The Oct. 8 ESPN B.S. Report with Bill Simmons introduced a contest to hype ESPN’s fantasy basketball product: a league where you can compete with the popular columnist as well as fantasy guru Matthew Berry. In a move that showed how the league was forming by the seat of their proverbial pants, conversation eventually turned to inviting a special guest to the league – a blogger named Christian, who happens to blog every day about his life as a sports fan … and a porn star (focusing more on the latter, to the blog’s benefit).
The next day, Christian immediately recognized the increased traffic the podcast mention of “Christian Sings the Blues” garnered, and wrote that he would be glad to join the 10-team league with the two ESPN employees and seven other contestants.
Fast-forward to podcasts of Oct. 21 and 22, and Berry/Simmons slogging through entries for … eight participants. What happened to Christian?
The Oct. 22 entry on Christian’s blog reads like this (link not safe for work, unless you’re in Christian’s line of work):
Oh and finally, Bill Simmons, the Sports Guy, sent me an email tonight. He basically apologized for the fact that due to the graphic and adult content on this blogsite, that ESPN wouldn’t let him and Matthew Berry let me into the league. He also said that ESPN chopped off the part where he stated this fact on his podcast yesterday.
Man, what a downer. I guess I understand, but it still sucks….”I coulda been a contender!”
Much like print, audio editing deserves consistency. The BS Report podcast attracts one of the largest audiences for ESPN’s foray into original podcast programming. The original idea to invite the porn star into the league evidently entangled itself into the original podcast enough so that the producers couldn’t cut the content. But for the final audio product to drop the idea without an explanation? That just insults the regular listeners who made the podcast so successful, even if the audience already knew the corporate parents wouldn’t approve of this edgy new acquaintance.
Then again, this isn’t the first time Simmons butted heads with management over the content of his podcast.