Wednesday, March 11, 2009

You Can't Fight Here, This Is The War Room

Except it isn't and you can. Huge big dust-up over t'ArfCom, mostly Shooting USA host and producer Jim Scoutten on one side (and Caleb!) and several familiar, friendly faces on the other. Plus Say Uncle bein' moderate.

...And they're all right. For the forums each of them control.

The basic issue here is one of personal taste. I don't see where anyone involved is suggesting persons holding different notions -- or their hobbies -- ought to be thrown to the wolves, a la Zumbo. One guy thinks one thing, another thinks something else -- and they each proceed to go act on their own ideas, without trying to stop one another.

There aren't any villains here. I usually watch "Gun Night" on the Outdoor Life Channel and I've noticed Shooting USA tries very hard to be family-friendly and non-scary. Other shooting programs, competing for the same eyeballs and advertisers, take different approaches. Come back in ten years and I'll tell you which one did a better job of it.

There are a lot of us. Most gunnies do some sort of outreach. Some have a longer reach than others -- and we all make our own editorial decisions.

We're not a hive mind. Isn't that the point? And while disagreement is a normal part of life, don't we have better fights to pick than with one another?


Turk Turon said...

I say let a thousand flowers bloom.

I'm OK with just about any shooting sport, including Knob Creek, Boomershoot and live pigeon shooting.

No problemo!

But as somebody in the TV biz for over thirty years, I realize that some sports are just more telegenic than others. For example, European-style road racing (F1 and sports car) is very difficult and expensive to cover due to the extended length of the tracks, requiring a huge investment in cameras and gear spread over an area of several square miles. There may be dozens of corners, each requiring three or more cameras, plus an operator for each camera, and a director and a technical director for each corner. By contrast, oval-track racing, like Indy and NASCAR, is much more telegenic - easier to cover - all of the cameras are literally within sight of each other. And for sports with limited mass-appeal, like shooting, even the "easy-to-cover" disciplines, like Olympic clay target shooting, don't get coverage on TV; even when there is an American, like Kim Rhode, who is likely to get the gold medal.

One day there may be some sort of technical breakthrough, like live on-car cameras, that will revolutionize TV coverage of shooting sports, but until then...

Hey, you can't smell the gunpowder over TV. Why sit at home? Go out and DO!

Drang said...

Hear, hear. This all seems like a tempest in a teapot. Mr. Scouten knows his business better than I, and while I would like to see Boomershoot, if he feels it's not a good fit for his show, that's his call. It's disappointing, but, as you say, he does not deserve to be Zumboed over this.

I just wish I got outdoor Life TV with my satellite package!

Anonymous said...

Ever watched an NCAA rifle match with electronic targets? That technical breakthrough is here.

It doesn't just show each shot as it's made. It shows the group, the trend, and the running score for every competitor. No $1200 spotting scope, no sclerotic old scorers, no waiting for the end of the match to see who's ahead. The lobby at OTC in ColoSpgs is SRO and breathless during finals. Quite thrilling, actually, old top.

Anonymous said...

Eh, at least in fighting each other, we can rest relatively assured that the other party will actually read what we have to say, consider it, and respond intelligently.

With folks on the entirely opposite side of the fence, that guarantee is nowhere to be found.

Makes the fights at least more entertaining...

Kevin said...

I just want to make this point:

"Mr. Scouten knows his business better than I, and while I would like to see Boomershoot, if he feels it's not a good fit for his show, that's his call." - D.W. Drang

That's not what the tempest in a teacup is all about. It's about Scoutten's assertion that he believes that no one should televise events like Boomershoot or Knob Creek.

That's a discussion that needs to be had, because I believe he's wrong.

Roberta X said...

So, one guy with a TV show is (IYO) wrong? ...And?

While I am not a big fan of the "Don't scare the soccer Moms" approach myself, let us please remember that the press is still free and Mr. Scoutten is no censor; he can believe events like Boomshoot ought not be televised just as fervently as he chooses but there is only one television program he can prevent televising it: his own.

The man knows his own mind and I see no reason to take him to task for his expressed thoughts and actions. We veer perilously close to our own flavor of PC-speak when we indulge ourselves in such chiding.