A case of irresponsible reporting: Carnoustie greenkeeper suspended
Here is a portion of an article on Golf.Com:
[[John Philp was sent home last week after officials launched an investigation into a confrontation involving the 16-year-old apprentice.
The 59-year-old greenskeeper says he plans to be back when the British Open returns to Carnoustie on July 19-22.
“I would certainly hope to be back at work before the Open starts,” Philp said from his home in Carnoustie. “I cannot talk about the facts surrounding my suspension in detail, but hopefully this will be resolved soon. We have a month to sort this out and I am hopeful of that.”
David Duval, who won the 2001 British at Royal Lytham, called Philp an “out-of-control groundskeeper” in 1999 as some of the greatest players in the game struggled against the ultra-tough course with its thick, thigh-high rough and narrow fairways.” ]]
IN MY EXTREME OPINION, the anonymous article (no writer name attached) connects a human-on-human exchange (the greenkeeper-apprentice confrontation) with a completely unconnected one (the course setup in 1999.) IT IS APPARENT that the writer(s) seek to link the adjective “out-of-control,” loosely tossed by Duval in reference to high rough and narrow fairways, with the boss-employee behavior. THAT IS IRRESPONSIBLE REPORTING, as there is absolutely no track record of implied or proven employee abuse on John Philp’s part. IT IS A SALACIOUS ATTEMPT on the part of SOMEONE to connect two unique circumstances for the mere benefit of selling magazines/ web attention. ALTHOUGH I DO NOT DUCK FROM CONTROVERSY, I do not embellish it with unconnected facts. SHAME ON YOU, GOLF MAGAZINE!
|« Virginia Tech continues golfing rebirth||The wait is over for Tiger's baby ... girl »|
This blog is not only written in an extremely amateurish way (MORE CAPS, MAN, BEFORE WE RUN OUT!), it displays the sort of journalistic ignorance that's so prevalent on the Internet these days.
To my horror, there are apparently many people out there who believe that every blogger is a journalist.
Here is a powerful refutation of that.
First of all, RonMon, let me introduce you to the Associated Press. See that "AP" after the dateline? That's what it stands for.
This isn't an anonymous organization. It's one of the biggest and most famous wire services in the world. I think probably the majority of your readers are familiar with the AP.
If this stumps you, do a little research and find out first what the AP is, and second, the byline policy of the AP and its subscribers. I mean, you're a journalist now, right? You know how to do a little research?
Then, he selectively uses part of the story to try to prove his point, leaving out the parts that are also relevant.
The British Open is coming up soon and the head groundsleeper is suspended.
Ron, this is what is generally referred to as "news." In the golf world, in fact, it's fairly big news.
Now, when you do a "news" story, you try to put it in perspective for your readers.
Why is this guy newsworthy? Why is this incident newsworthy? Well, it turns out that -- in addition to being the head groundskeeper at a famous course, one that is hosting an upcoming major -- he's been involved in controversy in the past, making "news" -- hey, there's that word again.
As I recall, this is the same guy who said everybody should stop writing about Michelle Wie.
No mention by RonMon of the AP's last line of the story, crediting the greenskeeper, John Philip, with "transforming" Carnoustie, enabling it to attract the British Open after a gap of 24 years.
Let me conclude by saying THIS IS A SALACIOUS ATTEMPT BY THE BLOGGER TO INCITE STUPIDITY AND AND JOIN THE MEDIA-BASHING RIGHT-WING CONSPIRACY.
Then again, maybe he just doesn't know any better.
Journalist = professional liar and system whore
An example: If O.J. Simpson gets into a traffic altercation and gets arrested, would you not mention his previous issues? Or are you only allowed to mention his murder trial if, in fact, he is accused of killing someone else?
Obviously, this is extreme. Think John Daly, as well. If he gets arrested for, say, illegal milking of a cow, would you need to surpess all his other issues, being as they were non cow-milking related.
So the story is: Groundskeeper suspended. Oh, let us tell you more about THE GROUNDSKEEPER (figured you'd appreciate the caps) both good, and bad, to flesh out the story.
As for the AP, here's the deal, though just a bit of research would tell you this: Newspapers pay money for using AP stories. Part of the deal, however, is that the AP is allowed to take stories from these papers, and AP-ify them. And then they give no credit to the newspaper, or the original writer and just slap "AP" on it.
Back in the day I was picked up a few times by the AP, and I'm sure Tim was, likely hundreds of times. With no byline, however.
Sorry Ron, but a truly silly effort.
PS: Mr Booger, what the hell do you know about journalism?
"Philp was at his Carnoustie home yesterday as he awaited the outcome of the investigation.
He said: "This matter has been blown out of all proportion and I only hope that someone sees sense and resolves the issue as soon as possible.
"Other than that, I can't comment on the facts surrounding my suspension."
While I do not believe that the linking of the current incident with an unrelated past incident is the definition of good journalism, it is always nice to receive helpful tips on the anonymous ways of the AP (Anonymous Press?) from one's superiors.
However, I'll refute a few issues: Taconic Golf Club in Williamstowne, Mass., has a suggestion box in the middle of a pond on the fourth hole. No complaints on that one.
Shinnecock Hills in 2004 and most US Open courses end up with over-par winners, yet no one complains that their greenkeepers are "controversial." Same goes with Augusta National.
As far as the cow-milking and Simpson analogies, perhaps that's a problem with journalism. Each offense should stand on its own, unless there is a direct correlation to previous ones. And as far as not giving a byline when one is due, well, that's just plain silly.
And Shinnecock and other US Open courses are most certainly controversial, but ground staff there merely follow the orders of the USGA. Philp played a crucial personal role in dictating the nature of Carnoustie in 99, although he now denies juicing up the rough with liquid fertiliser - which Mickelson the other day accused the USGA of picking up on for their courses. The importance of his role is made clear by the fact that the R&A have promised to take a much more pro-active role in Carnoustie's set-up this time around.
It also intrigues me that Philp seems to spend much of his life in denial. He was at it again last month at the R&A's annual press conference: Carnoustie 99? Nothing to do with me guv. it was the unusual weather wot dunnit.
But he again made some rather injudicious comments about some of his detractors and accused Davis Love III of talking "a load of crap". My cynical mind wonders whether this might not have started alarm bells ringing among leading lights at Carnoustie and the R&A. Last thing they want is some kind of verbal spat with players during the Open itself garnering headlines for all the wrong reasons. As I said before, I have a strong suspicion the timing of all this is no coincidence.