Thursday, July 30, 2009

Stay classy ESPN...Stay Classy....Nope. Not this time.

Upon hearing about ESPN's decision to publish a "skin issue" of ESPN The Magazine, I can't help but feel a certain disappointment. ESPN has done a pretty good job of staying well above the line of classiness set by sort-of-competitor FoxSportsNet.

Here is a link to the USA Today article announcing the plans for the edition of the magazine...

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/2009-06-10-ESPN_N.htm

I can't help but think of the number of young boys and girls that flip through each edition, either after eagerly awaiting for it to hit their mailbox, or sneaking a peek of their favorite athletes in line at a checkout, or at the favorite local bookstore, and will now be subjected to even more nudity and sexual imagery than they need.

ESPN has lowered its standards, and I cannot understand why. They have created a near monopoly for major sports coverage, and when you throw in parent company ABC, as well as the other ESPN networks (ESPN 2, News, Classic, Deportes, U, and 360, and others I am probably forgetting) it is such a large audience, that one wonders why there is a need to set lower standards for their programming, and to hope that this is not a ploy to increase readership of their magazine, or exposure of their company. I think that is will only tarnish what is otherwise, an upstanding, cutting edge, sports information monster that usually handles itself with class and care. Not this time though.... Not this time...

See another response to ESPN's move, and the inspiration for my thoughts... An article by Ted Kluck in Christianity Today. As a former writer for ESPN.com, and other selected sports articles, Ted offers his opinion on this topic...

http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2009/julyweb-only/130-21.0.html?start=1

1 comment:

  1. Chris,

    I had not seen this story yet; good get. Two thoughts.

    1. SI began an opt-out for subscribers for the Swimsuit issue in 2007 to avoid the lost subscriptions that otherwise occurred in the past.

    2. The few photos that have been released to date seem far from prurient. If the images are paired with some pieces on motion, muscle, and fitness it could be really informative. It could also be camp. I just don't see anything prima facia that requires nudity to be sexual.

    3. From an economic perspectives, monopolies, ie ESPN, always lower standards. When your the only game in town, sub-par is good enough.

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