While the 7-5 Bucks might be off to a decent start under new coach Jason Kidd, apparently not everyone in the organization got the memo about looking professional on and off the court. I'm not talking about fights at clubs or anything, but it's just as damaging (at least it would be to most professionals not part of the sports entertainment field).
In a 455 word section on the 11/20/2014 Milwaukee Bucks game recap page, the organization posted 8 misspelled words and three other grammatical errors, which comes to a miscue every 40 words or so. You could think of it as about one error every other sentence. If I wrote like that on this site, you'd have already seen four or five errors in the this post. Would you still be reading? I guess it depends on the content and whether or not I make millions of dollars and therefore warrant being quoted making cliché analogies. (But I digress.)
I wonder who holds the ball on this one. Did the Bucks hire a sports marketing intern to proofread? Are sports writers that bad? Do the athletes themselves write for the website? Does the organization use a speech-to-text program to weave the words together? Finally, how bad would it have to be for people (fans) to stop reading?
That last question might be the best one to consider. How bad does journalism have to get in our country before we say we're mad as hell and we're not going to take it anymore? I know it wasn't the local newspaper. I know it's up to the Bucks how poorly they want to present their multi-billion dollar organization before I get to decide if they get any of my tax money to make more millions of dollars. But there are standards for what we publish online, aren't there?
Maybe not. In order to save money and ensure some content is created, the baseball league I play in uses a box-score-generated game recap system, which means a computer analyzes the game and creates the content based on the stats. Writing that way about the Bucks game would have been awful, since Brandon Knight finished 2-10 from behind the arc and only 5-20 overall. A computer would say he had an awful game. However, the story would also be that he missed an open layup that could have won the game in the first overtime, but later made a three-pointer to save the game, made big free throws to seal the game, and contributed with assists. It would have missed why people care about sports in the first place: the comedy and tragedy and humanity wrapped into a few hours, like a play but with more sweating.
I hope all sports and all news websites don't go to poorly-written or computer-generated text. While computers probably can figure out SEO and other important ways to fool Google, I'm really hoping they don't figure out how to fool you as a reader.
As I was writing this article, the Bucks website was updated and someone (or some computer) fixed most of the errors. You can see the comparison below.