The sh*t has already hit the fan in the National Football League as a result of protests that were initiated by Colin Kaepernick last year. His taking a knee during the playing of the national anthem was meant to garner attention for the American practice of institutional racism via police brutality and unaccountability for police officers who maim, kill and otherwise impede the pursuit of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for black people.
And the fan just keeps on-a-spinnin, too.
As granddad used to say, a hit dog will holler, and last week Papa Johns was hollering about losing profits due to the NFLs handling of the situation. Now, NBCUniversal is chiming in. Despite what others have said, NBC believes the protests have hurt ratings. And advertisers are threatening to pull ads unless the network stops covering the protests.
Linda Yaccarino, the chairman of advertising sales at NBCUniversal said so during a keynote interview at the ad agency RGA.
“Marketers have said, ‘We will not be part of the NFL if you continue covering it,'” Yaccarino said. She would admit that it was difficult to tell if the protest is the main reason for the ratings nosedive.
The Shadow League has had a front row seat regarding Colin Kaepernicks protest, even predicting it in some respects. However, seeing these advertisers scurry frantically is somewhat amusing.
Dozens of NFL players have joined the protest since then, including a night in which some team owners took a knee to spite President Donald Trump, who has made it a priority to defame the league.
Are the protest hurting the NFL or is the league hemorrhaging viewers for one of the NFLs myriad of recent sins?
CBS chief Les Moonves is on record saying he does not believe the ratings and the protest correlate. According to Yaccarino, the NFLs broadcast partners didnt always air the national anthem for each game that is, until the protests gained steam.
At this point, it doesn’t matter if the NFL ratings are being pulled down by the NFL protests or not, What matters is advertisers BELIEVE they are.