Ah human nature, we do crave constant approval don’t we!
Football fans have this love/hate relationship with the mainstream media. We hate their ignorance and bias when it comes to ‘our’ sport yet still crave for them to love and embrace us… why???
Now let me get this out of the way. I am not an apologist for amateur pyro and certainly don’t support flares at matches. They are simply illegal so they should not be at matches – fullstop. However, the fact that is that today’s Sydney derby is sold out yet again, DESPITE the recent over the top coverage in the mainstream media indicates (to me at least) that people are now seeing through the hyperbole.
The image of fierce looking young men with tattooed chiseled torsos in the foreground of orange smoke was digital gold. These photos have been used countless times over the past 2 weeks. While admittedly not the most wholesome of looks, I don’t believe any of it (apart from the flare) is illegal. However, when the narrative is added that these are ‘football hooligans’ in our mythical squeaky-clean sporting landscape then it became an easy sell. Whether it was by design or omission, the picture was drawn that these things happen all over the stadium and only an irresponsible parent would bring their family to a game because NOBODY is safe attending an A-League match. It’s obviously bullshit, but that’s what some now believe.
However, with sincere apologies to my friends in the mainstream media; all the hysterical column inches, scripted talkback radio callers and coached TV interviews that painted a horrifying apocalyptic picture of attending an A-League match, have had ZERO impact on the popularity of the 3rd Sydney derby of the season. In other words, my theory that people are now consuming mainstream media as a form of entertainment rather than genuine fact is arguably closer to reality than many want to believe.
Now there’s an interesting topic for another blog!!!