Reporting on cricket, particularly the current test match series against the West Indies, can be a dull affair at times, and journos down the years have been known to create their own amusement.
But Dr Mumbo was more than a little surprised to read this line about the behaviour of an unnamed hack in Guardian sports reporter Russell Jackson’s opinion piece on the Chris Gayle affair yesterday:
“Last week in the Melbourne Cricket Ground press box I was staggered to note, on the third morning of the Test and for the entire day thereafter, an accredited member of the media sitting in front of me tapping away at his company laptop, but tabbing between his match report and a constant stream of hardcore pornography.
Jackson, who is Guardian Australia’s deputy sports editor, goes on to write how: “I could barely believe what I was seeing.
“The thing that initially staggered me was the sheer audacity of it, that the presence of both female and male colleagues, who were sitting metres away with clear views of his screen, hadn’t been enough to deter him and that he felt perfectly comfortable doing it in full view.”
Jackson argues that not only is sport still largely a “blokesworld”, but so too is the sports media.
He doesn’t identify the journalist in question, but he does note that on the second day (yes, it went on for at least two days): “This fervent porn consumer had to be awkwardly approached and told by an administrator of reasonable authority that not only could those female and male colleagues see what he was doing but that they’d appreciate it if he stopped.
“He did, admirably restraining himself for the rest of the day.”
Charming. As Jackson then notes in his piece: “Personally, I don’t subscribe to every arcane and unspoken law of the press box, but find the one that precludes any of us from spending eight hours on the verge of public masturbation is generally observed by all.”
You’d hope so.
Jackson’s full piece on sexism in the sports media can be read here.