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The End of Viral Videos: The Redskins Win Again

I'm no Web designer. I don't really know much about embeddable video players, their pluses and minuses, their technological underpinnings or requirements. But it strikes me that, if you're a TV station and you're putting up video clips that feature a special "Embed" button, you're sort of telling the world: "Hey, world, if you find this video interesting, go ahead and embed it on your site!"

But nah. That's in some alternate world. I live in the real world, folks, where burgundy claws of death and darkness are scratching scars into my soul.

And so even though both Comcast SportsyNet and WUSA have made available lots of fun embeddable video clips of the Redskins on their Web sites, begging to the world, "world, EMBED ME," I can't use 'em.

I don't have the story exactly straight, but after I used some of those clips this morning, someone complained to someone who complained to someone else, and I was told to cut it out. And so the entry I made this morning featuring those clips? It's been neutered. "On advice of counsel," or something like that.

Luckily, I've come up with a new, foolproof plan for making sure my posts come correct, from a Redskins point of view. I'll just e-mail them to Ashburn, and allow the ministers of information to submit any necessary corrections. This item you're reading, for example, just came back into my inbox, with the following note:

Dear Dan, looks good, could you please sprinkle the following phrases into your copy:

* "Four legs good, two legs bad."

* "When the individual feels, the community reels."

* "War is peace, freedom is slavery, ignorance is strength."

Sure, boss. No problem. Lemme know what else I can do you for.

By Dan Steinberg  |  July 22, 2008; 5:17 PM ET
Categories:  Redskins  
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Next: Morning Look: Now Here's a True Skins Fan


All bloggers are equal, but certain Official Redskins Bloggers are more equal than others.

Posted by: Ben | July 22, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

You will have more freedom in Beijing when you cover the Olympics.

Posted by: inchesfromyourface | July 22, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Next time, make sure you tuck them in before you embed.


Posted by: the real deal | July 22, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Wow. I think there was actually a case about this recently with some far-flung state (Kansas?) where a blogger embedded a tv video (because it had the 'embed' option) and they tried to sue him. They finally conceded oops, yeah, we did want people to embed and spread our video and brand and "my bad" for threatening to sue. It's a scary new world out there!

Posted by: misschatter | July 22, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

They make it so much harder for you than it needs to be, Dan. That said, the unnecessarily stringent guidelines did lead to some good Animal Farm humor. So there's that.

Posted by: Jamie Mottram | July 22, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Well, some 'Skins are known to be Hogs, right? So obviously, the animal farm references apply =)

Posted by: Big Brother | July 22, 2008 6:01 PM | Report abuse

May I suggest you use artist renderings, like in court cases where there is no video in the courtroom.

Imagine Jason Taylor drawn manga style with big eyes.

Imagine Zorn as a hard-scrabbled Commisioner Gordon.

Posted by: odessasteps | July 22, 2008 6:05 PM | Report abuse

The Redskins have always been at war with the Cowboys.

Posted by: EdTheRed | July 22, 2008 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Just because Dan refused to be the Foreskins blogger, the Ministry of Information decides to go to war on every video, embedded clip and blog post.

Keep up the great posts Dan, your writing is so much better than the trash from Matt Terl. At times, I can't tell if Terl, Snyder, Swanson, or Larry Michael wrote those Kool-Aid flavored posts.

Posted by: RedskinsSucks | July 22, 2008 6:39 PM | Report abuse

i think it's funny that the terl's blog has the sports bog as the second rss feed. and this is the article you see when hovering over that link.. ;)

(that being said, i don't get the anger to his blog. his one entry talking about media i guess could have been homerish, but the other stuff seems to be alright... just the lighter side kind of like dan does - but not as good ;p. by the looks of it, he's trying to go between talking about actual practice performance and the jovial side of the players. i won't hate on him as of yet. if 'bonita' applebaum can grow on the dc faithful, matt terl has a chance.... ;p)

Posted by: hmmmmm | July 22, 2008 6:51 PM | Report abuse

So how long until the Skins limit all press coverage and strictly rely on team generated news programs?

Posted by: David | July 22, 2008 7:02 PM | Report abuse

This would be funny if it weren't so incredibly not funny. Information control, Ashburn style. Whoa...

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | July 22, 2008 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Hey Dan,

Cheer up!


A Reader

Posted by: JonL | July 22, 2008 10:20 PM | Report abuse

"burgundy claws of death and darkness are scratching scars into my soul."

Don't you mean "maroon and black claws of death" Dan?

This stuff cracks me up. Really. All of this really reminds you that sports really are no longer a public trust. Sports franchises are a corporate entity. The brand that is the Redskins is the intellectual property of Dan Snyder and Redskins, Inc.

Since your access to the team is probably toast, you should feel embolden to blog freely now. The nemesis of those who try to control the media and message is that they can't control the media anymore. Oh, how much damage a popular blog can do. Go, for it dude. Wait, if you got a wife and kids and a mortgage and all that...nevermind.

Posted by: Maximus | July 22, 2008 10:30 PM | Report abuse

This is double plus ungood.

Posted by: Max Wass | July 23, 2008 1:25 AM | Report abuse

Whoa! (that was me acting surprised)

This kind of stuff is sad really.

Posted by: stumped | July 23, 2008 2:13 AM | Report abuse

I thought the Redskins' colors were burgundy and gold, not Communist Red.

Be careful not to commit anymore thoughtcrimes.

Posted by: JDP | July 23, 2008 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Perhaps you can draw stick figure diagrams of what is going on at Redskins park. If we scroll real fast, it will look like animation.

I say you just shoot video and send it to the Giants, Cowboys, and Eagles.

Posted by: Stormblue | July 23, 2008 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Stop Whinning becasue yuoyu are not good at your job. Don't Blame the Redskins when you use Copyrighted material to"enhance" your boring dribble to get others to look at it. If you can write soemthign about teh Redskins someone would want to read on its own, then find a new line of work!

Posted by: Sources | July 23, 2008 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Hey sources, or should I say Redskins employee X, lighten up. We must find a way to get back at the evil empire for this!

Posted by: Jonny Digital | July 23, 2008 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Most of the Washington Power People are terribly inept, particularly when it comes to issue involving law or technology. It doesn't matter if they're pretending to run a Cabinet department or an NFL franchise. When you're important you just need to yell a lot, or have your law-talking guy yell a lot, and avoid learning anything about late 20th century America. That's why Bill Clinton was unable to operate an ATM, why John McCain can't send an email, and why Al Gore uses two fingers when he types.

Absolute power not only corrupts, it also covers up.

Posted by: athea | July 23, 2008 11:01 AM | Report abuse

For a team that's won two playoff games in 15 years, the Redskins are awfully arrogant.

Posted by: Fingerman | July 23, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

F Snyder.

Posted by: Denise | July 23, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Just because Dan is sending stuff to Ashburn doesn't mean the Skins are reading it. He might be sending it to Mottram's AOL contacts.

Posted by: MDG | July 23, 2008 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Other requests from Ashburn:

-- Please make sure you put a cover sheet on that TPS report.

-- Please make sure you refer to Dan Snyder as "Daniel Snyder, the kingly Redskins buffet of manliness."

-- Please make sure you avoid linking to any blog featuring a blogspot, wordpress or livejournal address. Especially livejournal. Those girls are catty.

Posted by: Red Sox Monster | July 24, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

The case misschatter is referring to is the Des Moines Register putting an embed tag on its video of the destruction of downtown Cedar Rapids during the floods earlier this summer, and then ordering the Iowa blog "Black Heart Gold Pants" to remove it from their site.

And those "far flung states" you refer to provide you with most of what is on your table every it McDonalds or what you bought at the supermarket.

In other words, we supply life.

Posted by: Matt | July 24, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Chris | July 24, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

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