If you’ve visited the ESPNBoston Patriots blog recently, you’ve probably noticed some changes. In addition to the material from Mike Reiss and Field Yates, now, every single time the Patriots are discussed on any ESPN platform, there is an entry on the blog for it.

Reiss addressed the changes in his chat today, and I was surprised by the tone from the mild-mannered Reiss:

max (my cube)
Mike,I don’t see the “Patriots blog” section on the ESPN Boston homepage anymore. Has it been removed for some reason?
Mike [via mobile]
Can you get rid of all the extra links that have been popping up on the blog lately? I don’t need a link to a clip of any ESPN show that mentions the Patriots. Most of it is overlap with information you have already posted.
 (12:26 PM)
Max and Mike, I see quite a few comments similar to yours in this chat. I think over the last four years, we’ve established a community that is straight-forward and honest, so I’m going to shoot you straight here: I have lost control over the tone and direction of the Patriots blog on ESPNBoston.com. Since I started a Patriots blog back in 2003-2004, back at the MetroWest Daily News and then at the Boston Globe, I’ve always had control, for the most part, of the tone and direction of the blog. Over the last three days, that has changed as ESPN has introduced its NFL Nation project. Based on the personal investment I’ve put into it, there are a lot of emotions that come with that, and still a lot of questions ahead as to how things will unfold going forward as it relates to the tone and direction of the blog. I’m going to stay positive at this point, knowing that any time there is change there is some level of patience involved.

As a BSMW member put it: That’s the Mike Reiss equivalent of coming into the office and shooting the place up. He’s furious.

For what its worth, I agree with Mike. He’s established a proven formula for success in this market. He’s got a right to be upset that these changes are being forced upon him and his own work is being diluted in the process. Add this to the recent change to Facebook comments, which really angered a lot of regulars, and we’re seeing some real blowback at ESPN here.


10 thoughts on “Reiss: “I have lost control over the tone and direction of the Patriots blog on ESPNBoston.com”

  1. Ah so that’s what the people in the espn comments sections we’re talking about. I didn’t even notice the extra links. Here’s some info from the Mothership, in a press release dated August 19:


    ESPN.com is expanding its NFL Nation network by creating a dedicated digital home for each of the 32 NFL teams. The collection of team sites will be staffed by industry leading reporters in every NFL city. Each site will feature original posts while curating team-specific content from across ESPN platforms and linking to other relevant sources…

    For the past five seasons, ESPN.com’s NFL Nation has utilized a network of eight divisional blogs with one writer covering four teams per division with additional contributions from NFL writers at ESPN’s major market sites in Boston, Chicago, Dallas and New York. The new NFL Nation will combine these resources with 21 new reporters to be brought on board for the 2013-14 NFL season.

    ESPN has already added a number of veteran reporters for the expanded NFL Nation…


    Each of the 32 NFL Nation reporters will contribute multiple daily reports – including news, commentary, analysis, audio and video. In addition to their work on ESPN.com, NFL Nationreporters will contribute to other ESPN platforms, including NFL Live, NFL Insiders,SportsCenter and other television shows, ESPN Radio national and local affiliate programs, ESPN Audio podcasts, ESPN The Magazine and more.

    “The expansion of NFL Nation represents one of ESPN Digital’s most ambitious projects in our continuing effort to provide the ultimate personalized experience for fans,” said ESPN.com Editor-in-Chief Patrick Stiegman.


    NFL Nation will be featured prominently on the ESPN.com NFL home page with headlines from every team site. Fans will also be able to access digital content through customized ESPN apps and sites, mobile alerts, tweets and other methods of personalization. Stories written by ESPN.com national NFL writers and other experts will also be incorporated, and every team site will include relevant ESPN video, ESPN Audio clips, ESPN Insider links, Fantasy data, and more.


  2. It’s just a blog. If you are that upset about it then you spend too much time online to begin with.


    1. Come in from 1998, Enash. Blogs can be, depending on who posts for them, just an invaluable a news source as any other place on the web. I have known Mike for years (going back to Reiss’ Pieces in the MWDN) and I know he takes tremendous professional care in the content posted in that space. A lot of blood, sweat and hard work went into establishing it with its readers. I can assure you, as can anyone who reads it with any regularity, but most of all Reiss himself, considers it to be anything but “just a blog.”


    2. “just a blog?”…was only the best place to get Patriots info (without the BULLSHIT) out there…(if you didn’t know this you should be stripped of your avatar)…now ESPN is taking over and trying to force feed us the bullshit…..


  3. I think Reiss should jump to the Sports Hub. Put him and Gasper on the air at the same time. They sound so similar it will confuse the hell out of the audience.


Comments are closed.