I’m back from a much-needed two-week vacation. Many thanks to Tim Harrison for handling the Rant in my absence and for doing a great job in running things while I was taking a breather.
If you’re looking for perspective and a return to form, the best thing in the world is to just take a few steps back and remove yourself from the day-to-day grind of actually doing the job. This is especially true in the world of boxing writing, a nasty little world populated by shills and idiots that can suck you into its vortex and, before you even realize it, have you focusing all of your energies on things that actually have nothing to do with the sport.
For example– Right before I went on vacation, one of our writers was sent a steaming pile of cat dung by one of the industry’s smarmier writers.
This guy, who has turned self-congratulation into high art, is best known by knowledgeable readers for lovingly and publicly milking the virtual prostates of fighters from specific managers and promoters who just “happen” to have advertising space on his website.
Anyway, this creep wrote a nasty email to one of my guys, basically undressing him privately for not being up to professional standards and for not assuming the proper protocol.
It was really nasty stuff. I mean, real seventh grade girl stuff. Catty. It smelled of a teenage girls’ first battle with PMS.
In any case, this guy who works in a diseased den of professional conflicts and giddily (and regularly) engages in rumor-mongering in between self-righteous, sanctimonious sermons about his own awesomeness, was really keen on hurting my guy with a nasty, meow-ridden email.
But, as I’ve told my teammates in the past– don’t ever acknowledge an ego-maniac and don’t ever engage in drama with a drama queen. This is something that I’ve had to learn the hard way in this business because so many of these “hard-edged” reporters are little more than bed-wetting, metro-sexual drama queens. I’ve had countless minutes/hours of my time bogged down in meaningless squabbles with guys who are simply not worth the effort. Hopefully, I can pass down this “don’t feed the troll” mentality to future generations who may come to work with me. Hence, the reason I did not just mention the name of the catty scribe in question.
Of course, when these swine actually do something worth slashing, I will be all over them. The Boxing Tribune will never be one of those fake mean blogs that kisses all the “big” asses while saving all its nastiness and harsh “analysis” for those who can’t do anything for them professionally. The Boxing Tribune will be as real as it gets for as long as I’m still at the helm. I just won’t be wasting any more of my personal time with stuff related to drama queens. Just take it for granted that those in the boxing writing business, as a general group, are only slightly more respectable than scat porn site owners and guys who run mail order bride businesses. And, for the record, all future harassing emails sent to our staff members by big shot writers will now be “on the record” and subject to public posting.
But getting to the title of this Rant.
I honestly don’t think there’s a single real journalist in boxing. Real journalists aren’t subsidized by the same people they have to cover. Real journalists don’t simply rehash press releases and use them as news content. Real journalists don’t spend all day gossiping on social media and passing rumors off as facts. Real journalists don’t carry their agendas around like 20 lb. overcoats.
And, no, I don’t consider myself a real journalist, either.
I’m comfortable with my role as a bomb throwing misanthrope and fine with letting the younger Tribune guys work the craft of journalism, but I’m also willing to dig in and learn. And, most importantly, I’m willing to stand out here alone, with no promoter or manager financing my site, and write the truth as best I see it. Maybe I will never become a real journalist, but I will continue being one of the bravest people in this business– one whose only agenda is to actually get the real story out there from the perspective of someone with no personal agenda, no conflict of interest, and no interest in selling his soul to reach a few thousand extra eyeballs.
Hell, maybe The Boxing Tribune’s efforts will all be for naught. Maybe people just don’t care about where their news comes from and why it gets strategically placed in front of them at all the right times.
But you can be damn sure that we’ll be there pissing shills off and holding the true villains of the sport accountable for anyone willing to come and get our independent take on the issues. And you can be damn sure that we’ll keep getting catty emails from other writers who love pointing a finger, but hate having it pointed back at them. But, like I said, now we will be printing these little correspondences in full, just so our readers can see the egos and general nastiness of the boxing media establishment.
Ultimately, The Boxing Tribune’s only allegiance is to the fans and the fighters. We don’t care about being big shots at ringside or about joining the Loyal Order of Buffet Diving Boxing Scribes. Our goal is to get the truth out there. When we first started to put on the heat, several key people attempted to blacklist us and convince writers not to work for us. As a result, things have a been bit more difficult when it comes to putting together a staff. But I wouldn’t trade my guys for anything. We have integrity, something that can’t be taught in school and definitely can’t be learned under the guidance of professionals who snortle at the silliness of “integrity” talk.
At the end of the day, everyone at The Boxing Tribune can rest comfortably at night, knowing that we won’t have to regularly toss salads and do moral gymnastics regarding what we can say versus what we better not mention. And no matter how young and/or inexperienced any of us are, none of us would have the absolutely disgraceful gall to write a “Who are you? Do you know who I am?” put-down email to another scribe.
So, consider this a call to arms of sorts. We have big things coming. Fuck you shills and fakes.
You can email Paul at firstname.lastname@example.org or watch as he gleefully pokes sticks at several of boxing’s human centipedes. Paul is a full member of the Burger King Kids’ Club, a born iconoclast, and an ordained minister in the Universal Life Church. He’s also a Featured Writer for the Yahoo! Contributor Network, Fox Sports, and has done work for several other fine (and not so fine) boxing websites which may or may not still owe him money.