Zak Woods and Steve Cofield raises an interesting point: while the UFC is recession proof and continues to surge while others droop, one thing that hasn’t kept up is mainstream media attention. This isn’t because MMA has lost it’s ‘new big thing’ status, but because everyone in the media is hacking and slashing their reporters and there’s no one left to cover the sport:
The local television stations show up to all these events but fewer and fewer newspapers and radio stations are in attendance. WatchKalibRun points out that the Columbus Dispatch basically ignored the event in favor of The Arnold Classic, the state wrestling tournament and Ohio State hoops. That’s not a shocker. There is not one single newspaper nationally that travels a reporter to UFC events and when the Octagon comes to town the print coverage is often sporadic.
The media crew that consistently covers the UFC around the country can be counted on two hands. In fact, the UFC has lost at least one good reporter who covered the sport in Mike Chiappetta formerly with NBC.com and it looks like Showdown Joe Ferraro from Rogers SportsNet is only attending roughly 1-of-4 shows.
I’m not sure if it’s because media has thinned, because I’m in Montreal, or because they think I’m someone else, but I actually received a press credential email from the UFC for 97. It might mean something or it might not, but I found it interesting considering all the other shit Dana has been saying lately … “I love the internet fans”, “Come party with me in Boston, internet fans”, “The internet kept this sport alive”, etc etc etc. Hell, Dana went from calling MMA sites ‘parasitic’ to creating video blog content for them to post every week before an event!
Now we all remember just a short while ago Dana White taking every opp he got to shit on us in the past. But that was before the economy went in the tank and the death of traditional newspaper and media coverage was sped up about 15 years. Everyone is hemmoraging money and no one wants to spend the money covering the UFC. So are we witnessing a policy shift in the UFC towards new media?