Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Since the David Newton stories about Martin Truex Jr. and Ryan Newman broke last week, ESPN.com has stubbornly been keeping both of Newton's "exclusives" posted on the front page. My only question is, does anyone at ESPN read the comments?
This is the Martin Truex Jr. page and this is the Ryan Newman story. Both are now so old the computer has made them archive material. That does not matter to the ESPN.com editors, who keep them alive on the front page.
This was the article by veteran NASCAR journalist Monte Dutton talking about the kind of journalism that several of the ESPN reporters have been practicing for the last two years. Prior to 2007, ESPN and ESPN.com did not care about NASCAR and relegated it to a minor sport, just like the New York Times. Each of those organizations apparently has their own sense of sports reality.
Needless to say, NASCAR fans have taken this opportunity to voice their concerns over these stories, which have been denied directly by both of the drivers involved.
ESPN.com does not have the authors of the stories respond in the comments and apparently no one follows-up on the issues raised by the fans in the comments section. So, what is the point of offering this opportunity for the fans to post their views? ESPN.com has recently expanded this practice to Jayski.com, a site that now re-directs viewer comments to the ESPN.com site.
As Dutton said in his article, regardless of whether the drivers in question choose to eventually sign with the team in Newton's story, it does not make him right. Leaving these stories and the comments posted on one of the largest sports websites in the world reminds everyone of that fact 24 hours a day.
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