Wednesday, May 16, 2007

ESPN.com News Services: News Content on The Web From The Web

As I was winnowing through the stories on ESPN.com I noticed a story about Ken Griffey interacting with a fan in the stands during a ballgame. The fan had been yelling things at Griffey the entire game, so Griffey came out of the dugout in the sixth inning and gave him an XXL athletic supporter. Good way to diffuse a heckling situation.

What really caught my eye about this story was that 217 of the 477 words (45%) were either quoting the fan’s MySpace page or parts of his “email” interview. This made me want to know who wrote the article. His name is “ESPN.com news services.” What are ESPN.com news services? Does anyone know? I looked online and couldn’t find anything.

Clearly this is more blog entry vs. a sports article. Why not promote it like that? Put the blogger’s name on it and add all the familiar blogging tools around it. Maybe they could even innovate something new while they are at it.

Are we really at the point where reputable news services can create stories based on MySpace pages and email interviews? What is an email interview anyway? #13 of Steve Portigal’s Seventeen ways to not suck at research is: Phil McKinney says, “You’re probably not listening.” How do you listen in an email interview? I guess there weren’t many follow-up questions.

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