To: Comcast Sportsnet Chicago
Re: Blackhawks/Canucks Intermission
During an intermission of Friday’s game, your program ran tweets from fans with their thoughts on the opposition. You also chose to publish a tweet from fan that referred to the Sedin twins as sisters. By airing this tweet your brand has promoted acceptance of sexism and further, homophobic attitudes. You have encouraged insulting athletes by equating their skill with women.
Frankly, this was just lazy on your part to find content to fill twenty minutes. Instead of providing commentary on the game, your broadcast opted to be cheap. Twitter is a fantastic platform for people to broadcast their thoughts but you really should not be encouraging such offensive conduct.
I would have hoped your organization was bright enough to be aware of what happened when Blue Shirts United decided to run an article which talked down to women and devalued their intellect. It immediately went over poorly. The article ended up being yanked and brushed aside as if it never happened. Blue Shirts has yet to apologize for publishing it which is even more hurtful.
The You Can Play Project has been really aggressively tackling this problem in sports culture. Did you know that Chicago Blackhawk Duncan Keith supports this initiative? Way to keep up with your own city’s team and what they do outside of their sport. I imagine the Blackhawks do not appreciate your network’s going in the opposite direction of their efforts to make hockey a more accepting and open sport for athletes of all varieties.
I ask you to please re-evaluate the tweets to air on your program. It is really not difficult to come up with standards as to what is an appropriate tweet to share. Here, I will help you with some guidelines:
- Is this tweet racist?
- Is this tweet sexist?
- Is this tweet homophobic?
If you answer yes to any of those criteria: don’t air it. It is a real simple process. This shows that as a company you feel a responsibility to promote messages that are in line with your values. Further, you are dedicated to being a progressive brand that is inclusive.
I really do not want the reply to the decision to run this tweet to be, “relax it’s just a joke.” I am entitled to be offended and disgusted that who I am is being used as a put down. So please learn from this, do better and set an example.
If you’d like to contact Comcast Sportnet Chicago you can do so here.