Boycott Andy Reid
HAVE YOU NO SHAME?
That’s what I want to bellow at my TV screen during every Andy Reid post-game press conference.
Not at Reid.
At the media—at the assembled sportswriters and TV guys and radio and web reporters who meekly and submissively pose their questions to the Philadelphia Eagles’ head coach week after week and in return get nothing but brief, blustery and condescending answers from Reid.
WHY DO YOU JUST SIT THERE TAKING THAT, YOU SHMUCKS!
Being a member of the media is cruel enough these days. Respect for the profession rates lower than Rick Santorum’s chances of ever hosting the World Champion Phillies in the Rose Garden. Job security in the print medium went out with vigorous copy editing and fact-checking and bonuses for journalistic prizes.
Around every bend there’s a new insult to the profession’s dignity.
Advertisements on the front page of daily papers, once unthinkable, are de rigueur. Advertising sections that used to be clearly labeled and plainly differentiated from genuinely reported editorial by layout and typeface have become much tougher to distinguish for the average reader. On many news websites, videos start to play and voices start to babble the second you hit the home page—and lots of luck finding the little x that’ll shut the noise off.
Then, just this week, the editorial staffers at 400 N. Broad, jaded for years by endless cutbacks and plunging circulation, let out a collective gasp when they clicked on Philly.com and found a man-on-the-street video touting their recent gambit: a deeply discounted tablet for anyone willing to buy subscription apps to the Inquirer, Daily News and multimedia stuff.
The gushing, over the top video was not marked as promotional, yet—as reported by Victor Fiorillo on this site—it featured marketing maven Nicole Cashman, among others, gushing sweet nothings about the tablet giveaway.
Stuff like that you can’t control. If the suits can’t see how cheesy schemes like that come off, you just have to try not to look.
But Andy Reid?
Several months back, Michael Barkann, the Comcast SportsNet anchor (and newly-hired radio host at WIP), wondered aloud in an interview why sportswriters bother to cover Reid’s press conferences since he regards the media with disdain and doesn’t offer any insights.
The same question could be asked of Barkann: Why interrupt the insightful post-game flow with Didinger to show Andy Reid huffing and puffing like Smokey the Pissed-Off Bear?
It’s tough enough making a living in an ever-changing media landscape these days without having to put up with someone who refuses to show even a modicum of respect.
It’s time for the sporting media to show some chutzpah and boycott Reid’s post-game conferences. Simply don’t show up.
Let the arrogant big dog sit in front of an empty room.
Nothing may change, save the return of your dignity.
Tim Whitaker is the executive director of Mighty Writers, a nonprofit program that inspires city kids to write.