If my 18-year-old daughter, heading off to college this fall, told me today she’s going to college to start as a career as a sports TV journalist, my first reaction would be: Talk to those who are doing it, the ones you admire, and find out how they’re successful. Talk particularily to those who’ve been doing it more than 10 years. Beauty only goes so far in the visual media. You need context and content, not controversy. Remember Jill Arrington? (Try sidelinehotties.com).
That said, it’s disappointing that Erin Andrews hasn’t done more to stiffle the media that’s made her into a celebrity prop and done more to show her journalistic chops. Other female reporters can look at her as a perfect example of what not to do — on or off the field.
We’re not saying she’s at fault for having someone rig a video camera up to a hotel door and film her doing whatever she was doing inside — and then make it available on the Internet, despite all that ESPN has done over the last few weeks to stiffle it.
We’re in full agreement with the immediate response to this by USA Today’s Christine Brennan, who launched a Tweet the other day that, of course, was immediately misconstrued: “Women sports journalists need to be smart and not play the frat house. There are tons of nuts out there. Erin Andrews incident is bad, but to add perspective: there are 100s of women sports journalists who have never had this happen to them.”
It’s just that … you’ll see more when we try to get our heads around it for Friday’s media column….