Monday, July 5, 2010

Boughner coming to Columbus; Dispatch scooped again

At roughly 7:00PM EDT on July 4th, Twitter account Goergs sent identical messages to Elliotte Friedman of CBC's Hockey Night in Canada, Greg Wyshynski of Yahoo!'s Puck Daddy blog and SPORT Magazine.  The content of the message was clear:
It's Always Sunny in Detroit reporting ex-NHLer Bob Boughner to be named Bluejackets asst coach tomorrow #cbj

As a matter of background, note the little "#cbj" at the end of the message.  That hashtag identifies the Tweet as something of interest to followers of the Columbus Blue Jackets.  (It also has been hijacked by the Charlotte Business Journal and the Brazilian band Charlie Brown Jr., among others, but that's beside the point.)  If you open up a Twitter account and search for "#cbj" (no quotes), you'll tap into a stream of information, opinion and commentary on the CBJ - all in tasty, 140-character morsels.  Pretty much all of the CBJ blogging community uses the #cbj tag as a means to promote new articles or blog posts, even the mighty Columbus Dispatch.

Back to the Tweet.  I learned that It's Always Sunny in Detroit is a blog on Detroit-area sports.  When I saw the Tweets from Goergs, I immediately "re-tweeted," or offered attribution to the author while reprinting his news and offering a one-word commentary on the front end. Here's the message:
Wow. RT @Goergs: It's Always Sunny in Detroit reporting ex-NHLer Bob Boughner to be named Bluejackets asst coach tomorrow #cbj
I then went to his blog to see what he was saying about the Boughner hire.  Strangely, nothing was there.  I queried him:
Hey - I want to Its Always Sunny in Detroit and found nothing on the Boughner rumor. Can you provide a link? #CBJ
(Again, the #CBJ tag.  Just keeping the dialogue out in the open...)

I checked back in on the blog a couple minutes later, and it had this post (Note: it has since been edited to include a photo and content.  When I first looked at the post, there was nothing but a headline.). Call me crazy, but a headline with no explanation seemed specious.  So I followed up again:
OK, so I went to the blog again and saw that you have a headline suggesting Boughner is going to be a #CBJ asst coach. Um - sez who?
His reply:
he is throwing a party in Windsor Ontario. My family owns the place next door. He told me himself. No link.
If the guy in question tells you to your face that they're moving on, what else is there to ask?  So I closed the circle with this Tweet:
OK then. #CBJ RT @Goergs: [Boughner] is throwing a party in Windsor, ON. My family owns the place next door. He told me himself. No link.
All of this happened within the course of the 7:00-8:00 PM period.  About 2 hours after Goergs' first Tweet on the topic, Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch Tweeted the following:
Dispatch: Multiple NHL sources say Bob Boughner will leave the Windsor Spitfires to join #CBJ coaching staff.
 Note that Portzline used the #cbj tag too.  This leads me to believe that he had the opportunity to follow my dialogue with Goergs and, more importantly, give Goergs and Its Always Sunny in Detroit the attribution that he and his blog deserved.  But he didn't.  I wouldn't make a big deal out of this, but Portzline has now done this on two occasions.  When I posted an observation out of Winnipeg that saw CBJ Assistant General Manager Chris MacFarland handing materials over to now-CBJ coach Scott Arniel in Winnipeg back in mid-May as part of the second round of the coaching search, Portzline posted on Puck Rakers that Arniel was in the second round two days after me - with no attribution.

Tweeters and amateur bloggers like me will never replace mainstream media.  For reporters like those at the Dispatch, it's a job - a career in an industry that's struggling mightily to stay afloat...and stay relevant in this instant information age.  For bloggers like me, it's a hobby.  I've not made a dime on this blog and do what I do simply because I enjoy the Columbus Blue Jackets and the National Hockey League.  My reward, and the reward for other bloggers, is that people read and comment on our efforts.

But hey, a little respect for those of us in the citizen media when we offer up newsworthy items would be greatly appreciated.  It's not expected, but it's appreciated.

As for the hiring itself, it's a good thing.  I'll (again) defer to Jeff Little at the Ten Minute Misconduct blog when he says:
That Boughner is coming suggests a few things. First, he has likely seen that NHL head coaches today are coming from the ranks of guys who have had at least some time as a behind-the-bench assistant in the NHL. (Guy Boucher is the exception here–but he is an exception). Boughner, to my knowledge, was not interviewed for any of the NHL head coaching slots this season, so taking an assistantship likely appeared to be a prudent step for a man who is reported to have NHL head coaching ambitions. Secondly, it speaks volumes to the credibility and reputation that Howson is building, not only with his part of the organization, but with the new coaching staff. People are taking notice, and reacting positively, to the changes being made. Who knows how the Boughner move (or any of the hires, for that matter) will play out, but on paper things are looking good.
Yeah, I'd say that things are looking good for the Columbus Blue Jackets.  My level of excitement over the upcoming season is pretty darned high, and the addition of the two-time Memorial Cup-winning Boughner only heightens it.
Have you bought your tickets yet?  If not, why not?


  1. Thanks for the props, Tom

  2. Georgs scooped it in the blog . It's nice that somebody noticed it & gave Georgs the credit
    Good job Tom & Goergs !!!

  3. Nice job Georgs.
    Hockey rules!

    Mr. B.


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