Putting The Blast In E-Blast

Jeff Jackson puts the blast back into Rock & Ice’s Tuesday Night Bouldering E-Blast with this response to Peter Beal’s pot-stirring post from last week:

But is climbing media destroying the sport? Here again I take issue with Beal’s assertions. Sure, there are plenty of examples of terrible writing, self promotion and feel-good bromides but overall climbing media’s endorsement of the culture of consumption is tame or, conversely, anti-consumption.

Interesting thoughts as well from Justin Roth:

Whenever I disagree strongly with an argument, I take it as a sign. It means that argument has hit a sore spot. And any sore spot we have within us is worthy of further examination. Beal’s critiques,  and the less-than-tactful means he chose to express them, certainly made an impression on me.

Posted In: Asides, Industry

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40 Responses to Putting The Blast In E-Blast

  1. Calvin April 5, 2012 at 8:54 am #

    Well Narc, that’s one way to put it. I read some of those responses, but probably only because I read anything put in front of me, not because I think Peter or the responders have much of a point. I’ve said as much on his site. Methinks this is more akin to much ado about nothing? My worthless 2 cents, of course.

    Anyhow, I noticed you went to the Red but failed to post anything descriptive about it. Some of [your loyal readers] like the feel-good bromides of reading TR’s from fellow climbers. Nevermind how insignificant you feel your sends might be relative to Ashima or Brad Weaver. I don’t climb V13 or 5.13, so I like to read about the 5.1X sends of fellow climbers, as long as they’re excited about the journey.

    Post up! You can do it in a small sidebar if you want to keep it out of the way. :)

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    • Narc April 5, 2012 at 8:59 am #

      I do have something say about my trip, I just need to find some time to write it up.

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      • Luke April 5, 2012 at 11:32 am #

        I was pretty impressed by the weekend chaos of the Red River Reunion. A tough issue (a la Peter) would be a critique of big events put on at climbing areas.

        Mostly I think they work when trail days and cleanups are arranged to mitigate the trash generated. Fundraisers are also a plus. I was just shocked by all the people at Miguel’s. I guess that I am out of touch with how popular that place has become over the last 10 years.

        - Luke

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    • Joe April 5, 2012 at 9:17 am #

      Calvin, I want to keep you out of the way.

      Wait, is this facebook?

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      • Calvin April 5, 2012 at 9:21 am #

        Touche, Joey. How’re the kids?

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  2. Matt T April 5, 2012 at 10:09 am #

    After reading the article and the rebuttle, I have to agree with Beal. I haven’t picked up an issue of rock and ice for a while now, but last time I did, I remember there being more ads than articles. Jeff mentions all that was written about in Rock and Ice articles. While they did put those topics in a magazine, they were spread out and thus loses any credibility to someone who reads the magazines. If they were all in one issue, Jeff wins. This is the direction of all climbing magazines. I remember a post a year or two ago (possibly on climbingnarc) that physically counted the number of ads in a climbing magazine and compared them to the number of actual articles. It was astounding to see how much fluff existed.

    Everything is oriented towards marketing. Jeff mentions that they covered the whole cerro Torre extravaganza. What was at the root of that? The excess bolting? No. The Chopping of bolts? Later on. RED BULL. Red Bull was the reason behind the climb, the excess bolting, the lack of cleaning, etc… Everytime an article mentioned red bull, their (red bull) stock probably went up. Saying that climbing has not become a sell out is just flat out wrong because of that sole event.

    It’s hypocritical for Jeff to have posted this blog. I count on his blog post 5 ads currently. 1 of them being for subscribing. So 4 to outside companies. So Rock and Ice gets a COMBINED 1 penny for 1 view on his page. (That’s 1/4 cent per ad view.) His rebuttle, the next hot topic in the climbing world, will easily get 10,000 views, if not more. I would venture to say that I underestimated both the ad revenues and views in this example; however, that is $100 for a rant that probably took him 20 minutes to write. I wish I made that. This doesn’t include any kick backs or subscriptions that may occur from viewers actually using the ads. On top of that, he markets Rock and Ice in the middle of the article saying all the controversial topics they cover.

    As far as silencing controversial topics, 8a.nu, believe it or not, is the best at bringing them up time and time again while most other media outlets stay quiet. Charlotte Durif? “Chipping” in Lincoln Lake? Actual topics relavent to the climbing scene are rarely discussed. Only the big name (read: sponsored climber) ascents, events highly backed by sponsors, and the occasional glimpse of areas around the world that have an agenda closer to promoting spending than promoting climbing. Magazines, as they should be, are afraid of offending a certain group of people using these controversial topics because it results in a loss of revenue. You don’t see liberal media pushing conservative topics do you? You won’t see climbing media pushing office supplies. While this is an extreme comparison, it holds true. They second a climbing/outdoor magazine promotes something that offends, in this case indoor activities, they lose followers. When money is irrelavent, such as on athlete blogs, they dare to dicuss the more controversial side of climbing.

    This is the same reason climbing magazines don’t offer differing viewpoints. If you anger your patrons, they might not return. You have to go with the opinion of the majority. Its the larger of two groups (Majority/Minority) and if you had to pick one as your customer base, you must go with the most profitable. For example: With the whole Charolette Durif 9a debate (forgive me for bringing this up) there were 2 sides. Those that did not believe her and those that did. The majority and the minority respectively. Pick the side that discredits her or don’t report it at all. Same thing with Chilam Bilam. When Adam Ondra got the “First Ascent”, that is how it was reported. History forgotten, Adam Ondra is the first ascensionist, we will never discuss Barnabe again.

    However, while climbing is selling out, it is inevitable. That is how it goes. What College basketball team isn’t sponsored by Nike, Adidas, Gatorade, etc…? As a sport grows and the potential for making money grows, one must take advantage of it to survive. No fault of the magazines, but Beal is right in his discussion and Jeff isn’t necessarily wrong, just he is in a position that is impossible to defend from.

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    • ad block April 5, 2012 at 1:56 pm #

      Fairly simple to avoid all ad’s is to install ad block. Then you don’t have to go to dpm and see 1 billion ad’s .

      That issue is easily solved

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      • Narc April 5, 2012 at 1:58 pm #

        The merits of online ad blockers are a topic for a different day, but it certainly is an odd experience looking at DPM’s site with an ad blocker on. Quite a lot of empty space.

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    • Sid April 5, 2012 at 2:37 pm #

      You know, this post has the same lingering taste of bitter that’s plaguing both climbing and non-climbing society. Last I checked, it wasn’t a crime to try and earn a living. Frankly, you wouldn’t be able to watch all of those amazing, high-production value movies/clips of climbers if it wasn’t for sponsors. And what person in their right mind would drop wads of cash to produce or sponsor without expecting to make money?! Please, take your bitterness elsewhere. We don’t need this attitude in climbing.

      I am willing to take a stand for the complete opposite opinion since no one has yet done so, and say that I firmly believe sponsorship, media and advertising is the ONLY future for climbing. There are plenty of arguments for this – even in ways you don’t immediately consider.

      Take for example the number of people who climb. As the base grows (which it is and will continue to do so) so will the demand on natural resources. More climbers traffic an area means more routes need to be developed and/or more routes need to be maintained. Hardware ain’t cheap. Neither is time – and only a tiny fraction of the climbing population is actually involved. That’s where “corporate dollars” come in. They can sponsor people, in return for increased product awareness, with gear and money to enable this process. And it’s already happening.

      This is just the tip of the iceberg, you’d have to be wearing some seriously foggy goggles not to see it. Even Narc uttered speak of advertising on his iOS app… so the next time you go to dpm, or R&I or watch a climbing video remember that it’s only BECAUSE of all that you detest that you are able to enjoy such luxuries. If you truly do believe what you say, then you should send a check to the media producer of every video you watch because if not, you sir have double standards.

      P.S. I don’t block the ads on DPM

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      • Matt T April 5, 2012 at 2:52 pm #

        Not to cause an arguement, but I never stated I have a problem with the ads. I am just supporting what Beal said about climbing selling out and at the very end of my post I say that it is inevitable for climbing to drift the way it is.

        I do pay for all of my climbing movies and support things like “the stash” on DPM. So, I don’t have double standards, I believe what I said was just taken the wrong way.

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      • ad block April 7, 2012 at 10:08 pm #

        @ Sid

        I fully understand here you are coming from, I do not support not paying for stash videos like so many folks do (who all use one account). I do not support downloading illegal content of ANY kind, Not just climbing media. (which I doubt everyone has the same values, only when it effect them!)

        I simply don’t like being tracked via cookies, and don’t like webpages that take to long to load and take up my CPU, when I need to do multiple things at one time.

        I at least want to see a tasteful amount of ad’s. I don’t want to feel like I’m in the movie idiosyncrasy, where there are more ad’s than content. Having that many ad’s can hurt people concentration levels just like having commercials every 8 minutes.

        Matt, Brain, Bjorn, etc all do a great job because of their love of the sport

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  3. Sp April 5, 2012 at 10:14 am #

    Jackson is tough to read. His need to demonstrate his command of the English language overshadows any message he is trying to tell.

    Beyond that, while I agree with most of his piece, his statement “climbing as counter-culture is healthy and growing” seems to really miss the mark. He cites examples of pieces in R&I and his own anectodal experiences which suggest this, yet does nothing to show that the commoditization of climbing is slowing or not happening to the extent many believe.

    Go to Cafe Press and see 3,000 choices for climbing t-shirts. Check out the deep lines that form in popular areas under 5.8 “sport” routes. Better yet, ask if “counter-culture” involves tens of millions of participants and acceptance in the Olympics.

    Climbing is following the same trajectory as surfing and snowboarding previously did. Sure, you’ll always have the die hards (pun?) out there keeping the spirit alive, but does anyone consider publicly traded companies and Visa commercials a sign of healthy counter-culture?

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    • Duane Raleigh April 5, 2012 at 2:34 pm #

      I always get a chuckle when people say that climbing is “selling out.” I’ve climbed for 40 years, and climbers have always said this. Fact is, climbing can’t sell out any more than the potatoes in my garden can sell out. Climbing is an activity, not a living thing. People sell out. And since people are always motivated by the same things (money, fame), there are and always have been climbers that you could claim were sell outs. I want to know when this imagined golden age was when climbers weren’t selling out. It is no worse today than it has ever been. It is the same. Which is to say that there are a few climbers who are sponsored and scrape out livings from climbing, and there are companies and businesses that deliver products into the climbing market. They aren’t selling out, they are just earning livings participating in a sport that they love. If they are selling out, then so is every one of us with a job that pays us. Cast stones only if you show up for work each day or contribute to society in some meaningful—and you do it all for free.

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      • peter beal April 5, 2012 at 3:50 pm #

        I’d like to respond to this last comment. The all-or-nothing argument about legitimate criticism, with its implications of hypocrisy for critics who don’t measure up to an impossible standard of purity, is neither valid nor fair. Anyone can point out that a house is on fire and their character or occupation has nothing to do with that fact.

        I also am not persuaded that all businesses share the same values or are “just earning livings” and I would argue that this is obvious even to the most disinterested observer. While I think that the outdoor industry in general tries to uphold a higher standard than many, I would add that it is disingenuous to claim that nothing has changed in the climbing industry in 40 years. The evidence points overwhelmingly in the other direction. All one has to do is flip through a sample of issues of any magazine over the past two decades to see a pattern of market expansion, increasingly sophisticated public outreach and a corollary commodification of the sport. I would not be surprised if every advertising prospectus distributed by the major titles reflects this reality. If it doesn’t, it probably should.

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      • sp April 6, 2012 at 9:12 am #

        Duane – I’m not certain if your comment was intended as a reply to mine or an earlier poster, since I never said climbing was “selling out.”

        I do however disagree with your suggestion that publicly traded corporations are equivalent to Chouinard’s anvil and hammer in his parents garage. Hot-forged pitons from a dedicated manufacturing plant sold in retail stores are most certainly different from an 18 year old making equipment for top climbers at his parents home. Sure, both have the same end goal, $$, but to suggest that the era of buying gear from a guys van is the same as buying from an REI outlet would be simplifying things in a significant way.

        I could be way off here, but I don’t feel that Peter’s original blog post (who can correct me if I’m wrong), is intended for everyone to lament the loss of the “good old days,” rather to point out that things are changing, including for better and for worse.

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  4. peter beal April 5, 2012 at 10:29 am #

    In this case I agree with Calvin. However if it is much ado, why have a number of significant figures in the world of climbing publishing weighed in on this one blog post. It’s a blog. B-L-O-G. Don’t they get paid to cover important stuff?

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    • Calvin April 5, 2012 at 1:35 pm #

      Peter, perhaps that’s part of the point. They get paid to weigh in on *anything* because more eyeballs = more $$. Substance over style doesn’t pay many bills, because the incentive system isn’t setup the right way (nevermind the analogy to our medical billing system). Yet somehow we think the climbing paparazzi are actually media who are supposed to cover the important stuff.

      By the way, you did needle them with your post. It’s not unreasonable to think they’d get a bit defensive. Alas, It’s much ado about naught to the rest of us though.

      I should give the climbing rags their due – they do cover controversial/relevant issues from time to time. But I highly doubt that alone could pay the bills. Witness the demise of The Alpinist although I know it’s been resurrected.

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  5. Dave April 5, 2012 at 11:43 am #

    A good highlight of the growing pains of climbing.

    I read stuff online all the time how people want to grow the sport, want to see it in the olympics, etc. To that I say this: Is your crag experience improved by seeing more people there?

    There is an article on the deadpoint right now about how the pros don’t make any money from climbing. To that I say: Good! This will keep it a participant sport, with people who really love it. If you’re looking to be a high paid pro athlete, go somewhere else.

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  6. Colin P April 5, 2012 at 12:32 pm #

    I also don’t really see what the fuss is about. I don’t read climbing magazines and only occasionally skim the latest online climbing ‘news’. I ignore the advertisements and am relying on the same trad and sport racks I built up three years ago and shoes I bought on clearance in 2008. I have plenty going on in my life besides climbing so I stay blissfully ignorant of these recent cultural ‘developments’. When I do decide to spend time climbing, it’s in the gym or at the crag (or sometimes on a climbing trip, yay!) and I couldn’t care less what is happening in the world of climbing celebrities and gear companies. So for me, the current state of affairs in climbing is still awesome, and I still feel blessed to have even discovered this hobby/sport in the first place! In summary: Learn to ignore what’s not good for you and the rest will take care of itself.

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  7. Neil April 5, 2012 at 1:03 pm #

    This all makes me think of Marshall McLuhan’s Understand Media. The in-filtration of climbing media has without a doubt altered the experience of climbing. Whether the change is neutral, for better, or for worse seems up for debate. But if “the medium is the message,” it does seem that climbing media has tacitly made us objects of our imaginations, poseurs of our own fantasies, and some how diluted the original transcendent essence of the sport.

    Like everything else in the world these days, there’s so much more noise in climbing. And now this noise–branding, blogging, pro-goggling–has entered a lot of our heads and become a filter between ourselves and the experience.

    All of these filters might mean that the transcendent experience of climbing is further from the soul of the sport; transcendence has been replaced with representation, or “posing.” Instead of transcendence from daily life–as in the pre-mediated 50s-90s–the newly mediated climbing experience now thrusts us deeper into the mundane. What once bordered on spiritual and transcendent has become just another personal masturbation fantasy; instead of climbing to GET OUT of ourselves, we climb to GET OFF on ourselves.

    Of course this is not true for everyone. The older one is, or the less often one reads blogs and magazine, the less ensconced in noise. But Jeff Jackson is going the way of the dinosaur, and Peter Beal is talking about the future.

    Maybe some of the integrity of the sport has been lost as representation has usurped experience?

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  8. Chum April 5, 2012 at 3:24 pm #

    I usually don’t post my opinion in comment sections of blogs but I find this topic of the sport of climbing as being sold out quite interesting. Climbing is more popular than it ever has been. I’ve been climbing since 1991 and I’ve seen the growth. I’ve helped contribute to it many ways. Aside from the occasional overcrowding at my favorite crags I mostly don’t mind the boom in popularity. How could I? Climbing has been one of the best things I’ve done with my life. Other folks are finding out how fun it is. How could I deny them that?

    Has climbing “sold out”? I say no it hasn’t. I agree with Peter’s argument that the online world of climbing is covered up with ads. So what. Most climbing videos posted on the internet are 3rd rate home movies and the many athlete profile videos aren’t much better than that. I watch them. Sometimes they’re well done ads. Mostly it’s just an ad. This doesn’t mean the “soul” of the sport is dead.

    I’m a musician and I’ve lent my music to a few well known climbing filmmakers for use in their movies. For free. Most of the time I’ve received nothing for this. Why? Because I love climbing and feel proud to see my art connected with climbing somehow. Maybe things will come around I’ll see some financial payback. The latest movie I’ve worked on is going to be a documentary on the history of American rock climbing. If you think the soul of the sport is dead you should check out a few clips from the movie:

    http://www.rockadventuremovie.com/home.html

    Honestly I’m not sure what the “soul” of the sport is. I know what climbing means to me. As long as I get out and enjoy being on the cliffs and in the mountains I usually feel pretty good. Climbing stuff on the internet is often just a waste of time.

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  9. Winston Elliott April 5, 2012 at 5:54 pm #

    Peter Beal, in his response has made one good point, and then a couple of non-points. The good point is that you do not need to be without sin to point it out, only to throw the first stone. But his examples are not really examples at all, but impressions which he doesn’t seem to fully describe, only by stating it’s “obvious.” I wish he would go into more depth about the co-opting of climbing culture, and what separates his complaints from the complaints of all of the generations before him. John Sherman was pretty vocal about hang-dogs being solely people who didn’t lower after each fall. Sport climbers were looked down upon, and everything should be done “ground up,” even boulder problems, where the top-out should not be scoped out on. If his pointing out of greed is a lament of the direction of climbing, what would make his opinion any more valid than someone like Sherman’s. Not that I, nor anyone I know ascribes to Sherman’s view.

    It seems increasingly that everyone wants to be a part of a counter-culture, and they think that commercialism is the downfall of it all. But its not about what they’re selling, its about what you’re buying. So the answer is more about independent thought, the basis of counter-culture, and how can anyone control that, as it would be the antithesis?

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  10. peter beal April 5, 2012 at 6:07 pm #

    Hi Winston,
    I am unable to understand what the last paragraph is trying to say. I never claimed that everyone wants to be part of a counterculture, pretty much the contrary, at least counterculture in a meaningful sense. To claim that “it’s not about what they’re selling” is to dismiss the power of selling pseudo-counterculture. The best summary of this is in Thomas Frank’s Conquest of Cool.

    Regarding specific evidence, my complaint has nothing to do with climbing per se but the attitude surrounding the sport and its commodification. The Sherman example is neither here nor there. The examples of this new attitude are too numerous to count and I will leave that task alone for now. The defensiveness with which some in the industry have responded leads me to think that I have said something with merit.

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    • Winston Elliott April 6, 2012 at 3:35 pm #

      Right, pseudo-culture is constantly for sale, this is why I stated that ‘everyone wants to be part of a counter-culture.’ But if people choose to buy into it, its their choice that fuels that behavior of selling a counterfeit, not any companies.

      The Sherman example I feel is a pretty common parallel with all groups of ‘Those darn kids! In my day…’ Sherman felt (feels, probably) that climbing was an adventure sport, and that attitude became more of a numbers game. He was right, but that attitude also opened new doors that might have stayed closed (harder bouldering, sport climbing in general, etc.)

      Just because people get mad on the internet doesn’t mean there is merit there. Additionally, saying that there are too many examples to count is once again diversionary. There are certainly ways to quantify these things. A small example would have been Narc’s comparison of ad pages to article pages, but this example has a population of one. If you are really so interested in making a point, you should look for better ways to quantify the problem, or examples of the problem, rather than dismissing the ideas under ‘obviousness.’ I am not saying you are wrong, that people are trying to sell us things, but that sitting there as stating opinion as fact, and pushing those opinions into a place where change should be enacted, is without merit. Anyone can do it.

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  11. joeyjoejoe April 5, 2012 at 7:27 pm #

    This is one of the stupidest conversations I’ve seen on the climbing blogosphere in recent times. It’s right up there with discussing whether Ondra’s screams are ruining climbing or not.

    Seriously? Is climbing “selling out”? What the fuck are you people even talking about? You sound like a bunch of senile old men on a porch talking about the good old days. What do you (specifically, Beal and anyone else willing to type long-winded paragraphs about this nonsense) hope to achieve by whining about “commodification”? Do you think the industry might stop and say, “Hey, guys, we’ve gotten too commodified! Better take it down a notch!” Why don’t you go yell at the wind for a while and see if it will stop blowing?

    Climbing is what you make it. And, in my view, people like Peter Beal bitching about stupid non-issues are in the same camp as people bellyaching about whether a V13 is easier for a little girl than for a big strong man: they both make me a little less proud to call myself a climber.

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  12. peter beal April 5, 2012 at 7:35 pm #

    JJJ,

    Judging from the number of comments and page views that this “stupidest” conversation has generated, there must be a lot of really stupid climbers out there, including top editors and writers in the sport. Is everybody that misguided?

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    • Jesse April 5, 2012 at 8:40 pm #

      So in your mind the number of comments and views is an indication of quality and pertinence. Who’s misguided?

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  13. peter beal April 5, 2012 at 8:55 pm #

    I think that actually a lot of the comments have been very constructive and that any time such a large number of climbers bother to comment on such an abstract issue, that it probably reflects a genuine concern, not merely a desire to score points.

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  14. Chum April 5, 2012 at 9:41 pm #

    To be fair I think Peter raises a few significant questions. Could the mags do more to raise awareness of important issues? Things like overcrowding, managing environmental impacts, and access issues, as well as focusing less on hard sends and seeking out more quality writing.

    I would also agree that often the quality of writing in climbing magazines is not always the finest. I can think of several exceptions but often I find the stories leave much to be desired. I feel that unless you have a really good photographer getting pics to accompany your story then you don’t have a good chance of getting published. Is a story better with pics. Yes but not necessarily. My favorite piece of climbing writing is Chuck Pratt’s “A View from Deadhorse Point.” No pics but a real classic.

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    • jacob April 6, 2012 at 3:11 pm #

      why are we looking to the mags to raise awareness of important issues? it’s done every day on the intardweb. magazines aren’t for that anymore(if they ever were?). most people here obviously get their news from other sources and then discussions amongst friends a fellow climbers really grow from that. i don’t look to the mags for hard news, but for tidbits that make me search for more about what interests me. i don’t think that this reflects a selling out of the climbing world, but more just a change in the world in general. people eat information and vomit it forth in a much different way than they did just a handful of years ago. the “important” news is still out there, it’s just been individualized like everything else in our lives.

      don’t despair peter, climbers still care and they still talk about the things that really matter to the sport. maybe stop looking to, or expecting big names, established companies and climbing porn to contribute. the rest of us will pick up the slack…as we’ve seen here.

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  15. chris April 6, 2012 at 6:28 am #

    I actually found Jackson’s response pretty compelling. Which is not to say that the market for climbing magazines isn’t a little…diluted, these days, but the quality is there if you’re willing to look and not simply hate. Not every piece of every issue is going to be groundbreaking, nor should they be. Something for everyone.

    I think Rock and Ice in particular does an excellent job, and that is why they get my money. Yeah, they have a lot of ads, but that’s the nature of the publishing business these days. I don’t think they have altered my consumer behavior much.

    The fact that people are talking about things is being used as an argument for ‘having struck a nerve,’ or something. I’m not going to read into that too much. Mr. Beal has a bigger soap-box than your average internet commenter, and accordingly is granted more consideration when he writes. Every day, on obscure forums, comment threads go way longer for someone dumber having written something inflammatory (and, often, dumb)

    I think the fact that you have Jackson, editor of one of our bigger mags, responding via his own site is a kind of neat indication that our community isn’t yet as big and washed out as we may fear…The big names are still listening to and communicating with us quieter folk. I feel the same way when film editors or pro-climbers decide to put a post on this site. I like that I can hang out at Miguel’s one autumn weekend and walk by Chris Sharma, and it’s not a big deal.

    Hopefully the sport doesn’t lose these things too soon.

    Which is not to say I don’t find some developments troubling (Five Ten bought out, BD goes public, etc). But on this particular issue, I feel more on the side of Jackson.

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  16. david sahalie April 6, 2012 at 8:56 am #

    the discussion here is more dynamic and of a higher quality that what is found in the mags. mags in general are in decline, not only because they are paper media, but also because they aren’t interactive.

    can somebody please sponsor the Narc already?!

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  17. Will April 6, 2012 at 12:58 pm #

    The people who comment on this blog, let lone any blog, are hardly representative of the “climbing community”.

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    • peter beal April 6, 2012 at 1:00 pm #

      the evidence for that statement being what exactly?

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      • David April 6, 2012 at 4:24 pm #

        FYI, the “real” climbing community doesn’t even own computers. Duh. /sarc

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    • david sahalie April 7, 2012 at 10:02 am #

      then who is?

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    • Mason April 9, 2012 at 9:18 am #

      Will’s right. The “real” climbing community will never see this.

      http://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=190374764413743&id=132274126826898

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      • Will April 9, 2012 at 2:52 pm #

        All I’m saying is that the climbing community is huge. Peter is no more of a representation of the climbing community than any other individual with an opinion and a blog. It is easy to think that the climbing community extends only to those who comment online about their views, but that is not the reality.

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  18. Dan April 7, 2012 at 1:09 am #

    I read most of this and a lot of the comments here and I honestly feel a bit sick. I love climbing and good vids and the occasional high quality article in a mag get me psyched for climbing. I like that these mediums are sponsored because it means I pay less for it (go ahead LT11!!). I love going out in the woods with my pad and challenging my body with God’s amazing creation and admiring what an amazing route setter He is! I love introducing people to the sport and I love seeing their faces when they top out. Most of those I’ve introduced to climbing who love it and want more will go out and get a $20 pair of used climbing shoes and fill a zip lock bag with chalk. Trendy gear comes from birthdays and Christmas gifts as friends and family bless others by giving them toys that are relevant to their hobbies. Oh sure there are teens with too much money that go climbing once and watch vids non-stop for 3 weeks and then ask their parents for a Prana wardrobe and all sorts of other fancy thing but you find that in every outdoor avenue, really in any hobby. Its the direction our whole American culture is going and sure some of those folks are finding their way into climbing simply because the sport is growing and doesn’t require a moral/ethical entrance exam to participate (altho not a bad idea…)

    I’m writing too much here and I’m starting to even loathe my own post. I’m going climbing you guys let me know when you get all this “important” stuff sorted out.

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  19. Robert April 9, 2012 at 3:01 pm #

    Whining is really annoying, and thats pretty much all Mr. Beal is doing. Sure, there a some things about the way climbing is evolving that you may not agree with. There are things I don’t agree with either. I hate the elitist, holier-than-thou, back in my day, BS attitudes. Everything is changing and evolving. Climbing included. You can either get involved and help give the sport direction, or you can complain on the internet and offer no solutions or suggestions. We could all stand to get over ourselves, and not take everything so seriously (me included).

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