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 #26 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: How Can We Fix Youth Sports? – John O’Sullivan is Founder and CEO of Changing the Game Project and author of “Changing the Game: The Parents Guide to Raising Happy, High Performing Athletes and Giving Youth Sports Back to Our Kids.” We discuss overzealous adults in youth sports, the dangers of sport specialization, youth sports entrepreneurs and the profit-at-all-costs mindset, and the growing socio-economic gap in youth sports.
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Episode #25 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Physical Education Should Be a Critical Component of K-12 School Design – Michael Horn is co-founder of the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation.
Episode #24 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Mental Health and Athletes: Ending the Stigma – Nathan Braaten and Taylor Ricci are the founders of Dam Worth It, a non-profit created to end the stigma around mental health at colleges and universities through sport, storytelling, and community creation.
Episode #23 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Olympian Benita Fitzgerald Mosley Talks Title IX, Youth Sports and the Olympics.
Episode #22 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Rethinking Sports Fandom with Author Craig Calcaterra – We discuss Calcaterra’s new book “Rethinking Fandom: How to Beat the Sports-Industrial Complex at Its Own Game” and explore new ways to be a fan.
Episode #21 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Chatting About a Broken Game With Baseball Writer Pedro Moura – Moura is a national baseball writer for Fox Sports. We discuss how and why the game of baseball is broken, what factors caused it, and offer a few thoughts on how to “fix” a great game.
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.
- League of Fans Sports Policy Director Ken Reed quoted in Washington Post column titled "What happened to P.E.? It’s losing ground in our push for academic improvement," by Jay Mathews
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.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
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