Time To Clarify Some Dubious Claims Made By The Dean Of American Sports Blogging

Posted in Blogged Down, Internal Affairs, Will Leitch Sucks at 7:05 pm by

The Will Leitch Farewell Tour of Deadspin continued today with a longish post attempting to put my somewhat over the top attempts at antagonizing Will into some greater perspective.

Though admitting he once considered CSTB, “one of our favorites, though, and the one that seemed to have the best idea of how to run a general interest sports site” (keep in mind this was 2003, folks), Leitch also includes the caveat, “most of it was just long cutting-and-pastings of AP stories with a one-sentence ‘comment’ on the end.” So in other words, a mere parasite like me oughta have greater respect for someone who adds a two-sentence ‘comment’ to the end of stories cut and pasted from ESPN.com.

At the risk of C&P’ing far too much of Leitch’s self-described plucky midwesterisms, I’ll summarize the post in question.   Outta the blue, mild-mannered Man From Mattoon was bulldozed by an invisible grouch who proceeded to publish his cell phone number and encouraged the homeless to use his fiancee’s portrait for target practice.  Though these missives were distasteful and oh-so-unprovoked, they ultimately help Young Will to buck up, grow-a-pair…and eventually blossom into the fragile butterfly we all saw torn to fucking shreds on HBO.

You’re welcome, Will. Anytime. But the following points need to be made :

1) The CSTB category “Will Leitch Sucks” did not appear “within 25 minutes” of Deadspin’s public launch.  Said category was created weeks after the fact, though for the purposes of proper indexing, old posts relevant to the matter at handed were edited to include the category.

2) It is true I posted Will’s phone number, but I only did so after some moron at CBS Sportsline sent a press release that included it.  There’s a breach in Leitch’s personal security and he wants to blame the whistleblower?

3)  re : the bit about encouraging the homeless to get busy with pics of Will’s ex.  Not cool (dude).  Hardly my proudest moment — especially the part where I had to pay the homeless to do it. This was a reprehensible act and I don’t think I will ever fully live down the way I exploited…the nation’s less fortunate!

(seriously folks, did it ever occur to Will or his dipshit loyal readers that constantly mocking him was not entirely different from targeting, say, Stephen A. Smith or Chris Berman, neither of whom, to my knowledge, have ever met Will Leitch or done anything to personally hurt him?  Or that this long-running schtick is someone’s idea of humor?   That if Will were to disappear I’d have to go back to making fun of Mushnick’s beard everyday?)

4) “It can be difficult for the blog uninitiated ” which we most definitely were ” when they are being hammered online, but, thanks to CSTB, we grew used to it pretty quick. Heck, no one was gonna say anything worse than what he was saying.”

Not until recently, no.

5) The revisionist history is all well and good for lazy types who never bothered to notice how the majority of anti-Leitch posts at CSTB were not in fact, sneak attacks mounted as part of some bloggy traffic war, but directly referenced Deadspin’s real content and totally legit questions about such.

6) Good luck at New York, Will. Hopefully, the magazine won’t “focus too much on New York City for our tastes” and you’ll last more then two days at your new gig before someone compares you to Jm J. Bullock.

35 responses to “Time To Clarify Some Dubious Claims Made By The Dean Of American Sports Blogging”

  1. blahblah says:

    Man, your comments section is pretty fucking dead, eh?

  2. GC says:

    indeed, there’s no greater barometer of a blog’s true worth. And in spite of this, you had the incredible courage to jump start this discussion with the sort of pithy prose I’d normally associate with only the finest collection of letters. What’s it like, pal, to be brave and brilliant?

  3. andrew says:

    Time To Clarify Some Dubious Claims Made By The Dean Of American Sports Blogging

    Posted in Blogged Down, Internal Affairs, Will Leitch Sucks at 7:05 pm by GC

    blahblah Says:
    June 24th, 2008 at 7:11 pm
    Man, your comments section is pretty fucking dead, eh?

    So, Fuckface waited six whole minutes to get that in.

    An example of the brilliance of the Deadspin comments section:

    “Cosloy, tell me how my ass taste” — WillLeitch08

    Yes, if only the comments section here had so many HILARIOUS postings it would prove this site’s worth and popularity.

  4. matt says:

    the real question now is how many times gc will play “new slang” in the sidebar jukebox with a wistful look in his eye to commemorate this day. is that shit still in there?

  5. JeffWeaver4God says:

    Maybe I’ll get banned from the comment section for 10 minutes for this, but the homeless can maintain an erection looking at that broad?

  6. Ward York says:

    Yes, if only the comments section here had so many HILARIOUS postings it would prove this site’s worth and popularity.

    I imagine Mr. Roth & Mr. Cohen would be “killing it up in this bitch” (as they say) w/ the dick jokes and homosexual double entendres if they weren’t busy Googling for bend-over pics of Doris Burke and Linda Cohn in prep for tomorrow’s batch of posts.

  7. GC says:

    re : sidebar jukebox. Since I lost my copy of The Cult’s Electric, at least I have somewhere to call home.

  8. David Roth says:

    I apologize for my tardiness in killing this bitch (wait, what?), but I’ve not been feeling well since googling “bend over cohn.” Turns out McCarthy’s right-hand man was kind of…I don’t know what the word for it is. Not a conventional conservative, I guess.

    I’m taking this more or less verbatim from an email I wrote to GC, but I don’t imagine I can get in any trouble for plagiarizing myself. I just am continually struck by the almost poignant lack of introspection on Leitch’s part. There were surely times when I think GC went overboard on him, but honestly it’s easy to see why Gerard — or anyone else — would see Deadspin as pretty bullshit more or less from the start. If “Will Leitch Sucks” popped up as a tag pretty quickly, the cheesily bro-tacular one-upsdudeship of the Deadspin comments section was there first, from that site’s first moments. And that came to define it almost immediately.

    In it’s way, the snark-by-numbers stuff is not out of keeping with the rest of the Gawker family’s comment-section MO, although I think it was lamer (and obviously more intolerant, lowest-common-denominator, whatever) at Deadspin. Whether Will liked or approved of it or not, I can’t know. But he clearly didn’t seem to worry about the bro-tistic dittohead vibe there that much. I guess that sort of blitheness (along with the hustle he undeniably showed in his job, and in getting clips elsewhere while doing it) is how you get to the top — and the opposite of how I periodically wind up so depressed I can’t even muster a fucking blog post over the course of a week — but it sure does make for a boring and predictable site, at least to my lights.

    That blog will always kind of be what it is, even without Will, and CSTB will always be what it is. Smaller, probably, but I think also probably a bit smarter. Again, I came from CSTB’s audience (TO SUPERSTARDOM!), so I’m probably biased. But it’s not even a question which I’d rather read. People read Deadspin explicitly NOT to be surprised, and to join the march of near-identical dittohead +1s in the comment section. I think people read CSTB for different reasons. I think for better reasons.

  9. andrew says:

    Really, the funniest thing about his post is that he clearly takes him self so seriously. Someone talking shit about him on the internet affected him and changed him SO deeply…he realized that being a celebrity (because Will you are such a FUCKING ROCK STAR in the internet sports world) means that people will try to tear you down- and it just made Will that much fucking stronger. And you can just look at the comments on Deadspin and the neophytes that posted here to tell what a major influence Will has had and will continue to have on our culture. The future wife-beaters of America are behind you Will (on the internet at least, while they are bored at their day jobs), so you’re on top of the world baby, don’t let anyone tear you down!!1!

  10. Jackal says:

    I’m not completely sure, but I’m pretty sure that this back-and-forth, “how dare you” type criticisms between two sports blogs is, um…the most absurdly dumb thing I’ve ever read.

    Because here’s where I get lost: they’re both blogs. Not presidential candidates. Not sovereign nations. Not warring planets. Blogs. They’re entities which can be started for free that are floating around in the same heterotopia.

    And their purpose? Writing about sports news. Sports, which falls somewhere in the “type of laundry detergent you use” and “size of your car’s cupholders” realm of importance in society.

    So either clean the sand from your respective vaginas (vaginae?) and realize that you are essentially warring over something wholly unimportant, or continue writing about this “feud” every day for the next twenty years. It’s that entertaining to watch.

  11. GC says:

    J –

    nope, this isn’t the most important thing happening on earth. And you’re here because….?

    I don’t think there’s been much “how dare you” in this exchange, at least not from my end. Nor has the argument in question really been sports in and of itself. The cheap gags aside, some of this has been about ethics (journalistic and otherwise), race and the direction of a (somewhat) new medium. If that’s wholly unimportant to you , fair enuff, but I suspect your opinion in this instance is somewhat less than informed.

  12. Jason Cohen says:

    I’m holding out for Craig Finn’s essay about CSTB

  13. cro_mags_forever says:

    doug holland say: will leitch is a retard

  14. ElRanito says:

    An example of the brilliance of the CSTB comments section:

    “So, Fuckface waited six whole minutes to get that in.” -andrew

  15. PurdueMatt says:

    Deadspin > CSTB

  16. Bobby says:

    “that constantly mocking him was not entirely different from targeting, say, Stephen A. Smith or Chris Berman, ”

    Good lord! You make entirely too much sense. Leitch is a hypocritical lout in love with his own sense of self-worth.

  17. Rog says:

    I think people read CSTB for different reasons. I think for better reasons.

    I only come here for the Cubs updates.

  18. Skip Lockwood says:

    I always thought the entertaining back and forth, to and fro etc between Leech and CSTB was merely a continuation of the witty repartee that could be found from GC on a weekly basis in CMJ during the 90’s, versus a variety of foes . I’d virtually rip the trade from it’s single staple to get to that section.

  19. kt says:

    personally i’m hoping purduematt sticks around, you can’t get much more insightful than that.

  20. Bubbly Mc Bubbles says:

    This site sucks.

  21. Charles says:

    Left unsaid is the most poignant part of this: for his swing at CSTB, Leitch went low. GC hasn’t been called a cut-and-paster since L’affaire Tweeter.

  22. GC says:

    Au contraire, Charles, I get it pretty often. The ultra suave Rich from Sports Bastards actually called it plagiarism. Not without adding, “go choke on your boyfriend’s dick”.

    I haven’t seen much of Rich’s highly original writing recently. Maybe he got a job at New York Magazine, too.

    sure, there’s no small amount of C&P happening around here (or there come to think of it), but the quotes always appear with attribution. And the alleged lack of original content didn’t bother Will nearly as much when he was working on the beta version of Deadspin (ie. before I began routinely making fun of him).

  23. Ward York says:

    Deadspin > CSTB

    With math like this, who needs No Child Left Behind?

    I hope I’m the only dipshit that clicked on Rog’s link.

  24. Anonymous who reads both sites says:


    Enough is enough, really.

    He was probably just trying to shake hands and say don’t worry about it.

    CSTB: Can’t Stop The Bitching

  25. matt says:

    gc: re: sidebar jukebox – is middle class revolt still in there? if so, ………..seriously? thanks for that.

  26. GC says:


    that’s certainly one way of looking at it. Do Chris Mihfeld and Tony Dungy get handshakes, too?

    From my perspective, as much as I got a kick out of Will offering any praise in my direction (however faint), this really felt more like Leitch trying to frame the past 3 years of CSTB abuse as some justification for the ill treatment of public figures on Deadspin. Hey, Bob Costas, stop your sobbing! Nobody ever invited the homeless to masturbate to a picture of YOUR loved ones (or have they)?

    The irony of course being that Leitch’s published reaction to the CSTB onslaught of abuse (via The Black Table) was not entirely different to the befuddled outrage of traditional media types who can’t understand why they are pilloried at Deadspin —- when they’ve never personally met the editor or done anything mean to him!

    If only the Sean Salisburys of the universe had the benefit of Will’s 3 years in the blogosphere, perhaps they too, would have fashioned such a mature sense of perspective, anon.

    But it’s all good. I honestly wish him no ill will whatsoever and the increased traffic from yesterday’s Deadspin links has at the very least paid for today’s Vietnamese food. But none of that means I think Will is any less full of shit for a living.

  27. JJ says:

    This site sucks.

  28. Tommy Hoops says:

    GC –

    Did you lift your foot from Jack Rabid’s throat when people thought you went too far?

    Did you soften your assaults on Bill Popp just because ‘enough is enough’?

    This is the point where you step things up! Close it out!


  29. Timothy Cook says:

    Mr. Hoops makes an excellent point, but I believe these people will disappear as quickly as they descended. Soon only Rog and the rest of us will remain.

  30. David Roth says:

    Tim, are you talking about the rapture? Because I’d rather rule in bloggy hell than serve in a blog heaven where Matt Ufford and Might MJD have any clout.

  31. Timothy Cook says:

    Fair enough, Mr. Roth–I’ll quickly cop to a general ignorance: not having a deep knowledge of The Bible and its magic stories, or the equally fantastical works of The Mighty MJD, With Leather, or the general non-CSTB sports blogosphere (g-d I hate that word). I am similarly unfamiliar with the rectal flavor Leitch has on offer, but it must be insatiably attractive considering the quality and quantity of his orbit. I did take the opportunity to read a little New York Magazine this morning, and I am certain they’ve found the right fit.

  32. dickey simpkins says:

    I’m new to this catfight, but my God that “our we us” shit IS annoying.

  33. Phurge says:

    So you really, really want to fuck this Leitch guy, rught?

  34. Ryan says:

    This site sucks.

  35. Steve says:

    This site sucks.

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