Magno’s Monday Rant is back from the dead and re-energized for another run at boxing’s creeps, liars, and unrepentant douche bags. I’d like to give a special thanks to assistant editor Tim Harrison for the awesome job he did while I was on vacation.
After being out of the loop for a couple of weeks, the realities of the sport and its media always smack me hard in the face when I finally reconnect. Upon going through my inbox and checking over the boxing websites, I’m always amazed at how a fresh, re-focused mind takes me right back to how I felt when I first decided to start writing about the sport I love.
Everything gets crystal-clear, just like the first time I found out that the internet was full of boxing talk, but that most of the info was controlled by guys deep in the pockets of the sport’s dirtiest dealers.
Since then, nothing has really changed (although there are some pencil pokes here and there where people are starting to bring in some light through the solid wall of fecal matter).
There is no journalism in boxing today. No real scoops. No intrepid reporters looking to make the sport better for the athletes and their fans.
It’s all one big infomercial cut into bite-size nuggets and split up over several sites. Everything being “reported” has been pre-approved for publication by promoters, managers, and/or publicists. All of the “news” is really just publicity pushed into the trembling hands of a painfully compliant media.
And the behind-the-scenes boxing writer stuff is especially interesting. Watching all these guys fighting amongst themselves and jockeying for position to have their own spot as promoter stooges and messenger pigeons is equal parts humorous and pathetic. Fighting for the right to be buggered by much smarter men– Imagine that.
It’s no wonder most promoters and managers walk into media functions with the same attitude as traveling salesmen walking into rub & tug massage parlors. Without a doubt, the media is there to service them and it will happen. There’s nothing set in stone, nothing written anywhere, but it’s understood that the money men are getting that happy ending– and all it’s going to cost them is a deli platter and a platform upon which the gathered lemmings can scowl at a notepad and play big shot boxing writer.
The media comes when called, speaks when spoken to, and reports what they’re told to report. Hell, some are even employed by promoters. Others work for sites sponsored by the same promoters and managers they’re supposed to cover. The rest act like pilot fish, fighting over scraps and mimicking the crap they see from the industry big shots.
But none of this is new if you’re a regular reader of The Boxing Tribune and my Monday Rant.
When we first came on the scene and started naming names and pointing fingers at the media shills, we were hit hard. We found ourselves the focus of a nasty smear campaign that made it hard to hire a crew of writers, right at a time when we had received a big opportunity to do something big.
But we kept pushing through and doing our thing. We had no burning desire to be members of the boxing writers’ fraternity (at least most of us didn’t) and stood firm that our only loyalty is to the sport and to our readers. We’ve had our ups and downs as a site and have worked to find our identity as an operation, but we never stopped pushing forward. We may have stumbled naively at times, but we’ve never fallen.
Now, as I sit here in my Mexican cement bunker, surrounded by sun-faded boxing equipment and random medals from random events over the years, it’s clear to me that we have to take things to the next level.
Despite a concerted effort to shut us out and stop even linking to our site, The Boxing Tribune has developed a solid readership that has remained strong and consistent over the years. There is, indeed, a market for boxing news filtered through a critical eye. Independent thought isn’t limited to small-time, infrequently updated blogs and self-congratulatory vanity sites for guys who really only want to stroke their beards and sound intellectual.
So, with that in mind, I’d like to try and take us to that next level of readership and influence.
The first step in cleaning up the sport is establishing a free-thinking, independent media. And since none of the other sites seem interested in doing this, The Boxing Tribune would like to step up and give it a try.
But a lot of this will depend on you, the reader, and an augmented staff that we need to put together.
And that leads us to the main point of this comeback Rant.
We’re looking for some serious writers who can step up and become part of The Boxing Tribune team.
Covering the sport completely and in detail requires a real staff of independent critical thinkers dedicated to the work and dedicated to pushing for real reform.
We’re looking for news reporters who can report on stories without being influenced by money and favors from the power brokers or bogged down by blind ego. We could also use some quality analysts who can put that news into proper perspective and/or do fair recaps of the fight action.
Quality writing is a must; previous experience is a bonus, but not necessary. Remember, writing isn’t necessarily about comas and semi-colons. It’s about being honest, being brave, and being just competent enough with the pen to get your point across to the general reader. If you’re the next Hemingway, all the better. But we’re just looking for solid communicators.
Our pay scale remains the same and unlike any other site in the business. We pay via full profit share system. All revenue gets divided evenly among staff and all active writers get the same share of the money. The Editor-in-Chief doesn’t make a penny more than the most junior of staff writers.
While this is, admittedly, not yielding any of us a fortune at the moment, an ability to take the site to the next level would boost revenue greatly as well as open doors to other types of advertising. This will be as big as we’re willing to work and could make all of us some decent money, but it requires hard work and, as I’ve said, a larger staff than we currently employ.
If this sounds like something you’d like to do, if you’re down for the fight, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can get things rolling. I’ll probably ask for a writing sample and/or a link to previous pieces, just so I can guarantee the level of the work.
I’m sure the same shills and wannabe shills who attacked us the first time will do so again because of this effort to expand, but fuck them and fuck their bloated egos.
I’m tired of the sport, its athletes, and the fans always getting the pointy end of the screw job. And I’m tired of the media, which should be our first and strongest line of defense against the dirty players in the sport, working in cahoots with the creep and scum.
If this bothers you as well, then support The Boxing Tribune by sharing our articles or, if you’d like to give writing a try, come and be a part of our staff.
You can email Paul at email@example.com or watch for his upcoming line of boxing media action figures, complete with laminated press passes and kung fu ass grip. Paul is a full member of the Burger King Kids’ Club, a born iconoclast, and an ordained minister in the Universal Life Church.