Sunday, 18 November 2007

A Lesson in MSM Rumour Mongering

by Jes

We all know the Mainstream Mediots like to churn the rumour mills in order to sell more papers. Who cares if there are actual facts to back up the supposed rumours, as long as the rumour sounds plausible, people will start talking, and players will start getting nervous.

Here is an 'article' from Steve Simmons of the London Free Press, which basically says nothing, yet churns the old "JFJ is on his way out" routine.

Talk shows and frustrated fans aren't the only people conversing about the Maple Leafs these days.

NHL executives have been playing their own game of gossip -- some of it more than gossip -- wondering amongst themselves who will be the next general manager and next coach of the Leafs.

Many are saying they believe change is imminent. But in fairness, that story has been out there for awhile.

If you are stupid like me, and actually read the entire thing, you'll come to realize that

1. There is no mention of an actual name. NHL Executives is a very generic term...what is the accounting controller of the Florida Panthers is talking about John Ferguson Jr. Is that really a good source? Technically, the Marketing Manager of the St. Louis Blues is an NHL executive. Notice how Simmons doesn't actually seem to have talked to any of these individuals?

2. There is no concrete mentionof WHAT the Leafs will actually do and when. It's really just water-cooler gossip "Pssst.. do you think JFJ will be canned today"

Look, many of us believe JFJ is on thin ice, but if you are going to print something as a rumour, try to back it up with actual evidence. All this article does is fan the flames and make it harder to JFJ to do his job with confidence. All the while, fans will get a false sense of what may or may not be happening.

Some say Eklund is full of crap, and he is, but how does a guy like Simmons have any more credibility? This sounds like something from a message board, not a major newspaper.

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