Internet bampots unite!

gw500h633-500x336It must be really shite being a sports journalist in the Scottish media these days. No really, I mean that sincerely.

I spent a lot of my adolescent/early adult years devouring everything I possibly could about Celtic on a daily basis. Newspapers, Teletext/Ceefax or even calling ClubCall using my mate’s BT Account (sorry, Joseph).

Nowadays, I couldn’t find myself further from reading the media garbage that is handed down to football supporters. I’ve distanced myself so much from it, it is literally a gold nugget when you hear about a credible piece in a newspaper.

I’m a long way from picking up the Evening Times or any other Scottish paper to check out the latest on Celtic and not just because I now live 400 miles from Glasgow. The truth is I stopped trusting the bastards a long time ago and even longer before I started writing for myself.

Writing about Celtic was never a goal for me, but I was driven towards it. I used to vent my spleen on a fan’s forum though generally to the wrong type of audience.

A close friend made the suggestion that I should redirect my passions elsewhere. I never really gave much thought to what I was doing, I just needed to say what was on my mind.

I don’t have particularly radical views or groundbreaking material to offer, but I do speak from the heart and I guess that has always been my motivation. It’s one thing to do a match report the way you see it, but reading the other gumpf in the media was really getting under my skin.

The constant story telling to sell papers. The underpinning of our old rivals (and new ones today!).

It was sickening. Now we live in different times though.

There is another voice out there. The voice of the supporters and bloggers.

You’ve all heard about the ‘keyboard hard men’ or ‘internet bampots’ – well that’s the bloggers. The SMSM’s damning of the true voice of football supporters only adds weight to how threatened they feel by our presence.

There are some damn fine bloggers out there not just with proficient writing skills, but with formulated opinions and a very good insight. When it comes to the media it is sold as gospel, not opinion.

People buy into what is being printed and it is a dangerous game for which nobody dares to challenge. It is one thing to keep the media on side – or control them – but I despise the fact that Celtic don’t even challenge the press more.

Over the years the club have been thrown to the dogs by the Scottish media. The sort of thing that the English press do to their national side on a permanent basis.

It is appalling behaviour. So it is of comfort to know that out there on the internet you can find a growing source of material that reports more truth or honest opinion than you will find in any Scottish newspaper.

The simple reason for that is that they are not on the payroll for anyone else. I don’t always agree with what I read in other blogs, but I read it knowing that it is their opinion, not necessarily how everyone sees it and not always factual unless stated otherwise.

I’ve had the opportunity to write on other websites or blogs in the past which was a real pleasure. I enjoy the work of others and welcome the differing views even if they aren’t my own.

I think this dispels the theory that in the world of the blogger, we fans hear what we want to. What we do hear is the open and varied views of the fans and then we make our own judgement.

The guys that get paid to sensationalise content in the media are making fake news, to coin a topical phrase. I’m glad to be part of a growing community of people who write about their passions for Celtic and sport in general.

I’m approaching my tenth year doing this and still loving it. There have been highs and lows, beginning with the end of the Gordon Strachan era through to this current era for the club under Brendan Rodgers.

It is a very good time to be a Celtic fan, despite all the misinformation you might read in the media. Stick with the bloggers, they’ll keep you right.

Hail! Hail!

Stevie Mac