June 9, 2023


stressful sport

the media’s rampant cesspool of bullying and vilification that threatens to become a tsunami

5 min read

The newest Jordan De Goey saga has thrown up an interesting juxtaposition.

There are those who believe that De Goey has messed up, and that the media has been just in exposing and condemning him.

And there are all those who assert that De Goey has fully commited no wrongdoing, and that the media have been exploitative and opportunistic.

De Goey himself wrote a assertion that alluded to demo by media and the harm that it could do a player’s psychological properly-becoming if they did not have the kind of guidance community that he did.

Nevertheless, days later, the Collingwood Soccer Club declared that De Goey would be getting ‘personal leave’, demonstrating support can only armour you so a lot.

It really highlights an appealing query that hasn’t been asked: what is the media’s duty to the recreation, to the particular person, and to the community?

Kane Cornes recently proved that persecuting Collingwood’s Jack Ginnivan for four rounds was no aberration when he right away specific De Goey, raving about his rap sheet, and arguing with his fellow panellists on the Sunday Footy Demonstrate about his integrity and the Magpies’ obligation to hold him in check out.

It’s significant to note that there have been panellists who disagreed with Cornes, so his perspective was not component of a consensus.

>> Study: Media bullying of Jordan De Goey has been a disgusting witch-hunt

Mark Robinson experienced the temerity to counsel De Goey may possibly be ‘the dumbest player of his generation’ in the Herald Solar. Which is solid language. Whilst footballers are always heading to be open up to critique of their skill and their effectiveness, this speaks immediately to De Goey and devolves to a own level.

Robinson, by natural means, attempts to couch it in that disarming rambling everyman vernacular for which he’s renowned.

It wasn’t that prolonged ago that Robinson backed the Western Bulldogs’ Bailey Smith for his courage and honesty just after his indiscretion for taking an illicit substance. It’s an interesting oppositional watch – assist on 1 hand, and vilification on the other.

In which do you tumble? Allow the choose, jury, and executioner in Robinson make a decision. I wish we could all be as virtuous as him.

Jon Ralph is but an additional who’s chased Twitter infamy by whacking De Goey – Ralph’s an exemplar, in my watch, of locating and talking to the most affordable common denominator as a usually means of captivating to the mob.

On the flip side, Hawthorn legends Leigh Matthews and Luke Hodge had been both of those bemused at the uproar. It is interesting to note the thoughts of two people who have no vested fascination in driving general public consumption to their media.

This posse mentality amounts to hysteria that is frequently established on melodrama, nonetheless are we really that stunned? It’s not new to the sector and has, in point, been likely on for many years now – arguably at any time since we elevated the media’s standing and thrust them into the limelight on numerous soapboxes, instead than consigning them to continue being anonymously at the rear of some keyboard.

Brody Mihocek and Jordan De Goey of the Magpies celebrate a goal

(Image by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Photographs)

When Nathan Buckley was coach of Collingwood, he clashed with Footy Classified’s Craig Hutchinson about players currently being door-stopped. Go even more back, and Dean Laidley jumped as then-coach of a struggling North Melbourne simply because he required to conquer a hasty retreat just before the AFL media experienced stirred a frenzy about his coaching foreseeable future – you know, the kind of behaviour that in the long run harangued then-Carlton mentor David Teague out of a occupation.

There are plenty of illustrations of journalistic bloodlust that showcase media hounding gamers and coaches, inciting community animosity, and dictating a narrative that has significantly less basis in truth, and more in agenda.

If this cadre of journalists were operating in Hollywood with superstars, we’d label them ‘paparazzi’. Or ‘tabloid’. But, somehow, in the market of the AFL, most of them have pulpits from which they wax evangelical as purveyors of fact and denouncers of the unworthy.

The reality is footballing journalism has become the weaponisation of each variety of airwave to crank out ratings, simply because which is all it is about for so quite a few these days.

It’s not about details, integrity, and dependable reporting. It’s about the clicks.

Collingwood has punished Jordan De Goey. Fans will argue over the deserves of the penalties, but in the long run the 26-year previous has been held accountable. Gamers mess up, and they answer to their club. De Goey – whether you agree with the severity of his penalty or not – has now performed that.

But does the AFL care that there is a rampant cesspool of journalism threatening to become a tsunami? Who holds these individuals accountable? It’s certainly not their companies, since they’re benefiting from the wipeouts.

Some might argue that with broadcast legal rights, the media are an integral cog in the terrific AFL device. They are not. Consider this hypothetical: get rid of the recreation, and wherever do these people today go? They grow to be redundant. But if, on the other hand, you removed them, what would materialize to the video game?

Nothing at all. It’d nevertheless exist, and all we’d be remaining with are those people journalists who decry the muckraking and report purely on the activity.

The AFL is typically challenged with issues to ameliorate – principles, declining attendances, battling golf equipment, the record goes on. But this has turn out to be a pretty genuine factor: irresponsible reporting that elevates into the strata of bullying and vilification. What does it acquire for the powers-that-be to recognise and tackle the problem?

Whichever you assume of De Goey, he did have a level in his statement: it is just a issue of time prior to the media’s unrelenting and selective castigation and blatant sensationalising torments a player – or mentor – to an finish none of us want to see.

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