Posts Tagged ‘2007 NHL Entry Draft’

August 27th, 2010

The Continuing Saga of Bloggers and Press Credentials

It’s was a very long day for me for too many reasons to count, so it’s only been a couple of hours since I’ve had the opportunity to read a pair of posts by Greg Wyshynski over at Puck Daddy (click here and here) concerning the resistance a number of NHL teams are putting up over credentialling bloggers to cover NHL games.

It’s hard not to feel a little fatigued.  It’s been nearly four years since I published these guidelines with the help of the Washington Capitals to help NHL teams figure out  which independent media practitioners they ought to be granting access to on a regular basis. 

It’s tough not to be a little bewildered too, as the NHL has been very good to me in this regard.  It credentialed me on two separate ocassions: first at the 2007 NHL Entry Draft in Columbus and then again for the 2009 NHL Winter Classic in Chicago.  Even though I was representing FanHouse at both of those events, my credential was issued as if I was representing Off Wing Opinion.

If there’s one emotion I’m not feeling at all, it’s anger.  Even today, in 2010, not everyone reads blogs and not everyone fully understands the value of engaging with independent online media.  And in any case, getting angry won’t help anybody, but constructive criticism just might. 

Trust me on this.  Because before I got to my final cut on the media credential guidelines, somebody over at SportsJournalists.com posted my first draft in a discussion string over there.  While it’s safe to say that most of the peanut gallery there was less than friendly, you better believe I paid attention to what they had to say.  In the end, it helped me improve the final draft in many important ways.  I’m sure the folks at the NHL, many of whom monitor online chatter very closely, will take a look at what the online community has to say and take it into account when devising their own policy.

I do have a message for independent bloggers who have been watching this episode with growing alarm.  Your credibility is based on the trust you build with your readers everyday, not whether or not you have a laminated plastic badge hanging around your neck.  If you follow your passion and develop an audience, there will come a time when the powers that be have little choice but to let you inside the gate, if that’s what you really want.

Time, as they say, and for many of my blogging colleagues in their 20s this is especially the case, is on your side.