Nieman | SB Nation CEO on how we’re fans of teams, not sports … and what that means for news ::might not play for news::


Think of a typical newspaper sports section. It covers everything sports. Football, baseball, soccer, gymnastics — whatever season it is, that’s what you get. There’s a regional emphasis, but still, golf and ice skating live on the same pages. (SB Nation CEO Jim) Bankoff’s approach is to think about people’s habits, rather than a broad topic. “We’re not fans of sports — we’re fans of teams,” Bankoff says. “We’re not fans of television. We’re fans of shows.” Are we interested in health? Perhaps, but we’re definitely interested in a disease, when we have one.

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This piece notes that “SB Nation tosses aside the idea of objectivity” and shows how that works for sports. However, it’s not clear it would work for coverage of, say, politics. Fans in that arena tend to be less openly or constructively critical of their own.