SC's coverage of HPC has caused me to wonder, what are the federation's goals for the coming season, what kind of budget are they dealing with, and what would define "success" for them? Bringing new fans to the sport is a major goal of every federation, and certainly in the past, SC has discussed that (hence, the "tough" campaign). But outside of that campaign, and the backward approach they've used to market Tessa and Scott specifically, there's very little that SC actually puts out there to the public. Even on Skatebuzz, they provide some interviews and updates on the skaters at various pre-season and seasonal events, but that's about it. In the off-season, when SC should arguably be working to facilitate interest in the sport, Skatebuzz mainly posts videos of interviews with SC famous personnel (the "where are they now?" segments) or highlights of the NCC/ACGM meeting.
What is the point of Skatebuzz, exactly? Is it simply to give existing fans a more in-depth look into the ins and outs of the Canadian skating world? Because it seems like it spends just as much time celebrating the federation itself.
If Skatebuzz isn't directed at bringing in new fans, but is instead meant to provide a more extensive look into the world of Canadian skating, than why does Skatebuzz merely give thirty second peeks into that world with bad music in the background.
And why is the site director for Skatebuzz making $95,000 to $110,000 a year running a website that for the most part, provides nothing more than a few short interviews and live-streams of certain competitions? I guess what I'm getting at is, what is Skatebuzz supposed to do for the federation as a whole? How does it help grow fans for the sport? And if that's not the point of the website, what is supposed to be growing fans for the sport? Is growing fans for the sport via public outreach even that important to SC outside of their CanSkate programs?
Skating is an expensive sport. The Canadian economy is struggling. Skate Canada can only fill half of the seats in the arenas for major competitions. Yet they have the World champion in men's singles and perhaps the greatest ice dance team to skate in several decades. And still, Patrick Chan is down to one sponsor and Tessa and Scott appear openly allergic to anything that would require them to leave their carefully crafted bubble. Something is terribly wrong with this picture. Canada is a skating nation. It can't all be about hockey (which is also expensive to play). Twitter is free to use. SC is paying its Skatebuzz director a nice salary. So the fed is hurting in ticket sales, have three amazing skaters to hang their hat on, and yet do very little to reach out to the public. In terms of simple economic analysis, this makes no sense.
And what's amazing to me is that only after being chastised on the internet for A YEAR did SC even attempt to better publicize HPC and other pre-season events to the public, and while I'm glad they've provided photos and videos, it still looks like a poor man's version of what the USFSA could do in its sleep. If there hadn't been a lot of uproar about how "SC sucks at this" on the internet, would they have changed a thing?
But again, all of this really has me thinking about "the bubble." It seems that it isn't just Tessa and Scott who live in it, but that SC exists in a much bigger one (of which Tessa and Scott exist within, along with all of it's other skaters), rendering them unable to see how badly they're botching things up. It feels very insular and elitist to me.