Fear of a BruinsNation


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Posted by B..B on August 02, 2014 at 02:58:40


I get the feeling that some folks here don't like the BruinsNation website. That's OK. You are entitled to your opinion. It's a lot like Bill Walton. Some love him and some hate him. But nobody forces you to listen to him. However, some of the most critical folks here always seem to know what's going on over there. That's like someone who complains about the food, but keeps going the the same restaurant. Others act like it's toxic and won't go near it. Yes, the manner in which some of the opinions expressed there is objectionable, but that's like throwing away your TV because you don't like some of the programs.

In my opinion, BN is the best UCLA fan website around. That's my opinion. I'm not asking you to agree, just understand my reasons why. And starting today, BN is under new management, so maybe you might want to reconsider your position.

Here are some reasons why I like BruinsNation:

(1) Their editorial bias is irrelevant - So their (now former) leader for some reason had a bug up his butt about Dan Guerrero. Big deal. I don't know Dan, but I know a lot of people who work in the athletic department. I like them. They often consult me on various issues because I am so connected with the athletic program and the fan base. Most are hard working good people who have to deal with constraints the average fan doesn't realize. (There are also a few are arrogant a-holes.) So I take whatever he writes and consider the source. He's entitled to his opinion. But the analogy here is the Fox News Channel. I do not agree with any of their editorial positions, but I sometimes watch it because they do the best job of covering certain news stories. Now what turned many off was their Howland bashing. But they felt that getting rid of him was in the best interests of the program. Did some express that in an objectionable manner? Sure, but certainly nowhere as bad as people here treated Steve Lavin. (It turned out that 86% of Lavin's UCLA career was better than 70% of Howland's, but please let's not open a debate about that here.) Turns out they were right. Alford is doing a good job and Howland can't get one.

Actually, the Dan-bashing is only a very small portion of what they present. Here is a sample of what is there right now: A comprehensive position by position review of the football team, a regular feature of tweets by and about Bruin athletes - something you don't get elsewhere, recruiting updates, massive coverage of the flood and updates on soccer and gymnastics. They do the best job of covering minor UCLA sports. There are no other fan sites that have writeups of all Bruin sports, not just basketball and football. Many people here are not that interested in those sports, especially the non-UCLA grads, but some of us care quite a bit. They are also on top of all breaking news about UCLA athletics in a very timely manner.

(2) People in glass houses - I often see posts here complaining about what BN said. But what they were seeing was just what certain posters said, not the website itself. I'd hate to judge Bruinzone solely on some of the posters here. We have several trolls running loose and by all accounts, doing a very good job of getting the desired outrage out of their targets. We have a bitter old man who throws a hissy fit every time someone posts a link to a story the least bit negative about UCLA or positive about USC or Arizona. We have a massive egotist pretending to be a UCLA fan so he can pretend to know something about basketball statistics. We had someone claiming to be a long time UCLA fan suddenly show up here to scold everyone who said anything remotely negative about his buddy, a certain coach. I could go on and on, but no website is morally superior to the next. They all have their faults. If UCLA fan websites were countries:

BRUINSNATION would be IRAN - Adhere to their doctrine or be ridiculed, punished or banished.

BRO would be NORTH KOREA - Same as BN except their leader has delusions of grandeur.

BRUINZONE would be SOMALIA - No central government with any power, often leading to chaos.

So where would you want to live?

(3) They have high standards - OK, so they're impossibly high. It seems like they expect every UCLA team to win every game. But there's nothing wrong with that. It's no worse than some of the apologists here that want you to ignore every flaw or shortcoming in the athletic program. We all want UCLA's teams to succeed and just express it differently.

(4) They get results - I know for a fact that the athletic department has made public comments or actions as a direct result of a BN campaign. (Example: backing down on moving the student section.) There is only one verified (not hearsay) incident I can recall in the entire history of BZ that this has happened: a video of the pickup games with the pros was posted on the official site and I pointed out that it briefly showed Kyle Anderson, then still in HS, and questioned if that was a recruiting violation. An edited Anderson-less version was posted soon after.

(5) They have a sense of humor - I won't say nobody here has one. There are often amusing posts. But BZ is also populated by some of the most humorless, self righteous and cranky souls, who take everything way too seriously. BN always has some of the most hilarious comments I've ever seen, sometimes in the form of GIFs or videos.

(6) It's FREE - I'll never understand why people pay money for the right to (a) converse with each other on a "premium" message board or (b) read articles by self proclaimed "experts" about subjects you can learn about in many other places or (c) get "exclusive news" that has a shelf life of about 24 hours before it becomes common knowledge and often turns out to be not true or not really relevant for months if not years (such as news that a HS soph has committed to UCLA).

BruinsNation gets 2-3 times the traffic as Bruinzone. So those of you who think your hurting them by not giving them page views are deluded. It's a valuable source of information that shouldn't be characterized by a few negative articles or posters. You have every right to ignore them, but many, many Bruin fans disagree.




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