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Thread: Hersh: Nagasu not on par with Flatt? HUH?

  1. #91
    Banned janetfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wallylutz View Post
    CoP is more than just math, it doesn't help if the said person doesn't actually understand and is able, for instance, to catch UR when watching.

    Anyone who claims CoP is responsible for the decline of this sport - please explain to me why has it been so difficult to get an Olympic ticket to any of the figure skating events, even the Compulsory Dance?

    Have any of you even bothered to try to get the Ladies SP and FS tickets in Vancouver? You know, the Ladies FS tickets in Vancouver - the lower level seats were going for $2,500~$3,000 a piece on the official secondary market. Seems to me, if this sport was in decline as many of you lamented, then it should have been very easy to get those tickets, no? Most other sports, except the finals in Ice hockey, in Vancouver were very easy to get tickets and they were mostly like $50, $80 a piece and you get good seat. In Figure Skating, Compulsory Dance lower level seats are $425 - Face Value and usually sold for above face value.

    Finally, ISU World Team Trophy is again going to take place in April 2011 in Yokohama, Japan. The sponsors and ISU are going to award over $1 million in cash to the qualified skaters and their teams. I repeat, $1 million dollars. What other amateur sports award this kind of prize money for a semi-show / semi-competition event?

    If the sport is in a serious decline as many have claimed, then there are certainly other things going on that show otherwise.
    Interesting points Wally.
    Do you have any insight into why ISU can't get a decent TV contract to televise Worlds in the USA?

    I remember the 20 million + contract ISU had only a few years ago for broadcasts in the USA.
    Last season ISU gave Worlds to NBC - what was it for $0.00?
    That is one heck of a change from only a few years ago.
    This year, the ISU Figure skating World Championships were not shown on network TV. I don't have the numbers - but the deal with Universal had to be a pittance compared to the ESPN/ABC deal that was not renewed.

    I am sure seats for events in Torino were not cheap either - but 2, 500. is not the same as 20 million.

    At the moment there is no US TV network with a bid to cover the 2014 Olympic games. I am sure someone will broadcast it and win with a much lower bid than in the past. Much, much lower.
    Is part of that based on the fact that figure skating, once the jewel of Olympic broadcasts in the USA has seemingly lost much of it's lustre?

    NBC got raked over the coals and skating this Olympic year did not have anywhere near the ratings from previous Olympics.

    I am not so sure if that is a sign of such good health. Not when looking at the big picture , mass market, or whatever we want to call it.

    Is this all Michelle's fault for getting older? Hmmm

  2. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by janetfan View Post
    Interesting points Wally.
    Do you have any insight into why ISU can't get a decent TV contract to televise Worlds in the USA?
    There are many possible explanations and factors that can contribute to this change. One of the potential factor is the changing consumer behavior, in the same way that fewer people read paper newspapers and that newspapers and magazines have gone digital. Neither of them can be conclusively tied to smaller viewership as the definite answer.

    I remember the 20 million + contract ISU had only a few years ago for broadcasts in the USA.
    Last season ISU gave Worlds to NBC - what was it for $0.00?
    That is one heck of a change from only a few years ago.
    Care to cite some evidence to back up your numbers? I don't know where your numbers come from and would like to see some back up if you don't mind.


    This year, the ISU Figure skating World Championships were not shown on network TV. I don't have the numbers - but the deal with Universal had to be a pittance compared to the ESPN/ABC deal that was not renewed.
    Network TV has been cutting a lot of things, not just figure skating. Sometimes a show/event could be interesting and has good viewership but in an economic downturn, a lot of things get cut. Keep in mind, the viewership of figure skating is mostly female and an argument can be made that there is some bias against a sport where the viewers are predominantly women. Even in Canada, the network TV there has also been cutting figure skating coverage and the justification was that men's sports make money (i.e. hockey). It doesn't mean figure skating isn't popular or less popular than before, it's just a budget decision in the tough time.

    I don't think there is a single or simplistic explanation that could make sense of all the changes.

    I am sure seats for events in Torino were not cheap either - but 2, 500. is not the same as 20 million.
    Apples and oranges - one is ticket sales @ $3,000 per seat and there were over 10,000 seats. The other was a TV contract. Both are important but not comparable.

    At the moment there is no US TV network with a bid to cover the 2014 Olympic games. I am sure someone will broadcast it and win with a much lower bid than in the past. Much, much lower.
    Is part of that based on the fact that figure skating, once the jewel of Olympic broadcasts in the USA has seemingly lost much of it's lustre?
    That's debatable. Furthermore, I question the accuracy of your facts. For one thing, I do not doubt the 2014 Olympics will lack network TV coverage. As for your speculation, let's just say without a justification or reasoning, it's hard to agree or disagree with it.

    NBC got raked over the coals and skating this Olympic year did not have anywhere near the ratings from previous Olympics.
    Now, that's completely false. I know for a fact that the rating this year is the highest ever in years for Winter Games since the 1994 Lillehammer Olympics not held on U.S. soil. This has been widely reported, the 2010 Olympic was big success that may have saved NBC. I believe for you to even get this fact wrong speaks volume about the bias in you.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...311711120.html

    <<Ad buyers and analysts say that Olympics held on U.S. soil always attract more American viewers than those held abroad. TV viewing is also spread across more channels than it was eight years ago. Among Winter Games not held in the U.S., Vancouver is the most-watched since 1994.

    NBC has been aggressive in using its Olympic-sized audience to promote itself, and it says it plans to increase the number of promotional ads for its new shows in the coming week. Most of its ads thus far have touted "Parenthood," a series based on the 1989 movie, and "The Marriage Ref," a reality show produced by comedian Jerry Seinfeld, according to television analyst Steve Sternberg.

    "They have a chance to solidify and even improve their ratings into the spring," said Jackie Kulesza, senior vice president and broadcast buyer at Starcom, a media-buying firm owned by ad companyPublicis Groupe.

    NBC said the Games have had a "halo effect" on other parts of its schedule, its sister networks and affiliated stations. The percentage of households watching its profitable morning show "Today" are up 7% from a year earlier, NBC said. It said "Nightly News" is up 21%, and late news on local stations is up 15% by that measure.

    "The Olympics has a wonderful impact across all the businesses," said Alan Wurtzel, president of research and media development at NBC Universal.>>

  3. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by wallylutz
    This statement is completely unfair. In most cases, the winners are fairly clear these days….

    What you seem to suggest is unless a decision is to your liking, then it's no good. Can you try to respect others may have a legitimate difference of opinion?
    I wasn't talking about the fairness of the outcome, or whether people have a difference of opinion. I was talking about the emotional investment of the audience.

    I think the CoP reduces the immediacy of the audiences' experience when they choose to spend their entertainment dollar to take in a skating contest.

    Quote Originally Posted by wallylutz View Post
    Here is the part I don't get. I posted the HD clip of Nagasu's LP in Spokane. I pointed out the UR of her Triple Toes appear to be visually visible - in other words, no slow motion was required to detect them. So it begs to ask, given the stated justification, why don't those people say:

    1) Oh I get it, thanks for pointing out, let me review my thinking in light of that

    or

    2) Nah, what UR? I can't see any
    The average casual fan is not going to rush home to youtube and start measuring rotations. "Getting it" the next day is not a satisfactory return for a person's sports and entertainment dollar.
    Last edited by Mathman; 05-14-2010 at 08:04 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    My complaint was not that the tech panel was incorrect in penalizing Mirai's faulty jumps. My complaint is that under the CoP figure skating is becoming a sport that is of interest only to experts and insiders, and the general public is more and more being turned away.

    Under 6.0 judging, I, as an average fan, could easily form a well-reasoned opinion about which skater's performance I liked the best. Sometimes the expert judges agreed, sometimes they didn't, and sometimes the judges panel was split, with some judges agreeing with me and some holding a different opinion.

    Now, I am not really permitted to have an opinion at all. I may think that Mirai skated great, but here come the protocols the next day saying, oh you silly person, Mirai didn't skate well at all; you are just showing your ignorance of skating if you think she did.

    Well...OK. Bye.
    ITA with everything you said.

  5. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by wallylutz View Post

    Care to cite some evidence to back up your numbers? I don't know where your numbers come from and would like to see some back up if you don't mind.




    Network TV has been cutting a lot of things, not just figure skating. Sometimes a show/event could be interesting and has good viewership but in an economic downturn, a lot of things get cut. Keep in mind, the viewership of figure skating is mostly female and an argument can be made that there is some bias against a sport where the viewers are predominantly women. Even in Canada, the network TV there has also been cutting figure skating coverage and the justification was that men's sports make money (i.e. hockey). It doesn't mean figure skating isn't popular or less popular than before, it's just a budget decision in the tough time.

    I don't think there is a single or simplistic explanation that could make sense of all the changes.


    That's debatable. Furthermore, I question the accuracy of your facts. For one thing, I do not doubt the 2014 Olympics will lack network TV coverage. As for your speculation, let's just say without a justification or reasoning, it's hard to agree or disagree with it.



    Now, that's completely false. I know for a fact that the rating this year is the highest ever in years for Winter Games since the 1994 Lillehammer Olympics not held on U.S. soil. This has been widely reported, the 2010 Olympic was big success that may have saved NBC. I believe for you to even get this fact wrong speaks volume about the bias in you.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...311711120.html


    "The Olympics has a wonderful impact across all the businesses," said Alan Wurtzel, president of research and media development at NBC Universal.>>[/COLOR][/I]
    Thanks for your post Wally.
    I will see if I can dig up an article(s) about the ESPN/ISU fallout and ISU's major loss of skating revenues from the US market. We can agree that ESPN no longer broadcasts skating. I am sure the amount I quoted was close and have also read what a big chunk it represented in ISU's operating budget.

    About no Olympic bid yet or lack of skating on network TV I agree there can and probably are several reasons - which you cited. But that doesn't change the fact skating is becoming an endangered species on US TV. I do not get Universal so I became more aware of some of these things.

    I have no desire to see skating fail, for no Olympic covergae, etc. I like skating and the Olympics.
    Like many I was not happy with the limited skating covergae from Vancouver but there were a couple of reasons. The late hour and the fact that other sports were of interest to US viewers.

    My comments about NBC were based on infos released before the games. The ratings/revenues were better than expected - but not for skating. Half-pipe. skiing, snowboarding etc. were resposnible for the ratings boost over the initial bloodbath that was forecast..

    There was hardly enough coverage of some of the skating events to have given NBC enough time to make money off the commercials. It is hard to deny we lost coverage - in the past we might see the last two groups and not just the last six skaters with Tugba thrown in an hour earlier.

    Let me see if I can find some links to articles .........

    ETA: mathman has posted this info.......
    Last edited by janetfan; 05-13-2010 at 03:32 PM.

  6. #96
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wallylutz
    Care to cite some evidence to back up your numbers? I don't know where your numbers come from and would like to see some back up if you don't mind.
    Sadly, Janetfans numbers are right. I will Google some references if you want, but the $20,000,000 contract that the ISU had with U.S. network television was very widely reported at the time. (I believe ithis was $20,000,000 over five years, however.) If I remember correctly, this amounted to pretty close to half of the ISU's external funding at the time.

    For 2009 Worlds, after strenuous efforts by Cinquanta to salvage some sort of deal, he basically gave up and had to offer the event for free.

    Here is the USFSA's annual financial report for 2007-2008. Scroll down a little and you will see that they had total revenues of $100,000,000 from their contract with ABC television. (I believe this is $100,000,000 total for the whole period from 1994(?) to 2007.)

    http://www.usfsa.org/About.asp?id=13

    In 2008 the contract was not renewed. Although the USFSA tried to put a brave face on things, the new contract was indeed for $0 from the network. Instead, the USFSA had to essentially buy time from the network and recoup their cost by selling advertising. That is, it was the responsibility of USFS to line up advertisers, not the television networks. The only profit the USFSA made was whatever net they had left over from individual sponsorships.

    To see the effect of this change, here is the USFSA's official financial audit for 2008. Scroll down to page 9 and you will see:

    Total fund-raising:

    2007: $10,787,544
    2008: $624,122

    http://www.usfsa.org/Content/2008%20...Financials.pdf

    Yes, they went from 10 million to six hundred thousand (maybe they should ask Yu-na Kim for a loan. )

    As for the quotes in blue in your post, note that these are mostly from NBC executives trying to act brave by whistling past the graveyard. NBC lost tens of millions of dollars on their Olympic contract, which expires after the 2012 simmer games. They won't touch the Sochi games with a ten-foot pole.
    Last edited by Mathman; 05-13-2010 at 03:22 PM.

  7. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Sadly, Janetfans numbers are right. I will Google some references if you want, but the $20,000,000 contract that the ISU had with U.S. network television was very widely reported at the time. (I believe ithis was $20,000,000 over five years, however.) If I remember correctly, this amounted to pretty close to half of the ISU's external funding at the time.

    For 2009 Worlds, after strenuous efforts by Cinquanta to salvage some sort of deal, he basically gave up and had to offer the event for free.

    Here is the USFSA's annual financial report for 2007-2008. Scroll down a little and you will see that they had total revenues of $100,000,000 from their contract with ABC television. (I believe this is $100,000,000 total for the whole period from 1994(?) to 2007.)

    http://www.usfsa.org/About.asp?id=13

    In 2008 the contract was not renewed. Although the USFSA tried to put a brave face on things, the new contract was indeed for $0 from the network. Instead, the USFSA had to essentially buy time from the network and recoup their cost by selling advertising. That is, it was the responsibility of USFS to line up advertisers, not the television networks. The only profit the USFSA made was whatever net they had left over from individual sponsorships.

    To see the effect of this change, here is the USFSA's official financial audit for 2008. Scroll down to page 9 and you will see:

    Total fund-raising:

    2007: $10,787,544
    2008: $624,122

    http://www.usfsa.org/Content/2008%20...Financials.pdf

    Yes, they went from 10 million to six hundred thousand (maybe they should ask Yu-na Kim for a loan. )

    As for the quotes in blue in your post, note that these are mostly from NBC executives trying to act brave by whistling past the graveyard. NBC lost tens of millions of dollars on their Olympic contract, which expires after the 2012 simmer games. They won't touch the Sochi games with a ten-foot pole.
    NBC is for sale....comcast looks like a possible buyer. GE does not make it a habit to sell it's best money making assets......
    Last edited by janetfan; 05-13-2010 at 03:26 PM.

  8. #98
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    I know a little about GE's business model from graduate school - if they aren't #1 or #2 in an industry, they get out

  9. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by R.D. View Post
    When posters talk of skating interest decline they really
    mean in the US. because that's clearly what's happening (although it remains to be seen whether Lysacek's OGM will help reverse the trend)
    it won't be enough for the media since our ladies are rebuilding their status in world competition circles. That's why in the 80s Boitano, not Hamilton, is creditted more for bringing men's skating 'back to life'... nevermind Scott won his gold FIRST ending a many year drought... it's all about Boitano.

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    It's worth mentioning, however, that the debacle of NBC and the Vancouver 2010 games largely had nothing to do with figure skating. The economic downturn made EVERYONE worried about spending a lot of money on advertising, which drove down prices. And while advertising revenue ended up not too badly, the higher price tag (which included things like online streaming, something not done much in previous winter games) made recouping money impossible. Toss on an extremely fractured television audience, nothing's gonna return to their glory days.

    Mathman's essential point is correct, though. If the audience doesn't get what they pay for - a clear winner that they adore - they're gonna be disappointed and they leave. Of course, I think blaming COP for that is wrongheaded. But I think the basic fact that we don't think the audience needs to be informed is something that will frustrate me to no end, however. It was presented as a performance-based-entertainment for so long that actually asking audiences to judge it as a sport, you know - with rules.

  11. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by wallylutz View Post
    CoP is more than just math, it doesn't help if the said person doesn't actually understand and is able, for instance, to catch UR when watching.

    Anyone who claims CoP is responsible for the decline of this sport - please explain to me why has it been so difficult to get an Olympic ticket to any of the figure skating events, even the Compulsory Dance?
    Top Sentence: Have you noticed that the sport in the US has declined dramatically. The spectators go home puzzled.

    BottomSentence: There is a ritual in going to the Olys. One has choices on what to see. Standing out watching the Biathlon and the Downhill Races is frought with freezing and sometimes snowy weather. So, hey guys, let's get a ticket to the figure skating event where we can get in doors and bull#@$%, have a few beers and there are lots of ladies in that arena. Figure Skating and Ice Hockey keep you warm.

    Now Worlds is another matter. I can agree with you on this but with that convoluted scoring system it's not worth learning for most spectators and hence if you've seen one FS event, you've seen em all. Been there, done that, leave confused, why more?
    Last edited by Joesitz; 05-14-2010 at 07:57 AM.

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    It really is difficult for an audience to get into a sport where they don't know who won until the geeks with pocket protectors and slow motion cameras punch it into their calculators. We all remember Yukari's standing ovation at the 2008 Worlds. The announcers were debating whether she would get gold or silver.

    Of course, this discussion becomes meaningless in the unlikely event a savior spirals out of nowhere and saves the sport. ( Hey, it could happen. )

  13. #103
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PolymerBob View Post
    It really is difficult for an audience to get into a sport where they don't know who won until the geeks with pocket protectors and slow motion cameras punch it into their calculators.
    Forget all my rambling posts on this thread, just replace them with what PolymerBob said.

  14. #104
    Banned janetfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ImaginaryPogue View Post
    Mathman's essential point is correct, though. If the audience doesn't get what they pay for - a clear winner that they adore - they're gonna be disappointed and they leave. Of course, I think blaming COP for that is wrongheaded. But I think the basic fact that we don't think the audience needs to be informed is something that will frustrate me to no end, however. It was presented as a performance-based-entertainment for so long that actually asking audiences to judge it as a sport, you know - with rules.
    In the past skating was often criticized for being too elitist.

    This attitude that the fans don't need to know how winners are determined feels like a big mistake. Skating is still controlled by the very elitist ISU and they seem to want the fans to be on a "need to know" basis.

    SLC exposed what many of us knew had been going on for years. The same gang that permitted it - and profited from it are still in charge. Make no mistake about it - this is a very elitist group of people.

    IOC ordered changes after SLC. So what we got was a new system that hides how the judges are voting. We then are told even the judges are incapable of scoring properly and a panel under the exclusive control of ISU determines which skaters meet their approval. Elitism in it's purest form.

    An organization that values honesty and integrity does not hide behind anonymous marks and a panel with the power to determine the outcome at their whim without being held accountable.

    Fans at times invest as much time and passion as they get back from a sport or leisure activity.
    The casual fans have lost interest but without doubt the elitists can afford $3,000.00 for a ticket along with the travel costs to watch an Olympic skating event.

    Is it any wonder skating is in decline in N. America? There are not enough viewers left in Canada or USA to provide the TV ratings necessary to attract commercial sponsors. That part is simple business.
    How skating got to that point is not so simple or cut and dry. But by making skating even more elitist ISU should have been aware that it would lose a major chunk of it's casual fans.

    Personally I think ISU doesn't have the 'bells" to post Mirai's dg's along with her score for the fans to see. Booing and hissing has never been tolerated by the elitists.

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    Yeah, because booing and hissing has never happened under COP - see Johnny Wier, the young British dance couple

    So what we got was a new system that hides how the judges are voting. We then are told even the judges are incapable of scoring properly and a panel under the exclusive control of ISU determines which skaters meet their approval. Elitism in it's purest form.
    They post the rules. They post the protocols. You see what judges do. You see the individual scores and the weighted scores. You see the automatic deductions. You see a step by step computation of scoring. This is not elitism.

    How many people say that the scoring system is too complicated? How many people have suggested that separate panels be designed to weigh PCS from TES. This isn't elitism. It's recognition of human imperfections. It's a good idea to have a panel designated solely to decide the difficulty of an element. A number of sports do this - we saw Moguls doing it at the Olympics, as an example. Is it too much power in the hands of three people? If it is, how many technical controllers should there be? None - leave it to the judges discretion? Nine? What would be appropriate.

    It's not elitism to hide who's scoring who what way. It gives the appearance of malfeasance, which gives credence to the "wuzrobbed" cries, but make no mistake, 90% of those cries have nothing to do with the judging system and everything to do with "my favourite didn't win/place higher, therefore something was wrong with the system."

    An organization that values honesty and integrity does not hide behind anonymous marks and a panel with the power to determine the outcome at their whim without being held accountable.
    Can you explain your latter comment. Because if you continue that line of thought, it's worth mentioning that the technical panel worked against Virtue/Moir at the Olympics (they had a lower base value for both their OD and FD) but made it up from the judges in terms of GOE and PCS. You said "determine the outcome at their whim" but you've also said that the "placements seem right' elsewhere. These two thoughts don't jive with each other, unless you believe their whims and your beliefs match; if so, I'd suggest the problem with audiences is bigger than I though.

    Fans at times invest as much time and passion as they get back from a sport or leisure activity.
    The casual fans have lost interest but without doubt the elitists can afford $3,000.00 for a ticket along with the travel costs to watch an Olympic skating event.
    Agreed.

    Is it any wonder skating is in decline in N. America? There are not enough viewers left in Canada or USA to provide the TV ratings necessary to attract commercial sponsors. That part is simple business.
    How skating got to that point is not so simple or cut and dry. But by making skating even more elitist ISU should have been aware that it would lose a major chunk of it's casual fans.
    True.

    Personally I think ISU doesn't have the 'bells" to post Mirai's dg's along with her score for the fans to see. Booing and hissing has never been tolerated by the elitists.
    Yeah, cause fans never booed the scores Davis/White got in LA. Or Johnny Wier at the Olympics. Or the young British dance couple at the Olympics. I'm not really sure what your point is.

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