10/31/2012 05:11 EDT | Updated 12/31/2012 05:12 EST

Sportsnet Sells its Soul for Windows 8

Listen. We get it, television. You don't want the rest of us to know that you're the next newspaper. We know, Rogers, that you don't want to announce cutbacks or firings. We know times must be tight, and finances must be pinched. We know you're losing money.

Aren't you? If not, then why have you sold out in the worst way imaginable?

Explain to me, Sportsnet, why you have given away the home page of your website -- your URL and therefore your entire online identity -- as a bundle cog in some (hopefully for your soul) luxurious advertising package with Microsoft and Windows 8?

If you go to right now, you'll be greeted with what I have been the past two days. It's a snappy new browser and interface. It actually looks all right at first, until you realize that it's not Sportsnet's new home page, but instead an artistic fuster cluck that was designed with no real insight or outlook. (Except, of course, for the profit of the today.)

Sportsnet now appears to be a weak, feeble version of what was once a flagship sports station. It's a shadow of its former, confident self, like Jordan with the Washington Wizards or Markus Naslund on the New York Rangers.

It's the opposite of The Score, a one-time dominant Canadian TV hub that has now become the world's best North American sports app and blog site.

Then again, this mess all makes sense. Rogers, are you going broke? Is that what you're telling us? It's what it looks like, after all.


Why else would you be selling your brand spankin' new magazines for $2.99 at my closest corner store? (I thought you valued your journalism.) Why else would you have ever featured an online segment called "All Day Breakfast," which was basically just an excuse for your interns to masturbate while writing.

Why else would you be throwing everything into the hands of a medium you clearly don't understand?

If you don't believe me, Rogers, then understand this: you are failing your readers. Is that not the one no-no for any self-proclaimed news corporation?

They don't like it. Just read their testimonials.

"Hey, I know we've screwed you guys over enough over the last six months, but here's an infuriating full-screen ad just to twist the knife a bit deeper," wrote on guy, pretending to channel Rogers in his submission.

"Yeah, the new 'Windows' screen is incredibly annoying, and surprisingly hard to escape," responded another.

One guy summed it up perhaps perfectly:

"This Error Message is brought to you by....."

*A longer version of this post appears in White Cover Magazine.