Blogging. It is the new journalism in The Age of Social Media.
Whether we are old school and prefer to read a traditional daily newspaper such as the New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe or the Chicago Tribune or if you’re a modern-day Millennial who prefers to get their daily content from places such as The Huffington Post, Yahoo! or Google, blogging—and journalism as a whole—is completely and forever changed.
Many prefer to get their news from either local or online sources, it’s just the way content as we know it in the 21st century has evolved so much. It’s even more so in sports. Blog networks such as Bleacher Report, SB Nation, DeadSpin, Scout and FanSided have changed the game when it comes to producing digital content, and are the standard bearers of sports media.
With so many more sports blogs out there and so much to choose from, the people behind producing a lot of the online content that we read today also deserve some recognition. One of the most talented and on-the-come-up bloggers and digital content producers around today is Indiana-born Evan Massey.
Massey, a former contributor here at INSC, has crafted quite an impressive resume ion the digital world in working for established websites such as Forbes, ESPN, Fox Sports and the aforementioned Yahoo!
The founder of blog networks NBA Analysis and NFL Analysis, which have become two of the most well-respected websites in their short time already, speaks volumes for the man behind them both. Recently named Editorial Director of the sports website, ClutchPoints, Massey has truly established himself as one of the hardest-working, most knowledgeble and respected bloggers in the industry.
Born in Indiana and raised in Virginia, while spending time in Wisconsin and now back home again in the Hoosier State, Massey looks ready to take his game to the next level. A basketball and football savant, Massey can debate and write with the best of them when it comes to hoops and all things gridiron.
Below is my Q and A with Evan as we talk about the future of journalism, blogging, controversial subjects such as Colin Kaepernick, LBJ vs. MJ, fake news and the future of digital media.
Name: Evan Massey
Hometown: Greenfield, IN
Social Media Links: Twitter: @massey_evan
Publications and Media (featured in): Featured on Forbes, ESPN, Yahoo! Sports, Fox Sports, and plenty of other online publications.
We go back aways! From Rant Sports and here at INSC, It’s nice to finally get a chance to interview you. You excited?
Could not be more excited! I appreciate the opportunity and your interest in interviewing me.
Congratulations on the success of both of your blog networks, NBA and NFL Network as well as being named Managing Editor for ClutchPoints, how do you feel about the success and what motivates you to continue? Honestly, it has been an amazing journey so far. There have been so many ups and just as many downs. That being said, the success has felt amazing and a lot of hard work is paying off.
Becoming the Editorial Director for a website like ClutchPoints has been amazing. Working with a great group of people to accomplish amazing things in the sports media world has been fun and simply drives me to work harder and get better moving forward.
What first inspired you to get into journalism and blogging? For me, being able to share my opinion and passion for sports was the biggest thing. I always had a talent when it came to expressing my thoughts through writing, but with sports it was taken to a new level. I love being able to share my opinions, whether fans agree with them or not, and then debate and prove why my point is valid.
Biggest and first influences in writing? When I first got into the writing world, there were only a few people that I looked up to. Stuart Scott was my favorite sports personality and I was able to talk with him a few times. His energy and passion for what he did was amazing and infectious.
Since then, I have had the opportunity to work with quite a few awesome people. Michael Dunlap, Clayton Green, Nish Patel, yourself, and too many others to name. I am thankful for everyone who has taken the time to read my work, send constructive criticism, or simply those who have supported me along the way.
Thoughts on the growth of blogs as a mainstream news source? I think this is a perfect time for people to jump into the online media industry. With so many sites publishing fake news at an insanely high rate, the individual blogger has never had a better opportunity. In my opinion, if an individual blogger can share something interesting and shed light on a topic better than mainstream news, I want them doing everything they can to do so.
Thoughts on fake news? As publishers, How do we fight fight it and prevent it? The biggest thing about fake news to me is the bias that comes with it. Bias has always been something that the news stayed away from. In order to fight it and prevent it, we must find a way to rewind back to the times before bias became normal in news personalities. Too many networks have decided to go for ratings instead of actual reporting, not naming names. We must find a way to move past that and back to what made news reporting such a unique job.
Biggest and most controversial sports subject, and what’s your take on it? I’ve been deep into the LeBron James vs. Michael Jordan debate for years. Just a couple of years ago, you would have found me arguing to my last breath that Jordan was the greatest of all-time. Recently, however, I cannot continue arguing that point. LeBron has passed Jordan and while both players will remain side-by-side as the NBA’s greatest to ever play, James’ career has been an absolutely amazing thing to watch.
You’re a big hoops fan! LeBron, MJ or Kobe, who is the ? See the above answer!
Colin Kaepernick and kneeling? What are your thoughts on it? You know, this is another topic that I have waffled on. Do I think it’s a bit disrespectful to the anthem? Absolutely. Can I understand why there is outrage towards him? Yes. The problem is, he has a point. The country has failed minorities and there is a problem. Perhaps finding a different way to bring change would be best, but I certainly am not going to be one that burns him at the stake for kneeling during the anthem.
Since you’re from Indiana, who is the bigger sports star, Andrew Luck, Danica Patrick, Victor Oladipo or Brian Kelly?
Right now, it would be a tie between Luck and Oladipo. You don’t hear a whole lot about Patrick or Kelly, to be honest.
Luck or A-Rod, two minutes to go, down by 6, who you got? Give me Rodgers all day. He has done it time and time again. I trust his decision making, his ability to make difficult throws, and he doesn’t force the issue. Rodgers will not turn the football over and more often than not will give the team a chance to pull off a miraculous win.
Outside of writing, what are your hobbies? I enjoy traveling a lot. I don’t get to travel for vacation as much as I would like, but anytime I get the chance I do. Outside of that I love music, watching sports, going to events, hanging out with friends and family. Pretty normal guy for the most part.
How’s the recovery of the ankle? It has been a process. Every day is a different test. As of now though, I’m back to walking normally. Still can’t run 100 percent normally all the time, but it is progressing well, thank you for asking.
What sites do you emulate and draw ideas and inspiration from? Usually, my ideas come from within my own head. I am always contemplating how to improve, what content to write, what kind of bold prediction I can make. I have always loved the way Bleacher Report runs things with their Team Stream as well. I also think Clutch Points is a site that people should take notice of in the sports world.
What do you think of the future of journalism? I think journalism is alive and well. To those who are saying that it is a dying breed, there are plenty of people employed that would disagree. Everything is gearing towards the internet taking over print in the near future, but I think the journalism world is safe. Now, we just need to get back to what made it great to begin with.
Any parting words or advice for aspiring bloggers, journalists and website owners?
Absolutely. My best advice would be the following.
1. Understand that this is work and won’t come easy. To get into the online media industry, you will have to give up certain things. While others go out and party, you will be at your keyboard writing an article to meet a deadline. Others may be celebrating a holiday, you might have to work holiday hours. There is a chance you will have to work hours that don’t sit well with you, I had to work overnight shifts as an editor for a couple of years myself.
2. Understand that someone is always gunning for your job. I have always promised myself that I will not be outworked by anyone. If I allow that to happen, I will no longer be on the upward trend.
3. Make friends and network with everyone. Meeting people and becoming friends with people in the industry will open up doors that you couldn’t have imagined.
4. Finally, have fun. While this industry takes a lot of time and work, it is worth it and fun. Enjoy it and be your best.
Special thanks to Evan Massey for his time and assistance during the Q and A interview process.