Just checked in to all my sites as part of the morning online reading routine, and as usual, Kevin at Bfloblog doesn't mince words when it has anything to do with the bosses, pundits or sportwriters at the Buffalo News.
The News at long last unveiled their new look website this morning, which was a long time coming. I am happy to see this happen because sites such as buffalo.com and the Buffalo News site are our portals to the world.
At the same time, publications such as the News have to be feeling the pressure from the growing presence of digital media, and they are trying to come to grips with how to deal with the growing tidal wave. The trend away from old line publishing isn't about to change, and newspapers which don't adapt to that will eventually go the way of the buggy whip.
That being said, the Buffalo News is still by far the big kid on the block when it comes to sports reporting, and let us not try to delude ourselves into thinking otherwise. We write for Artvoice (60K weekly circulation), Sports and Leisure Magazine (140K monthly) and WNY Hockey Magazine (9K monthly), and post stories to this blog. Our combined presence in all these outlets doesn't have the impact that one Jerry Sullivan column has. Now five years from now the world might be a different place, but as for today, that is the reality of the situation.
So what do we do as bloggers? It's simple really - if the sports blogs band together as an online community, we instantly become a bigger and more credible force. As Kevin so aptly put it, the blogs that are emerging aren't just duplicative and repetitive, but are capturing their own nitch. Bfloblog is now teaming up with WNY Media as their sports department, and this in turn just gives the sports blog network that much more "mojo". It's all good!!!
But our responsibility is not only to copy and paste stories from the established media and offer critiques, but also report on the news and relay them here. And that means keeping eyes and ears open for anything relevant going on that may be of interest to our readers.
Last Monday before the NHL trade deadline I caught a story on TSN, where Phoenix coach Wayne Gretzky emphatically stated that he had no intention of moving Kevyn Adams anywhere and would instead re-sign him and keep him in Phoenix. Now THAT was an important bit of news and we posted it here, while at the same time, Bucky Gleason at the News and the reporters at WGRZ.com were still speculating whether Adams was in the mix and what it would take to bring him to Buffalo.
These are exactly the kind of "scoops" we need to watch for and post and that is how we snag that occasional "w" vs. the major media.
The sportswriters at the Buffalo News really aren't bad guys - their degrees of friendliness and affability vary wildly, but they all have years of professional experience, contacts in the industry and their own opinions which we should respect. Whether it be sportswriters, TV personaliites,radio sports jocks, photo journalists, behind the scenes engineers, or internet media (including bloggers), we're all part of the media family.