Whitecaps Face A Mountain To Climb In Terms Of Widespread Media Recognition

When it comes to the Whitecaps and the Vancouver media, I think it’s fairly safe to say that we shouldn’t expect to see any major changes in the coverage we’re getting any time soon – especially in the printed medium.

With pages being devoted to any Canucks player who happens to get a splinter in his finger, the Caps face a hard task to change the way that local journalists view the team and the sport, even when MLS comes around next year.

With the Canucks dominating the back pages most of the year round and the BC Lions taking most of the summer coverage, there is little room for much else. Pages donated to boring stats and boxscores (surely that’s what the internet is made for) and surprisingly, to me at least as a non Canadian, the masses of print given over to the local university teams are baffling and of no interest to me and I say that as a huge sports fan.

I want to read actual stories that interest me, as do so many others. You know, real journalism. I know football and football fans are in a minority in the city, but soon the Caps will be attracting more fans to games than the Canucks. No wonder the daily printed pay papers are dying a slow death the world over, we’ve forgotten what their purpose should be.

If anyone wants to know the kind of crap we as football fans in Vancouver have to put up with, check out Wednesday’s “Back of the Net” blog by the Province’s Marc Weber.

This piece of lazy journalism really surprised me, as Weber is one of the main friends of football in the city and a journalist I usually enjoy reading. His blog post is based on THIS original article from the Seattle PI website. It’s an article which at no time mentions the hooligan word.

Why would that be? Well perhaps that’s because it was a one off incident and one that we don’t know the whole story to. This can be backed up by the fact that last year a staggering 629,135 paying punters went to Qwest Field to watch the Sounders and there was not one arrest. Not one (see this Article on Prost Amerika for more details). That’s an amazing statistic and one which the football loathing journos will of course ignore if they can get a chance to paint all football fans as thugs.

Our Southsiders President’s comment on Weber’s blog is spot on. The Vancouver media would like nothing more than to crucify the Caps, the fans and football. I mean, how dare a team challenge the Canucks’ dominance in hockeytown? Any small, isolated incident of violence or thuggery linked to football will be blown out of all proportions. It’s pathetic, it really is.

It’s something we all know and it’s something that we as a fans group have no real control over when there’s 20,000+ people coming to games next year. There’s going to be some arseholes. Look at some of the drunken dicks that get thrown out of every single Lions game I’ve ever attended (and I’m a season ticket holder with them so it’s not just the odd game). I don’t read reports of that after every home game.

So stories like this one don’t really surprise me, just annoy me. What I’m most surprised by though is that it’s come from the pen of a journalist like Marc Weber. It’s really disappointing to see him stoop to such journalistic standards. I guess we should start getting used to it.

Authored by: Michael McColl

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