WEEI>On Demand>>20 Minutes of Silence with Kirk Minihane: Alan Siegel defends his Boston Magazine column

20 Minutes of Silence with Kirk Minihane: Alan Siegel defends his Boston Magazine column

Jan 29, 2013|

Kirk talks with Alan Siegel, who wrote a piece in the February edition of Boston Magazine that was highly critical of the current state of the Boston sports media.

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

It -- -- and millions of semblance. Wooten not meant literally be repaired and go into the -- grueling minutes Simpson and yeah I don't know. Chelsea was a writer for Boston next February issue of that magazine writes -- Story titled the fellowship of the -- that the media -- once again -- nation. Become so awful well -- writes about elephants here today out what's going on. -- -- Good let me ask you -- first -- sort of how the Genesis of this is that something you pitched. To the magazine -- on the news directed toward you. I think it's our collaborative I know he urged innings and emailed back and forth with few of my editors and -- the thought it would be a good idea really am and there are options sports media and how. Changed over the years. What works what to work. That sort of sort and it. What that what doesn't work I guess from my next question which said he looked at a time won't -- but with the second how many people would you say. You talked to here in Boston com media allies. I would say okay if spiritual wanna look at Javier which it. Try to shift -- -- and I could be up if you really not sure exactly. And what was sure I guess. What did you -- now when you look at is it more wrong and right I guess you know you look at this obvious he must think there is. I think that the case I think first of all. You know the bought and sports media has been -- romanticize the past. And you know what a perfect but I just think it's. Gone downhill and kind of what I found was. -- an article. Walking gimme gimme two or three specifics of what is so wrong with the media here in the city today. Basically. Just the kind of echo chamber that kind of an ending you know it's people shouting at each other. People kind of shutting each other out and adding. Just had a more interest data and arguing. And kind of -- interstate and thoughtful -- I would say. Would you say that that's the case though Allen. Because I don't think that's the case in general I think that's the case with a few people but I think there are far more people in this media. We're not like that that are like that. You know I don't know but I do know that you know XP acerbic loud actual real people that's sort of drive. The -- -- opinion errands. Kirk or rather their voices are kind of a dominant ones and that sort of EU. You know -- here than most and yet you look harder you know you're gonna find. More thoughtful people but again I just think it's really hard to escape the cacophony of all these pockets. All bill that would say this in the OK we get into that later on but you know you start the story by talking about. The Gonzales text message with Ballantine and getting fired in the meeting at the hotel all the went down just pass from Yahoo!. Covered it and wrote -- federally good piece about it. In your piece did not really talk about your start here was not about -- bombastic figures you know that we don't they are missed out more about the failure. Of to beat writers in talent. To break national or to break these stories you're getting costly scooped by national guys that that that's sort it was it was a tipping point right this thing. Yeah you know that that's. Sort of another major point of the story just that he. -- and media. In general not all the time but in general seemed to be missing out on -- story like. Kind of play catchup. -- ask this -- and the gamma beat writer for the Red Sox or department nor the Celtics are and he seems and columnist here but you know. I mean -- national guys are always going to -- I mean the past sins. The -- all these they're always gonna do that you can go back to the eighties but I would ask you this in 1984 for example can't. Let's just say the same thing was happening with the Red Sox and -- I'll just say for argument sake. AI don't think anybody reported for the globe at the time to be right there as such not reported in even if they didn't. -- would competition be nationally. I guess you're having yet again kind of one of those days. Didn't know that I'm right -- there's no here's the national baseball voice in 1984. But yeah I mean so Randall short if somebody were to happen with the patriots you know women on the matter reported. That chapter certainly there's no -- there was no weather chapter ninety -- my points and now. You know you read money ball right. So remember -- -- -- money ball the trade deadline you're the creature trade in my chapter my favorite chapter in the book. -- -- -- never been in in the protester flat ground trying to trade on that left -- for Cleveland. And and it it -- wanna take any local calls and all the -- register call and see what's going on nothing nothing Gammons calls. And Billy Beane says yeah I'm gonna take this why because he's information for me. I think that's a lot of Howell works I'm at the national guys are always gonna have a head up. Over the local guys now and immoral for. You know it's a difficult spot the little guys -- the back to work the next day in the next day in the next day. In the next day where the national -- -- shall -- -- differently if he doesn't want to ever. Sure I think in -- again perhaps this didn't come out and I think a problem with PP system in general overall is that. These -- have to worry so much about not burning their sources and -- -- them a lot of times from getting these big stories you know. -- all our example the one. I imagine you know that the fried chicken -- -- story again you know even said that it was determined that you would go on those derided because. In that show up every game and kind of do his job so it but it just it's it's kind of weird to me that. You know these riders who spoke to -- covering interest stories. You know are kind of forced all tactic. Well. I mean if you think the eighties I mean guys are doing cocaine left to right the eighty's how often you're reading about that in papers. You're you're never -- whenever you're different because they were beat writers they may very well known about it surely -- cry about it. Write about because it. It affects their job that was -- a better point is that. When these guys get scooped on this some of them you mentioned Abraham some of these guys sort of -- afterward or had a run the other is saying no this isn't what's going on you know big the other way. Sorted six national guys wrong he's right. And that's SharePoint and -- mean. The block huge story like that because it's gonna ruin their -- they can't must they think they're going national and -- that's exactly -- Ken Rosenthal at a show after. -- only all of these guys left and right always break these stories in the local guys don't. I mean you'll remember when Parcells left in 96 straight yes sir that you will mean what we are told that story -- -- You're a local guy yet international pro -- national. True but he wouldn't say it quote right. It is also tight with Kraft and Parcells he's for ourselves we already are useless. So I mean you know. It was the dumbest competition nationally 1996. And the importance of young it against two different. That's the other thing is a different world we talk about his the globe in 1980s that's Allegra to hereditary. You talk about how was so much better than in May very well bad. We don't understand what's what's what's the 2013 world back in 1985 Boston Globe apparent. There's no way -- those guys would still be there you know Bob Wright make Yahoo!. Peter Gammons might be it MLB. Jack McMullen might be ready for ESPN Boston I mean they had the pick of the litter and there was there was literally. Absolutely zero competition. Now this competition all over the major target that's bad -- good that's fine. But I mean that's all there wants a litmus you grow up right. So we're holding. -- twenty answering my missed will be in the eighties but we you -- -- from the old -- remember that you know. In your youth there were two options when you're younger from Boston there was the globe there was a -- -- -- to some extent that I -- free day in day -- piece of news. There's nothing else there were no message boards there was no WEEI dot com there's no Comcast there was no CSN. And he dot com there was there was nothing right it was just that that and it's a big difference I think. -- -- you mentioned the story don't. I mean it it is just focusing on Boston but. But that's exhibit but that's my point I mean that's that's that's a big is that big factor. It is but I still think that. The institution you know it reporters general. Should be able to get our story without. -- -- naturally worry about -- source. -- a -- mean you know I would say that you know again it's fine if you don't think these local guys breaking stories but. I mean local guys break stories. The -- get delegates -- sometimes nationally but I -- go back and look at each story the local guys do this I would say this to you focus on Boston right let me ask you this. Did you look around and say. What percentage of big stories New York or Seattle. Or Texas or Los Angeles Minneapolis. -- Miami vs national. Yeah I mean I again I was focusing on Boston. What you but my point is you're saying Boston's missing the big stories all the time. Because national guys are scooping -- have to look at the -- other cities. Is it the same things happening because of it is the new to say well this is the way it is now in 2013 don't have to do. Eight. Were questioned but again I would focusing on Butler and George him saying. I don't usually -- -- and people are getting constant scoop now actually right the big stories. You'd international searchers think she did not take a look at Seattle in all the others -- -- right you didn't -- Not particularly generated national issue you're right they'll -- and say did you do yes or no that you I did not OK now when you talk about how a lot of these guys are not. Stature here locally and I think that you know I think the world is definitely changed I'm with you on Adam on the big stack -- Rupert and James. I want that stuff -- the torture saying is the nick of Fargo and DH -- -- -- that your guys right. But when you looked out the rest of the guys in the Red Sox beat that result every day. You're talking to mossy Radford spear you love you mentioned in there Brian MacPherson Tim -- you know those guys province. Are all those guys stature and. Yet some of them are actually. Every night but. I'm talking general across the board of plot to be writers across all sports I would say the majority or not. Let's give you five of the seven rate it is so who -- who aren't in football Bedard is right. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Well I mean gingerbread just hobbies rewrote the story -- the -- that The Herald right. True. Ian read them okay walk fine art so but I mean you bring up a point where you know after the Houston game pro football focus wrote a story. About the number of times what -- pressure Brady. Yeah something like that -- came up next -- -- point was that there should be more of that. In my next day in the globe and herald Bruno you know the thing with it's it's loaded with quotes that this story next day. I agree I don't like those either you know you read them originated globe. Which of these -- young down in the world and teacher wrote some story about. How the ravens. Two showed up and get more experience it was packed with quotes and I agree it was a boring read but pro football focus the next day. Can write -- story you know that source 1516 hours after the game and you're aware after game like that. -- -- very tense there's there's a -- -- Greg the dark just how can watch thinking twice in CME times oppression and get them by 11 o'clock that. True. And again I was you know what brought ample but still exist -- you mean for football. True but again I think -- C convention out in stories. Need a change in general. Widget let me ask you this -- yours mark how would you do so say you're the beat writer for the patriots -- 8 point 8 o'clock game. You have to get historian an hour and fifteen minutes after the game so can be a paper can physically be delivered. You and you know most people our age don't read newspapers anymore but the paper are going to people are parents want the paper in their hand the next morning you get an hour twenty minutes right. You can reinvent the wheel in eighty minutes. Let me I think Bedard does a good job with his post game call and sending your analysis and error mean again it. It's not an -- public for pro football focus but. But I think it initially as does the you know. But it -- Greg Moore called us and you have the person guitar general game's story -- the call us. Article why do you need -- call and an -- Why do you need. A game. Sorry to do -- that you do media but I mean is that is that is that representative of what's wrong with the Boston media is that something cents summit right -- story quotes and you just don't read. He's -- a dark doing all. Well then why even what you know likely to do it. What I don't disagree with you I guess my point is why why -- you caught up and then I mean is it really you bring you know does it affect any newspaper right now that's going on. One -- -- saying like come. You say inference it's -- -- electricity do the game's story is really getting in the way of something else what's getting in the way -- Greg's brought something and if somebody you don't like all these mean people like I. I agree I don't get -- stores but I do think some people like compounds -- what I think. When you're 5560. Years old you know on Twitter you know watching. Post game press coverage as you get the next morning. I guess that appeals to some people you and I guess not. But again. We sure that that appealed to is some of the city's Irish sixty's -- -- -- not on Twitter you know you're right here that it broke. It's a fair question but -- -- yeah I mean it. Our thought of the -- But again you know -- actually could go to route that Bedard again I know. In practice didn't get and they -- I realize their deadline. But I don't think it's a waste to have -- actually write it gamer when she could be doing something else. More interest. -- you talk about how BC's street talk about how. The ease these vehicle -- it seemed to get pretty down the globe right now and in this story and enough you mentioned how. Geyser there are blocking. Jobs you know getting in the way of you know Albert goes national have a career goes national. The other examples of you Rappaport from The Herald -- national. The best ball right from ya I want to Yahoo! Marc spears here -- -- -- with us went to. WEI dot com we ask you this case we -- -- The Herald right. OC in the film network because he's blocked right that the deal. Who is well who would Herrera. Who are locking Ian -- It's not. Yet -- perhaps. Edit this what unclear but. It's like -- Rapoport. Isn't someone who is like Felder or a -- or Roddick who again and kind of use one entity. Tactic aplomb peavy -- pre -- center or something like that's so again if you want more exposure. He's trying to have to go to our national get great. Yep I think that's always the case isn't -- mean. Well -- -- -- listen if what you're saying that I think what you're saying. Allen is the reality is she not yell or any screamer you might not be a much but you know what -- was on sports ninth time he was on here every week. I mean I don't know what what more I mean was he supposed to -- -- Friday show I mean. There at the airport I just. Again I still think that. The more thoughtful guys and and women are just not. You know. I mean that the guy and I lifted right. You know how complete it afflicts very well and on yes -- would not print primetime -- see very often. Not much snow -- -- that's one good example but I mean you know the again are you talking about the glut of old guys blocking their way forward over three year. Was writing the -- -- pictures writer and sending notes columnist for the Boston Globe there was nobody Ternium. What was in front of him. So -- British -- got -- problem and now you've missed him but he's not -- -- There's nobody. But again I mean you you know you wrote. But it and Bert I mean why convert you know serve data don't show arsenic out. We had Albert reassure only what I do what is he gonna do like magic Jackson you host. I mean he was on TV all the time an easy it was on Comcast all the time he was on 95 all the time I mean. You know he's all over the place. His own show would click where what what what proposed Emmy what show our leadership in doing Boston everyday. I don't know it any this year and you know. During the day or not. Because he's a beat writer for the goal PP writer again this is what we talked about how can he beat writer the on the radio every single day. I can that would dabbling compromises job at all. That's true. So which is it. Yeah should our -- had a show in town or should publish. I'd just say he that it. Yes you try wouldn't have it -- -- you know without stopping at B writer but. And you know for a fact that our -- saying yes or no would be entertaining guy for four hours every single -- OK. Now you bring up you know you talk about. How. The writers now on their own way. Jack they're small and you're right members -- -- -- -- is famous as we are. And I think there's some obviously -- some writers and that is true obviously it's not true. But there is this kind of idea now where you see these guys all over the place in you know obviously I'm on TV too. Once a while some amp -- guess -- it but you know. Rich rich Lavin says you know we talks about going on here -- we don't you right here. The primary goal reporters seems no longer to be merely producing great and interesting work right Europe that. You stand by that. Sure what do you said the primary goal Freeport students in some cases he said reports. Every port town their primary goal is to no longer be producing great underestimate. What percentage. I don't know are -- content -- ten guys that are that are not interested in doing. Writers. -- -- It just makes sense to try to go to spots this decides what -- let's. Okay concede that point. And -- damning thing to -- you're saying you're wrong. You're writing about the failure of journalists in this town which is legitimate thing to talk about a failed in her reporting. That right now right. I. -- Shoulder says. There's something we are going on the Sox beat tells you all the good stuff comes nationally from news Gallic -- but I think it's partially TP Gary destroy in whole or did. The organization is gonna make his life a living hell yeah that's true. I think so. You don't -- that's it you think so. I mean it is yeah I think it's different I mean. Again that's why they -- overdo it. How many how many. Red Sox beat writers did you talk to for this record Alex and Abraham he's talking -- else. I -- you Alex at our neighbor Eric -- neck. But. Talked to Brad I did target Bradford. Viewed the younger than that must. I spoke in a little bit but not. After. That aren't there really get a chance. I get the feeling that you had a story in mind. Which I think the person is some things are worth saying. But I feel that you want to feature narrative. You know. I set out to do you know -- assessment of ought to sports media and again you know sort of a conclusion they cannot put that in the report. And again -- -- -- for your -- Do you feel that you think you feel that you YouTube you nailed it do you feel like you got right. I think you know I'd do it I think. You know I was pretty spot on a lot of things. What are your -- You know I don't know I don't. I know I -- -- that the offense it was there was there a was there you certainly longer -- you had mine is very character. The got deleted because kind of drop the students didn't. You know fat again I would like you have. You know included more people would you do a great job. But again you know this is a broad look at media across the board so it would have been hard to. Wax poetic on individual people. You know beyond -- idea. You know touched on though. I just wish you'd done and eight and again -- I've said in the I agree -- -- -- self important whiny petulant title people on the media I can be and I can certainly be one at times I'm guilty of but I wish you had. Looked at Boston OK because Boston is you know part of it. Ending compared it to New York or compared to Chicago. -- said well you know maybe it's not the city of Boston changing maybe just the whole dynamic is changed because. I mean there's a version of sports tonight. In Chicago there -- multiple Sports Radio stations in New York. I'm much the individual city is changed Alan I just think the whole thing exchanged. I mean that -- again it's illegitimate legitimate point but you know my service spoke to be focused on. The local media. Division series grid opens -- you least done that and -- OK you know what it's not did you make it seem like boss and his evil in this whole thing where it's just reality I think. Well yeah. -- out at a I don't necessarily note it's evil course today. But I mean -- think for example a team in New York where it is Mike princess of in his Mike Lupica. In the ears Michael K in this John sterling and there's five million guys fueling this -- perpetual self entitled. I don't think every. Particularly in certain certain and I don't think that the case. Mean Agassi mixing in a senior -- Boston currents. I hate you know I think the busting -- here. Because it would considered so good it I would I would I would tend to think that it attacked. This significant drop -- at the end -- wanted to focus on. So you're -- -- you mean let me just get this -- that's -- -- back to the second here. In -- landscape were being loud and controversial is valued oversee being Smart insightful. The overdoing is harder than ever and yet most of them I guess to beat writers -- reporters continue to approach -- the same way their predecessors in the eighty's and ninety's. Showing up usually in the locker room -- standing around and going throw the same motions with athletes for the most part the fruit of all this labors he -- really boring cliche heavy courts. See you think that's the case for most of the beat writers in the style. -- and we didn't. I can sometimes get. There's no. Giving specific view user who most serial offenders that I guess I would ask. Look he gave it to crop support it is these guys don't often say anything so. The locker and access. And not PP. Work it and it doesn't usually yield anything interest thing. And and you know what when I was working at eagle Tribune I would go in every so often to Boston and I wouldn't get much stuff -- it's just the way it is. And that's sort of without pointing out that. It's pretty difficult to -- -- in you know get -- dangerous thing and the whole system of access. You know -- Don't know you know I don't know -- benefit. Well no I mean listen I can tell you they're games I don't go to now to stay home and I'll get up early next morning write a column in. It would get read more in the fight them there and had anxious sometimes I think that I agree with you on Matt. In that from a columnist perspective I think the world changed from a beat writer I think they have to be there. Just to just to further relationships which again I mean I think you look at the guys here in this Catholic it's not a lot actually it happens. Well you know steeple -- a lot of Celtic stories. Our guys recorder Red Sox stores scored these brakes Red Sox stores. There -- guys around your -- stores and you focus on the big once they've missed on some big ones. I mean you really got over here over the last year to three when you wrote this for years look at the -- of the 22 point five biggest stories in the export. And the national vs local who broke it. Nobody again the one reported out or symbolic I mean these -- huge story that you know again. They didn't -- on not. They -- and every story. I mean they should get every bit I mean again we talked about the beginning -- which closes. I mean you do understand though that the national local guy I mean there is sort of a you know a conflict of interest -- it just I mean it's existed and it's always existed I mean there's no way the local guys gonna go win there. In breaks some of these stories and that's why they're national guys now when they talk on the phone with these guys and more confident because they know. They don't have to go -- locker if you beat her right and you had to go in that locker every day Hoosier job in your livelihood. -- you gonna do. Reported I guess they do twenty years ago example quick to be examples I just can't -- you want to get damaged years ago breaking news story. What -- strict on how we're. Our children -- left to local Barrett. Will McDonnell is a call list he was not a beat writer for the globe music columnist. You -- the patriots beat writer in 95. Well I mean it's a huge difference you're talking about writers. Write. Correct you'll see the difference. I -- keep it different I donate our structure earlier. You know. What kind of you want me. Don't don't don't just curious for Nancy okay well and it's a huge huge huge written it for the -- -- the -- Are all either for. There were. Four years did you try and get a job to go over Harold at that time. I mean I you know I applies for internship -- college and never never. Never happened. What do you think the few what do you think. You -- the end basically they have. Here. The message the launch. Well you before forget. So you you've written a profiles. -- year about how one goes down vote structure about six months ago was that that was something you pitched to the magazine or better yet. Your financial. -- And that's -- me in boots I mean it replica but I would just say that their big thing is you know they have followed the law -- Right now you start of the beginning of the story destroying peace -- right that's fair. I don't show you on the every week right -- -- no -- have watched people on that show to be at the end of the day I mean are they is guilty as everybody else that the people propped up. He you don't think that they can't turn our heads sometimes. Well I mean you know I guess they do them they -- have them on community in the US those guys for for baseball opinion they bring them on ask him for -- several of the same people that missile the stories they bring a lot. True I mean. But again -- Kadaziz convention of the show that there on -- sport -- so I think they kind of have to have. Reporters -- To the last line you want them to read them lasted. -- the globe to stop publishing sports tomorrow how much -- readers feel surely some much less than even a decade ago. That's because Boston fans have gotten increasingly used to following the ups and downs of their. Favorite teams and national outlets rather than local ones the message the largest clear change. Or die the death of utter irrelevance that's the final. Sentence of your story I think -- a lot of truth and I think that you know. Did these newspapers. Are trying I think to some extent but have to try harder. To be flexible understand that it's 2013 and I'll go back to my larger point I guess you and I disagree again. I mean you could be right this Chicago magazine you -- for the Phoenix magazine in the lessons to be the same I mean it's not a Boston issue it is a national. First local issue in the local ones are having trouble. And again you know my job was to localize -- -- -- were coming from absolutely. Do you do you focus -- when you talk about the stuff I mean how much of a factory say you know. Salt blog -- car much like her son's a similar message board which I like you know. You Boston sports media watch message for me sort of that part of it too is I think another appetite for these people they go somewhere a strict and forget the national stuff sometimes too. Even local kind of go to those places I think sometimes more than the papers restores whether it's the best source or not I do you think people go there. Don't know why I agree and I mean like I imagine I -- Yeah exact gun shop we operate you know -- And again. That kind of an alternative to the site you mentioned to. You know to the -- papers or some other local sights -- And it just seems to me in a lot of ways though that this is more of a it just seems like you're down on the globe in a lot of ways you're trying to sort of write around it but it starts to glow. Did they are. Under Eric oh yeah I guess they are I mean they certainly guest -- I think. You know you talk about how they haven't you know they've lost -- houses -- the globe on the look at you know young guys they have -- They have been -- on it and we Benjamin -- young I mean they have a lot of young people. Working there in the Baxter Holmes that just is a lot of young people still the globe and I think you sort of folks like Fargo Shaughnessy. I -- has -- -- -- champions of the younger guy -- scratch under the surface where there's a lot of young people the globe these -- people by the way. In his paper that's the came to keep going national I mean how would you be surprised Greg Bedard. Was working until networker ESPN and six months -- the -- And I green in fact right spoke about -- he's you know about Chris -- You know just in the good wages. Will you retire from. Quote probably not patriot point in -- Not about the -- at some point. Because he's young counted. Actually. The larger point is that the most the Boston media as you say you earth. Self important entitled don't work hard lazy and that's kind of the message right may have to wake up. Yeah. And it's. Without you saying you know there's no part of the media it's you not just focusing on the call misuse of the Shaughnessy types the that people you're looking at the every -- beat writers and export your column out. It's no overarching point I. Again like I said I couldn't go through and mention every single person that I into the decent job is there out there but. Overall the overall climate like -- -- it needs change. Which story from steeple -- -- jump w.s being particularly raising. Well I didn't say he specifically he just said you mean by -- says so yeah but vital are expected at -- Edit okay I think some people that's not is rob Bradford. Now as to an -- Nobody -- eats -- somebody's gotta be here at some point I mean who -- but it. You know one night I certainly point out. I think and that's not everybody in -- two guys. These -- most of meat plant two guys at 3000 guys three point 02 guys. What else do no right to meet say all the names list all the names. -- -- I can't just go back injury or just work. Double the Bruins writers with the Bruins beat writer for the -- Yeah blue -- he -- -- over the Harold Paris is he lazy. It's eight and -- pretty much of them but yes I don't know yeah. You see Everett Jeff how ever the Bruins got them OPEC you mean so I mean I guess the -- look at a magic Callahan. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Every other newspaper in America doesn't judge agrees time for change. You know these guys a break a lot of stories they work hard to block now which the didn't do 1520 years ago in the in the salad easier talking about they -- They chat I think they you know there on the meter in the media more -- that worked real hard and the guys used to do -- two or three stories in the did not. You think the guys to date with all the other stuff going on or lazy in the -- 25 years ago we're not -- -- right. I don't know. You don't know. And I shoot the guys. Twenty years ago or lazy I'm right we're not lazy rather. We talk about it in the book you talk about that that the don't have the Camelot days he talked blow for -- -- certainly. Or not. -- rather not. Are -- fully appreciate your time is seat in the February. 2013 addition of Boston magazine Alan Siegel. The fellowship miserable. This stuff and I agree with them in we've kind of gone back and forth is some stuff. I agree with I would encourage illegal -- didn't make up your own mind how we appreciate the time I thought.

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