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Thread: Changing The Image Of Men's Figure Skating

  1. #91
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    ^ Fans of the CoP claim that the new judging system has improved the sport. The president of the Canadian federation (in his email posted on FSU) mentions that now we are seeing level four spins and step sequences, whereas the great skaters of the past only did level ones.

    Ottavio Cinquanta was quoted recently as saying," the new judging system has improved the product. If the public doesn't like the new product, what can we do? We (the ISU) are not a marketing organization."

  2. #92
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    I don't see any more OR less artistry in men's skating (or ladies for that matter)... the only disipline that is still struggling to find a happy medium, IMHO, is pairs.

  3. #93
    Rink Rat i love to skate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Particle Man View Post
    Except this makes no sense, as kyla clearly explained. CoP has already ramped up the technical elements and diminished the artistic side -- and what is the result? Lost viewership, falling attendance. Talk about doing the wrong thing. And costumes? If they're all in black boring costumes or uniforms, how will that raise attendance? It won't. Hockey and beer monkeys aren't going to watch figure skating. They need to get real, fast.
    I don't think COP can be solely blamed for the decrease in viewership. Skating was bound to take a decline after the over saturation the public received in the late 1990's. I think the biggest factor that lead to people turning away from figure skating was the judging during SLC. I know many people stopped watching the sport because of this as they got tired of all the judging scandals and controversies. It seemed to many that taking skating seriously wasn't possible anymore due to the high profile incidents involving judges -the foot taping incident at Worlds among them. A change was inevitable and necessary.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Ottavio Cinquanta was quoted recently as saying," the new judging system has improved the product. If the public doesn't like the new product, what can we do? We (the ISU) are not a marketing organization."
    Oh, speedy. Pass that buck baby, pass it hard.

  5. #95
    Custom Title NatachaHatawa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Ottavio Cinquanta was quoted recently as saying," the new judging system has improved the product. If the public doesn't like the new product, what can we do? We (the ISU) are not a marketing organization."
    That's funny, because I'm under the impression that the whole CoP is a marketing stunt, just to make the whole world believe that figure skating is clear of controversial judging, which it isn't (just look at how many of us tend to disagree with the judges!).

    I personnaly belive that the CoP is the problem. As Elvis said, under the old system skating was a show, there was real suspense, skaters used to fight like mad on the ice, now competitions are just recitals. More over, the way artistry is graded doesn't encourage skaters to push their talent to the limit.

  6. #96
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    that Elvis even dares to complain about a skating system because it's too much like a recital is a joke in and of itself. but that's JMHO.

    as for the decline... ratings were going down well before CoP... pro fans were blaming MK for staying in too long and making some pretty negative comments about pro skating (basically saying it wasn't for her, just hasbeens IIRC... paraphrasing, certainly). Then it was the pairs scandal in SLC... whether you call it a scandal or not. The world media tore that one apart... took sides... blah blah blah... then the CoP - which I think the real reason it doesn't fare well is not so much that it doesn't work but because most of the average joes don't understand it and don't care to learn it so they just turn it off. Surprisingly even with all the math I get it a whole lot more now than I did with stupid ordinals. Other than the fact that I understood that it was a sytem of favorites... and waiting your turn... and having the right coach... and the right country... certainly don't miss that crap.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tonichelle View Post
    then the CoP - which I think the real reason it doesn't fare well is not so much that it doesn't work but because most of the average joes don't understand it and don't care to learn it so they just turn it off.
    I dabble with Fermat's Last Theorem and models of the universe in my spare time, and even I don't like CoP. I think you expect too much of average people. Why should everyone have to be a mathematician to understand what is happening -- that's ridiculous. You and speedy and all the CoP supporters can whine all you want and it won't change a thing. People don't like your system, they don't understand it, and it's killing the sport.

  8. #98
    Off the ice Buttercup's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyla2 View Post
    Another issue is that there is no female figure skater people are connecting to, including Yu Na Kim. The loss of Michelle Kwan had an enormous impact on the sport. It devastated it. She connected with the public in a way that is unprecedented, and I am including Peggy Fleming and Sonia Henie in that statement. The current Asian skaters don't have the emotional connection to the American public. They are more within themselves, unlike Michelle who was out there in full force with her incredibly appealing personality.
    I think there's a tendency to write "skating is dying" when a more accurate statement would be what you just wrote: "Americans don't have much interest in the current ladies skaters". I can tell you that for me (heresy alert!) Michelle Kwan never had the wow factor that so many people see in her. She was a very good and graceful skater, but there were others I enjoyed more. Without comparing them to MK, I feel both Yu-Na and Mao have plenty of personality and know how to connect with the audience. But I agree that so long as the general public in the US doesn't have a pretty and successful ice princess to get behind, skating will be in trouble there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Particle Man View Post
    I dabble with Fermat's Last Theorem and models of the universe in my spare time, and even I don't like CoP. I think you expect too much of average people. Why should everyone have to be a mathematician to understand what is happening -- that's ridiculous.
    Math and I went our separate ways when they took away the numbers and gave me letters to work with instead . But one doesn't need to be a mathematician to understand the IJS; all you need is to get basic arithmetic. Like Toni, I have a much easier time with this system than with ordinals, which could get very confusing, and rewarded established favorites to a greater extent than IJS. It' easier now to be judged on the merits, at least when it comes to TES.

    Another thing that's needed is for whoever is broadcasting and the journalists covering the sport to actually address what's going on rather than whine endlessly about the eeeevil scoring system and the eeeevil judges. If there's something that doesn't make sense, like, say, Denis Ten's marks at the Worlds SP, by all means - say so on the air. But the repetitive complaints about how hard it is to understand the system aren't doing anyone any good. I think anyone watching Eurosport knows what's happening and what the scores mean. For that matter, anyone watchign the skaters' reactions can tell what the scores mean.

    That having been said, there are problems with the current system that do need to be sorted out. Most importantly, I feel it's not rewarding risk-taking, innovation and creativity properly; it's rewarding checklist skating, and I agree - that's dull. The skaters know exactly what they need to do to get high levels (e.g. all the ice dancers doing the same lift because it's not that hard but gets a high level). So the artistic integrity of the programs is often compromised, because what you need for a level 4 isn't always what the program needs to be coherent, appealing and meaningful.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Buttercup View Post
    Another thing that's needed is for whoever is broadcasting and the journalists covering the sport to actually address what's going on rather than whine endlessly about the eeeevil scoring system and the eeeevil judges...

    ...That having been said, there are problems with the current system that do need to be sorted out. Most importantly, I feel it's not rewarding risk-taking, innovation and creativity properly; it's rewarding checklist skating, and I agree - that's dull. The skaters know exactly what they need to do to get high levels (e.g. all the ice dancers doing the same lift because it's not that hard but gets a high level). So the artistic integrity of the programs is often compromised, because what you need for a level 4 isn't always what the program needs to be coherent, appealing and meaningful.
    You agree there are problems, so where should those problems be addressed? Oh, during the broadcast, since 95% of the viewers will only pay attention to it during the broadcast.

    6 years? so far of CoP, and we still have "checklist skating." Why? Because that's what CoP is, inherently. CoP is the pig and you are debating colors of lipstick...

  10. #100
    Off the ice Buttercup's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Particle Man View Post
    You agree there are problems, so where should those problems be addressed? Oh, during the broadcast, since 95% of the viewers will only pay attention to it during the broadcast.

    6 years? so far of CoP, and we still have "checklist skating." Why? Because that's what CoP is, inherently. CoP is the pig and you are debating colors of lipstick...
    The lipstick/pig thing is lame. That's one expression that really needs to go away.

    Now, you took two separate points in my post and misrepresented my argument. So let's clarify: the broadcasters should explain what going on for the benefit of the audience. For instance, "look how Patrick is using his upper body in that step sequence, that should help him get the level up". Or mention that Miki may have URed a jump, so it'll get marked as a bad double (if I had a dollar for every time I heard the "bad double" bit on Eurosport, I could buy lots of lipstick). It's really not that hard to do; Chris Howarth does a great job over on Eurosport (and he doesn't chatter endlessly, another plus), and I know from Medusa that the German ES commentators are really good at spotting URs.

    The ISU needs to look at the IJS, which I've heard they may do after Olys and see, based on the six full seasons it will have been used at that point, what's working and what isn't, and make changes accordingly. For instance - allow more ways to get high levels on step sequences. I believe the system needs work, but it doesn't need to be completely discarded. And it won't be, so all this yearning for 6.0 is pointless.

  11. #101
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    Personally, I think people romanticize 6.0 too much. I suppose we remember all the spectacular, beautiful programs that skaters like Janet Lynn and Michelle Kwan did under 6.0 but people also forget those stroke-jump-stroke-jump programs that were as common and dull as the 'checklist'-type programs today. IMO, it all depends on the skater's ability and the choreographer. It's equally possible to construct a beautiful, artistic program under CoP too--haven't skaters like Stephane Lambiel showed us that?

    And as for scoring, 6.0 can just be as confusing as CoP. Sure, a 6.0 obviously means the program was excellent, and everyone can tell that a program that scored a 5.8, 5.9 was better than one that scored 5.4, 5.2. But isn't it equally easy to tell that a program that scored a 76.03 is better than one that scored 69.24?

    That being said, CoP definitely has its flaws. But so did 6.0.

  12. #102
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    When I was a kid, I kind of accepted the 6.0 system, although I found it weird that everyone had the same score. I guess the ordinals really didn't stick with me. With the CoP, I see why someone won in terms of scoring.

    Of course how someone arrived at that score is a whole different matter. If commentators explained how Skater A got those levels, I think I would understand a whole lot more, but of course not everyone does that.

    And Joe, yes my ballet school followed the Russian style because we did classical ballet. Balanchine, in his leotard/tights programs, was doing neo-classical. Not all had a character to imbibe. My ballet company does do neo-classical, but understood that classical is its forte so it frequently did programs in that vein.

    Like it or not, many figure skaters use music fit for a character, and costumes go a long way.

  13. #103
    Ice Dancing and Johnny Fan MissIzzy's Avatar
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    I think part of the resistance to CoP is that people are naturally resistant to change, and to trying to understand new things. That, of course, is a thorny problem the ISU doesn't seem willing to deal with. I'm with those people who find CoP easier to understand than 6.0, but of course I only started watching in 2006.
    If we did go back to the 6.0 system, I wonder how many Japanese and Korean fans would start complaining that the new/old system was incomprehensible(and you'd never convince the Mao/Yu-Na fans that the judging wasn't rigged whenever their favorites lost!).

  14. #104
    Custom Title antmanb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Did you get to wear those cool periwigs, too?
    No i'm a (and was training to be a ) solicitor not a barrister (a distinction i'm not sure they have anywhere else in the world!) so we lowly solicitors have limited rights of audience in court so never get to the big wigs literally! I'm not a litigator anyway so i rarely have anything to do with courts!

    Ant

  15. #105
    Custom Title antmanb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Medusa View Post
    You mean, like with the Mexicans right now? "Not all Mexicans have swine flu. So if you meet a Mexican, it's possible that he hasn't the swine flu and is not contagious" - "Not all male skaters are gay. So if you meet a male skater, it's possible that he isn't gay and therefore won't spread this condition"


    Thank you Medusa, i was trying to think of an appropriate reply but yours was the best! Heaven help someone catch gay from watching skating on tv

    Ant

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