By Ken Reed
Earlier this week, the NBA announced it was scrapping the idea of putting small corporate logos on their teams’ uniforms — at least for now.
The rumored reason for the decision is that complications and complexities related to conflict issues between player sponsors and team uniform sponsors were too much to deal with at this juncture. For example, consider the messy issues involved if a given team sold a uniform sponsorship to a competitor of a star player’s endorser? Pepsi and Coke, for example.
It’s also been rumored that the concept was tabled when owners couldn’t decide how to divide up the revenue. Ah, good ol’ owner greed.
But it’s also possible that fan pushback played a role. Opposition to the idea was heavy on Twitter, using the hashtag #NoUniAds. And NBA offices received a large volume of emails and phone calls on the issue. The League of Fans weighed in against the idea via several outlets, sent a letter to NBA commissioner David Stern, and started a petition drive to stop corporate logos on NBA uniforms. Stern has come out and said he’s not for the idea but that he wouldn’t stand in the way of owners moving forward if that was their decision. Now, there’s strong ownership.
At any rate, the bottom line is the fans pick up a win on this one.
“The news that the NBA has backed off of its plan to add advertising patches to its jerseys for the 2013-14 season is a huge win for fans who’ve grown weary of a sports landscape in which every surface, every element, every conceivable aspect of every game is treated as a salable commodity,” wrote Paul Lukas on espn.com. “For now, at least, the NBA’s uniforms are not for sale.”
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #10 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: An Issues Discussion With Paul Dolan – Dolan is the Cleveland Indians Owner and CEO. He discusses the use of Native American names and logos by sports teams and the decisions to drop the Chief Wahoo logo and the upcoming change to the team name. Other baseball topics include health and safety, possible MLB rule changes and youth participation in the sport.
Follow on Facebook: @SportsForumPodcast
Episode #9 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports Issues With Ralph Nader – Nader is a consumer advocate and was named one of the “100 Most Influential Americans of the 20th Century” by Time magazine. He is the founder of League of Fans.
Episode #8 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: How Can We Save College Sports From Overcommercialization and Professionalization? – The guest is Dr. David Ridpath, a sports business professor and past president of the Drake Group
Episode #7 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Brain Trauma and CTE Risk in Sports With Dr. Ann McKee – Dr. McKee works in the field of neuropathology and has demonstrated that “mild” repetitive head trauma can provoke chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a devastating neurodegenerative disease.
Episode #6 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: The Need for Quality Physical Education in Our Schools is Greater Than Ever – The guest is Clayton Ellis, one of our nation’s leading advocates for getting our young people to be more physically active.
Episode #5 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Youth Sports with Positive Coaching Alliance Founder Jim Thompson – Thompson started Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) in 1998 to help create a movement to transform the culture of youth sports from “win-at-all-costs” to a positive, character-building experience.
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
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