen party.

    Jenny and Dave are both capable of delivering intelligent and insightful commentary, as proven in some of their interviews and other segments, and they don't have to be temper everything they say to the point of sounding like a USFSA press release :yawn: - they could still pepper their commentary with some witty snarks. But right now everything is just too OTT with the result being them coming off as a pair of catty teenagers chatting, and that doesn't particularly appeal to me as a would be viewer.
     
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  6. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    The definition of journalism has changed quite a bit since Al Gore invented this thing called the internet. The conversations that Jenny and Dave are having are right in line with the type of discussions that happen here. The only difference, as you pointed out, is that they have the guts to do it without the shield of an anonymous internet handle. Do we know that their intentions are to become full fledged journalists in the tradition of Hersh and Brennan? I don't think their intentions have been clarified, but if we've been given any hints it seems to me that they are trying to steer clear of what's been done before, as they consider current media coverage to be deficient. What I love most about TSL is that they cover ALL facets of skating. From the silliest choreographic details right down to in-depth technical analysis. I snuck into the press box at Worlds in 2009 and was alarmed at all of the so-called figure skating journalists who knew nothing about what they were covering and had to ask each other silly questions like, "Which one is Yuna and which one is Mao?" When it comes to real information about the sport, I've learned more on this board than I have from reading any article from a professional publication, and skating journalists readily admit that they visit this board for current information. All I'm saying is, when you put information online, it can become source material (credible or not). So perhaps the distinction between what TSL does and what we do here is not so great.
     
  7. overedge

    overedge Well-Known Member

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    But FSU does not present itself as journalism. It's very clearly labeled as a discussion board. Yes, there is news on it, but it is not positioned as a news source. No matter how the definition of journalism has evolved since the Interwebz, FSU is not trying to do what TSL is trying to do. TSL wants to be considered journalism, even if it's a TMZ tye of journalism, and so the basis of comparison for what it does should be what other journalism outlets are doing.
     
  8. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    As I said in my previous post, I don't recall Jenny or Dave stating flat out that journalism is their priority. The only clear goals I have heard them repeatedly state is that they would like to give a platform for skaters to speak honestly and that they would like to promote discussion of any kind about skating. The latter half of that is precisely what FSU seeks to do. Hasn't it been said in this thread that FSU has applied for press passes? Again, the lines aren't so clear.

    In any case, whether the motives be journalistic or not, there is some irony in criticizing others who criticize skaters on a board that is filled with skater critiques.
     
  9. Willowway

    Willowway Well-Known Member

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    I don't want to get into a protracted argument with you about your argument however...

    Just because a person posts critiques of skaters doesn't mean that person has disqualified themselves from criticizing the tone and personal content of other critiques. All criticism is not the same nor equal - personal cuts, jabs, insults, snideness, etc. are one kind of criticism and not the best kind.

    If your opinion is that all criticism equates with personal insults then you might look at the best of the best (which agreed, is way beyond what anyone in skating is doing or perhaps has ever done) by accessing some of the ballet reviews Arlene Croce wrote years ago for The New Yorker. She taught me a lot about criticism of the arts (and I'll expand that to include skating) by demonstrating that any review, however much she didn't like something, could be direct, separate the artist as person from the individual work, never be gratuitously nasty or nasty at all, and best of all, teach the reader more than he/she/I knew before reading the review. Really quite extraordinary.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2013
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  10. analia

    analia Active Member

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    TSL is too self-centered for my liking (he looks really awkward all the time), but I've appreciated aunt joyce's work over the years. He was really the Stephen Colbert of the gym/skating world, so to speak, meaning that I find him a great comedian. Too bad he has gone all serious with TSL and got stuck in the middle. Dave has a nervous personality, is totally into trying boorishly too hard and hasn't got a PC sense, all the things I find tremendously amusing about him.

    I did hear it's quite easy to buy him off. Just give him a media pass and an interview already. He'll say the nicest thing about you. He can't help it. I'm talking to you Gracie.
     
  11. overedge

    overedge Well-Known Member

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    Then why are they applying for press credentials to cover an event?

    FSU *has* applied for press passes in the past. AFAIK it doesn't any more. I think FSU's purpose is clear. TSL's - maybe not so much. But it seems to me that deciding to do day-to-day coverage of an event and applying for press credentials are pretty obvious signs of positioning as journalism.

    There's no irony in questioning the predominantly nasty and petty tone and content of a stream of criticism.
     
  12. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    "You say potato, I say pah-ta-to; You say tomato, I say tuh-ma-to ... Let's call the whole thing off!"

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZ3fjQa5Hls

    Things that make ya go hmmm .... ;)


    Meanwhile, thanks for shaking things up Jenny and Dave! Nobody's perfect and no one can please all of the people all of the time. Please do keep on keeping on, keep learning and growing and defining what your goals are. Don't stop being real and rad. At the same time, try to keep your feet on the ground and maintain a sense of balance in this crazy world of fs. :p Above all, thanks to everyone fed up with the lack of good, extensive, current and up-to-date figure skating coverage in this country who have set out to do something about it!!!

    Thanks manleywoman, N_Halifax, pingu, TanithandBenFan, Sylvia, FSU, GS, et al. Thanks to all for sharing their varied viewpoints, especially those who do it with thoughtfulness and good humor (shout out to peibeck :lol:). Major kudos to those who manage to do it with respect and sensitivity toward the skaters at all times... that would be only a handful of folks here I believe (not always including me, btw). :rollin:


    ETA: Thanks included to Absolute Skating, LifeSkate, and to many other bloggers and skating enthusiasts who help fill the gaping holes in relevant, meaningful, in-depth and up-to-date fs coverage.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2013
  13. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    There are a lot of contradicting ideas here. Jenny and Dave applied for press credentials, so they are press. FSU "has" applied for press but they don't any longer, so they're not press. But "were" they press? :lol:

    Regarding irony, I think that a conversation with Jenny and Dave would read much like a typical discussion on FSU. You may disagree, but it seems painfully obvious to me. I don't judge anybody's right to judge, I was merely pointing out that if this sort of critique offends you, I wonder why you actively post and engage in similar discussions here.

    Re: the press issue, FSU does not publish official articles to my knowledge, though many of its members do, and link to them here. FSU does not hold official interviews, though many of its members do, and link to them here. One of the reasons I love FSU is not only because of the colorful posters, but because it is quite frankly the most comprehensive, up-to-date place to find relevant information on figure skating. Whether or not the goals of the creators were to become a part of the media, the truth of the matter is that FSU contains journalistic content. Journalists use FSU as a source. So, it may be unintentional, but FSU does play a role in figure skating media coverage. I'm not saying that TSL and FSU have the same goals, but they are certainly part of the same machine and they are both accessible to the public, including current and past elite skaters.

    Totally off topic, but every time I type 'FSU' my auto correct tries to replace it with 'GAY' :)
     
  14. overedge

    overedge Well-Known Member

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    With all due respect, you are the one with the contradicting ideas. FSU may be used as a journalistic source, but it doesn't consciously position itself as one. TSL's approach is radically different from that in that it is explicitly trying to be journalism or to be a news source. I don't see how you can't understand that difference if you are as familiar with both, and as familiar with what constitutes journalism, as you claim to be.
     
  15. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    Did Dave and Jenny say that they are explicitly trying to be journalism? Your argument was that they are because "why else would the want press passes?" Yet you also admit that FSU has done the same. Therein lies the contradiction.
     
  16. Willowway

    Willowway Well-Known Member

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    You're defining backwards and that's a nice rhetorical trick but it doesn't always work.

    From The Skating Lesson website " A recent graduate of Boise State University, Jenny has embarked on a new career as a broadcast journalist and is very excited to share others&#8217; stories with you through The Skating Lesson." I assume Jenny wrote this about herself and that's great. It does make clear that Jenny understands that broadcast journalism covers a variety of media including internet broadcast.

    Yes, it's a very specific area of broadcast journalism (in terms of subject covered and media used) but it's broadcast journalism.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
  17. twizzlesizzle

    twizzlesizzle Active Member

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    As I stated earlier, and others agreed, if she wants to see herself moving forward with a journalistic career, she needs to depart the TSL name (or make some changes). Sure, this may get her somewhere, but if an employer, seeing TSL on her resume, did some work to further familiarize themselves with the TSL content, the tweets will come through. All of the things that Jenny may not have done, will be there under the name that she and Dave created. As I also said, Dave is just using Jenny to get inside the sport, and she's too taken by it to realize what he really is doing.

    I was criticized for looking out for Jenny. Um no, it's an observation. A very real observation. You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink. If she wants to remain where she is, then good for her, but if she wants to achieve better, she needs to just remember that when you have 2 people tweeting under one entity, there has to be a mutual basis for what crosses the line.
     
  18. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    This is ridiculous.

    1. You have no idea what Jenny wants career-wise or what her goals are; you are assuming.
    2. You have ZERO basis for writing (multiple times now) that Dave is using Jenny.
    3. It's condescending (and a total assumption) to say that Jenny doesn't know that she is being "used."
     
  19. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I <3 Kozuka

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    True, but until a certain incident, the ISU was willing to grant FSU press credentials. FSU never presented itself as anything but a discussion board.
     
  20. twizzlesizzle

    twizzlesizzle Active Member

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    Hey Dave... Shut up.

    1. I could care less what Jenny does. If she wants to work with someone who has proven he will ridicule athletes to the point of harassment, then that's on her, may she share in whatever he gets as a reward.
    2. Others have agreed with me that she needs to see the light.
    3. It's not condescending when it's the truth.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
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  21. WeakAnkles

    WeakAnkles New Member

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    I'd be wary about claiming something as "truth" when you don't know the person. And saying that other people agree with you doesn't make something true. Many people once agreed the earth was flat, but that didn't make it the "truth".
     
  22. Lacey

    Lacey Well-Known Member

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    nm
     
  23. Lacey

    Lacey Well-Known Member

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    First post?
     
  24. WeakAnkles

    WeakAnkles New Member

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    Yes.
     
  25. skateboy

    skateboy Well-Known Member

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    Your assumption that any poster who doesn't agree with you must be Dave, is getting old fast.
     
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  26. Colby3711

    Colby3711 New Member

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    When I first heard Dave and Jenny had been denied a credential I was surprised. Frankly, I had just started watching their interviews and while I find some things that happen in their interviews questionable, i have in general found them to be well researched, appropriately provocative, and very interesting. I didn't know anything about Aunt Joyce etc. That said, since their reaction to not getting a press credential I have found their response really immature. And then to read their tweets this week, it is clear to me why they didn't receive a credential. I was really disappointed in the content of their tweets--dye jobs, mocking skaters, sarcastic comments...the absolute lowest brand of commentating. I found this especially disappointing given some of the comments from their interviewees. Ashley Wagner spoke specifically about how mean people were on twitter after nationals. Tim Goeble described Dick Button as vindictive. Well, let's add TSL to the list of mean and vindictive since they have clearly demonstrated themselves to be both. No press credential is necessary to sit and the stands and make snarky comments.
     
  27. WeakAnkles

    WeakAnkles New Member

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    I like Dave and Jenny quite a lot. To me, they're the Dick Button/Peggy Flemming for the post-internet age. Is the snark excessive sometimes? Yes. But most of the time, I think they're on the money and, yes, entertaining. Very entertaining. And they certainly do know their stuff. I can't imagine that someone like Frank Carroll would have agreed to a two hour interview with people who were simply the contemporary internet equivalent of "mean girls." Or that said interview would be far more in depth and, yes, entertaining, than any piece I've ever read or watched on traditional journalistic outlets. In a not unimportant way, I think their general irreverence for the sacred cows of the figure skating world has made the figure skaters they've interviewed loosen up and really be honest. Ashley Wagner, for instance, who has been a primary butt of their snark, gave a fantastic interview. Far more interesting and revealing than yet another boilerplate interview from established journalistic outlets. And I have to admit I laughed my head off when they showed just how "jam packed" the stands for journalists actually were in SLC. No room indeed.

    Journalism is in a period of rapid evolution. Rather than trying to follow a traditional path, Jenny and Dave might be smarter to follow a different model. Tom and Lorenzo, who started out as bloggers for Project Runway, might serve as an alternative model. From their small blog, they have built a website generating millions of hits per year, covering not only Project Runway, but celebrity fashion, television dramas (their series of posts analyzing costume design on Mad Men are brilliant pieces of analysis and writing), movie musicals. How successful have they become? Enough for them to quit their daytime jobs and write full-time for their blog. And they're just as snarky as the snarkiest comments from This & That.

    The USFSA is an exceedingly conservative organization (it should tell you something that they are still using the term "Ladies" in 2013, but not the term "Gentlemen"). And in this case, I think they're being shortsighted. So, what else is new, huh?

    YMMV of course.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
  28. skateboy

    skateboy Well-Known Member

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    Like them or not, Jenny and Dave have created something unusual for FS and I don't think they're going away anytime soon.

    I predict that, sooner or later, USFSA won't be able to deny their presence on the scene and they will be given credentials for future skating events.
     
  29. overedge

    overedge Well-Known Member

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    Tom & Lorenzo might be getting enough from their blog to quit their jobs, but there are hundreds, if not thousands, of blog authors out there giving celebrity/pop culture snark and not making a penny from it. One blog becoming profitable in that niche doesn't mean that there is room for more.
     
  30. Spun Silver

    Spun Silver Well-Known Member

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    This may already have been said, sorry if so, but it seems that Dave and Jenny's access was severely restricted by their not getting press passes. Yuka Sato seems to be the only interview they got. In light of that, I am not surprised that they made an issue of being denied.