Bourbon Street Shots 2015 Resolutions

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Published: January 4, 2015

This site has been around for nearly 10 years, but it is still very much a work in progress. Not only is the team constantly evolving, but since the site has come into being, more than a dozen writers have been a part of our team and social media has become a huge part of what we do. Combine that with all the different outlets that cover the New Orleans Pelicans now, and their evolutions, and you can imagine how it is hard for us to lock down exactly who we are and what we want to provide for our readers, podcast listeners, and followers on social media. With that in mind, we want to start fresh and declare our resolutions for 2015 and beyond.

We do this for two reasons: First and foremost, to figure it out for ourselves. And secondly, we expect YOU to all hold us accountable when we slip up, because odds are we will from time to time. Not necessarily in a mean, incriminating kind of way, but in a good friend, “Hey man, do you think you should be having that cookie?” kind of way. So, here we go. These will be individual declarations, but the the site as a whole will establish universal norms as well moving forward. Save this article somewhere if you can and help us when we need it. Also, the updated mission statement is are on our updated About page.

Mission

To provide the best analysis of all facets of the New Orleans Pelicans. To be a meaningful and significant part of the culture of the New Orleans Pelicans. To interact with the New Orleans Pelicans, their fans, and their media in a consistent and mutually beneficial manner.

  • Analysis and Reporting: While the major media outlets provide excellent coverage of the New Orleans Pelicans, certain segments of the market are under-served by mass media. We resolve to fill in those gaps with the best analysis possible. We resolve to be correct, clear, consistent, and comprehensive.
  • Readers and Fans: As we are fans and readers ourselves, we resolve to treat fans and readers the way at least as good as we want to be treated. This includes encouraging fandom, educating fans, promoting good interactions with fans and discouraging interactions that negatively affect the culture surrounding the team or our operations.
  • Media: Though not full-time or paid members of the media, we resolve to hold ourselves at least to the standards paid and full-time media media members are held. This includes going out of our way to compliment and promote good work by media members, be an available resource to media members, and engage in criticism of opinion or analysis in open, accepted, and respectful ways.

Our 2015 Resolutions!

Regarding Analysis and Reporting

Michael McNamara: My resolution is to not react from moment to moment or even game to game as much – something I think I have already gotten better at I would say. I think there is a way to say, “X thing was bad in this game or this group of games,” without assuming that it will necessarily be the case long term. Same goes for positive happenings with small sample size.

To me, what should differentiate this site is that we have the passion of fans, but the objectivity of outsiders with no skin in the game when putting forth the analysis for you to take from it what you will. It is not as much about making sure that you believe what I do, as much as it is for you to get a viewpoint here that you might not get elsewhere. Then you can do with that information what you will.

Mason Ginsberg: There are so many new basketball analytics tools popping up every day, courtesy of people who are much smarter than myself. My goal is simply to keep up with these resources the best I can and to help share the insights that I gain as sufficiently as possible.

Jason Calmes: I’ve been a bit hesitant to get too deep into discussions about players and play on the court. I need to remedy this.

Regarding Fan and Reader Interaction

Michael McNamara: My biggest regret with regard to my interaction with readers – be it on social media, message boards, or in the comments on this site is that I am not literal enough. I go the way of ‘snark’ far too often, which is often also interpreted as condescension. If I had to guess, it is because I HATE condescension when it is done to me, and when we think about punishing people, we think of what we would hate the most.

My resolution is to be more literal. I suspect I will disagree with people a lot in 2015. Not because I am smarter or know more, but because in any debate where the truth is not clear or 100% knowable, there will be disagreements. But I resolve to lay out facts. To ask questions. All in a sincere manner. But, I suspect that as I write this that I will slip up in 2015. So, please, call me out on it when I do!!

Mason Ginsberg: While I would like to try to respond to more followers when they reach out to me, another personal resolution I have is to spend less time in general on Twitter – my girlfriend deserves better from me – so I can’t guarantee that will happen. Instead, I want to repurpose the time I do spend on Twitter and make sure that it’s devoted to those asking polite, thought-driven questions who genuinely want to expand their NBA and Pelicans knowledge base.

Jason Calmes: Over the past year, my interactions have waned for various reasons. I need to increase that interaction and make sure it productive or fun when I do interact.

Regarding Other Media Outlets

Michael McNamara: One thing I have learned since starting this process is that you should never judge another man until you have walked in his shoes. I think, truth be told, as a blogger you have a bit of an inferiority complex because you are not a “real reporter” – whatever that means – in the eyes of others. So, you look for a way to take down those who are put on this invisible pedestal, and you don’t really consider that they are people too. People with a job to do that is different from yours, even though it might seem the same on a superficial level.

On the other end of that spectrum is the fact that you care about your readers and you want them to be as informed as possible, and when you feel that they are being misinformed, you want to protect them in a way. But attacking and belittling other journalists is not the way to go, because God knows I have been wrong many times in the past. Instead, I will put my information side by side with theirs and let the readers make up their own minds. I will also praise good work by others more often and point our readers in that direction.

Mason Ginsberg: Everything McNamara said is 100% spot on. If you asked my parents for my biggest flaw, they would probably point to a lack of patience before anything else (though I’m sure there are many other options). I have no doubt that this common misstep of mine is present within both my work on Bourbon Street Shots as well as on social media. Moving forward, I plan on letting analysis do the talking, instead of quick, unprovoked jabs at others with whom I disagree. Doing so will accomplish two things: first, I will improve my own personal level of professionalism by making my points through the appropriate medium. Second, I will give myself more time to both interpret those opposing viewpoints as comprehensively as possible and express my own beliefs as intelligently as I can. My interactions with other media outlets is undoubtedly my top priority among my resolutions given here.

Jason Calmes: I’ve been quite shy with the media, not really interacting with them too much. I need to build relationships with some media members beyond the “Hi . . . hi . . .” threshold.

So, that’s it from our end. How about you? Do you have any plans with regard to your resolutions as a reader or contributor? More active? Less? Let us know what you think and what you want to be in 2015.

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