bloggers win again

; aka: up yours, mark cuban

earlier this month i had the pleasure of meeting dallas mavericks owner mark cuban at the Digg party at sxsw. i had about 30 seconds of his attention so the first thing i asked him to do was take a look at kareem abdul-jabbars blog on the LA Times, and when he didnt immediately walk away i asked him to buy my chicago cubs. he said he would do both things if sam zell would open the books for the cubs.

but then almost the very next day cuban wrote some crud in his blog about how bloggers arent kewl enough to be in the mavs’ locker room, although he would let the blogger in there.

i sorta ignored it, figuring the commish would fine him or talk with him or something. but when the lakers came into town, sure enough cuban cockblocked lakers blogger andy kamenetzky. our complaints joined the chorus of criticisms from other pro bloggers and today the league is forcing cuban to do the right thing. Dallas Morning News:

The NBA has instructed the Mavericks to re-open the team’s home locker room to properly credentialed full-time bloggers who were banned earlier this month.

Bloggers, including The Dallas Morning News’ Tim MacMahon, again will be allowed locker room access when the team returns to American Airlines Center for Wednesday’s game against the Golden State Warriors.

MacMahon, who primarily blogs for The News’ Web site, was barred earlier this month. Bloggers from’s TrueHoop and the Los Angeles Times also have been turned away. The visitors’ locker room at AAC has remained open to all credentialed media.

“It’s a new media age, and there are more ways for people to get information than ever before,” said Brian McIntyre, the NBA’s senior vice president for basketball communications. “That creates a lot of challenges for all of us who deal with the media, but we will deal with it.”

because the owner needs to have the last word on everything, he pouted in only the way he knows how, by blowing it out of proportion:

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, who contended the team’s locker room was not large enough to accommodate all bloggers, accepted the league’s edict but added a caveat. Via e-mail, Cuban said the Mavericks will open their locker room to all credentialed bloggers, regardless of affiliation. Mavericks credentials are issued by the team.

Cuban indicated he believes bloggers should be treated equally, regardless of affiliation.

“Which means we will encourage all bloggers to apply, whether they be someone on blogspot who has been posting for a couple weeks, kids blogging for their middle school Web site or those that work for big companies,” wrote Cuban, a blogger himself. “We won’t discriminate at all.”

He then cautioned that locker room time, which translates to access to players, may be divided.

“We will try to work it out so that all bloggers come in as a group after credentialed media,” Cuban wrote. “This will help us manage the crowds should there be quite a few bloggers.”

Cuban’s position was challenged by Mike Fannin, president of the Associated Press Sports Editors.

“With all due respect for the potential journalism talent in the middle school ranks, this rebuttal smacks with the tartness of sour grapes,” Fannin, managing editor for sports and features at the Kansas City Star wrote in an e-mail. “Is this really the standard the NBA wants to set for blogging?

say what you will about this or that,

but the LA Times has the best American Idol writers of all. Ms. Ann Powers, and Mr. Richard Rushfield. Today Mr. Rushfield did wonders with the Tragedy of Chikeze. But first, my favorite Chikeze moment on Idol:

Rushfield wrote:

On elimination nights, the show pre-tapes one segment, filming about half an hour before the full episode shoots live. The segment includes the viewers’ questions and the guest performer. This week, as we saw, one of the questions went to Chikezie; he was asked if he was single and abashedly answered that, yes, he was very single.

Half an hour later, the contestants having been sent backstage and then brought out again, the show proper began shooting live (to the East Coast, at least). Within moments, Chikezie was placed on an elimination stool awaiting his fate. The doomed contestant tried to put on a brave face and managed moments of mirth with fellow prospective oustee Syesha Mercado. He joked at the break with Carly Smithson and Brooke White, who were “safe,” and thus visiting from a land across the stage that he could only dream of. But despite his efforts, Chikezie seemed serious and grim throughout most of the hour.

Finally, about halfway through the show, the lights went dark in the studio as they aired the pre-taped segment. At the beginning of the segment, preserving the pretense that the show is entirely live in chronological order, Angel of Death Ryan Seacrest announces that they are bringing all the contestants back to the couches for the viewer calls. Thus, an hour later, sitting in the shadows alone with Syesha on the most dangerous stool in show business, Chikezie gazed across the stage at the giant monitor, which showed him a mere hour before sitting on the couch with his comrades, laughing, joking, shyly fending off queries about his romantic life — a way he would never be again, on a couch that he would never again call home. The segment had been taped but an hour earlier, but in that hour, how different the world had become for the once mighty Chikezie.

read the whole thing here. Ann Powers explains that Chikezie’s departure was a black (male) thing. One that has been happening in music for a while

hey its ax tony a question day

starring you, the beloved readers of the world famous busblog

Matt Welch asks: Hey Tony! We’re coming to Southern California from May 2-18, doing a Palm Springs book festival that first weekend, Mother’s Day the next, and a Zocalo deal on May 15. My question to you is, when do we go over to Sam Zell’s house in Malibu, and play his little wind-up airplane toys?

That seems like a pretty long ass book festival, and that Zocalo deal sounds pretty highfalutin’. Now lounging at Sam’s house in Malibu, thats something I can get behind. Just as long as Sam’s not home. I have no problem with the owner of the Times, and I think I understand why he wants to sell the naming rights to Wrigley Field, and I’m sure he’s a really nice guy – if only he could learn how to break out of his shell. But I don’t wanna be at his house when he’s home because I don’t want him to ask me how to save the newspaper industry. That is a question I get asked at least once a week and people hate the answers I give them. Plus it’s not my expertise, which appears to be providing interesting content online. I love newspapers, I love journalism, I respect the history of journalism, but I’m clearly someone who was meant to be online, all the time, f’ing with the program. Sam would be wise to ask me my ideas, but I’m not sure I would have the wisest answers. I know what works online. I know what works in blogs. And weirdly, those things are different than what works in newspapers in 2008. These are very scary and fascinating times in the journalism world. I’m happy and honored to be part of it. And I wish you were at the paper with me.

Suzie sez: I thought about what I’d like to ask you…. nothing came to mind. So, how about something blog related, which may finally encourage you to write a post for me…..which you have promised to do on more than one occasion MISTER! 😛 What is the quickest, most efficient way to do a blog post?? including pics, vids etc….how can you make an elaborate post quick and easy to do Mr. Tony Pierce????

The quickest way to do a blog post is to forget about pictures, just type, and then hit publish. Lots of bloggers do this and some even do it and get lots of traffic. However those blogs are painfully dull and relatively insightful. It’s a lot like making love: if your partner is thinking “how can i do this the quickest, most efficient way” odds are the sex wont be great.

So heres a tip as to how to include video and images in with your words. First take a shower with no music playing. Just shower and think. After you dry off you should have something to blog about. Then go to flickr or yahoo or somewhere where you can hotlink an image. i dont recommend hotlinking cuz its not web 2.0 and its not even very polite. plus the pics can disappear from your archives the second the owner of said photo feels like having it expire, etc. but you asked and its been a busblog tradition, etc. and really it doesnt hurt anyone except those looking thru archives, etc.

what you do is you type in the code area (or Edit HTML) of blogger {img src=”” /}. you want some space between the image and the text so throw in an hspace=11, and you might want the text to wrap around the pic, so say align=right. therefore your whole code will be {img hspace=”11″ align=”right” src=””}.

if you wanna put a youtube video in there use the Embed Code. but remember that content is everything. have something to say first, then pump up the post with images and vids.

xtx ponders: If you could ask me one question, what would it be?

when we first met virtually in the AOL poetry boards, some 15 years ago, or whenever it was, what did you think our lives would end up looking like in 2008?

In response to my latest poem/song, Scott says: That’s fantastic! So can we cover your song in my band? 😀 (I’m actually serious)

of course, my bad lyrics are your bad lyrics.