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SBD/July 28, 2014/Media
ESPN's Smith Apologizes For "Most Egregious Error" In Domestic Violence Comments
Published July 28, 2014
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BREAKING THE UNWRITTEN RULE: SI.com's Richard Deitsch wrote Beadle's Twitter response to Smith's comments "game-changed what likely would have been just another horrible day at First Take" and "set up a narrative (correct or not) of an ESPN employee publicly condemning another ESPN employee." News outlets around the country "posted stories on it." However, outside of ESPN’s Jemele Hill and espnW’s Jane McManus, women talking about the Ray Rice issue "on ESPN’s airwaves were non-existent" (SI.com, 7/27). SPORTS ON EARTH's Will Leitch writes Beadle's Twitter response was "the most important thing she'll ever do in journalism" and "legitimately one of the most courageous things I've ever seen someone in sports journalism do." Beadle "didn't just call out Smith; she started a conversation that we desperately needed to have." She "called attention to Smith, and the scores of others like him." We are all "still talking about Stephen A. Smith and domestic violence and Ray Rice because of Michelle Beadle." Leitch: "Do not think that Beadle ... did all this without considerable risk." Keeping criticism in-house is "a matter of public policy" at ESPN. That Beadle would "call out a colleague took guts, and legitimate outrage." But the wrath of ESPN execs is "nothing compared to what Beadle exposed herself to online" (SPORTSONEARTH.com, 7/28).
ARE YOU SIRIUS? In N.Y., Bob Raissman reported Smith will "soon leave" ESPN Radio 98.7 N.Y. in favor of Sirius XM's "Mad Dog Radio." Smith currently co-hosts a 1:00pm-3:00pm ET program with Ryan Ruocco on ESPN Radio. His new show on MDR also will "probably air" from 1:00pm-3:00pm (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 7/27). However, in N.Y., Phil Mushnick asks, "Why has Smith become sports TV and radio executives’ ideal go-to guy in the pursuit of diversity?" He is "a circle-talking windsock." He "simultaneously knows everything and nothing, while he dances in place until the con becomes apparent, until you realize that you’re either listening but not hearing, or hearing but not listening" (N.Y. POST, 7/28).