Tag Archives: Century Link Field

A simple proposal to normalize fact-checking

Here’s a simple rule reputable media publications should follow, with absolutely no exceptions: If you’re going to reproduce a third party’s factual assertion, you must provide immediate clarification whenever said factual assertion is false.  The alternative – that is, current practice – makes it far too easy for the subject of a news story to hijack the vehicle you provide for his or her own ends.

Because I don’t want to turn the hunt for truth into a partisan issue, I’ll give an innocuous example of how this ought to be done. On Saturday morning, the Seattle Times published an editorial by columnist Larry Stone that touched on what a potential Sounders victory in the MLS Cup could do for the franchise in its home city:

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Finally, a reasonable explanation for the 49ers billboard in Fife

It’s been called the Insuffera-Bowl: the epic denouement of the NFC West’s 2013, a face-off between two teams the rest of the Football universe has had enough of.

Fans in Seattle and San Francisco would agree, but only up to a point (exactly 50%, if you must know): they love their own teams and [the opposite] one another. And so the rivalry has degenerated into a series of semi-juvenile pranks: 12th men flew their flag over Candlestick in December, paid for a brick in Levi’s Stadium, and have even stooped so low as to prank call a 49ers fan.

Unsurprisingly, San Francisco was not going to take all that lying down. Here’s an article from December:

The budding rivalry between the NFC West teams will be ratcheted up even more in the coming weeks, when a group from the City by the Bay erects a taunting billboard somewhere in Seattle. It will play on the fact that San Francisco has won five Super Bowls compared to the Seahawks’ current total of zero.

Cute idea, I suppose. Just one problem — the billboard they settled on was not exactly “somewhere in Seattle”:

A group of 49ers fans who raised money for a billboard in Seattle to brag about their team’s five Super Bowl trophies got their sign – but it’s nowhere near CenturyLink Field.

The digital billboard is just north of Fife, about 27 miles from downtown Seattle.

27 miles from the Clink? In Fife? What in the world were these guys thinking? Do they not have a map? But it all made sense the moment I remembered who we’re dealing with. At 27 miles, Fife is actually much closer to downtown Seattle than Santa Clara is to San Francisco:

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In which I fact-check ESPN

Welcome to the latest installment of Paper Treiger Fact-checks Major Media Outlets. In recent months, I’ve done it to the New York Times, and in the post that immediately preceded this one, I did it to Yahoo! Sports.

Next up, the worldwide leader in sports.

Like the rest of the football universe, ESPN is excited about the slate of playoff survivors, and published an article titled It’s what they’ve been waiting for about the coming matchup at the Clink between Seattle and San Francisco. Here’s the offending paragraph:

This entire season, dating back to the offseason, seemingly has been building for this moment: Seattle-San Francisco, Take III. The two franchises have been traveling on parallel tracks. They are almost carbon copies of each other. They both have coaches who came to them from the Pac-12. They both have young, mobile quarterbacks. San Francisco traded for Baltimore wide receiver Anquan Boldin in the offseason. Seattle countered by trading for Minnesota wide receiver Percy Harvin.

Funny, that’s not the way it was reported at the time. Here’s NFL.com’s account:

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Xbox: Just insensitive advertising or is it grave-dancing?

Because it somewhat reminded me of a previously-published post (It seems everybody’s rooting for San Francisco — could this help explain why?), I was originally planning to let this screenshot of a popular Seahawks blog speak for itself:

Continue reading Xbox: Just insensitive advertising or is it grave-dancing?

Seattle’s plan for tonight’s game might not be the best idea

Earlier this year, the Seattle Public Library (book)wormed its way into the Guinness Book of World Records when it set the standard for world’s longest domino chain made of falling books.

Exciting stuff.

So exciting, the rest of town wanted in: Tonight, Seahawks fans plan to land a spot of their own by generating the loudest crowd roar at a sports stadium during their home opener against the NFC West rival 49ers.

The standing record is 131.76 decibels, set at a Turkish football soccer stadium back in 2011. And while Seattle’s Century Link Field has never before approached that level of noise, topping out around 20 decibels short, it’s easy to understand why organizers think they have a shot. After all, the Clink is the stadium one Harvard study identified as providing the best home-field advantage in football, and was famously the site of a minor earthquake during the 2010-11 playoffs, in which Marshawn Lynch says, “Get off me!” to Tracy Porter.

That said, I shouldn’t have to tell you why this is not the best idea. Instead, I’ll let audiologist Brian Fligor of Boston Children’s Hospital do it:

“Pack people in nice and tight, all screaming at about 115 decibels, and yeah, I could imagine peak sound might hit 132 decibels.”

At that level, people can suffer immediate and permanent hearing damage, Fligor warned.

Well, that’s the reason your mom could have told you — and, if she’s anything like mine, does every time you put on headphones — and it’s certainly not the reason I went out of my way to turn this into a blog post.

But there’s also a non-medical reason to leave the record alone: As things stand, the loudest noise officially recorded during a Seahawks game is 112 decibels. Superstition is a big part of sports, and the NFL is no exception. Sometimes it’s best to just leave well enough alone. One hundred and twelve decibels should be plenty for the Twelfth Man.

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Monday night’s game is not why the lockout had to end

As of last night, I had no intention of commenting on the call. But after a good night’s sleep, I decided to weigh in, for the sake of sanity – mine, and everyone else’s.

It seems that much of the outrage has been directed at the Lingerie Football League referees, and at the NFL owners who hired them. The opinion hardly varies whether you’re asking a professional mainstream journalist, a sports journalist, or a sports fan:

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