On basketball coverage and Australia's maturing relationship with media
What can Australian media learn from the way basketball is covered in this country?
Australian sports fans are smarter than the media apparatus gives them credit for. Strange way to start a basketball article, right?
The Pick and Roll is a niche platform that devotes 100% of its resources to covering basketball. You are already reading our work, which means you are intellectually more demanding of your sporting content than most. You value the power of independent journalism, within an Australian market that has one of the most concentrated media ownership regimes in the developed world. This, of course, results in less diversity, fewer voices and inferior coverage of vital, generationally defining moments. If the coverage of truly important events like a federal election is poor, what are the chances sport lovers have of getting premium content and information to accompany their fanaticism?
Why is this relevant for a basketball website? In many ways, it isn’t. There will be a large percentage of people reading this, who don’t care about the inner workings of a media landscape. Not quite #StickToSports, but a related cousin is the sentiment that “I want my news, and that’s all.” And I get it. The past three years has thrown a continual parade of meta discussions into the public sphere. Running away into the bliss of a Josh Giddey pick and roll is guaranteed to be more aesthetic than delving into the narcissisms of an already vain industry.
Back to basketball. My running theory is that basketball is the vehicle that has platformed some of the leading journalists in Australia. Is that self-aggrandising? Sure. It certainly is, as my bias (more on this later) is firmly focused on supporting the people who write for and read websites like this one. But stay with me on this. There have never been any recognised pathways for journalists and content creators with a basketball bent.
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