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  1. #41
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    What did Jere Longman ever do to you?
    Who wants to watch rich people eat pizza? They must have loved that in Bangladesh. - Randy Newman on the 2014 Oscars broadcast

  2. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by caseyedwards View Post
    I can't believe the words level or twizzle were never used once! Lol. But it makes sense as his views are like most American writers that ice dance is a big joke and all false and results are based on parking spot proximity even an American team being the frontrunner for gold was impossible and never going to happen!
    I enjoyed the article, and actually think it was brilliant to keep it simple and accessible to the every-four-year-viewer. Hopefully it gets more people to tune in and become hooked!
    DH - and that's just my opinion

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by FiveRinger View Post
    Well said and I agree. I enjoyed the article.

    We have so many folks on this forum, many who are strongly opinionated and extremely articulate. Perhaps you all might take up freelance writing in your spare time?
    Good advice! How everybody feels about the article is true from our individual perspectives. As I said, great yes to see something/ anything being written in the U.S. about figure skating, and in particular about Ice Dance, courtesy of our champions Meryl & Charlie of course, and in a lead-up nod to the Olympics. FINALLY something about ice dance and Meryl and Charlie!!! is what I say, especially since NBC didn't see fit to show any Ice Dance during their GP coverage, not even at Skate America with Meryl & Charlie competing! It wasn't until NHK Trophy later in the GP series that NBC finally showed highlights of Meryl & Charlie's performance. Again, because they are winners. Otherwise, I suppose there would have been zip coverage of Ice Dance.

    Again, scraps are good if that's all we can get. Thanks NYT, and more and better PLEASE! I really don't think that's too much to ask, but yeah, as skating fans we generally do have to create own coverage as many enterprising figure skating lovers obviously are and have been doing. A great big Thank You to all those enterprising and creative fans who do a great job!

    And thanks also to Yazmeen for posting the link in this separate thread (it's also in the Davis/ White fan thread in Skip). Not everyone is going to always agree, especially on FSU. But I guess we can agree that a NYT article on ice dance, regardless of content is a good thing (and the article really wasn't so bad, but perhaps fs fans are used to nitpicking at scraps).

    Well known that I am not a fan of the over-importance placed on that extra quad revolution, so for me yes, quads have a "brittle legitimacy." Thanks for that turn of phrase, Jere Longman

    I'm not the biggest fan of Domnina/ Shabalin, but of course they were very good ice dancers, and being Russian as usual didn't hurt their scores. They had a very good program when they won Worlds, but I didn't think they should have won that year. Oh well, so what anyway?

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by overedge View Post
    What did Jere Longman ever do to you?
    Never landed a quad?
    To think that fun is simple fun, while earnest things are earnest, proves all too plain that neither one thou truthfully discernest.

  5. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by overedge View Post
    What did Jere Longman ever do to you?
    Just ridiculous snark like the whole parking spot stuff. He doesn't even believe ice dance should be in the Olympics.

  6. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by caseyedwards View Post
    Just ridiculous snark like the whole parking spot stuff. He doesn't even believe ice dance should be in the Olympics.
    Oh, for Pete's sake, the parking lot thing was just done in fun!!!! Lighten up, Francis, you'll live longer!!!!
    "Once you've skated together long enough, and you're really good friends, you can close your eyes, put your hand out and she's right there." Joe Dolkiewicz, 2011 US Novice Pairs Bronze Medalist

  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    And even in Six-pack Joe favourite's sport football, you can see a goal being scored and then the referee raises the offside flag and everybody cries and it's all unfair and about politics and bribes.
    To be fair, American football viewers rarely go on about bribes. It's more "that ref is blind/incompetent/biased." So I guess the officials for that sports are too stupid to get $$ for their bad calls.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    Since according to the journalist, ice dance is a FEMININE GAY NOT MASCULINE ILLEGITIMATE NOT REAL SPORT, it would make sense that he would be interested in mums and not dads.
    Also, the in US, it's usually the moms who are taking the skaters to the rinks and the competitions. There are a lot of reasons for it but, statistically speaking, it's mostly moms. The fact that we can name the dads just underscores that. You can't name all the moms because there are too many of them.

    Quote Originally Posted by PRlady View Post
    Take a step back and say thank you to the New York Times.
    No. The article was lame in many parts and I am going to say so. Especially on a figure skating forum for dedicated fans. I'm especially going to criticize an article where the author did so little research and prep work that she thinks the 2002 SLC Pairs scandal was about Ice Dance. That's like thinking Hurricane Katrina was a tornado.

    I am not on board with the idea that we should be so grateful for whatever coverage we get that we have to bow down in gratitude any time anyone pays the least bit of attention to us at all. I actually think this sort of article hurts the sport because it doesn't attract the sort of fan who might stick around once the Olympics is over. It's designed solely to get eyeballs onto that event and that's what it does. I want something that builds up the sport long-term.

    Quote Originally Posted by FiveRinger View Post
    We have so many folks on this forum, many who are strongly opinionated and extremely articulate. Perhaps you all might take up freelance writing in your spare time?
    Ah, the 'if you can't do it, you can't critique' defense. Can 'you guys are just jealous!' be far behind?
    "Cupcakes are bullshit. And everyone knows it. A cupcake is just a muffin with clown puke topping." -Charlie Brooker

  8. #48

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    Ah, the 'if you can't do it, you can't critique' defense. Can 'you guys are just jealous!' be far behind?
    No, I was serious and meant the question/remark to be a compliment.
    The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are--Joseph Campbell

  9. #49

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    YOU'RE ALL JUST JEALOUS.

    Um, wasn't the SLC thing about dance? Wasn't it supposed to be a tit for tat thing--you vote for my team in pairs, I'll support your team in dance?

    It's all a bit hazy now....

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    Jere Longman has been covering skating for more than 20 years, so if he thinks ice dancing shouldn't be in the Olympics, I would be willing to listen to why. It would be an informed opinion at least.
    I don't give much credibility to the Phil Hersh "it's not an athletic sport" view, but there are people who think that a skating discipline with such a long history of, um, questionable outcomes shouldn't be in the Olympics unless it's fairer or more transparent.

  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by PrincessLeppard View Post
    YOU'RE ALL JUST JEALOUS.
    I'm jealous of my cat. She's prettier than me. And younger. I bet she could do an axel too.

    Quote Originally Posted by PrincessLeppard View Post
    Um, wasn't the SLC thing about dance? Wasn't it supposed to be a tit for tat thing--you vote for my team in pairs, I'll support your team in dance?
    Well there was that. But the media barely mentioned it. It was all Pretty Canadian Pairs team screwed by Evil (but also pretty) Russian Pairs Team! I am pretty sure this author doesn't know the difference between Pairs and Dance. It wouldn't be the first time that's happened.

    But if that's what they meant, kudos to them!
    "Cupcakes are bullshit. And everyone knows it. A cupcake is just a muffin with clown puke topping." -Charlie Brooker

  12. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    That is true of any sport that is judged, though. It's the same in gymnastics or diving. And even in Six-pack Joe favourite's sport football, you can see a goal being scored and then the referee raises the offside flag and everybody cries and it's all unfair and about politics and bribes.
    Disagree. I don't follow gymnastics or diving until the Olympics, and every four years I'm informed enough over what to look for/what mistakes are being done/what makes a score high and another not. I know from commentators that leg Seperation is bad, toe point is good, more rotations = higher base mark, water splash is bad, and difficulty + quality make up the final mark. When a gymnast misses a skill, it's pointed out immediately, as well as how costly the mistake is. Other wise I'm not gonna want to watch 30 divers and gymnasts do similar looking routines without any idea how to separate the good from the bad, and just wait for a random 3 to win medals. When an footballer is called for an offside, commentators explain what an offside is, cameras freeze frame to show where the striker was when he/she struck the ball, and comment on whether they were actually offside or was it a bad call. You're welcome to disagree and cry foul, but at least you know what is happening

    Cannot say that about ice dance. Unless someone misses a twizzle or falls in the middle of a routine, there is no comments on what is technically happening during a routine. You get the random (Oh they're slow in this section, mmmm they're lacking energy) but that has nothing with technical levels or content

    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    Some knowledgeable commentators would have a pretty good idea -- Tracy Wilson, Judy Blumberg, Tanith Belbin.

    However, the networks are more interested in gearing their commentary toward a few million casual viewers who don't know one edge from another and don't care, so the coverage focuses more on human interest and obvious errors or obvious strengths that can be pointed out without detailed explanation to viewers with no prior knowledge.

    Those commentators can make pretty good estimations of which teams will be in medal contention, top 10, lower ranks. They may know for sure or have a good idea what levels were called, but until the scores are finalized and in the computer -- including the PCS -- they can't do the math on the fly to predict accurately which of several closely matched teams will come out ahead. So why guess out loud and risk being proved wrong?

    And the networks do like to maintain suspense, especially in supporting the chances of the home team(s).

    So the commentators are not encouraged to provide a detailed analysis.

    We thousands of more interested fans who would like learn more are out of luck when it comes to network commentary.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    Maybe TV networks should hire people who know what they are talking about then? Would be great. Now I can't specifically recall a comment about the compulsory levels but I definitely can recall Polish and Russian commentators making comments about specific details. Most English-speaking commentators I heard totally suck though (PJ Kwong deserves a honourable mention for actually caring, she's lovely).

    Having said that, as gkelly said, I am sure that there are commentators who do know. However, they most likely get orders from above not to go into technical details.
    I think this is a cop out. I'm sorry, but the commentators - even the best of them - cannot tell you what levels a performance will receive until the marks come out. and when they do, they still cannot tell you which edge didn't count and which steps resulted in the low levels. Networks wanting the public to be ignorant and discourage commentators from explaining technical details? Come on. Singles and pairs commentary are full of technical comments, you see underrotations, double foots, too many combos, zayaks and missed spin levels being pointed out in real time, and later emphasized during the slo-mos. Not the case with Ice Dance. I still remember having absolutely no explanation to my friends as to why a team like Bobrova and Soloviev scored over 70 in the SD at worlds, when some 6 other teams were more enjoyable, fluid and exciting than them (And I'm the figure skating expert amongst them!) and commentators were of no help.

    If there was a way to educate the public in judging ice dance, it would've been done. but it can't, because out of 100 steps in a pattern, no commentator can tell you which one resulted in an N, and you just have to wait till the end of a competition to see who won what. It's like school figures, only sexier

  13. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by MR-FAN View Post





    It's like school figures, only sexier

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    Quote Originally Posted by MacMadame View Post
    That's like thinking Hurricane Katrina was a tornado.
    I thought she was a pro wrestler.

  15. #55
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    In the rink at the Olympics over the radio, they had a guy who was trained to be on the tech panel, and he explained in detail why he thought a spin or step sequence would get a certain level. There was always the disclaimer that he was looking at it from a different angle and that the tech panel had replay and could catch things, but he seemed to be in the ballpark most of the time.

    Another athlete that had a famous hockey father was Tatiana Tarasova, a pairs skater until she injured her shoulder. Anatoli Tarasov bullt the Soviet team into a powerhouse.
    "'Is this new BMW-designed sled the ultimate sledding machine for Langdon and Holcomb?' Leigh Diffey asked before the pair cruised to victory. I don’t know, but I know that sled is the ultimate Olympic Games product placement.." -- Jen Chaney

  16. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    In the rink at the Olympics over the radio, they had a guy who was trained to be on the tech panel, and he explained in detail why he thought a spin or step sequence would get a certain level. There was always the disclaimer that he was looking at it from a different angle and that the tech panel had replay and could catch things, but he seemed to be in the ballpark most of the time.
    There are also a group of fans who score along with the panel at competitions -- acting as both tech panel and judges -- and then hold up their scores for all to see. They are generally in the ballpark. If they can do it, up in the stands, performing the job of several people at once, I don't see why commentators -- who can see the judges scores and hear tech panel talk in real time -- couldn't do something vaguer. They even have interns and assistant producers in the background to help them.

    I absolutely believe that some are capable of it and are told not to by TPTB. And, no, we don't get "lots" of it in the other disciplines. We get a bit more because those disciplines have more obvious elements but you see a pattern of commentators offering this kind of comment at the beginning of the skate and then tailing off and doing it more at the beginning of the broadcast and less as it goes on and that's why I have come to believe someone is telling them to cut. it. out. There is a strong believe that this is not what fans of skating want, not the casual fan who for some reason is who the broadcast is geared towards.

    And thanking TPTB for crappy coverage just reinforces that this is the kind of coverage we want so that this is the kind of coverage we will continue to get.
    "Cupcakes are bullshit. And everyone knows it. A cupcake is just a muffin with clown puke topping." -Charlie Brooker

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    Relax. When I was young and before I started liking figure skating I also thought ice dance was ridiculous as a sport. I think everyone has gone through that. It really is not something the lay viewer understands as a sport. Then again, having ice dance is very important because it is indeed a source of ridicule that will get attention from normal people. I've certainly never paid attention to curling before and I only knew about it because everyone watching Vancouver Olympics was laughing about how ridiculous the sport is. Now, at least I know there is a sport called curling.

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    Like most Olympic sports, figure skating appeals to a niche audience. Overwhelming the viewer with information is not going to draw in new fans, no matter how much some of us may enjoy counting levels, calculating changes of position, or analyzing whether the exit edge on the rocker was sufficiently deep. I'm not saying I don't want the analysis to be technical, but it needs to be within reason, and you can't expect a newspaper article to read like a wikipedia entry explaining the various elements. Viewers have responded to figure skating because it can be ridiculous and outrageous, but also beautiful and moving. Not because people enjoy picking apart the key points of the short dance ("ooh, she exited the twizzle on a flat, NOT an outside edge!").

    At the moment, dance is very lucky to have two teams that, to the naked eye, stand out as "the best." That will lend credibility to the sport in Sochi.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hitchem View Post
    you can't expect a newspaper article to read like a wikipedia entry explaining the various elements.
    I can expect it to be reasonably accurate though.
    "Cupcakes are bullshit. And everyone knows it. A cupcake is just a muffin with clown puke topping." -Charlie Brooker

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    Quote Originally Posted by hitchem View Post
    Like most Olympic sports, figure skating appeals to a niche audience. Overwhelming the viewer with information is not going to draw in new fans, no matter how much some of us may enjoy counting levels, calculating changes of position, or analyzing whether the exit edge on the rocker was sufficiently deep. I'm not saying I don't want the analysis to be technical, but it needs to be within reason, and you can't expect a newspaper article to read like a wikipedia entry explaining the various elements. Viewers have responded to figure skating because it can be ridiculous and outrageous, but also beautiful and moving. Not because people enjoy picking apart the key points of the short dance ("ooh, she exited the twizzle on a flat, NOT an outside edge!").

    At the moment, dance is very lucky to have two teams that, to the naked eye, stand out as "the best." That will lend credibility to the sport in Sochi.
    I agree about Ice Dance being a niche sport, like many Olympic sports. For example, how many people in the USA actually follow Curling?- A very small population, I think (may be those close to the Canadian border do). I personally find it boring, although I had enjoyed watching the Curling event at the SLC Olympics because it was something new to me. It does not appear have some of the characteristics associated with sports or athleticism (I am not saying it does not have those) , like speed, jumping high, etc. However, I have no problem accepting it as a sport.

    I think part of the problem with ice dance may be that -1) it is called 'dance', 2) the costumes are much more theatrical and usually sexy compared to other 'costumed' sports- even ladies singles, and 3) this is JMO- the vocal music has not helped at all. So the overall effect is of Theatre rather than a Sport. I am not suggesting that we should do away with any of these (except may be the vocals but that may be the least important factor here).

    (this has been mentioned already by other posters)It is harder for a casual viewer to differentiate between the levels of difficulty, including speed, which requires athleticism. I don't think we can draw more fans to ice dancing by explaining the different criteria; most casual fans are attracted by the difficult positions and an understanding that they are doing this on ice. I think ice dance and figure skating in general is going to remain a niche sport, no matter how you try to sell it to a larger population.

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