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Thread: Ice Skating community needs to regain control of our sport - Petition to remove Cinquanta

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by lcd View Post
    I wonder how the Speed skating world feels about him. It's not like that sport has been thriving on a global scale.
    I have a suspicion that speed skating community blame him for being focused on figure skating

    However, the article that nimi linked to says he's been taking also important places in IOC by the year 2003:

    Quote Originally Posted by nimi View Post

    One of the WSF's main aims is to separate the governance of figure skating from speedskating. The ISU oversees both, and Cinquanta is a former speedskater. The WSF, in a video presentation, called him "hopelessly out of touch," "hopelessly evasive" and "hopelessly misleading."

    "The facts and reality prove that these comments do not deserve comment," Cinquanta said.[2003]




    If this is true that the sponsors and the money have withdrawn dramatically from US figure skating since, the USFSA might regret their choice back then. However, they might also have little motive to make their choice today. What’s the point to fight about a sport that’s been milked to death already?

    Does anybody know how the WSF story ended? Did they try to develop any non-Olympic format?

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anna K. View Post
    Does anybody know how the WSF story ended? Did they try to develop any non-Olympic format?
    Things got pretty ugly. I believe that some of the main organizers were banned from judging and/or ISU membership. The FSU thread below contains a lot of info and a link to Dick Button's statement/press conference about the WFS. (Mods, not sure if posting this link breaks any GS rules. If it does, please do what you have to do.)

    http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/show...tion-(aka-WSF)
    Last edited by skatedreamer; 04-13-2014 at 09:43 AM. Reason: added link

  3. #33
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    As I recall, the World Skating Federation never tried to organize any skating events. They put their entire effort into legal challenges to the ISU on the grounds of monopoly and restraint of trade. When these legal challenges failed, the organization was through. The ISU banned the WSF organizers and went on with business as usual.

    The WSF made a number of mistakes. They coaxed the USFSA into issuing a statement saying that they agreed with the principles on which the WSF was organized -- fair judging, etc. -- then they advertised, misleadingly, that the USFSA was supporting their move to replace the ISU as the sanctioned figure skating organization in the IOC. This put the WSA on the outs with the leadership of the USFSA.

    Also it came out that almost all the skaters who supported the WSF were represented by IMG. It was widely believed that IMG bankrolled the whole protest in order to advance the fortunes of the agency and its clients. The WSF never denied or responded to these charges and refused to say where the money was coming from to pay the lawyers, etc.

    That is really the problem with these petitions. Money talks, petitions walk. If the million people who signed the various petitions each sent in ten bucks, Mr. Cinquanta might be compelled to take notice.

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    Another idiotic petition? Thank you but no thank you. BoP is the biggest troll.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    As I recall, the World Skating Federation never tried to organize any skating events. They put their entire effort into legal challenges to the ISU on the grounds of monopoly and restraint of trade. When these legal challenges failed, the organization was through. The ISU banned the WSF organizers and went on with business as usual.

    The WSF made a number of mistakes. They coaxed the USFSA into issuing a statement saying that they agreed with the principles on which the WSF was organized -- fair judging, etc. -- then they advertised, misleadingly, that the USFSA was supporting their move to replace the ISU as the sanctioned figure skating organization in the IOC. This put the WSA on the outs with the leadership of the USFSA.

    Also it came out that almost all the skaters who supported the WSF were represented by IMG. It was widely believed that IMG bankrolled the whole protest in order to advance the fortunes of the agency and its clients. The WSF never denied or responded to these charges and refused to say where the money was coming from to pay the lawyers, etc.

    That is really the problem with these petitions. Money talks, petitions walk. If the million people who signed the various petitions each sent in ten bucks, Mr. Cinquanta might be compelled to take notice.

    Thank you for the perspective. It's surprising that Dick Button, with his Harvard law background, didn't handle this better. Mis-stating the USFSA's position is especially hard to understand.

    Re: $10, I'd consider it money well spent.

  6. #36
    Skating is art, if you let it be. Blades of Passion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivingmissdaisy View Post
    I don't think the IOC cares much about the judging. They recognize that figure skating is a niche sport except at the Olympics, and casual fans are always going to watch figure skating at the Games regardless of whether they like the judging. Since the IOC isn't particularly impacted on whether something like Skate Canada gets good television ratings in 2016, they aren't incentivized to initiate any sort of major changes that impact figure skating outside of the Olympics.
    Hmm, I'm not sure why you've brought up the IOC. Of course they don't directly involve themselves with sporting events outside of the Olympics. It's just their rules that determine which direction a sport might take to maintain eligibility.

    I'm sure the IOC would be happy if ice skating brought in higher ratings and sponsors. The Winter Olympics are actually very much in need of it.

    Your label of "niche sport" is the problem we're facing. The sport has been much more than just niche in the past. It's always going to face certain issues in terms of being one of the most widespread activities out there (cost, availability, time and effort it takes to learn), but there's no reason why it shouldn't be capable of having a large following. It should be something that many people watch multiple times per year and talk about with glee at school/work the next day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mafke View Post
    I don't think the ISU can or should be saved in its current form. The quicker it goes belly up the quicker a better organization (devoted to figure skating alone) can be built. If skating has to miss an olympics or two then too bad better no skating than more Sochi style judging.
    I agree. I am anxious for the ISU to go bankrupt and be done forever. I am willing to wait 8 years or however long it takes for a completely new organization to take over.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    As I recall, the World Skating Federation never tried to organize any skating events. They put their entire effort into legal challenges to the ISU on the grounds of monopoly and restraint of trade. When these legal challenges failed, the organization was through. The ISU banned the WSF organizers and went on with business as usual.

    The WSF made a number of mistakes. They coaxed the USFSA into issuing a statement saying that they agreed with the principles on which the WSF was organized -- fair judging, etc. -- then they advertised, misleadingly, that the USFSA was supporting their move to replace the ISU as the sanctioned figure skating organization in the IOC. This put the WSA on the outs with the leadership of the USFSA.

    Also it came out that almost all the skaters who supported the WSF were represented by IMG. It was widely believed that IMG bankrolled the whole protest in order to advance the fortunes of the agency and its clients. The WSF never denied or responded to these charges and refused to say where the money was coming from to pay the lawyers, etc.

    That is really the problem with these petitions. Money talks, petitions walk. If the million people who signed the various petitions each sent in ten bucks, Mr. Cinquanta might be compelled to take notice.
    I dont think the WSF was ever going to be a particularly good or fair organization either. For starters it seemed like 95% of it was American. So I am somewhat glad they did not get anywhere. Plus have you ever read the book of disgraced ex ISU judge and WSF member Joe Jackson? Who would ever want someone that biased, hypocritical, and pro American helping to run the sport. However I hope soon something like them, that is more balanced and fair, and represented across the world (not just pro Russian and pro money interest like the ISU, or pro IMG and pro American like the WSF) comes around.

  9. #39
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    Step 1 Remove Cinquanta.

    Step 2 Find decent candidate to replace him. Ideally someone with figure skating sport background, impeccable reputation, ex Marketing / Strategic Consulting / MBA experience / public face optional. ie/ Someone smart and has long term view with keen business sense to pick up the pace and start a snowball effect from a whiff of snowflake.

    Steps 3 Regain Public Trust. Reassess the entire judging panel selection process from top to bottom. Including training and qualification. Are they qualified to judge all aspect of PCS for example. Remove conflict of interest, agenda, influencing, remove anonymity. Human being by nature is incapable of being honest 100% the time. You might as well say you don't believe anyone likes money or love their country. Total BS.

    Step 4 Accountability and Verifiability. Invest greater use of existing sporting technology and to make the scoring more understandable for and make reference of actual sporting measuring facts in support. Consider revise an info graphic interface to better inform audience of the scoring system.

    Step 5 Horizontal integration. Consider figure skating as a truly multidisciplinary sport that involves physical movements, music, choreography, fashion, make up, culture (cinema, theatre, performance art) and market it wisely. Make figure skating relevant to modern times in areas people are interested in. It need a younger audience, people with money who will invest to go and see shows, competitions.

    Niche is good if it is properly exploited. Look at X Games. Figure skating is less than Niche at the moment. It does't even seem to have the respect of some of its most ardent fans and insiders. It is an embarrassment and clearly not being managed well compare to 20 years ago. Dwindling attendance figures and lack of real understanding and appreciation of the sport by its leaderships that appears to lack the foresight, knowledge or good will to really push the sport more global and understandable. It is not like the rest of the world beside the big 4 nations are uninterested, but it is more likely they just couldn't 'get in' the old boys club, and especially with the new GP rules, it seems the old boys don't want them in so they can have greater control over the outcome. ie/ Award their own. Look at its strategy, how COP has came about, insist there's never any judging controversy yet Salt lake happened, corrupted judges continue to judge, insist on keep anonymity, alienate audience further, create distrust among skaters and even fans of the sport, contemplate kill short programs, crap prize money for skaters that doesn't command respectability in this capitalist society, especially an expensive sport like this. This gives the federations enormous power over their own skaters, more than they should in an individual sport. There so many thing wrong with it there's no quick fixes unfortunately.

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    Step 2 Find decent candidate to replace him. Ideally someone with figure skating sport background, impeccable reputation, ex Marketing / Strategic Consulting / MBA experience / public face optional. ie/ Someone smart and has long term view with keen business sense to pick up the pace and start a snowball effect from a whiff of snowflake.
    Strange to say, except for the figure skating background, these qualifications were what people lauded Cinquanta for twenty years ago.

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    Personally as a casual fan I think the judging has been fine.

    Sotnikova had a huge homefield performance. Kostner also got a much bigger score than she ever had which is never really mentioned.

    In the Worlds Kostner got overscored again.

    Mao Asada wins every event in Japan. Including given highest score ever in the FS at Worlds.

    Yet all the venom is because Sotnikova finished ahead of Kim. Even if she hadn't got a bit of a homefield boost (just as other girls have) she still would have finished a close second.

  12. #42
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    A good 'modest' blog article from Jeremy Abbott's parents. I agree with several points particularly on the relevance of music in a sport that involves choreography. Musicality is among key reasons I have always like Jeremy's skating and his programs, even if he might not the most consistent competitor. I will remember his Muse FS from Sochi, even without Quads.

    http://ontheedgeofskating.blogspot.c...-proposal.html

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    As I recall, the World Skating Federation never tried to organize any skating events. They put their entire effort into legal challenges to the ISU on the grounds of monopoly and restraint of trade. When these legal challenges failed, the organization was through. The ISU banned the WSF organizers and went on with business as usual.
    Was it one of those cases when both parties rather care for discrediting each other than for achieving any pragmatic goals? If so, it definitely didn’t help the FS popularity in the US.

    The WSF made a number of mistakes. They coaxed the USFSA into issuing a statement saying that they agreed with the principles on which the WSF was organized -- fair judging, etc. -- then they advertised, misleadingly, that the USFSA was supporting their move to replace the ISU as the sanctioned figure skating organization in the IOC. This put the WSA on the outs with the leadership of the USFSA.
    Well, it was the very point, to persuade skating federations to choose WSF instead of ISU. It doesn’t seem that WSF had any other reason for existence; unless we consider this strategy itself a mistake which it apparently was because the existing federations proved to be not persuaded at all.

    Also it came out that almost all the skaters who supported the WSF were represented by IMG. It was widely believed that IMG bankrolled the whole protest in order to advance the fortunes of the agency and its clients. The WSF never denied or responded to these charges and refused to say where the money was coming from to pay the lawyers, etc.
    Why didn’t IMG sue the ISU on the ground of monopoly and restrain of the trade? They were in position to do it and they’d have much better chance to win. They represented skaters. They could provide facts that would prove that their trade had been restrained. They might try to get money out of the ISU or achieve some worthy compromise.
    WSF wanted to represent everyone but seems that they ended up representing no one when the hour came. A bit too big bite and too much risk I’d say.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    As I recall, the World Skating Federation never tried to organize any skating events. They put their entire effort into legal challenges to the ISU on the grounds of monopoly and restraint of trade. When these legal challenges failed, the organization was through. The ISU banned the WSF organizers and went on with business as usual.

    The WSF made a number of mistakes. They coaxed the USFSA into issuing a statement saying that they agreed with the principles on which the WSF was organized -- fair judging, etc. -- then they advertised, misleadingly, that the USFSA was supporting their move to replace the ISU as the sanctioned figure skating organization in the IOC. This put the WSA on the outs with the leadership of the USFSA.

    Also it came out that almost all the skaters who supported the WSF were represented by IMG. It was widely believed that IMG bankrolled the whole protest in order to advance the fortunes of the agency and its clients. The WSF never denied or responded to these charges and refused to say where the money was coming from to pay the lawyers, etc.

    That is really the problem with these petitions. Money talks, petitions walk. If the million people who signed the various petitions each sent in ten bucks, Mr. Cinquanta might be compelled to take notice.
    I was at the WSF initial announcement meeting in DC and asked Dick Button how much $$$$ the newly formed organization had - he said $200,000. Knew right then, it would fail.

  15. #45
    Skating is art, if you let it be. Blades of Passion's Avatar
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    Everything revolving around money and titles is truly a primitive state of being. It needs to be about the work and the ideas. The rest is worthless in the end.

    The ISU is now at a point where they can't coast on luxury, so real change should be far more possible.

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