Short Strikes No. 10

This week, Short Strikes heads to Table Rock Lake, where Bill Dance is teaming up with a world famous athlete. Then, we check in with Silicon Valley, where two titans are dominating American advertising revenue, before wrapping up in the sunshine state, where apps are changing the way fisheries are managed.

Dances with Woods

Tiger Woods and Bill Dance are teaming up for a free golf and fishing clinic for kids in Missouri.

Go ahead. Read that again.

The clinic is being held at the Johnny Morris-owned Big Cedar Lodge at Table Rock Lake on April 17. FTR editors agree that this is the first time a fishing legend has co-hosted an event with a mainstream sports icon on the level of Woods, Michael Jordan or Peyton Manning. Woods needs no introduction, trailing only Jack Nicklaus in major golf championships. Dance is the most widely recognized bass fisherman of all time, having hosted “Bill Dance Outdoors” for five decades, following a legendary run through the B.A.S.S. circuit in its formative years.

Woods is on a roll of late, having finished in the Top 5 in his last two PGA starts. His celebrity status is unquestioned. And although nearly 10 years have passed since Woods last won a major, he’s still the biggest name in golf.

The strike: Woods is less than a year removed from a Jupiter, Florida, DUI arrest and a subsequent stint in a drug rehabilitation program. That makes him an odd choice as a role model to kids, though Short Strikes would argue that there’s no shame in letting the young ones know that the world isn’t perfect.

Digital Domination

New reports from the 2018 Recode Code Media conference show the extent to which Google and Facebook have transformed the U.S. advertising landscape. In the graph below, you can clearly see Silicon Valley’s dominance over traditional ad outlets like NBC, Fox, Disney and Time Warner. The tech giants have captured a stratospheric portion of ad revenue, and far outpaced their traditional rivals in the past five years. While Facebook ad revenues have grown over $10 billion since 2013 and Google’s have grown over $15 billion, most legacy media outlets have struggled to raise their own figures by even $1 billion.

Graphic: Moffett Nathanson/Code Media Conference 2018

The strike: Legacy outlets have an opportunity to regain ground as user trust in Google and Facebook begins to slide—particularly with regard to Facebook. The social media empire has reportedly lost more than $60 billion in market value in recent weeks, as a privacy scandal has rocked its core. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is scheduled to testify before Congress next week at a House oversight panel focused on the platform’s protection of user data.

While that’s shaking out, you can download an archive of information that Facebook has been keeping on you for years. That archive includes videos and photos that you’ve uploaded to the platform, as well as message logs and information about which Facebook advertisers have your contact info.

Meanwhile, Google employees are protesting the company’s involvement with a Pentagon program that would use Google artificial intelligence to improve drone strikes.

Wildlife management? There’s an app for that.

According to a new blog post from the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership (TRCP), anglers who report catch data using apps are helping fisheries managers adjust seasons in real-time. The blog, featuring guest author Brett Fitzgerald of the Snook and Gamefish Foundation (SGF) breaks down some of the organization’s efforts to deliver more data on snook fishing in Florida, in conjunction with their iAngler app. Data from the app, they say, was cross-referenced with the University of Florida’s Marine Resources Information Program—an initiative which collects data on all federally managed fish.

The strike: University researchers acknowledge that data can be skewed in areas with more participating anglers. In addition, Fitzgerald notes that many anglers are still reluctant to log their catches. To see real change, the logs will need to be widely adopted; and maybe they should be— iAngler data helped extend the federal red snapper season just last year.

The Closer

Short Strikes leaves you with a scene from the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, where thousands of people gathered this week to reflect on the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. King was killed 50 years ago this week, when a .30-06 round from a Remington rifle cracked out over the Memphis sky on April 4, 1968. The bullet fatally wounded him on the balcony of the Lorraine.

Being near our Memphis field offices, Short Strikes ventured over to the former motel (now the National Civil Rights Museum) to take in the scene. Police lined the streets, barricades barred all but politicians and news trucks from accessing the area, and drones circled the skies. At the heart of it all, a bell tolled, and the Reverend Al Green picked up the mic, leaving the crowd to depart with some choice final words: