“The Decision” and ESPN’s Ethics Fail: The Ombudsman Blows the Whistle

ESPN’s special broadcast turning LaBron James’ choice (pompously called “The Decision”) regarding which N.B.A. he would allow to sign him for millions upon millions of dollars was a landmark in the demonstration of bad taste, ego, greed and arrogance by professional athletes . As the sports networks ombudsman, Don Ohlmeyer, points out in a column almost nobody will read (do you think many of ESPN’s followers are jazzed by issues of journalistic ethics?), it was also a low point in responsible journalism, and shattered  professional ethics standards left and right. ESPN let James’ representatives to choose its own paid interviewer and allowed control the content and ad sales in return for giving ESPN an “exclusive” and a ratings bonanza. The result was a journalistic ethics meltdown.

Some highlights of his criticism (you can read Ohlmeyer’s entire analysis here) : Continue reading