Wednesday, June 25, 2008
NASCAR Lawsuit In The Media - Continuing Post
Here we go. This will be the expanding post that will watch the development of the TV and Internet treatment of the Grant lawsuit. This has nothing to do with the merit or lack of merit of the allegations. We watch the media and this is going to be a critical time for the sport.
In her own words: Before you begin reading, hear Ms. Grant's comments on a phone call at Foxsports.com. Here is the link, the video is on the right side of the page. Click on "Grant talks lawsuit" under the video links. She speaks about the situation in the Nationwide Series as a whole.
Comment from her lawyer: This is the link to the SI.com story that interviews Grant's lawyer who offers his view of Grant's experiences in the sport. Here is a short excerpt:
"This (NASCAR) isn't a sophisticated operation; this is a bunch of nudniks hanging around together who just happen to be onto something because they were enterprising what is now a billion-dollar business. And they haven't caught up with the fact that America actually has laws protecting women, people of color, people over 40 years old, etcetera."
From an HR professional: This is the link to an HR professional's view of the issue at hand. It contains another non-racing opinion that may help to put things in a new light.
Read the lawsuit: Yahoo! Sports has the lawsuit available in a pdf file format to view or download. Just click on this link. There is no better way to understand the situation than to read the actual documents filed in this civil matter.
Now the first print interview: Grant wound-up at SI.com and that might be with good reason. There is no overt connection with the SI.com folks and NASCAR other than reporting the news. Click here to read the interview she gave to Tom Bowles.
8PM EDT - NASCAR has suspended and sent home from Kentucky two Nationwide Series officials (both named in the lawsuit) for violating unspecified company policy. Here are the SI and ESPN.com story links.
8:25PM - Here is Marty Smith on ESPNEWS Hot List talking about the issue.
8:30PM - Extended story of the suspensions from the Associated Press. Mentions investigators interviewing Nationwide Series officials in Kentucky. Speaks to no incidents reported by Grant.
9PM - No mention of the entire Grant lawsuit issue on Trackside on SPEED. Focus on Cup Series, driver interviews and Father's Day.
10PM - Very nice job by NASCAR Now of stepping into the issue in an informed manner and presenting a lot of different views and personalities. The only real problem was Brad Daugherty. According to NASCAR.com it was Daugherty and Brian France who co-founded NASCAR's Diversity Council several years ago.
So, the person speaking with host Ryan Burr about this situation was the original head of NASCAR's diversity efforts. Daugherty never disclosed this, never talked about his personal views on the lawsuit, and never offered any real content.
What he did do was follow the corporate line of NASCAR, with whom he is no longer employed or associated in an official capacity. Daugherty is now an ESPN NASCAR commentator, and has struggled to define his role.
Like it or not, this one issue may dominate Daugherty's on-air life as the story grows out of the niche shows like NASCAR Now and migrates over to SportsCenter and Outside The Lines.
11PM - Tradin' Paint on SPEED chose to begin the show with the Petty Merger and ignore the lawsuit topic completely. The media guest with Kyle Petty was Joe Menzer from the NASCAR.com website. The Grant issue was not even acknowledged on-the-air.
Here is the Yahoo link folks have been emailing and asking about. Here is the link to the actual lawsuit itself.
8PM - Topic handled nicely by Allen Bestwick and Brad Daugherty in the final minutes of NASCAR Countdown before the Nationwide Series race on ESPN2. Also now in rotation on ESPNEWS is the specifics of the suspensions of the two officials.
10AM - NASCAR Now did a very good job with this topic. Nicole Manske presented the known facts and let Marty Smith introduce comments from Brian France played earlier on ESPN. Manske stressed that neither Grant or her attorney would speak to ESPN on this issue.
10:30AM - Wendy Venturini handled the lawsuit issue right at the top of RaceDay and summed up the known facts and then played the same Brian France soundbites. She did it live with no script and then advised viewers SPEED would keep them posted.
12:30PM - Marc Fein at first called the Petty merger the biggest story of the week on NASCAR on TNT Live! At 1PM, TNT used Fein to update the facts of the story and followed the pattern of not involving any commentary from former drivers or crew chiefs. The facts were correct, and TNT moved-on.
1:30PM - New story published on Foxsports.com from a non-NASCAR writer takes Mr. France's comments to task. Interesting perspective on the issue overall from a person not involved in sports TV or the media regularly.
Monday/Tuesday: No stories on TV. NASCAR Now and TWIN avoided the topic totally.
This thread will continue as the location to comment on the TV and Internet coverage of this single issue. Please do not post a comment on the lawsuit itself, as it will be deleted. What we are comparing is the various TV shows and websites as they struggle with a topic very unfamiliar to most of these writers and reporters. You are certainly welcome to comment on that topic.
The Daly Planet welcomes comments from readers. We are watching the media coverage on TV and the Internet of the Grant lawsuit. Do not post your comments about the lawsuit, only the media issues surrounding it. Click on the COMMENTS button below to post. The rules for posting are on the right side of the main page.