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ESPN and Facebook: How Does That Shovel Full of Grave Dirt Feel?

If anyone has ever seen the show Corner Gas, they will know that the residents of Dog River  all spit, no matter where they are or what they are doing, when the rival town of Woolerton (ptuey) is mentioned.

If anyone has any grown up friends who don't have a hundred thousand selfies posted on the internet and could care less what color the cornflake bowl is, they might recognize that response as being close to the one they get when they say the word Facebook (ptuey).

Which makes ESPN's new policy of using Facebook (ptuey) as the conduit for site comments particularly perplexing. I mean ... are they trying to piss all the grown up people off? 

I bet the servers at ESPN are all standing around on their cooling platforms exchanging recipes and talking about what they had for breakfast. I bet they're plotting a way to murder Facebook (ptuey) in its sleep. I bet they're lonely and a little sad and wondering where all those nice people who used to keep them busy went.

According to ESPN's Kevin Seifert, those servers are going to have to get used to being lonely. The new policy of requiring a Facebook (ptuey) account to post comments is here to stay. I sense intractability in them words: "... I can tell you ... that this will be the policy moving forward, one that is not dissimilar to many other media and social web sites."

Yeah, because "he did it first" and "everyone else does it" have long been acceptable reasons to do something stupid. Right? You've been talking to one of my kids, haven't you? One of the dumb ones, I mean.

ESPN, you silly, incomprehensible, deaf and blind bastards.

I know it's a knee jerk, but it's the last ESPN straw for me. I am tired of their crappy hockey coverage (speakina, check out the Shark's hilarious twitter dig  at ESPN) and their belief that what LeBron had for a midnight snack is more important than pretty much anything hockey related. I deleted them from my bookmarks and will cancel my Insider account and subscription. They will get NOTHING more from me. This is war, baby. 

I can find the sports news on TSN, anyway. And they LIKE hockey there.

And I know my measly little acccount is a drop in the bucket. But I'm sticking to the theory that just because other people do things that I think are stupid, I should too is asinine. All social change happened because one person chose to say "no". I'm looking at you, Rosa Parks.

This isn't big like racial equality, to be sure, but it's the biggest thing on my mind at this exact moment.

Why is this a bother, you ask ...

Well, let me tell you. I am certainly in the mood to tell you. I want to tell you. Hell, I NEED to tell you.

Web transparency is over rated. I like being able to go to comment boards, sign on as Catherine, a nice innocuous name shared by millions of people, which may or may not be my real name, and talk to other people. I do not want you to know what my last name is, where I live, who I went to school with or the names and ages of my children. I do not want to be your friend or read your feed. I do not care if you are afraid of spiders and like grape kool aid best of all. I do not care.

It's not that I am doing anything that I am ashamed of and I have never once trolled in my life. I don't make racist or other inappropriate comments. I don't have anything to hide, per se. But I like the dividers. The separations.

I work in a field that is public. My name is known to some people. My name is attached to my work. In the same way that I don't show my family and co-workers, or in my case, the people who are exposed to my work product, pictures of myself in bathing suits and exchange "I was so drunk one night" stories with them, I am also not particularly interested in them knowing how many comments I make on the Pens boards on game nights or what my opinions on Gary Bettman might be.

It's the rough equivalent of taking your grandma to the sports bar with you. She doesn't need to see that - even if it is only you being a rabid fan with BIG opinions and too much time on your hands.

And I am old enough to believe that I should not have to create a new email address, a fake Facebook (ptuey) account and essentially, a new persona, in order to make comments on a website. In fact, I do not believe that I should be required to make an account on any other site and subject myself to their dubious security and marketing practices in order to comment on whether I think the new Dustin Brown contract is a good or bad one. 

I like the separations I am able to have on the internet. I like that I can have a blog such as this one and don't have to explain anything to anyone. It's not like I am posting porn and work in a church choir, but without being specific, I work in a related field and my official, professional opinions on matters might not be expressed in the same manner as they are in this place of relative anonymity. In some cases, I am not supposed to even have an opinion.

But that's academic, isn't it? The real point is why should anyone have to use a site which is designed to display personal information in order to comment on a site which needs none?

On principal, I refuse to go with the mewing masses. I refuse to join a service which I have steadfastly resisted in order to use one which I find less than adequate. Perhaps if they were indispensable to me, so well organized and presented that I could not do without them ... but, no, this is ESPN.

And they suck.

Yes, this was one of those rants I warned you about.

Come on ... what do YOU think about it?

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