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Thread: Piper Gilles' Citizenship Drive in Time for Sochi

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    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Piper Gilles' Citizenship Drive in Time for Sochi

    Apparently, the rules for second generation returning Canadians is not immediate. Piper's mother's application does not get her a quick trip to a Canadian passport, due to a recent change in Canadian immigration law. The following article from the Star describes what's going on.

    If you are fans of Piper and Paul, I suggest you not read the comments, because they are not particularly kind.


    http://www.thestar.com/sports/amateu...irier%2Fpage17

    The Star has an editorial supporting Piper getting her citizenship prior to Sochi. Comments are disabled.

    Editorial
    http://www.thestar.com/opinion/edito...editorial.html

    I'm afraid that G&P's 18th place finish at Worlds did not exactly help their cause, since expedited citizenship is based on exceptional service to Canada.

    In fact the tone of the article is that G&P's place on the Canadian Olympic team is guaranteed, when there are 3 or 4 other teams who might pass them at Canadians, including Paul & Islam, Orford & Williams, and Ralph & Hill, especially since Paul's broken ankle and result surgery may impede their training this year.
    Last edited by dorispulaski; 07-23-2013 at 08:50 AM.

  2. #2
    Missing Tdizzle and SDiggity golden411's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dorispulaski View Post
    BTW, in connection with the article, the front page of the hard-copy edition of The Star had a giant photo of Gilles/Poirier. A headline printed in red and the portion of the photo showing Gilles' face were above the fold. (Not the front page of the sports section. The front page of the first section. )

    @PiperGilles
    Front page of the @TorontoStar !!! This is unreal !! Check it out pic.twitter.com/UqmZb5CaeN
    6:31 AM - 19 Jul 13
    https://twitter.com/PiperGilles/stat...17484203081728

    One of CAN Fund @CANFUND's reply tweets:
    I just sent an email to the Minister of Immigration. That should clear this issue up! #hopeso @PiperGilles @TorontoStar @PaulDPoirier
    6:55 AM - 19 Jul 13
    https://twitter.com/CANFUND/status/358223697133305857
    Wonder whether CAN Fund really has that kind of clout??

    ETA:
    Hmmmm, as of just this month, Canada has a new Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, who happens to be from Ontario.

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    I just never will understand how someone can just so blithely turn around and represent another country. Will never be able to fathom it. Even worse, they go to try and represent another country because they weren't good enough in their home country! How can that possibly make them happy inside?

    But then what do I know? My blood runs green and gold but it'll never be put to the test for sporting achievement...

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    Custom Title Mattieu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by karne View Post
    I just never will understand how someone can just so blithely turn around and represent another country. Will never be able to fathom it. Even worse, they go to try and represent another country because they weren't good enough in their home country! How can that possibly make them happy inside?

    But then what do I know? My blood runs green and gold but it'll never be put to the test for sporting achievement...
    It's very difficult to find a partner, be that a girl looking or a boy, so I don't think it's a question of blithely switching countries, it's more like having to accept a boy from no matter what country, just to have a partner. Nobody chooses to skate for some of minor countries, it is just the only way they can get a partner.

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    Piper Gilles sat "on the shelf" for two years after her former partner Zach Donohue ditched her for someone else (not his current partner Madison Hubbell). There were other vacancies in dance in the US during that time, but she couldn't get another American partner.

    Piper's maternal grandmother IS Canadian, but her mother only recently applied for Canadian citizenship, and did it only to help her daughter's application along.

    I do think it is presumptuous of Piper to think she is entitled to Canadian citizenship so she can go to Sochi, when it is by no means a done deal that G/P will get that third Canadian berth. Their performance at 2013 Worlds (18th) did nothing to help their chances, and that was before Paul broke his ankle. In the Gilles/Poirier partnership, Poirier is the one with the past glory, and Gilles the wannabe. When it comes to talent, the couple is by no means of the same caliber. Even in 2018, they may not be Canadian #1. Weaver/Poje seems poised to take over that spot after V/M retire.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chuckm View Post
    Piper Gilles sat "on the shelf" for two years after her former partner Zach Donohue ditched her for someone else (not his current partner Madison Hubbell). There were other vacancies in dance in the US during that time, but she couldn't get another American partner.

    Piper's maternal grandmother IS Canadian, but her mother only recently applied for Canadian citizenship, and did it only to help her daughter's application along.

    I do think it is presumptuous of Piper to think she is entitled to Canadian citizenship so she can go to Sochi, when it is by no means a done deal that G/P will get that third Canadian berth. Their performance at 2013 Worlds (18th) did nothing to help their chances, and that was before Paul broke his ankle. In the Gilles/Poirier partnership, Poirier is the one with the past glory, and Gilles the wannabe. When it comes to talent, the couple is by no means of the same caliber. Even in 2018, they may not be Canadian #1. Weaver/Poje seems poised to take over that spot after V/M retire.
    The year before she was a "wannabe" starlet in Hollywood, when that didn't pan out she started looking for partners outside.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jolen View Post
    The year before she was a "wannabe" starlet in Hollywood, when that didn't pan out she started looking for partners outside.
    That's even WORSE! She quit skating for pie in the sky, and came back to it only when the pie turned out to be mud. Not exactly a great recommendation for a skating partner.
    Yes, I know---Sasha tried to become an actress after her Olympic silver, and went back to skating after that didn't work out. But there are two major differences: 1. Sasha was already a top-tier singles skater, headlining in SOI before she tried acting, and she never completely quit skating between acting jobs; and 2. She wasn't in a skating partnership.

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    It's very difficult to find a partner, be that a girl looking or a boy, so I don't think it's a question of blithely switching countries, it's more like having to accept a boy from no matter what country, just to have a partner. Nobody chooses to skate for some of minor countries, it is just the only way they can get a partner.
    It's odd the article didn't mention Vanessa Crone, a Canadian, or that Paul ended that partnership after going to the Olympics and Worlds with her in 2010, and directly after becoming National Champion with her in 2011. She's still partnerless. Don't know what happened there but a lot of teams with that resume stick it out rather than opt for a partner with lesser skill and a different nationality. I guess the Immigration Dept. is meant to extend itself to accomodate these choices.

    What is the status of Paul's ankle? Is he back to training full time? The photos in The Star would suggest that he is. It's odd neither the article nor the editorial made reference to his injury - or reminded us that Canada has the reigning Olympic champions in ice dance, who are Canadian right now.

    I don't know if this sort of media pressure is effective or the wrong road. We'll see. To me, it looks as if the mom became Canadian only for her daughter, and the daughter wants to be Canadian only to go to Sochi, and not much value is put on the rest of what it means to be Canadian, or even a skater for Canada in non-Olympic years.

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    skating philosopher Mrs. P's Avatar
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    There's been some discussion on FSU whether Team Lane/G-P planted this story to the Toronto Star, so I responded this way:

    Look at the front page again

    https://twitter.com/PiperGilles/stat...081728/photo/1

    The actual story is on the front section of the sports page (S1).

    Now look at the stories that are on the front page: Daycare secrets; sinking wages; aboriginal health experiments; subway fund shortage.

    Per typical newspaper design, the newspaper needed a centerpiece photo or art and none of those front page stories had it (or there wasn't time to do any illustrations that would serve as such). So what do they do? They take a photo of a story that is somewhat interesting from another section and use that as the front page centerpiece.

    If it was a different day where there were more breaking news day that involved fires, crime or something else (or the announcement of the drug habits of the mayor, since we're talking about Toronto) that would yield centerpiece art, then Gilles' story would likely have remained on the sports front.

    I see the front page treatment as editors deciding that that was the best way to front centerpiece art when none of the A1 stories had any.

    Sure, team Lane/publicists may have be influential as far as making the paper aware of the story. But the paper likely found it newsworthy because 1.) it involves a local team 2.) immigration stories, in general, are quite popular given today's climate. 3.) While we as hard-core fans percieve G/P as a second-tier Ice Dance team, the editors at The Star -- who are likely not figure skating fans -- may still deem it noteworthy to tell the story of a team that has seen national success at least (they were silver medalists this year.).

    As for the fact the editorial came just days after the story -- that isn't an uncommon occurrence. Most editorial boards write editorials based on stories/events that happened recently. The editorial boards of most newspapers have to fill the editorial page daily, so it's likely they saw the story and say, hey, this is worth commenting on. Again, Team Lane might had influence in getting the ball rolling, but I believe that any influence ends there.

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    Missing Tdizzle and SDiggity golden411's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by golden411 View Post
    BTW, in connection with the article, the front page of the hard-copy edition of The Star had a giant photo of Gilles/Poirier. A headline printed in red and the portion of the photo showing Gilles' face were above the fold. (Not the front page of the sports section. The front page of the first section. )

    @PiperGilles
    Front page of the @TorontoStar !!! This is unreal !! Check it out pic.twitter.com/UqmZb5CaeN
    6:31 AM - 19 Jul 13
    https://twitter.com/PiperGilles/stat...17484203081728
    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. P View Post
    The actual story is on the front section of the sports page (S1).

    Now look at the stories that are on the front page: Daycare secrets; sinking wages; aboriginal health experiments; subway fund shortage.

    Per typical newspaper design, the newspaper needed a centerpiece photo or art and none of those front page stories had it (or there wasn't time to do any illustrations that would serve as such). So what do they do? They take a photo of a story that is somewhat interesting from another section and use that as the front page centerpiece.
    Appreciate your comments as always, Mrs. P., but I still find the size of the photo of G/P on page A1 to be ridiculously big.
    Disclaimer: Not living in Toronto, I don't know what The Star's front page typically looks like. But wouldn't that photo be disproportionally large even for USA Today's page A1, for example?
    Seems to me that the stories on aboriginal health experiments and subway fund shortage (and maybe even the others?) easily could have offered good visuals.

  11. #11
    skating philosopher Mrs. P's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by golden411 View Post
    Appreciate your comments as always, Mrs. P., but I still find the size of the photo of G/P on page A1 to be ridiculously big.
    Disclaimer: Not living in Toronto, I don't know what The Star's front page typically looks like. But wouldn't that photo be disproportionally large even for USA Today's page A1, for example?
    Seems to me that the stories on aboriginal health experiments and subway fund shortage (and maybe even the others?) easily could have offered good visuals.

    Actually I don't think it's particularly that big. It's a two-column photo.

    At my newspaper, for example, a centerpiece photo typically runs four columns. We sometimes do the six-column "across the page" treatment, if the story (and photo) merits it. USA Today also does four-column centerpiece photos on A1.

    (Also column size vary greatly from publication to publication so a four column photo for one paper may be a three column photo to another).

    Also regarding why the other stories didn't have art -- it could have been a limitation of the reporting/photography process. Perhaps there was a photo planned for one of those stories, but it fell through. Happens all the time. As a result, editors have to scramble and figure out how to fill the space. So perhaps the G/P story provided a convenient means to do so.

    ETA: Here's the front page from the Toronto Star today: http://www.newseum.org/todaysfrontpa...p=NorthAmerica

    As you can see the centerpiece photo is HUGE. Obviously with Canada being part of the Commonwealth, there was big interest in the Royal Baby story.

    And with the bigger story play; there were fewer stories on the front page. If G&P's story was published today, it would have been regulated to the sports page...

  12. #12
    Missing Tdizzle and SDiggity golden411's Avatar
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    It's not the width but the length of the G/P photo that struck me as notable: from above the fold all the way to the bottom of the page.

    I do realize that stuff happens in the course of laying out a page (such as one or more expected photos for certain stories falling through).
    And that some days are slow news days.

    But at the very least, I think G/P are extremely lucky that their photo was ginormous -- for whatever reason(s).

    ETA:

    I do understand that each morning's front page presents a fresh and unique jigsaw puzzle for editors as they decide how to configure the elements that they actually have in hand into a layout that will sell newspapers as well as reflect the relative importance of the news of day.

    But for the sake of argument, I will point out another perspective on how lucky G/P are:
    I wonder whether p. A1 of The Star included photos of Virtue/Moir and of Rochette on the mornings after they won gold and bronze, respectively, in Vancouver. And if so, I wonder what the sizes of those photos were. (Have not attempted to check the Newseum's online archive of front pages, but I have a feeling it does not go back that far.)
    I would be the first to say that the Olympic comparison to G/P is not exactly apples to apples in the sense that the Vancouver medals were not decided until late at night Eastern Time, prob. after The Star is normally put to bed. If front-page photos of V/M and Rochette were smaller or nonexistent, I don't suspect any conspiracy against them. [Similar instances of "unfairness" occur in journalism (whether print or broadcast) all the time.]
    Just sayin' that G/P lucked out that the alignment of the sun and the moon and the stars that particular morning ended up giving their photo such prominence.

    (BTW, if the feeling of The Star editors is that Gilles has a pretty face, that too might have given them some motivation to position it above the fold.)

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    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by golden411
    (BTW, if the feeling of The Star editors is that Gilles has a pretty face, that too might have given them some motivation to position it above the fold.)
    However, she has very ugly sneakers They could have cut the shot at the fold.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. P View Post
    Obviously with Canada being part of the Commonwealth, there was big interest in the Royal Baby story.
    Actually, Canada has a bigger interest. According to a newspaper article, this baby is 3rd in line for the throne (Charles --> William --> Royal baby). Since whoever is monarch in England automatically becomes the monarch of Canada, this baby could eventually become the "King of Canada" someday.

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    Missing Tdizzle and SDiggity golden411's Avatar
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    rvi5, surely Mrs. P was making exactly the same point, although she and you have chosen different words to express it.

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