ESPN is airing an hourlong teevee special tonight, for basketmaking machine Lebron James to announce which team he's going to sign with. To get this, ESPN ceded near-total control of the show's advertising (and reporters' question-asking!) to Lebron. The explanation?
"Times change and needs change and people's desires change and other parameters are put on things."—ESPN's executive VP of production, Norby Williamson, to Ad Age's Brian Steinberg.
Oh, okay. I thought allowing an athlete to tell your "news" network which reporter can ask him a question, and also tell your network to only sell ads to his own personal sponsors, would be ethically compromising. But I didn't take into account the other parameters put on things. My apologies.