writing style of front page content

Submitted by karpodiem on February 24th, 2013 at 7:28 PM

has anyone else decreased mgoblog consumption due to the strange writing style of front page content? Beyonce? Oklahoma? Really? Why is this necessary? And this seems to be the normal style for front page content for the last year or so.

Yes, it's February and this is traditionally a slower time of year (hey, basketball!) But in the history of my site patronage, my perception is that the front page content has become increasingly more difficult to read with numerous bizarre allusions. 

And I'm aware that posting this on the board for people who still read the site more frequently will probably generate a chilly response, but I'm ok with that. Just wondering if there are people still lurking around that feel the same way.



February 24th, 2013 at 8:09 PM ^

Love Seth's diaries, he's got a great writing style.  I will say, howeva, that Ace is this season's Most Improved Poster (writer...whatever). 

but I think the OP is a bit too sensative regarding this low period in the football season input, and I think that if front page stuff is always the same, it gets stale.  Changing things up once in a while, but paying respects to the old classics, is a fine mix.  Just roll with it...just my two cents.


February 24th, 2013 at 8:16 PM ^

I'm in the same boat with this.

I'm sure some of Seth's stuff is good, it just doesn't click with me.

I also agree with the above poster about Ace. He's come a long way in his writing, and I've come to really enjoy reading his posts.

The OP also has to think that he is complaining about this in February, which is the slow period for content.

We literally have the hoops team, and the very start of a new recruiting class. That's it. Brian has gone on a boycott of the hockey team so we don't get updates there (not that it's not a well-deserved boycott).

Content will start heating up once spring practice starts and we have the spring scrimmage and what not, and the basketball team will be entering the tourney.

If you still don't like it then, well I don't know what to tell you.


February 24th, 2013 at 7:37 PM ^

I agree.  The writers these days seem to aim for being witty and unique rather than straightforwardly informative.  I'm okay with a joke now and then, but the inside jokes get tiresome sometimes.

I used to spend a lot of time on the front page content, but now I skim it and head for the board.

eamus_caeruli (not verified)

February 24th, 2013 at 8:11 PM ^

Your sarcasm is sarcastic! I hope you weren't serious, though, because Ace is a discernible downgrade from Tom and Tim. MGOBlog isn't as good, and I find Brian to be like Jim Caray. Hilarious for a awhile, but how my times can you hear the same routine, jokes and find it amusing or interesting?


February 25th, 2013 at 1:01 AM ^

I don't think that's fair to Ace. First of all, I don't know that he's a huge downgrade from Tim right now. he was at first but once he got his feet under him, he has been great. As far a Tom, he's where he is now for a reason. He had a lot of contacts and a great reputation. You aren't going to keep guys like that around a free site very long and people should just feel fortunate he was here as long as he was. Ace will continue to gain contacts and experience and get better. I'm assuming we are also talking about guys who aren't making themselves rich in these jobs. You guys also aren't giving Heiko credit for forging the thing I looked forward to more than any other content in the football season: His interaction with Borges.

I don't, know but all this seems like a bunch of bitching to bitch. There is plenty of stuff out there for Michigan and if you want dried out information go there. I enjoy the sytle of this site because I'm not reading a newspaper. I'm reading actual people who have a vested fan interest in what goes on and you do get more than the facts, especially with the Monday posts after games. It's much more relatable. 



March 1st, 2013 at 11:27 AM ^

What is it about the internet that prompts people to make derogatory comments directly about the capabilities of perfectly nice people providing you free content? Anyone being openly critical like this about guys like Ace or Seth is flat out a dick.

Coastal Elite

February 24th, 2013 at 7:52 PM ^

Just want to make sure I'm getting this straight... you head for the board to avoid the inside jokes? We've already got one entirely pointless "this will end well" comment in this thread (predictably upvoted to 5), and I'll set the over/under on Kate Upton shots, "turning the tide of the rivalry" mentions, and RollTide and/or Section 1 references at +/- 10.

FWIW I completely agree with you that the increasingly insular writing is ruining MGoBlog (especially by comparison to its peer blogs in the Big Ten, such as, regrettably, 11W), but I think the board is every bit as nauseating in that regard as the front page.

turd ferguson

February 24th, 2013 at 7:58 PM ^

"Straightforwardly informative" would make for a very dull Michigan sports blog. You seem to be aware of this given that your own blog is saturated with models and unsuspecting girls wearing Michigan stuff. Personally, I strongly prefer the approach that Brian and Seth have taken - with real voice and personality - to the approach you've taken.


February 24th, 2013 at 8:37 PM ^

I agree.  This is the stuff that make this site different as well as outstanding.  It's not dry, it's witty.  It's not just a sports column, it's prose.  I know some people only come here for the information and that's fine.  But the site offers a lot more than that, and it's found on the front page.  


February 25th, 2013 at 1:57 PM ^

But don't you feel like it's been trying to ram its personality down our throats a little more the last year or two? Everything always has to be quirky or a meme. No one ever says "run-first pro-style offense" anymore, it's always "MANBALL." Things like this get tiresome after awhile and what used to give this blog personality is now very overbearing and often unnecessary. (Not that this stops me from checking this site a thousand times a day.)


February 24th, 2013 at 8:26 PM ^

Look, this blog is great and is THE cyber pub for all UM fanatics.  I agree with Magnus....maybe this is an age related view; however, sometimes it is too much snark and over reliance on pop culture or insider references.  This audience probably spans 50 years in age variation and, perhaps, that is not considered.  Now that this has been mentioned, I do seem to move straight to the board more often.   


February 25th, 2013 at 9:07 AM ^

Before Dan Patrick and Keith Olberman the show was a pretty straight forward sports news report aside from the annoying Chris Berman nicknames...but once Dan and Keith started the "Big Show" the level of snark and "witticisms" rose exponentially to the point of rendering the show unwatchable, an issue that has grown even worse over time.


February 24th, 2013 at 7:38 PM ^

There are more contributors, each one being slightly different, so maybe that explains it. But I try not to complain when everything's free of charge.  If you really feel strongly about it, just write Brian.


February 24th, 2013 at 7:38 PM ^

You do realize you're reading a blog, right? I mean if straight news from sober people is your bag that's understandable, but then this was never that in the first place. Ever read some of Brian's stuff from 2005-'06?


February 24th, 2013 at 7:49 PM ^

In the past, you've presented blogs as being just as legitimate as traditional news sources but now you're using the defense of "we're just a blog." Anyways, I disagree with the OP, I enjoy the style of writing on this site. However, I could see how some people might not appreciate the sense of humor.


February 24th, 2013 at 8:25 PM ^

First Seth was Misopogon, then he was Seth, now he's the editor. Seth has occassionally edited my contributions, but I don't think Brian and Ace have to pass everything by him before they post front page stuff, and if Seth is the editor, no one else is editing his stuff.

I tend to get Brian's perspective and writing style more than Seth's, but I always figured that's because Brian and I are engineers, whereas Seth reads books and knows about history and stuff like that.


February 24th, 2013 at 9:46 PM ^

Well "Editor" is an official title and that's Brian's title. But yes I'm still the copyeditor. I'm Business Manager and Associate Editor, and the Publisher of Hail to the Victors. Long title, I know.

On copyediting: yeah it's hard to edit your own stuff. If I had to rank the MGoStaff on typos on the 1st draft (from fewest to most) it's Ace, Me, Brian, Heiko, Brian's bolded subconscious. If you want to include the outside writers, Mathlete is the new last place and BiSB is too soon to tell. Ace has now gone 6 months without a "teh" -- that' big yo.

First Brian hired me as a copyeditor. Then I took on Dear Diary. Then I split Dear Diary into two weekly posts and got paid twice as much for it. Then I took on the business manager role when TomVH left since he was developing something like that before me. Then I took HTTV independent.

My duties: write my 2 weekly columns, copyedit everything on the front page, do some ombudsman-like stuff when required, provide direction for the moderators, handle all of our business transactions and advertising, handle all of our promotions (e.g. the weekly t-shirt giveaway), and just generally be a (poor man's) backup Brian.

I don't have equity in the blog--I draw a salary. I do have equity in Hail to the Victors, which in the future will be published out of a new company I'm starting. I'm also planning a book for Black Shoe Diaries and for Inside the Hall, and we want to launch a MIchigan basketball book this year. Brian's a small part of those other books.

As for engineers vs. historians who dabble in paleoanthropology, I'd like to say for the record that of all the MGoStaff I'm the only one who blogs on a computer I built all be meself. Unless you count Chris Cook (Brian's brother who built our servers out of alien spaceships) but that's just not fair.


February 25th, 2013 at 12:10 AM ^

I realize that you have gained a reputation for being jerk-ish to people on this site and that it's something of a feature/bug that's part of the package that includes your excellent video production, but...

Have you ever worked in a team setting with people who divide responsibilities? It sounds like you're bashing Brian for not being involved with every element of the site's day-to-day operation. As if he weren't working hard enough or something.

Do you know how dumb that sounds? This site is what it is because of Brian and no one else. Seth is an asset to it, as are Ace and Heiko; but without Brian this is just another sports blog and it isn't close to the phenomenon that it has become.

Brian provides a viewpoint, writing style, and level of content that are unique and inextricably crucial to the quality of this site. The things you are griping about him not doing are, with no offense intended to Seth, things that multiple people are capable of and qualified to do. If Seth were to get hired by someone else, Brian could replace him with someone who could do a lot of the same things. 

But nobody can provide what Brian does. And, in case you forget, it involves a whole boatload of work, especially during football season. Not to mention many of the technical things that Brian handles himself. 

Seth collaborates, doing things that he is good at, allowing Brian to focus on the things that only he can do. That's how teamwork works.


February 25th, 2013 at 1:19 AM ^

I guess I wasn't clear, probably because I was actually trying not to be jerkish to Seth (no really, I was!). What I meant to suggest was that since Seth is doing all the behind the scenes stuff, maybe he shouldn't try to write Brian's blog too. I could have waited until Monday to get Brian's take. Now, instead of a post, it will probably only be a bullet in UV.