Friday, January 26, 2007

Journalism lament 1

It is interesting that the Queensland Courier-Mail insists on referring to football as soccer. It is less interesting that I have to hunt for their 'soccer' news everyday around 10 pages in from the back page. Of course I am grateful that they try to write something for me everyday.

I like cricket. But I like a contest. I want to be on the edge of seat wondering, assessing, working out possibilities and options. I like watching captains seeking a way to win. But do Queenslanders really read 10 plus pages on one one-sided cricket series? And yet, there is next to no reporting on the tests that involve other countries even though the results of these games are exciting, unpredictable and sometimes sensational.

At the start of the summer it was pretty obvious that Australia has a far, far better cricket team than England - before a test ball was bowled. And yet 10 pages every day. Flintoff this and that, England not giving up, Fletcher under threat. zzzzzzzzz WAKE-UP The Australia v England Ashes Series was one sided and boring, every 10 years or so they may doctor some pitches and win some matches at home but Australia has this lark down pat. They have too much depth to lose here to England.

Yes, yes there were big crowds at the gabba, MCG and SCG and the other grounds sold out days 1 and maybe two. But how many years will that happen for such one-sided games? Or am I missing the point. Are people turning up to see the win irrespective of the quality of the opposition? OK there is a bit of that in every sport.

But 10 pages every day? You have to know your readers well, I guess, to keep them entertained on a no-brainer result for that many pages in a summer.


Hamish said...

Yes. After 32,000 at Lang Park see a spectacular match which sees Queensland out of the finals, anyone would think that that was the sports news in Queensland. But no, even then it was page 10 or 12, after cricket, tennis and skiing.

What I find very odd is that Murdoch, who owns The Courier Mail, also has big interests in Fox. Why is the Murdoch Press not promoting the A-League? It's strange that the A-League is getting a better run with Fairfax.

Any speculations?

The Round Ball Analyst said...

Gentlemen, I was only on the phone with my football-mad mate from Cornubia earlier this week and he was lamenting how bad the newspaper coverage up north was. A former Sydney-sider, he of course grew up in an era down here where the round ball was afforded similar treatment in the Sydney press. Things have improved, of course, but there is still room for improvement across the board.

At least here there is an established football press. Ditto in Melbourne and Adelaide, but it seems Queensland, to the best of my knowledge, hasn't an estbalished football writer. Amy Harris, it seems, it the closest thing.

I read, earlier in the week, her player ratings for the Roar this year. Did you guys see that?