Mark Cuban has never been shy with the media, and the Dallas Mavericks owner doesn’t pull any punches when it comes to airing his thoughts on his personal blog, BlogMaverick.com. One of his entries last month stirred the pot in a back-and-forth between Miami’s Dwyane Wade and Dallas’s Dirk Nowitzki on exactly what happened in last year’s NBA Finals.
Told that Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling has his own blog, Cuban, who was in town last night to watch his Mavericks take on the Celtics, was asked if he would be OK with one of his players having a personal blog.
“I’d be fine with it,” said Cuban. “We’ve had Josh (Howard) blog and we’ve had Devin (Harris) blog at various points. I trust our guys.”
Schilling has recently used his blog -- 38pitches.com -- to comment on everything from his contract status to his trash talk with Kevin Millar. Schilling even wrote that Jonathan Papelbon would return to the closer’s role before it was officially announced by the team. Schilling apologized to manager Terry Francona the next day for spilling the beans.
Told of the Schilling situation, Cuban was asked if he would be OK with his players breaking team news before it was officially announced.
“Most of the guys are very protective of our information,” said Cuban. “They recognize that what happens in the locker room stays in the locker room. I’d have no problem with [one of my players starting his own blog]. I think it would be a great way for fans to get insights into the players.”
Cuban is no stranger to emerging media. He co-founded Broadcast.com, a provider of streaming Internet multimedia, in 1995. He made millions when he sold it to Yahoo! in 1999. The entrepreneur thinks there may be a big market for new concepts like in-game blogging.
“When you read the AP wrap-ups anymore about a game, they’re really minimal,” said Cuban. “I don’t think the opportunity is so much for people to follow along. I think the biggest opportunity is to go through entire games and map out what’s happening, blog it in real time, and then take all of that and consolidate it and syndicate that out as an alternative to AP.”
Despite his fascination with new media, Cuban was quick to point out that traditional media was by no means dead. He said he could never see a point where owners like himself, players like Schilling, or the leagues themselves, were the only disseminators of news.
“You want somebody with an outside point of view that is objective or at least tries to be somewhat objective,” said Cuban. “Plus distribution is different. Even if you look at different types of PDAs of all sizes, laptops, whatever, cell phones, I don’t think people necessarily want to be caught having to read everything in monitor type.”
The new-media Maverick considers himself to be somewhat old-school.
“I think there’s something to be said for sitting on the John reading a newspaper, or laying in bed reading the newspaper,” said Cuban. “You can read more words and you can read more. That’s not to say that [newspapers] are going to be the primary source of information, but that’s going to be the primary source for in-depth information.”