Monday, February 8, 2010

Shut Up David Feherty


A couple of days again, David Feherty published his monthly column on Golf.com, a thing that I have never got into because it reads too much like Rick Reilly. (Example? "That being said, I've been trying to think of an equivalent example of the grim, ghastly, gleeful, and positively gloat-ridden coverage of a prominent public figure's fall from grace." Hey look everyone, I know what alliteration is!!)

Feherty's story was about Tiger and the media, and how, I'm sure this will surprise you, the bloggers and media hounds are jerks and have nothing better to do and sit in basements and eat meatloat their mothers make them! How could we ever report on such a story as Tiger, the most popular athlete in the world, cheating on his wife and completely changing the public perception of him 180 degrees?! We are such dogs.

Here, let us dive in.

By comparison, Bill Clinton got off with a slap on the trouser-trout, and he was in charge of the free world! I guarantee you, the only thing Tiger Woods is in charge of right now is a border collie named Taz.

This argument is dead because when the Clinton news hit, the Internet was still a baby. Blogs weren't mainstream, everyone didn't have a voice, and we all checked CNN and ESPN for our news. Broken argument -- let us continue ...

Now, I'm not a total nimrod, and I know there won't be many opportunities like this for these bottom-feeders to gorge themselves on, so I understand the initial frenzy, but come on, people, can we move on a little bit? Would it be this bad if they found out the Pope had been having his crosier cleaned by Barbara Walters? I think not.

First, well done with the "bottom-feeders" dig. Nothing like slandering people that get paid to report on athletes and what is going on, when the most popular athlete in the world does something completely against his personality (or so we thought).

Second, I have absolutely no idea why Feherty insisted on picking the Pope and Barbara Walters as his deviously sexual act, but I can tell you that I'm not hungry for lunch anymore. Thanks, bro.

Also, it is this point where Feherty goes on some rant about psychology, and Nietzsche and absolute right and wrongs. Honestly, it seemed more of an attempt at patting himself on the back for his extensive knowledge on the mind than any real revelation about Tiger or the media. Basically, Feherty is condemning people about the Tiger coverage and how we can't let anything go and how, who are we to say he isn't perfect when we too aren't perfect!

Feherty ends with this line.

But the point is, Zeus was the king. Flawed he may have been, but he came through unscathed. I hope our king does too, because there is nothing mythic about him. He too is flawed, but thankfully for golf, he is real.

This is the stuff that kills me about these "holier than thou" writers. They pick on blogs and publishers like myself for calling Tiger out for shit he shouldn't have done. Listen, obviously we were disappointed in Tiger, mainly because we all felt something a little closer with him, like he was some being greater than us, and in a way, he was. That doesn't change that fact that almost everyone is ready for him to return, and dominate, and remind us that no matter where he sticks his pecker, his golf game is that of legends.

Tiger fucked up. I agree on that, you agree on that and I'm sure Feherty, once he dismounts from the very high horse he is on, would agree on that. That isn't to say we as a media were wrong to report on it. We were doing our job, just like Feherty was doing his by not speaking on it. I'm not sitting here bashing David for avoiding the subject. I'm bashing him because, like a lot of old journalists too busy reading their newspapers and not busy enough scouring the Internet, he forgot that things change. This is our world, this is our medium and this is what happens.

If Feherty can't grasp that, then I guess he needs to spend more time hanging with Barbara and the Pope, and less time trying to join my world. It obviously scares him.

5 comments:

Roody said...

It's a double-edged sword. On one hand, you have the pro athlete who is only human, and has a right to some semblage of privacy. On the other hand, it's the public that this pro athlete feeds off of for his or her success. The pro athlete cannot survive without an adoring public that wants to know every intimate detail of their lives like they are our best friend. It's the public that buys the tickets, watches the ads with the athlete in it, and thus pays their salaries.

Then you have the media. They need to turn a buck for a product that they produce. The way to turn that buck is by drawing in more visitors to their outlet so they can sell more ads. Let's face it, it's in our human nature to be drawn to the "juicy" story over the boring laissez-faire everyday events. So when given the choice to highlight the juicy story or the boring story, it's obvious what the answer will be.

Then you have Feherty. One who claims to be a "higher class" of media than you "lowly bloggers". One who feels infringed upon because more people are going to blog sites for their news than to him for it. So he fires a warning shot to all you lowly bloggers out there. A "get off my lawn!", if you will.

What Feherty and his ilk don't get is if they want the people to come back to their sites for the news, then they need to put out a better product. Having a temper tantrum about it won't do much to sway readers/viewers.

linkslifegolf said...

The problem with Feherty is that he considers himself a friend of Tiger. He won't call out his buddy and his meal ticket. His knowledge of psychology came from his own rehab. I like Feherty most of the time, but he refuses to call out his buddy. He is not a journalist in this case...he is just a friend. Who's the pro now David?

Vince Spence said...

Crosier = http://tiny.cc/Crosier

One reason I like Feherty is he knows he is a knucklehead, we know he is a knucklehead and he knows that we know.

Nary a single word he says or writes can be taken seriously. He is a less than mediocre golfer with a decent sense of humor and has pictures of CBS executives partying with barn yard animals.

courtgolf said...

You make an excellent point about the relative newness of the interweb...Al Gore hadn't gotten it perfected...slowed down by his VP duties...something to do with hiring and firing interns or some such thing.

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