Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Jeff Gordon's Video Game Leads "NASCAR Now"


Host Ryan Burr had just returned from his first NASCAR trip to the Atlanta Motor Speedway. Now back in the studio, Burr started the Wednesday version of NASCAR Now with Jeff Gordon on a satellite interview. The only question was...why?

Burr did a good job asking all the politically correct questions, and got the politically correct answers. Gordon did speak-out a bit in support of Goodyear after the blunder in Atlanta, and referenced his recent tire test at Darlington as a success.

During that test, NASCAR Now had Lead Reporter Marty Smith standing alongside of several other journalists who were kept on a very short leash by Goodyear. No company spokesman appeared on-camera, but the company made the drivers participating in the test available for interviews. That is the type of good reporting and solid information fans want from this TV series.

Gordon said Bristol this weekend will ease the pain of the fans and he looked forward to getting back to good hard racing. Behind Gordon was the EA Sports logo, and viewers found out the reason why. Gordon was actually on an EA Sports "junket" in his driving suit where interviews are provided to media outlets like ESPN2. Once again this season, NASCAR Now took the bait. The question is...why?

Andy Petree was brought-in from Martinsville to get things back on-track. Petree was quick to acknowledge that Goodyear had a problem, but felt that the next race in Atlanta would be different. Burr tried to pin Petree down, and referenced Gordon's earlier conciliatory words.

Petree said, "Gordon is a nice guy and he said the right things." Burr is still working to figure Petree out, and hopefully this relationship will grow as they both continue on this show. Without Stacy Compton, NASCAR Now needs a lot more of Andy Petree on a regular basis.

In sports TV, things have to be flexible. But, one simple rule is that single-camera satellite interview subjects do not wear sunglasses. Enter Chrissy Wallace on what may have been her first NASCAR Now featured interview. Aside from the noise of the cars behind her, Wallace presented a "mask" with large dark sunglasses on throughout the entire segment. All someone at ESPN had to do was ask her to take them off.

Much like the current TV commercial where the stain on the job applicant's shirt causes his potential employer to miss everything he says, Chrissy Wallace will be remembered for her big sunglasses and the fact that TV viewers really do not know what she looks like up-close. Sunglasses hide the emotions, they hide the eyes, and they distract from the content of the interview. Hopefully, as she prepares for the upcoming Craftsman Truck Series race at Martinsville, she will use the Kasey Kahne approach and lose the shades.

Jamie McMurray was up next as an interview subject, and once again the question was...why? He immediately scoffed at Burr's Top 35 question, summed-up Bristol as repaved but exciting, and said he was going to "stay out of that" on the Goodyear tire issue.

Just like Gordon, the real reason for a bored McMurray appearing was to promote his sponsor's Irwin Tools Industrial Challenge. He gave the website address for the promotion's sign-up, and mentioned that this was his second year of sitting on-camera totally bored while satisfying part of his NASCAR contract. Actually, he said it was his second time being involved in the promotion. The other part was obvious.

The NASCAR Media Group provided a nice feature reviewing last season's race at Bristol. This was another glossy and highly-edited product that uses all kinds of TV and radio announcers voices along with soundbites from drivers and natural sound of the race. This is the real "ultimate highlight" package, and more of them would make this show even better.

Burr "tagged" the show with the breaking news of Carl Edwards not appealing his Las Vegas penalty. Then, Andy Petree helped him with the racing reality that no one expected he would. Perhaps, the picture of Carl "flipping with his lid-off" seen all over the Internet might have helped with that decision.

One quick note to consider. Burr said that Andy Petree was at Martinsville to "observe" the Truck Series testing. Over at ESPN-owned Jayski.com, a blurb on the main page said Petree himself was testing and would drive in the March 29th race.

Perhaps, between the Irwin Tools Industrial Challenge of Jamie McMurray and the new EA Sports video game release featuring Jeff Gordon, there just wasn't time to slip-in some actual NASCAR news involving one of ESPN's own announcers.

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32 comments:

Anonymous said...

I really dislike when drivers show up on the daily news show just to promote their stuff. Jeff and Jamie were only there to promote their wares, and Jamie looked like he had just finished working out. His face was unusually red and patchy and his answers were very short and he wasn't his usual jovial self. At least Jeff would talk about the tire issue, but he was not nearly as vocal as he was on Sunday. He had his corporate hat firmly on his head today. Jamie basically said, "No comment." It was odd....

I was disappointed with the Chrissy Wallace interview. Aside from the sunglasses issue, where the heck did she learn to talk? Her father has a good command of the English language, Kenny, Rusty and Steven not as much, but passable. I was concentrating more on her language errors rather than her content and wondering why her familial mentors haven't gotten her a speech coach yet. If she's expecting to be the poster child for female racers, she really needs some polishing. Enough of the negative, though, at least she expressed her appreciation to Ryan for interviewing her. It would have been nice to see if she was excited to be interviewed, but I digresss to the sunglasses issue.....

Finally, I wonder JD, if Andy not promoting himself for the truck race was because of the late breaking Rousch news and not the self promotion of the other drivers? Since the news "broke" within 2 minutes of the show's conclusion, and Ryan ate up a good 30 to 45 seconds reading the release, perhaps he's not seasoned enough to by-pass his #1 question on the list, the tire issue, and drop to the #2 question, what are you doing in Martinsville anyway. Just a thought....

SophiaZ123 said...

watched tonights show as we made dinner.

First, LOSE THE AMBIENT NOISE. I am giving up on this show..LOSE the sunglasses,too. First thing my roomie said "Why do they let them wear sunglasses on an interview. They are HUGE? she had FLIES EYES.

JD Frankly, my room mate and I BOTH found Jamie Mac RUDE in his attitude about the top 35 in points! Generally I like Jamie but now wish he could FALL OUT OF THE TOP 35 and see what that feels like. he could've sounded THANKFUL it has yet to be an issue for him.
Waltrip and others claim its a drag. Just ask Boris Said. He came off arrogant.

The show was ok but the LOUD NOISE issue is just ludicrous.

I think I will stick with just the Monday night shows and just read your reviews until they can clean up the noise and ask guests to TAKE OFF the hedge apple sized shades. Sigh.

Elementary folks.

NASCAR_IRL Fan said...

Wow! Thank you for noticing the sponsor placement for Gordon and McMurray. Unfortunately, I wondering if that's the only way you can get the drivers during the week sometimes? I've seen Dale Jr on ESPNNews shilling for something (Sharpie?) and Kasey Kahne on First Take for some kind of NASCAR debit card in the past. That seems to be the deal: you get to ask a few race questions, then they get to promote whatever and they have the product logo in the background.

At least Jeff answered Ryan's race questions seriously - the Atlanta questions and questions about the first four races were topical and I liked hearing those answers.

Jamie came off as more than a little "jerkish" with his answers you described above, as if the racing questions were beneath him. Unlike jeff, he didn't engage with Ryan until the sponsor question came up; I think Roush should talk to him about that. If he falls out of top 35 and fails to make races, he'll be begging someone to interview him. He probably needs that experience, sad to say.

Ryan cracked me up when he asked Jeff if they made him look younger on the EA Sports game cover. Ryan seems a little more relaxed these days, I like him and I thought he did well interacting with Chrissy Wallace, who I've never heard interviewed before. She comes across younger and much less polished than some of her teenage male counterparts her in ARCA/Nationwide/Trucks who are that age, but that homespun charm was nice to see for a change because those guys are SO smooth, they all sound 30. She seemed like she was speaking in the manner of her age group, but Ryan never acted like he took her less seriously for that. Good job.(Though she REALLY should have taken off the sunglasses, you're right.)

Still I'm realistic about how homespun she can be: I just looked Chrissy up; she turns 20 in May. By then she'll need to have a media coach to smooth the edges since she won't be a teenager anymore.

Anonymous said...

JD, I have a question on the connection between espn.com and NASCAR Now. There was a comment the other day in the NN Monday thread pointing out the midweek shows should be used to catch up on stories coming out of races that the Monday roundtable misses. espn.com has a article about Brian Vickers and how even if he doesn't race Sunday, he'd still be in the top 35 - that's how well he's doing.

But there was no story on Vickers on NN yesterday or today. Is is possible when an espn.com reporter does a story for the website that a NN person - like a camera crew - could record a video story at the same time for NN? There are some really good stories on espn.com that never get mentioned on NN. I don't know if that would be too hard to do or what.

Same with the "fluffier" stories, like asking real gymnasts to technically judge Carl's flips or how Adidas is getting NASCAR fans to buy stuff because of Junior. Those would be good TV stories which right now are only on the website.

Ryan Burr seems like he knows the sport and people better now and that shows on NN. He's good. Would like to know what he thinks of all the sponsor plugs, but he probably has to keep that to himself. I didn't blame him for all of those plugs. Probably PR people at work: "If you want my famous driver to appear live midweek, then this is the way it's going to be." Maybe they need to work more with the drivers who don't have much sponsorship, they'll be happy to be on the show at all.

Newracefan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Newracefan said...

Sorry just too many typos so lets try this again :) I was somewhat disappointed with todays show. Jamie definately looked bored and annoyed certainly didn't make me want to rush right out and find some Irwin Industrial Tools, he didn't even really explain what the challenge was all about. I was excited to see that Chrissy was to be interviewed because I believe she may be Nascar's answer to Danica but now; not so much. The concept of sunglasses was bad enough but they were so large they remined me of those glasses the elderly wear after cataract surgery. Not a good look for anyone. If she is serious about making it to cup I would recommend the wonderful Dale Carnegie course that DJ and even Brian Vickers have taken to brush up her public speaking skills (Steven W might want to tag along). I could live with the Jeff interview he was at the tire test and there were some Goodyear issues to discuss not to mention he is JEFF GORDON. I guess it was a slow news Wednesday and poor Andy's news about the truck race got pushed out by the only news of the day the 99 not appealing the penalty. Not that anyone thought they would.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 8:05PM,

This is the issue that ESPN and its TV networks and other businesses have been wrestling with since last season.

When NASCAR first appeared on ABC, there were several times where the announcers specifically told viewers to switch to ESPNEWS and to catch more interviews and highlights on SportsCenter.

This situation came about because the ABC stations want the network to go away once the race is over after 6PM so they can get to their local news, which is how they make a lot of their money.

Unfortunately, there was usually no coverage on ESPNEWS and there was nothing but chaos on SC where NASCAR was concerned.

The best part is neither ABC, ESPNEWS, or SC ever mentioned that ESPN-owned Jayski.com had all the latest news and results. The same is true with NASCAR Now, they just cannot "make" themselves say the word Jayski.

This season, ESPNEWS has begun to add live post-race press conferences from the Media Centers at the tracks. They have also forced the NASCAR word into shows like PTI and First Take.

What they have not yet been able to do is what you asked about. They simply cannot integrate all of their different media resources across the board seamlessly.

I hope that, as many news organizations are starting to do, ESPN considers having one reporter create content for the web in both text and video form. This would solve the type of problems you mentioned.

If you noticed in my column, I tried to point out that Marty Smith at Darlington for a simple tire test was important after Atlanta's problems. That is good reporting and journalism.

Having two drivers stop-by to plug sponsors and do nothing else but fill time was not a good choice. There are lots of hard news stories going on, and I miss the fact that Shannon Spake is not out chasing them down in Mooresville like she did last season.

It should be interesting to see if we continue to have Jamie Little from Las Vegas and Brad Daugherty from Ashville, NC who appear just to be seen and talk about nothing.

This is the second season of this show, and there is NO crew on the scene in Mooresville or Concord following up on the stories of the weekend. Maybe, it will happen soon.

JD

Anonymous said...

The EA game cover is a big deal every year. Tony Stewart was the cover last year and I believe he was interviewed on NASCAR Now for it too. They announced it this morning during First Take and I believe Gordon was inteviewed then also. I liked his interview on NASCAR Now - the game was mentioned at the end of the interview, but he was also asked about HMS "struggle" this season, his performance, and the tire issue. I thought he put the HMS "struggle" issue in a nice perspective since I keep hearing about it everywhere - Jr. is doing well and finishing well and the #24 team has been there in performance - just haven't always had the finishes. Jimmie is stuggling a bit right now, but I wouldn't say HMS as a whole is. Casey Mears has had his issues, but I'll give him a few more weeks to gel with a new crew chief. As for the tire issue, Jeff tested at Darlington the past two days and talked with Goodyear about his concerns and I'm sure got some answers. Goodyear has already said they are bringing a different tire to Texas.

Anonymous said...

Everybody above has summed up my feelings on tonight's NASCAR NOW, so I gotta gripe about Tuesday's show (which actually wasn't bad but didn't have a lot of news).

They interviewed Brad Keselowski. Again. Every time the Nationwide series comes up - there he is. Qualifying, practice, race, and NASCAR NOW. I want cawsnjaws.com to use their breakdown tally on how many minutes are devoted to him in relation to the other NW drivers.

Yes, he got a top 10 in the Atlanta race, but Bliss and Bires are ahead of Brad K in the points, and noone would ever know it if you watched the coverage. And the interviews aren't about him anyway. All questions yesterday were about Brad K's relationship with Dale Jr.

The question I wanted asked yesterday-which I've seen the media start to pick up on a little more - is that Mark Martin called Brad K to apologize after that Las Vegas wreck and Brad K did not return his call. b/c apparently he has nothing to say to Mark Martin, and according to the scene daily article I read Sunday, he also wants us to know that it's unlikely Martin will get any 'breaks' from him if they race each other again.

Burr should have asked why hasn't Brad K. called Martin back and acknowledge his call? I'm sure Mark Martin has better things to do than call a kid like Brad K. and apologize.

Instead he gets a free pass from NASCAR NOW because he's Jr.'s guy and ESPN's NW star. They need to spread it around a little bit - I'm patiently waiting on the Bliss/Bires interviews before saturday, NASCAR NOW.

Anonymous said...

This show does NOT need to book Satellite Media Tour interviews.

They are intended for local TV stations who, having little access to major sports figures, are grateful to accept a little product plug in exchange of booking someone live. Bob and Susie anchorperson get to interview a Real Live Star.

ESPN doesn't fall into that category. The Worldwide Leader doesn't need to accept a sponsored interview, and if they do these days, then they're in real trouble.

You will not get a real interview out of an SMT, because the subject is absolutely aware of why he is doing the thing--and it is NOT to talk about what you want. It is to promote a product. Period.

What an embarrassment.

Vince said...

Thought this was one of the less interesting NN shows so far this season. A whole lotta nothing. Seems this show still has trouble finding enough real NASCAR news to cover on Wed. and Thursdays. Maybe they need to do like RPM2Nite used to do. Have openwheel Wednesdays or something of that nature. Use Wednesdays to focus on some of the lesser known series and drivers in NASCAR.

If Chrissy Wallace is really serious about racing and attracting sponsors she needs to lose the sunglasses during the interviews. And money on a Dale Carnegie course would be money well spent.

All in all, tonights show was pretty boring and vanilla.

New York Times Reader said...

daly planet editor said...
I hope that, as many news organizations are starting to do, ESPN considers having one reporter create content for the web in both text and video form. This would solve the type of problems you mentioned.


I agree that would be a good idea, Mr. Daly. The recent NYT Play magazine (I'm sure you read it and noticed the Tony Stewart story!) had a wonderful story about two young African-American sisters whom their dad hopes will be the Venus and Serena of women's golf. The story had a video attached to it, narrated by the reporter. I'm usually pressed for time after reading such a long story - but this was Sunday and the story was so interesting I watched the five minute video. Seeing the people in the words and photos come to life really added something to it for me. If the video had been on television on Sportscenter, I would have watched it, though it was matter of fact and not glossy -no dramatic music or cuts.

I believe it was narrated by the reporter. Applying your video idea to written ESPN stories and playing those videos on related television programs (NASCAR Now, NASCAR Countdown) for viewers who don't visit the site regularly would be the logical step for ESPN.

SallyB said...

Good grief! Not bad enough to have all the commercials during the races, but now the nightly show has commercials as 'content'? What a waste of my time.

Anonymous said...

The mistake made here is to apply journalistic standards to anything on ESPN. All those shows are dedicated to entertainment and commerce. This is not the way I wish it was, but its the way it is.I grew up in the 70's and at that time there was a move to cover sports as "hard news" and not be shills for the individual sport being covered.It did not last.

kenn said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Reminder: NASCAR Now tomorrow and Friday doesn't air until midnight Eastern. That's the new episode, no repeat.

Anonymous said...

The sunglass thing must run in the Wallace family. Did anyone notice when Steven Wallace was interviewed last week He put his sunglassses on when the interview started and took them off when he walked away.

Frank in Sebring

Anonymous said...

Steven Wallace has Tourette's Syndrome which causes him to invountarily blink his eyes/squeeze his eyes shut at a very rapid pace that is distracting on camera. That's why he wears the sunglasses. He used to do interviews without them and really got the message boards going about why he blinked that way until his diagnosis was made more public.

I assume Chrissy wears them on camera because she sees other drivers do it. Kyle Busch put his sunglasses on before his VL interview on Fox this weekend. So did Matt Kenseth on ESPN. Maybe they shouldn't, but they do.

Tom said...

This was one of the weaker spisodes we have seen this season. I am with everyone on the sponsored interviews...get rid of them. If NN stops using them altogether, perhaps the drivers (sponsors) will understand that they aren't getting the exposure they want and they may scale back the commercial element and settle for a real interview with a product placement behind the driver. Just an idea. Clearly mid week is a WEAK spot for this generally improving show. I too would like to see these shows focus on series aside from the big 3-not just a single interview-but highlights, commentary and schedules. There are many drivers who's names will become commonplace in the next 5 years that are in these series now and we would be well served by learning about them now.

Chrissy, lose the glasses.

Tom
Inverness, FL

glenc1 said...

I figured Chrissie just didn't think about the sunglasses, and someone else *should* have. I did wonder if it might have been that she didn't want people to focus on her looks. I agree with Vince though--had the same thought on a Carnegie class while I was watching her. She seemed earnest but not very polished in getting that across. Kenn--that's the funniest comment I've seen in a while, lol. And I'm guessing they may very well have covered that very issue...

As for the promos--this stuff goes on all the time, whether it's charity (a better endeavor) or business or sponsor obligations. But I can cut Jamie some slack, he's had a rough month and that's very unusual for him; most all the reporters have good things to say about him ordinarily (and he was not rude, just indifferent, and he doesn't like being in controveries). But in general, I am more lenient with drivers/teams pushing this kind of thing than I might be with other sports because they are SO dependent on sponsors. I would agree it's an awkward thing, but so much of it is not just their teams but NASCAR insisting on it, and they are the ones who sign the broadcasting contracts with networks like ESPN...I think we've just gotten used to it even if it's not a great thing to be doing.

Anonymous said...

I assume Chrissy wears them on camera because she sees other drivers do it. Kyle Busch put his sunglasses on before his VL interview on Fox this weekend. So did Matt Kenseth on ESPN. Maybe they shouldn't, but they do.

March 13, 2008 12:23 AM

Don't a lot of them have sunglasses endorsements? (Sponsors again...) jeff Burton wore them during a NASCAR Now interview not long ago. I would prefer that they not put them on during interviews. But some of the veteran drivers aren't being real role models to the younger drivers when they wear them in victory lane - and the networks allow them to do it. For that reason, I wouldn't single Chrissy Wallace out or think negatively of her in particular for wearing them, other than it was her first interview. She's going to do what the other drivers do, as would any newbie.

If you want to blame anyone, blame the production people or camera crews who don't ask them to remove them before satellite interviews (and I would prefer it for victory lane, too). Unless the networks- perhaps backed by a NASCAR communication to drivers - enforce a policy, then the drivers aren't going to comply. If they always have to remove sunglasses for interviews or the result is not getting interviewed, they'll get in the habit.

David said...

EA Spends Big Bucks on ESPN and they where just doing the Car Wash for that. Surprised he hasn't been on ESPN Radio for yet. You are correct about Chrissy why would someone from that family let her go on with shades on when they are trying to sell her. Bet it doesn't happen again. Mike, Un cle Rusty and Kenny you listening??

SophiaZ123 said...

Jeff Burton did the sunglass thing too..the drivers do it ALL the time on SPEED. On RaceDAY and even VL.

JD is it still a written rule at ESPN or do they just let is slide because of the SPONSORSHIP connection?

I think it's rude as all get out (though Jeff B also blinks his eyes hard sometimes so maybe he has a weird tic. I can understand with Steve Wallace as he can almost grimace with his eye blinking.

But as an unknown, the fact Chrissy was on TV and completely hidden!? I mean if you WANT to show sponsorship of the glasses, it's quite easy to lift them on top of your head as your being interviewed.

Even more annoying when the drivers put them on after a night race when they get out of the race cars. I am sadly so used to the SPONSOR SATURATION, i just shrug it off.

But I love seeing people's eyes...so it's a dreadful habit.

AndyPandy said...

All I know about the sunglasses deal is that several times this year, I have seen Dale Jr. on TV standing by his car or just around the pits with his sunglases on, and when a reporter asks if he could talk to them, the first thing he does is remove the glasses. I would think that he has some sort of sunglass sponsorship, but it looks like his politeness is stronger than his salesmanship.

Some other drivers, both veterans and newbies, should take notes.

And another issue - has anyone ever heard Mike Wallace asked the question about the difference in attitudes concerning female drivers now and in the past?

Anonymous said...

It's not just NN that pushes endorsements via race car drivers. Ever watch First Take? Most of the time, their live interviews revolve around some present or has-been athlete shilling for something, be it a credit card, some kind of contest they're being paid for, or some product. They also bring on movie/tv stars to promote their latest venture, covering it up by asking them at the end about their favorite teams. It's not about sports anymore, people. It's all about entertainment and $$$$$$.

Perhaps NN should be forgotten on Tuesday-Thursday. Since they can't seem to come up with anything of substance on Tuesday-Thursday, they should focus on something else---maybe like the spelling bee or domino tournaments.

Perhaps the drivers are sick of being asked about the tire "controversy" but the reporters are still pushing the issue. It's done with, let it go, no one is going to change their opinion on Wednesday. But no, sensationalism reigns supreme, and they're still stirring the pot.

Anonymous said...

I would think that he has some sort of sunglass sponsorship, but it looks like his politeness is stronger than his salesmanship.

Depends on the extent of the media training they've had or how much they're in the media. You very rarely see guys like Jr, Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, Carl Edwards wear sunglasses on TV interviews or Victory Lane. Jimmie Johnson takes his off unless he's mad; he kept them on when Vickers wrecked him at Talledega.

(Except Raceday - for some reason it's acceptable to leave your glasses on when being interviewed by your motorcoach or hauler on Raceday.)

It's done with, let it go, no one is going to change their opinion on Wednesday. But no, sensationalism reigns supreme, and they're still stirring the pot.

It's not called sensationalism or stirring the pot, it's called following up on a story, and I'm glad to see them doing their jobs. The issues with Goodyear tires didn't disappear after last Sunday. Do you think there won't be tire problems anymore this year if they stop discussing it? Dale Jarrett is talking about it, Tony Stewart had more to say about it and so did Harvick. In other words, non wishy washy drivers who are not named Jamie McMurray do care about the tires. If they're talking, I want to hear what they're saying.

Which doesn't mean that NASCAR Now can ignore all the other garage news.

Anonymous said...

Hey did you hear NASCAR Now has been nominated for a national Sports Emmy?

Daly Planet Editor said...

Hey Guys,

Those are some great comments. The sunglasses thing is easy to get confused about.

When a driver is involved in a spontaneous interview, like in front of his hauler or just climbing out of his car (even in Victory Lane) they have the right to wear sunglasses. Nothing you can do to stop them. Some guys in the past have even tried to wear them during night races!

What I was referring to with Chrissy Wallace was a full-length feature interview one-on-one with a studio host. As you can see on all the other ESPN programs, losing the sunglasses just makes common sense. (And is ESPN policy)

This was a good first media appearance for her, and she was really treated well by Ryan Burr. He has come a long way from when he started in terms of his NASCAR knowledge. We have to give him credit, he is involved and working hard at the sport.

She will be a good story in a couple of weeks, and hopefully she will have learned a little bit about TV from this first interview.

The good folks at NASCAR Now have chimed in a bit to point out to me that not all the features on the program are produced by NASCAR Images. In fact, the nicely edited piece that we liked from the Wednesday show was done by the in-house ESPN staff.

Thanks to them for clearing that up. It is nice to get some direct feedback this season from the NASCAR Now crew, who have completely changed the program this season with great results.

Getting the focus of the Wednesday show off of promotion-driven interviews and back onto the regional and hard news stories about the sport will come with time.

For those of us who watched every single NASCAR Now in 2007, this season is a great big breath of fresh air. Thanks again to the NASCAR Now staff for emailing, and we hope to hear from them anytime they would like to raise an issue or help us with a correction.

JD

Anonymous said...

I'm curious:

The split screen interviews on SPEED's NASCAR RaceDay where JR, Jimmy, Kenny talk to a driver are also long interviews and the drivers often wear sunglasses for those. Why the difference in policy?

Why did Jeff Burton get to bypass ESPN policy and wear sunglasses on NN and who is responsible for ensuring athletes adhere to policy if they wear them?

You'd think the NASCAR nets would see the comments and realize that people don't like sunglasses on drivers during ANY type of interview and ask the drivers to cooperate.

Daly Planet Editor said...

There is a new column up about the Emmy Nominations.

Anon 7:53PM,

Those are great questions and bring-up the fact that there is always going to be a conflict between what is "good TV" and what "sponsors want" on TV.

SPEED has struggled with this, and often has a disjointed presence on the air because some announcers are wearing sunglasses and some are not. Daytona was a case in point.

The next time you watch ESPN, check for this tidbit. Sunglasses are supposed to be banned across the board for the simple fact that without the person's face being visible, TV is just expensive radio.

These are just some of the struggles cable networks go through while they manufacture hours and hours of programming.

Did you notice that a college-trained TV professional like Wendy Venturini or Marty Smith will never appear on the air with sunglasses on?

Isn't TV always interesting? Don't get me started on the white jackets on SPEED. That is certainly an interesting choice.

JD

Anonymous said...

Don't get me started on the white jackets on SPEED. That is certainly an interesting choice.


How polite of you.

They look dumb.

Really.

Ken-Michigan said...

In most cases, the person being interviewed is asked to "face the sun" for lighting issues during an interview ( unless the TV crew is prepared with proper lighting, reflector boards, etc).

So, Chrissy was probably asked to stare directly into the sun, while the sun was at the camera operators back. That interview was in turn 4 at Martinsville and she was no doubt staring into the sun.

Either she has a sunglasses deal already or she simply felt more comfortable wearing them. I DONT AGREE wearing them either. But, if it was a last second decision on HER part to wear them, we cant blame ESPN.

I wonder how many times the TV crew has asked Richard Petty to remove his sunglasses for an interview.