NCAA heading down the great path to censorshipBy
Pardon me while I rant about something barely related to the Yankees for a few minutes…
On the same day that the friend-of-free-media and Russian President Vladimir Putin won Time Man of the Year honors, the NCAA released their new Live Blogging Policy. This is such a ridiculous step toward censorship. It’s rather shocking.
As The Big Lead noted, the NCAA will somehow try to enforce rather stringent live blogging rules. For football games, reporters are graciously allowed three updates per quarter and one at halftime; for basketball, it’s five times per half, once at halftime and twice per OT period; and for baseball, it’s just once an inning. The full draconian rules are available at the NCAA’s site as a PDF. This is a sad day for bloggers everywhere.
Ostensibly, the NCAA is worried about blogs somehow replacing live broadcasts of the game. If some blogger is allowed to update their live blog as often as they want, what’s stopping them from giving a text version of the play-by-play?
In reality, that’s a pretty weak argument. No one I know is going to sit a computer refreshing a blog while reading the play-by-play for the BCS Championship game. And if I were the NCAA, I’d be much more concerned with those online who are actively engaging in copyright infringing retransmissions of NCAA telecasts.
Blogs serve a journalistic purpose and provide an outlet for fans to share their common interest. Alienating sports sites and attempting to limit their post frequency during games is not only a form of censorship, but it’s bad business practice as well.