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Melanie Smith-Taylor

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  • *disclaimer* I've only heard MST on NBC, BUT I'm positive NBC instructs their commentators to dumb things down. Especially after hearing Jimmy Wofford's commentary at Rolex one year.

    (Sorry if this has been pointed out already -- I didn't read the whole thread.)

    Comment


    • Originally posted by grayarabpony View Post
      *disclaimer* I've only heard MST on NBC, BUT I'm positive NBC instructs their commentators to dumb things down. Especially after hearing Jimmy Wofford's commentary at Rolex one year.

      (Sorry if this has been pointed out already -- I didn't read the whole thread.)
      Which takes me back to Figure Skating + Dick Button = High Ratings, loads of fans. Figure Skating - Dick Button = ho hum to boring.
      Because Dick Button is so knowledgeable and chose to educate viewers many people, including this Southerner, became avid followers of FS beginning in the 1970's.
      Wofford does not talk down, he does educate, he does show his love of the sport and of the participants - both horse and human. I really loved the time from Rolex at the big drop into the water. He told the audience - If you want an idea of how this drop feels, get on top of your fridge and jump.
      Wofford and Button both tell it like they see it. Egos get bruised and I guess that "some" skaters are happy that Button is no longer commentating.
      "Never do anything that you have to explain twice to the paramedics."
      Courtesy my cousin Tim

      Comment


      • Yes, I do remember one statement in particular from Wofford that I liked about dressage and being zen, something that RIDERS need to remember all of the time.

        Nevertheless, I do think NBC did instruct Wofford to simplify things for non-horse people. Which is ridiculous. I don't care which sport it is, commentary should not be over-simplified. Simplifying things too much makes viewing boring. I completely agree.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by Lord Helpus View Post
          ^^^^^^
          .Melanie is commentating for non-equestrians. If you know as much as she does, then there is no reason for you to listen to her at all, is there?
          That's fine with me! Actually, except for the freestyle, I do/did mute her commentary. Need the music for the freestyle, so have to put up with her inanity. BUT....if FEI dressage is going to capture any interest from the general public, it SHOULD be educated commentary, not dumbed down. Dumbing down plays to the mocking "dancing horses" silliness and makes light of a difficult athletic endeavor and minimizes the complexity, e.g., it isn't JUST the number of changes that is important but HOW they are done. Heck, Wofford could comment better on FEI dressage than MST, even if we'd like someone of the likes of Davison or A. Steiner better for that particular level of dressage.

          Comment


          • Sandy M...
            I think you're thinking about attracting the American public in your post.

            The FEI doesn't worry too much about attracting support from the public. The stands were packed at the Games, and not just with Brits; Schweppes had a TV dressage commercial. Horse sports have a large following in Europe and the FEI works hard to keep that so.

            Horse sports DO have a following. COuld it be larger? SUre.

            Comment


            • Who was that man?

              I, too. have said that we need a Dick Button in considering who, might be;of similar style, I come up with Jim Wofford , too; ; also Sally O. C. I thought her comments during Rolex were excellent; you know, in Athens, someone, Robert Dover perhaps? was commentator, along with Robert Ridland, also an Olympic showumper who, quickly picked up on the "little things" hindquarters swinging out , horse not straight.Anybody have a video of that, or, recall who that person was?
              breeder of Mercury!

              remember to enjoy the moment, and take a moment to enjoy and give God the glory for these wonderful horses in our lives.BECAUSE: LIFE is What Happens While Making Other Plans

              Comment


              • But why are we talking amongst ourselves? Clearly, NBC Sports has made its choice with Melanie, and they've got exclusive rights for Olympc coverage until 2020. If you want a different commentator, why not contact NBC Sports directly with suggestions?

                Comment


                • Because NBC doesn't care about equestrians. Not sure who they think makes up the majority of their audience for equestrian events though..

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by cyberbay View Post
                    Sandy M...
                    I think you're thinking about attracting the American public in your post.
                    Isn't it more appropriate to restrict this particular discussion to just the American viewing audience?

                    MST is under contract to NBC and NBC has exclusive rights to broadcast the Games in the USA thru 2020.

                    Others named are similarly under contract to their own networks and not available...unless NBC wants to buy the BBC commentary and that ain't going to fly.

                    Perhaps a thread about the FEI giving the sport more support worldwide? trying to influence the networks to show more and in better time slots on channels more widely available? If viewers never see it, they aren't going to get to like it no matter who is talking.
                    When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                    The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                    Comment


                    • Actually NBC Sports probably has thought about it and even researched the audience market share for programming. Remember, they make money by selling advertising so they need to know about their target audience. I agree that their target audience is not equestrians. Their target audience is people who are horse enthusiasts, which is a much larger group.

                      MST's commentary was not my favorite, but I expect NBC will continue using her. She has been working for them for years. She is experienced and a known entity. My guess is that most of the audience watching likes her commentary. So it will stay.

                      At this point, I am just happy that there were improved ways to watch the equestrian sports at WEG, the Olympics and Rolex. Was it ideal? No, but it was a pretty decent option to the "old days" when it was a miracle if you saw a snippet of anything horse related.
                      Where Fjeral Norwegian Fjords Rule
                      http://www.ironwood-farm.com

                      Comment


                      • Well, in the unlikely event that NBC replaces MST with Jim Wofford, I would hope Jim Wofford's commentary is better than his writing in Practical Horseman, because I think he comes across as a complete ass.

                        And I agree, Ironwood. In the olden days of the 70s and 80s, about all they ever showed of equestrian was a few seconds of the falls on cross country and show jumping.

                        Comment


                        • But why are we talking amongst ourselves? Clearly, NBC Sports has made its choice with Melanie, and they've got exclusive rights for Olympc coverage until 2020. If you want a different commentator, why not contact NBC Sports directly with suggestions
                          Could it be a result of slacktivism?

                          Stolen from totalis(sic) thread.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Crockpot View Post
                            Could it be a result of slacktivism?

                            Stolen from totalis(sic) thread.
                            Yes slactivism on the part of some of the people on this thread who haven't read the whole thing. Because if they had actually read the entire thing and not just assumed that their comments were important enough to ignore others, they would have seen that in fact, SEVERAL people HAVE contacted NBC to tell them how we feel.

                            Comment


                            • Yes slactivism on the part of some of the people on this thread who haven't read the whole thing. Because if they had actually read the entire thing and not just assumed that their comments were important enough to ignore others, they would have seen that in fact, SEVERAL people HAVE contacted NBC to tell them how we feel.
                              Nothing more cranky than a slacktivist without a sense of humor..

                              If this is the most burning issue in your life, you are soo lucky.

                              So many pages on this??Wow.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by IronwoodFarm View Post
                                At this point, I am just happy that there were improved ways to watch the equestrian sports at WEG, the Olympics and Rolex. Was it ideal? No, but it was a pretty decent option to the "old days" when it was a miracle if you saw a snippet of anything horse related.
                                Yup, I have to agree with that, since my 10-year-old computer was just not up to snuff for coping with the video and I couldn't get coverage on my Kindle.

                                What's a "horse enthusiast"? Usually people either get into horses and riding or move on with their lives. In any case they don't need to be told the riders use their legs and pull on the reins to turn the horse. Anybody who has watched a cowboy movie knows that.

                                Let's face it, the majority of people who are going to actually watch two full hours of musical freestyle, or even showjumping, are equestrians. In my family the non-horsey set fall asleep. lol And then they perk right back up when baseball comes on. Strange.

                                Comment


                                • Originally posted by cyberbay View Post
                                  Sandy M...
                                  I think you're thinking about attracting the American public in your post.

                                  The FEI doesn't worry too much about attracting support from the public. The stands were packed at the Games, and not just with Brits; Schweppes had a TV dressage commercial. Horse sports have a large following in Europe and the FEI works hard to keep that so.

                                  Horse sports DO have a following. COuld it be larger? SUre.
                                  We're talking specifically about MST and NBC's coverage of the Olympics. I doubt the people in the stands or the European public were watching the games on NBC.

                                  Comment


                                  • Originally posted by Crockpot View Post
                                    Nothing more cranky than a slacktivist without a sense of humor..

                                    If this is the most burning issue in your life, you are soo lucky.

                                    So many pages on this??Wow.
                                    And yet, you keep coming back to it to comment about how many pages.....But keep commenting on how this is a burning issue...it isn't a burning issue in my life. I don't discuss burning issues in my life with faceless strangers on the internet. And this board IS about horses, right? So, should all the topics on this board be burning issues?

                                    Yes, I am lucky. I love my life.

                                    Comment


                                    • [quote=grayarabpony;6501335]
                                      What's a "horse enthusiast"?
                                      /quote]

                                      A horse enthusiast is anyone who likes horses. Obviously equestrians are a subset of this bigger category. There are far more people who are interested in horses who do not own them, ride them or come in contact with them. That's the market NBC wants.

                                      I actually happen to agree with them. The way to have horse sports thrive and grow in this country is to have a bigger base of support. You want to increase your horse enthusiast base. That means educating your audience in a very basic way about the sport they are watching.

                                      I consider myself a figure skating enthusiast. I have never owned skates, wanted to go to a skating rink, or understand all the fine points of skating. But I was raised listening to Dick Button and have a basic understanding of the sport. I like watching it and will be part of the audience for the next Winter Olympics.
                                      Where Fjeral Norwegian Fjords Rule
                                      http://www.ironwood-farm.com

                                      Comment


                                      • And yet, you keep coming back to it to comment about how many pages.....But keep commenting on how this is a burning issue...it isn't a burning issue in my life. I don't discuss burning issues in my life with faceless strangers on the internet. And this board IS about horses, right? So, should all the topics on this board be burning issues?
                                        Well you definitely sound burned up about it.

                                        Comment


                                        • Originally posted by Crockpot View Post
                                          Well you definitely sound burned up about it.
                                          That's your own interpretation. I am not burning up about it. Nor am I worried that this thread has gone 12 pages like you are.

                                          Comment

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