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Thread: Dick Button: What Went Wrong With Figure Skating

  1. #76
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    While Mr Button makes some good points, I would be wary of "throwing the baby out with the bath water":

    In my opinion, giving ZERO points for an element if the skater falls... purely in the name of making it simple for casual viewers to understand... would be going way too far. I think that would lead to stagnation, with no-one willing to attempt new or technically difficult elements.

    I love BOTH the sporting/technical AND the artistic sides of figure skating. It's that combination that makes it so attractive to me.

    So I want artistic merit to be rewarded (even though this requires human judges, and therefore subjectivity). But I also want technical merit (and taking risks) to be rewarded too. To me, it's just a question of striking a good balance.

    Yes, it would be nice if the casual viewers could understand why skaters still get points even after a fall... but surely the simplest and easiest solution to that, is for commentators to explain it (that would take what? 1 or 2 brief sentences?! How hard can it be?)

    In any case, is it so difficult to understand anyway? There are any number of other sports where people can stumble, fall, make mistakes etc... and still win. O_o

  2. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by pangtongfan View Post
    In the cases of both, especialy Yu Na, the only expectation was that they would likely outskate their competitors to win. Which obviously was correct as Yu Na clearly did that, and only ended up with a silver medal indeed due to "fixing" but against her, not for her.
    Did you change your mind about Caro skating better? If you did, then Yuna wasn't "clearly" better than her competitors, even to you.

  3. #78
    축복, 축도 RABID's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by speedbomb View Post
    Thank you for posting this Meoima.
    I agree with Button in every words....The nonsense has to stop right here, right NOW.
    Of course the irony here is that Korea is one of or maybe "the" Speed Skating powerhouse of the world. I wonder how all that plays with the latest controversy involving the country's favorite daughter? Talk about a conflict of interest!

  4. #79
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    I think any of the newly retired skaters, who know how crappy the system is, would be worth trying. Dai, Mao, Yuna, etc. can be president! I would like to see someone young or youngish. Unfortunately, the newly retired skaters probably don't have administrative capabilities, but that can be learned. What's most important is integrity. In terms of bringing in money, Mao and Yuna do that in spades in their native countries.

  5. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by YesWay View Post
    While Mr Button makes some good points, I would be wary of "throwing the baby out with the bath water":

    In my opinion, giving ZERO points for an element if the skater falls... purely in the name of making it simple for casual viewers to understand... would be going way too far. I think that would lead to stagnation, with no-one willing to attempt new or technically difficult elements.

    I love BOTH the sporting/technical AND the artistic sides of figure skating. It's that combination that makes it so attractive to me.

    So I want artistic merit to be rewarded (even though this requires human judges, and therefore subjectivity). But I also want technical merit (and taking risks) to be rewarded too. To me, it's just a question of striking a good balance.

    Yes, it would be nice if the casual viewers could understand why skaters still get points even after a fall... but surely the simplest and easiest solution to that, is for commentators to explain it (that would take what? 1 or 2 brief sentences?! How hard can it be?)

    In any case, is it so difficult to understand anyway? There are any number of other sports where people can stumble, fall, make mistakes etc... and still win. O_o
    Once again: Dick Button has been highly political when writing his address. He’s been saying what people might like to hear; in other words, what might work. He knows very well what the value of technical side is. He’s one of the authorities. I think no one in figure skating world doubts about it. Though, he has also enormous experience as the organizer of Pro skating. He knows what people might like. This is what figure skating world also remember. I would trust him

  6. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by jenaj View Post
    The 6.0 system, though not as simple as it looked, was still accessible to fans and created drama. Remember when fans used to hold up placards with 6.0s on them? Is anyone holding up a 220 placard? That isn't even a good score for the men! The artistry of skaters like Michelle Kwan and Sasha Cohen is what held the fans' interest. Now, artistry is devalued and programs tend to look the same, with crazy spin positions and long and laborious footwork sequences.
    I disagree with this. I think the 6.0 system, if anything, was inscrutable in that everyone knew 5.1 is worse than 5.9, but no one could explain why a certain skater deserves 5.1, and another a 5.9. It was the ballpark of the worst degree.

    Secondly, I disagree, as I already stated earlier, that IJS is producing cookie-cutter programs with no artistry. Cookie-cutter programs with no artistry are the DEFAULT of all figure skating competitions. If you claim that 6.0 produced interesting, artistic programs en masse, you're either lying or your memory is colored by nostalgic rose glasses. If you actually took the time to sit through 24 long programs, either under 6.0 or IJS, the majority of them will be similar, and forgettable. A handful would be memorable, a very small handful. This has nothing to do with the judging system. This has everything to do with the hard truth that only a minority of skaters have the talent to tell stories on ice, or the resources to hire good choreographers. Mediocrity is the default. It's not the system, it's the distribution of talent.

  7. #82
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    If the issue under 6.0 was why a judge gave the score he or she did, they could have just required protocol sheets. There were mandatory deductions under that system in the short program, so it could have been tailored to become just as objective on the technical side, at least. And most people understood that the scores were relative to other skaters. The new system allegedly eliminates this aspect, but judges and fans still think in terms of rankings--for example Yuna is better at performance than Skater X, so her PCS should have been higher.

  8. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by pangtongfan View Post
    ... some Yuna obsessed stuff...
    You are looking into a completely wrong direction. Dick's point was about the presence (or lack thereof) of figure skating coverage on American TV. Dick is not looking beyond US in his anti-ISU rant. Figure skating popularity is going down in the US and this is all Button is concerned about. And I tell you this: the average US audience doesn't give a crap about Yuna. The US media decision makers don't give crap about Yuna either. Her contribution to figure skating popularity (or lack thereof) in the US is zip, null, zero. Yuna could have won the Olympic by a infinite margin, and the impact of that winning on the US networks would be none. The college sport system in the US would be identical, the money invested into sports would be identical, the sport distribution in US television prime time would IDENTICAL. Beyond some obsessed hard core elitist fans on this forum Yuna does not exist at all.
    The problem is completely elsewhere, it is in the shifting dynamics of US sport public and Yuna has nothing to do with it.

    Of course you must bring Yuna to every issue and every problem of your life, private and social, she must be present in your every step of your life, and by definition it makes you a stalker, doesn't it?

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