Neither the National Football League, its owners, or any of its players care much for the well being of the enthusiasts who fill the stadiums each Sunday in the fall and winter outside of the cash they supply. I don’t think I’m telling anyone anything new here, since this is common practice in the business world. The customer is always right… up to the point where they hand over acceptable currency. After that, anything goes. However, much like not dropping a hair dryer into the bathtub while we are in it, we need to remind ourselves of the simple things.
My issue isn’t really with that attitude that businesses take. This is what we have signed up for when we go to the free market minus regulation. Business can basically do what they want and charge what they want consequence free. My contention is when customers (or “fans” as they sometimes call themselves) somehow get hoodwinked into thinking that those selling the product have the same attachment to fantasy and nostalgia as they do.
Sports fans are perhaps the worst type of consumer because the decisions made in regards to their purchasing are rarely tied to logical thought. Sport is an emotional act after all. As a result of this, fans can sound horrendously stupid when situations of actual business take place, as opposed to situations where guys in tights are hitting each other. Cries of “they’re doing a disservice to the game” or “The only people who get hurt in this ordeal are the fans” abound. This is crap that makes us sound like our brains a constructed of the marbles from Hungry Hungry Hippos.
The problem with folks getting their act together is that the only weapon they have in this fight is their checkbook, but when fans refuse to pay for a poor product, it is strongly implied that what they hold dear will be taken from them. This is especially true in this city.
The football team has been no good for over ten years, yet the attendance is pretty good to great. Its great because there is a thick layer of fear under the purchase of tickets. Even if fans wanted to make the only statement that mattered about their satisfaction level – empty seats – the pressure on them to get back in them would ratchet up to unbearable levels. Fans have been great and there are already games in Toronto. What if fans actually had some standards for what they watched?
At this point, I’m not even trying to talk anyone down from this. Spend your money, folks. The NFL will gladly take it from you.
The nation is on the brink of burning down economically, and a league with no revenue issues at all has ground to a halt. And as citizens, we are upset that we can’t give them more money. Go team.