Top 10 Chicago Media Criticisms of 2012

Top 10 Chicago Media Criticisms of 2012

This column started in April, so it’s a less than a year old. However, 2012 gave me plenty of people who set themselves up to be criticized. It was a fun 8 months, despite the fact that I’ve been battling a monstrous illness the entire time I’ve had this blog.

Still, I’ve done guest radio spots for The Score, CBS radio Cleveland and ESPN Honolulu- all while in a hospital bed hooked up to an IV pole. Things have gotten much better on that front, and continue to get better every day. So hopefully in 2013, I can spend less time in clinic and more time on my work.

And I can do more of these. Because the critical columns are fun, and often make new friends, especially among the rival media outlets of those who you just ripped. Or at least it gets you more Twitter followers and Facebook friends among the media in general. But of course, it makes enemies too. A lot of enemies.

So without further ado, here were the ten best.

Click on the title to read the original column/learn more


1. Sun Times Joe Cowley’s incredibly sexist tweets

Only Deadspin beat me to the punch on this one, so I’ll take that. The S-T suspended Cowley for acting like a childish, egomaniacal jackass. Editor-in-Chief Chris De Luca nearly fired him and took away his Twitter account.


2. White Sox announcer Hawk Harrelson continues being unlistenable

This was my most polarizing entry. Lots of people agreeing with me, lots of discontent. And my best hate mail of all

kelly kraft

3. Governor Quinn hires grossly under-qualified former WFLD FOX reporter to head Illinois Sports Facilities Authority

In a meeting at Sox Park, Quinn made a sneaky, malfeasant maneuver, slipping it by Mayor Rahm Emanuel.


4. Sun Times hires Jenny McCarthy as columnist

I called this “a new low” as now we have someone who dumbs you down every time she speaks possessing a very big platform. Time Out Chicago’s Robert Feder one-upped me, calling the hire “a Michael Farrow wet dream.”

jenny mccarthy

5. Bears Brian Urlacher rips: fans, media, Lovie critics, refs

When you’ve been the face of the city’s most beloved franchise for over a decade, you can’t act like a cranky old man who hates everything. I’m sure his press agents and handlers cringed when they heard these remarks.


6. WSCR The Score goes nearly all Bears almost all the time

The station becomes borderline unlistenable as they cross-promote the team who’s carried by their sister station, WBBM.


7. MLB Advanced Media drops the ball

Cubs fans in a frenzy on Twitter as Braves beat writer for gets Ryan Dempster trade wrong.


8. Iowa Cubs PR falsely calls the Anthony Rizzo call-up

Cubs AAA affiliate pulls cheap publicity stunt and riles up Cubs nation, Twitter explodes


9. CSN Chicago’s Chicago Tribune Live and it’s rigid casting

How many times do we really need to see the same 6 people, i.e. Brian Hamilton and K.C. Johnson on tv? And their worst offense of all is letting the subject of #10 on the show a couple times.


10. BTN’s Tim Doyle, who should never have a microphone in front of him again

Would have rated higher, but he’s not relevant enough. Not enough people have heard of him yet.


So who do you think in the Chicago sports media is long overdue for criticism? Comment below

Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports, a Google News site generating millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Chicago, Walter, Yardbarker, and Fox Sports

A Fulbright scholar, published author and MBA, Banks has appeared on live radio all over the world; he’s also a member of the Football Writers Association of America, U.S. Basketball Writers Association, and Society of Professional Journalists. The President of the United States follows him on Twitter (@Paul_M_BanksTSB) You should too.


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  • Hopes for a healthy New Year.

    Actually, Chicago media think they are the stars, because we have no Hollywood here. Most are boring pieces of browned yellow snow, just sucking up what the establishment and politicians (same thing) have to say and transcribing.

    So Urlarcher rips the fans... so what? Some deserve it. Let's see how well these fans do on the field. Not only that, what do you think the restaurant serves says about you (and spits into) your food, should you have a minor complaint?

    As for Jenny McCarthy, she is as qualified as anybody else to put her vapid opinions in a column if she wants. Plus, she is easier on the eyes than than the guys with the hair growing out of their ears.

    Wellness. Peace.

  • In re: Sun-Times hires Jenny McCarthy as columnist, maybe the pen is mightier than the penis.

  • @Richard Davis Im with you on the sorry state if journalism today, not just in this city but all over. Copying and pasting press releases is not doing any work

    re: Urlacher, he didn't just go after the fans, he seemed bitter because he had a bone to pick with everyone

    re: McCarthy sure, it seems harmless enough to just puts boobs on the broadsheets in order to sell papers, but this is a woman with dangerous opinions on vaccines and a gross misunderstanding of science. Thats not good for anyone

  • @Aquinas Wired indeed it is. Maybe the Sun-Times should just also hire Pam Anderson, Carmen Electra, Nicole Eggert and Erika Eleniak as columnists too. Then they'll have a washed up '90s Baywatch bimbo for everyday of the week

  • Cowley had to do something new this year, since his senseless feud with Barry Rosner over Ozzie vs. Kenny lost steam when Ozzie left.

    Urlacher: It is a general rule that one does not dump on the paying customers, but the talk last week was that somehow athletes are exempt. Maybe he figures he has sold his last 54 jersey.

    Governor Quinn hires grossly could put any name here; he has a pattern. No indication that in this case, as opposed to others, he did it to reward a lame duck who voted for the tax increase.

    The Score: As I pointed out on Zawaskis blog, it is always football season at The Score, which at least no longer promotes itself as the "official home of Bears fans." At least they teed off the Bears enough with the Rich Jauron show and that type of stuff that the official Bears programming (except Zaidman's "Bears All Access") is off 670 and on 780. But I wonder how Lou Canellis can be the "sports reporter" on Fox 32.1 and the shill on the Bears Network programming on Fox 32.1. Sounds like a conflict of interest.

    Also, if anything makes The Score unlistenable it is, beyond the 20 minute commercial blocks, that stuff like the Ob and Doug postgame show has become the ... Casino Postgame Show at some bar brought to you by some beer, interrupted by The Wolves anchor studio and the Northwestern Text Screen. At least politicians generally don't advertise there.

  • Cowley and De Luca are rumored to be BFFs, so I guess he can get away with a lot..but maybe not so much anymore after that incident.

    Urlacher: probably knows he's headed out of town

    WSCR: they still bill themselves as "this is the station for Bears talk", and play that damn fight song EVERY break, and I agree the commercialization of the station is making me wanna switch to WMVP. it's getting oppressive.

  • In reply to Paul M. Banks:

    At least it isn't the "official one."

    WMVP isn't much better, with the Cadillac studio and the like. But not as bad.

  • and good call about Lou Cannelis having a potential conflict of interest there, I missed that one.

    Quinn: he's getting a little more like his predecessor everyday

  • In reply to Paul M. Banks:

    Except that he isn't smart enough to be a crook. Or was Blago? Or was giving out the Quinn pro Quo appointments being a more successful crook? Can't really tell.

  • I think the major dirt on Quinn is yet to come out

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