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  #61  
Old 02-01-13, 23:29
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Libertine Seguros Libertine Seguros is online now
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Cycling is growing massively in Australia as well, but I doubt that can be attributed to Britain spending money on advertising?

Cycling is very much the in thing at the moment - I've heard it described as "the new golf" about 100 times over the last year or so. It has that great blend of being very social, suitable for all ages and standards, is eco friendly, as well as being excellent for your fitness (which has come to the fore much more over the last 5 years). My guess is much of the surge in Britain is associated with that.
The success of Australian cyclists can account for it though. Countries will cover sports where they have a lot of success, which increases the exposure and gives people somebody to root for, which helps them pick up the sport.

The surge in Britain is associated with the British success, but the British success was associated with the financial injection it was given. Lots of money was plunged into cycling in Britain because it offered a good haul of Olympic medals in a comparatively small field (they similarly targeted swimming, but with less success), and the incredible success of that led to the cyclists becoming the golden boys and girls of the British Olympic teams, bringing home several medals, which made them a focal point, made the public aware of the various riders and become interested in them as people, and as people to root for. It gave the wider public a reason to care about the outcome.

The Lance Armstrong factor, with his massive media empire, feeding a large hitherto largely untapped Anglophone audience, cannot be ignored either. That wasn't patriotism, but it was only partially organic growing of the audience. Lance's media blitz was more important to the growing of the sport than Lance's triumphs. The sport didn't grow like that in new markets when Indurain won 5 Tours, when Hinault won them. The Tour Down Under is a good illustration, with the amount of money spent on bringing Armstrong in. The character Lance Armstrong sold more than cycling the sport.
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Last edited by Libertine Seguros; 02-01-13 at 23:34.
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  #62  
Old 02-02-13, 10:07
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Women's vs men's tennis is an interesting one. The play in women's is often more interesting (due, like you say to the excessive power of the men's game) but I really like the 5-setters at times.

I don't think women's tennis is anywhere near as interesting as the men's game. Almost all the women essentially play the same game, standing on the baseline hitting as hard as they can. The differences in competition are also very big. How often do you see a double bagle in the men's game? In the women's game the hardest hitters often come on top, last big exeption was Henin.

Did anyone see the Aussie Open finals last year. That's a prime example of the difference between the men's game and the women's game
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  #63  
Old 02-02-13, 10:24
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I don't think women's tennis is anywhere near as interesting as the men's game. Almost all the women essentially play the same game, standing on the baseline hitting as hard as they can. The differences in competition are also very big. How often do you see a double bagle in the men's game? In the women's game the hardest hitters often come on top, last big exeption was Henin.

Did anyone see the Aussie Open finals last year. That's a prime example of the difference between the men's game and the women's game
But go back 15 years, and it was the other way round. The men's game was full of hosses like Philipoussis and Rusedski who had a power serve and little else, so it would be almost entirely contingent on whether the first serve was in, while the women's game had far more interesting rallies. The styles have changed over time and it's gone the other way now, but it comes in cycles.
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  #64  
Old 02-02-13, 20:11
Aapjes Aapjes is offline
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The styles have changed over time and it's gone the other way now, but it comes in cycles.
Yes, steroid cycles. Sorry, I know this isn't the clinic, but I just had to say it.
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  #65  
Old 02-02-13, 21:19
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RE First bold: Exposure is what creates interest is what generates revenue. We can all agree about that. Since women's sports aren't offered as much exposure (read: marketing support), they don't generate interest (read: viewership), so there's not as much revenue. It's a self-sustaining cycle.

Second bold: See above. Plus, you're pretending that the rules and structures that govern our culture are natural, not historical constructions, and that the forces that built and perpetuate them are invisible. Why are you so invested in protecting a system of artificially constructed discrimination?

Third bold: I think you have no idea what you're talking about w/r/t feminism. Feminism as it stands is actually just a form of Marxist deconstruction that seeks to illuminate the cultural structures as they stand today, fostering awareness and--hopefully--a move toward a more equitable society.

To anyone who actually knows what words like "feminism" mean and have meant during their different iterations (waves one, two, and three), as well as what theoretical ideas they are based on and that they interact with and evolve with, you just make yourself sound like an idiot when you write things like that.

PS: Please try not to lose your mind over the word "Marxist." Chances are good you also have no idea what IT means
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Good post, especially the bolded.
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  #66  
Old 02-02-13, 21:31
Aapjes Aapjes is offline
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Originally Posted by mr. tibbs View Post
RE First bold: Exposure is what creates interest is what generates revenue. We can all agree about that. Since women's sports aren't offered as much exposure (read: marketing support), they don't generate interest (read: viewership), so there's not as much revenue. It's a self-sustaining cycle.
No, it's not. If that was true, no marginal sport would ever grow and no big sport would ever decline. But it does happen in real life and based on many factors. Women cycling could try to make the sport more interesting. Why not break with the UCI and shake things up with on-bike camera's and special formats? Be the crazy league that is much more fun. In men's cycling, the importance of the TdF holds people back since no one can afford to miss out on the TdF. I have little sympathy for people who cry that other people should spend money on them, but refuse to be innovative themselves.

Furthermore, I wonder how this magical marketing support works. Why would a big TV network suddenly show women cycling when they see minimal interest in viewers? Should they be given a big bag of money for it (which is completely different from male cycling exposure, so no equality there)? What women cycling could also do is what other marginal (male and female) sports do, get strong support in the local community, build up a base and then go big. Women soccer in the US is on this path and I think it is far more likely to be successful than a top-down approach.

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Second bold: See above. Plus, you're pretending that the rules and structures that govern our culture are natural, not historical constructions, and that the forces that built and perpetuate them are invisible. Why are you so invested in protecting a system of artificially constructed discrimination?
That is just a straw man, I never said that existing rules/attitudes/etc shouldn't be changed. But what I object against in modern feminism is that different behavior by men and women is assumed to be always bad and caused by brainwashing by the 'patriarchy'. This ignores even the possibility that men and women may choose different based on biological difference (which obviously exist at some level) and even more importantly ignores freedom of choice. If people do things that make them happy, that do not hurt others and are not forced to do, then I find it hard to argue that this is some huge travesty.

If women choose not to support female sports (or sport in general, as is the case), then so be it. If most men don't see the appeal, too bad. On the list of travesties going on in the world this problem ranks very low IMO. No athlete in any sport has a right to be paid for the sport and the overwhelming majority of athletes do not get paid (in male sports as well). If an athlete feels he is underpaid I fully support him/her trying to change it. Just don't guilt trip people and pretend you deserve it. I'm not whining that it's unfair that I don't get paid for my hobbies. If you can't find someone to pay you for what you want to do, then do what you can get paid for. That is capitalism.

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Third bold: I think you have no idea what you're talking about w/r/t feminism. Feminism as it stands is actually just a form of Marxist deconstruction that seeks to illuminate the cultural structures as they stand today, fostering awareness and--hopefully--a move toward a more equitable society.
Frankly I don't care about the nonsense coming out of women science aka anti-men non-sciences. Any and all research that I've seen coming out of that corner starts off with the assumption that men are evil and will never accept any other conclusion. What I'm talking about is what the normal people believe who call themselves feminists, in the media and forums. Fact is that the initial waves succeeded because they made solid arguments against discrimination and offered realistic steps for change, not because of a Marxist deconstruction of the current society. No normal person understands these far fetched theories and they will never influence enough people for real change. So who cares?

As for what normal people think, I see no realism in the third wave. They want special favors, not equal chances. They blame men for choices women make. They do not understand that with equal choices, further progression can only work if men are freed from bias, stereotypical expectations, etc at the same time as this is done for women. So success can only happen when men's rights and women's rights movements merge and work together for a common cause.

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PS: Please try not to lose your mind over the word "Marxist." Chances are good you also have no idea what IT means.
Thanks for the put down. Really mature. You also just demonstrated that you like to stereotype people, even though you know nothing about me.

Last edited by Aapjes; 02-02-13 at 21:35.
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  #67  
Old 02-02-13, 22:07
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No, it's not. If that was true, no marginal sport would ever grow and no big sport would ever decline. But it does happen in real life and based on many factors. Women cycling could try to make the sport more interesting. Why not break with the UCI and shake things up with on-bike camera's and special formats? Be the crazy league that is much more fun. In men's cycling, the importance of the TdF holds people back since no one can afford to miss out on the TdF. I have little sympathy for people who cry that other people should spend money on them, but refuse to be innovative themselves.
Setting up new sports federations isn't exactly a walk in the park. Why should women have to set up a new federation anyway? The fact that you are suggesting that they do this implies that the UCI are doing an inadequate job with women's cycling as is and that therefore there is structural sexism at the UCI.

I don't think anyone is suggesting that the only thing that determines a sport's popularity is its exposure, but there is definitely a cyclical component. Of course there's a bit of a chicken and egg situation here - what comes first, the fans or the coverage, but better coverage vastly increases the potential fan base.

The fact is that when TV coverage of sports began, society in general was far more sexist than it is now. There was much less acceptance of the idea of female sportspeople when that initial wave of televised sport occurred, so it's hard to say that women's sport has ever been competing on level ground. When sport first broke onto television it was men's sport that was most prominent and since then the fans-coverage cycle has perpetuated that situation.

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Furthermore, I wonder how this magical marketing support works. Why would a big TV network suddenly show women cycling when they see minimal interest in viewers? Should they be given a big bag of money for it (which is completely different from male cycling exposure, so no equality there)? What women cycling could also do is what other marginal (male and female) sports do, get strong support in the local community, build up a base and then go big. Women soccer in the US is on this path and I think it is far more likely to be successful than a top-down approach.
Well ones does not have to detail the exact proposal that will be put forward to a TV network in order to say that it is broadly a good idea. Men's cycling isn't even (generally) on big TV networks. Perhaps the UCI could look at increasing professionalism of women's cycling in order to reduce the number of part-timers and thereby make weekday races more widely viable. Most sports networks are pretty barren on weekday afternoons, so the events could be marketed at that slot, perhaps. That is just one idea. The fact is that the UCI spends an awful lot of time, money and effort promoting men's cycling, so they must feel that not only does a governing body have a responsibility to promote its sport but also that they can be effective. The question then is: why do they not do the same for women?

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That is just a straw man, I never said that existing rules/attitudes/etc shouldn't be changed. But what I object against in modern feminism is that different behavior by men and women is assumed to be always bad and caused by brainwashing by the 'patriarchy'. This ignores even the possibility that men and women may choose different based on biological difference (which obviously exist at some level) and even more importantly ignores freedom of choice. If people do things that make them happy, that do not hurt others and are not forced to do, then I find it hard to argue that this is some huge travesty.
Not actively seeking to change those attitudes was very much the thrust of your post though. Can you even name any modern feminist scholars? This is just absolute rubbish. Not all behavioural differences are patriarchal, nor are they biological. What that has to do with the UCI promoting women's racing, however, I do not know and how exactly it violates anyone's freedom of choice is an even bigger mystery.

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If women choose not to support female sports (or sport in general, as is the case), then so be it. If most men don't see the appeal, too bad. On the list of travesties going on in the world this problem ranks very low IMO.
This right here is you directly arguing for the perpetuation of current attitudes. Yes this is a pretty minor problem in itself but to me it is part of a much wider problem. It also strikes me as a bit odd to come onto a thread about governance of women's cycling and then make the point that it's not a hugely important issue. I don't think anyone here is claiming that solving problems with women's cycling is more important than, say, ending the Syrian civil war, but this a cycling forum, not a Middle Eastern politics forum.

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No athlete in any sport has a right to be paid for the sport and the overwhelming majority of athletes do not get paid (in male sports as well). If an athlete feels he is underpaid I fully support him/her trying to change it. Just don't guilt trip people and pretend you deserve it. I'm not whining that it's unfair that I don't get paid for my hobbies. If you can't find someone to pay you for what you want to do, then do what you can get paid for. That is capitalism.
When has anyone here said that women cyclists have a right to be paid? For someone who likes to throw the strawman accusation about you sure do construct a few yourself. The governing body have a responsibility towards the sport is not a "guilt trip". The point being made is that if the UCI were do to its job, there might be someone willing to pay female cyclists to do cycle.

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Frankly I don't care about the nonsense coming out of women science aka anti-men non-sciences. Any and all research that I've seen coming out of that corner starts off with the assumption that men are evil and will never accept any other conclusion. What I'm talking about is what the normal people believe who call themselves feminists, in the media and forums. Fact is that the initial waves succeeded because they made solid arguments against discrimination and offered realistic steps for change, not because of a Marxist deconstruction of the current society. No normal person understands these far fetched theories and they will never influence enough people for real change. So who cares?

As for what normal people think, I see no realism in the third wave. They want special favors, not equal chances. They blame men for choices women make. They do not understand that with equal choices, further progression can only work if men are freed from bias, stereotypical expectations, etc at the same time as this is done for women. So success can only happen when men's rights and women's rights movements merge and work together for a common cause.
Absolute drivel. Not at all what feminism says, does or is even about. You clearly don't know much about it.

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Thanks for the put down. Really mature. You also just demonstrated that you like to stereotype people, even though you know nothing about me.
A lot of self-righteous indignation, without actually attempting to prove him wrong.
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  #68  
Old 02-03-13, 23:50
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It's really simple. Men's and women's cycling are two different products. if women want equal pay for equal performance then no woman would ever be a pro rider as the men would smash them every race. True equality would be competing against the men, not demanding the same money for going slower.

As two distinct products they have their market values based upon how much interest they generate. The men's racing generates more, therefor gets more coverage and therefor more revenue which is in some part passed on to riders and races. MIt is also undeniably true that way more men compete in cycling, which means that it is in fact harder to bothe best than it is in women's cycling.

In other walks of life women get more money than men. For example in pornography there is far higher demand for women and so women earn more than mentor doing the same things.
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  #69  
Old 02-04-13, 10:08
Aapjes Aapjes is offline
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Setting up new sports federations isn't exactly a walk in the park. Why should women have to set up a new federation anyway? The fact that you are suggesting that they do this implies that the UCI are doing an inadequate job with women's cycling as is and that therefore there is structural sexism at the UCI.
The UCI is doing an inadequate job with male cycling: cycling in Germany has been destroyed, cycling in Holland is being destroyed now as well, the situation in the US is horrible, etc. And where does the UCI's money come from? Male cycling. So of course that will be their main focus. That has nothing to do with sexism, but just with 'follow the money'. You can argue that this is due to sexism in the past, but that is just an explanation, not a solution.

Why should male and female cycling be controlled by the same federation anyway? If having separate races for men and women is fine, then why would a separate federation suddenly be a crazy idea? By sticking with the UCI, women cycling will always be: 'similar, but with less money/support'. Why not be: 'different/more exciting, but with less money/support'? How can they catch up while being similar, but worse?

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Perhaps the UCI could look at increasing professionalism of women's cycling in order to reduce the number of part-timers and thereby make weekday races more widely viable. Most sports networks are pretty barren on weekday afternoons, so the events could be marketed at that slot, perhaps. That is just one idea.
Interesting idea. Although I think that professionalism (as in: full time athletes) has always come after popularity. The problem with that idea in cycling is that you have big fields of riders, so it would take a huge sum of money to pay them all. I don't see who would/could put up that kind of money. The only way to do this is by changing the format of female cycling to something with a small number of superstars who compete in a super league. But the UCI will never allow this (so you need a separate federation to do this).

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The fact is that the UCI spends an awful lot of time, money and effort promoting men's cycling, so they must feel that not only does a governing body have a responsibility to promote its sport but also that they can be effective. The question then is: why do they not do the same for women?
Probably because it would mean taking money away from their cash cow, with no clear ROI in sight. It would be a huge gamble.

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Can you even name any modern feminist scholars?
I'm sure that the majority of the people who call themselves feminists can't name any. My argument is that social change can only work if there is an understandable argument/ideal that average people can understand and get behind. 3rd wave feminism is missing this. That mr. tibbs points to Marxist deconstruction and that you dismiss me by a reference to (unnamed) scholars demonstrates this clearly. You guys can't/won't even articulate your ideal. It's just hand waving and snide remarks.

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It also strikes me as a bit odd to come onto a thread about governance of women's cycling and then make the point that it's not a hugely important issue.
Some people want the UCI/the world to spend a lot of money/effort on women cycling. This thread is opposed to that idea. IMO it's a validly perfect counterpoint to argue that a lot of people don't care that much and thus women cycling shouldn't expect people from outside female cycling to give them huge support.

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When has anyone here said that women cyclists have a right to be paid?
This is an argument that has been made quite a few times by female riders and people on this forum. The initial post that started off this thread criticizes this in its first sentence. So I think it's weird that you criticize me for bringing this up. To semi-quote you: 'It also strikes me as a bit odd to come onto a thread about' better wages and not want to discuss it.

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The governing body have a responsibility towards the sport is not a "guilt trip". The point being made is that if the UCI were do to its job, there might be someone willing to pay female cyclists to cycle.
What does it mean for the UCI to 'do its job'? Are they spending less money on female cycling than they earn from it? I doubt it. So do you want them to divert (more) money from male cycling to female cycling? Or do you think they do a bad job with the money available?

My position is that the UCI is doing a bad job with the money available, but that they can't be expected to dump a lot of extra money into female cycling unless there is a clear ROI. And I haven't seen any plan where the ROI wasn't based on hope.

Last edited by Aapjes; 02-04-13 at 10:16.
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