I'm sure Colin Cowherd has listeners today that he never had before because of this little stunt. Many people had never heard of Colin before yesterday. Particularly because the majority of his listeners are West Coast or small market listeners. Colin knows the blogosphere is powerful and "family", but he also knows the blogosphere cannot do battle against the powers of ESPN. I used to be a fan until about 6 months ago - I got sick of his bullyish attitude and claiming to callers to not bring that stuff on my show because this is "big boy radio". I believe the purpose of his little game was to generate internet publicity for his crappy show (which just so happens to now be available on the web). He knew that he needed an internet audience now that he is available on the web, so he pulled this little stunt to try and get us. Howard Stern knows there is no such thing is bad publicity in the world of shock jocks, and so does Colin. Is it working? I think so - as I mentioned, he probably has more listeners today and plenty of extra viewers to his stupid little webcam thing today because of kicking around the little guy.
So... how should we approach this little battle?
I'm suggesting that the way to win this little war is by starting and promoting a massive boycott. And when I say boycott, I mean boycotting anything and everything that is ESPN. I mean seriously - hit them where they can feel it. I personally started this boycott in my own mind back when they got rid of Shanoff, and started charging for anything and everything over on their site. It was made official about 6 months ago when the whole Harold Reynolds thing happened. Just by complete irony, TBL was the blog that was all over that story.
So... (and I know some of you have already done this) on with the boycott:
If you watch ESPN, specifically Sportcenter, start watching something else. Find another source for your demanding sports information. FoxSports is not the greatest and I know they're not as good, and don't have the resources, but be patient - this is going to be a long battle. There will soon be other shows to choose from - they're coming.
If you listen to ESPN the Radio - Mike & Mike, Shrutebag, Dan Patrick - switch to FOXSports Radio immediately, or better yet - get XM or Sirius and listen to all things but ESPN. It has even been mentioned that Tony K is now available on XM in the mornings. (I personally don't mind Mike & Mike, but you gotta send a message)
If you subscribe to ESPN, the magazine - cancel today! Go back to SI.
If ESPN.com is your homepage - change it to SI.com; Sportsline.com, Mlb.com, Deadspin.com, something, anything but the 4 letter!
If you like watching ESPN baseball games - take one for the team, and subscribe to MLB.tv or the Extra Innings package. ESPN's ratings will take a hit, the Extra Innings package and MLB.tv link you to the local affiliates channels, not the ESPN broadcast.
Ratins are the bottom line for those guys - they are already afraid of the Blog community and the recent reports of Foxsports.com taking over the ratings lead in the .com race is bad news for them as well.
Someone with knowledge of the web and more time on their hands could also start a petition on a boycottespn.com website. Then we can all sign - it'd take thousands of signatures, but with enough star power we could have guys like Colin removed from the airwaves before we would lift our boycott.
This is just an idea - but I think it could work, as long as someone powerful and credible was leading it - and we all stayed committed to the cause.
p.s. - As for the guys at TBL - I hope you guys have a nice weekend actually enjoying the outside world, it's just ashame the weather sucks this weekend. But seriously - get that blog back up and running soon... because we really miss it!
Oh... and Colin has a myspace page? Is this true? Now THIS we could have fun with!
Colin's myspace page
Update 1: this doesn't appear to be Colin's actual page - just a tribute page to his greatness.
Update 2: boycottespn has been launched... but honestly - it would require much more than this. A petition would need to be started, stating that we decide to boycott espn until they can Colin Cowherd for starters. This petition would need to signed by thousands - then emailed to espn repeatedly. Would the blog world be willing to launch an attack like that on Espn? Well... I guess that's to be determined. My initial thoughts are we as bloggers (after a day of ranting and raving) will probably decide to let it slide by, and just forget about it and accept the fact that ESPN just landed a major blow. We need a big name: Deadspin, KSK, With Leather, or TBL to spearhead this attack and push it in the right direction. Can enough of us convince them to do that - or are you thoughts that it is not worth the fight?