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Thread: Labor/Workers movements thread

  1. #181
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafi View Post
    Thanks TK. I too should be doing something else!

    I think the definition and structure you describe can be carried out all the way to the middle school athlete. I have to pay $5 to watch my kid play middle school volleyball, there are rules, production, etc. I'm not sure that helps differentiate labor from student athlete.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductio_ad_absurdum

  2. #182
    Quote Originally Posted by BeachBumDeac View Post
    Exactly. Taking this to extreme of middle school athletics is an effective argument that a college cross country runner is not labor.

  3. #183
    Quote Originally Posted by PhDeac View Post
    If a middle school AAU program is getting a shoe deal, the coach is getting paid, and people are watching highlights on YouTube, thatís clearly not just play.
    I really disagree. Having played AAU and traveling sports, I would argue that I was just playing sports, and thatís it. It definitely was not labor.

  4. #184

    Labor/Workers movements thread

    Quote Originally Posted by PhDeac View Post
    If a middle school AAU program is getting a shoe deal, the coach is getting paid, and people are watching highlights on YouTube, thatís clearly not just play.
    How about playing Fortnite? People stream it, itís all over YouTube, and it makes millions of dollars and would not do so if there were no players. Is it labor for the 9 year old that plays it a few times per week? As you might guess, I donít think it is.
    Last edited by Rafi; 04-04-2021 at 07:53 PM.

  5. #185
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafi View Post
    How about playing Fortnite? People stream it, itís all over YouTube, and it makes millions of dollars and would not do so if there were no players. Is it labor for the 9 year old that plays it a few times per week? As you might guess, I donít think it is.

  6. #186

    Labor/Workers movements thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Rafi View Post
    How about playing Fortnite? People stream it, itís all over YouTube, and it makes millions of dollars and would not do so if there were no players. Is it labor for the 9 year old that plays it a few times per week? As you might guess, I donít think it is.
    Iím not sure of your point here. A college athlete is clearly much closer to a professional streamer who has to hone their craft and their image over many months and years than they are to a 9 year old who plays the same game a few times a week. It is definitely labor for a professional streamer.

  7. #187
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    Labor/Workers movements thread

    Rafi, we are talking about ďlaborĒ the noun, not ďto laborĒ the verb. You can have fun doing labor and itís still labor.

  8. #188
    Quote Originally Posted by BeachBumDeac View Post
    Iím not sure of your point here. A college athlete is clearly much closer to a professional streamer who has to hone their craft and their image over many months and years than they are to a 9 year old who plays the same game a few times a week. It is definitely labor for a professional streamer.
    Yeah, thatís the point. This broad definition of labor (including middle school and AAU athletes) doesnít work, in my opinion. A definition that includes conducting a service ďfor a wageĒ makes a lot more sense to me.

  9. #189

    Labor/Workers movements thread

    Quote Originally Posted by PhDeac View Post
    Rafi, we are talking about ďlaborĒ the noun, not ďto laborĒ the verb. You can have fun doing labor and itís still labor.
    Yes, thatís clear. And I still donít think AAU basketball players are labor.
    Last edited by Rafi; 04-04-2021 at 08:26 PM.

  10. #190
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafi View Post
    Ha, you really honed in on the specific dollar amount, which isnít really the point (and I was thinking about a multi year contract anyway...). So letís cut that to $50 million over 5 years. The point still stands (!) that tens of millions of dollars will be made based off student athletes, and the same questions will remain.

    Also, itís raises another point, which has been discussed before. I donít think the level of play matters that much - it just needs to be a decent level and competition between colleges for it to be interesting and a money maker. I watched UCLA Gonzaga last night because it was intriguing based on the schools. Prior to the tourney the only player I could name on either team was Suggs (hometown kid!).

    I grew up playing soccer and it was never on TV (we bought VHS tapes just to see what professional soccer looked like). That has obviously changed drastically, so I could see the rise in interest in soccer in general plus the rise in MLS leading to college soccer becoming a big deal over the next 20 years (I think we have already seen it to some extent).
    MLS is continuing to push the academy system and pursuing young international talent; the draft is getting weaker and weaker and eventually will -- as it should -- not be a source for top end talent; and MLS is still not a top-10 league -- a raise in profile for the league will mean even fewer kids who played in college, as they should. The rise of MLS is actually diminishing college soccer, as more young international guys make up squads. The kids who played in college -- the ones that actually see the field -- are still academy products by and large, and not coming through the draft. Again, the problem here is the lack of a true minor league system that feeds into the senior club, unlike Europe.

    You did not address the point that the European countries looking to add college sports are doing it for the second tier of kids, the ones we agree should be playing in college. Do you really think this new trend in European college sports is going to change things for any professional sport of note in any of those countries?

    The key argument here isn't whether or not people will pay money to watch college sports -- the key argument is that we should build a system where people that want to be a professional athlete do not HAVE to go through the college system to do it like they currently do in football, and -- with some notable exceptions -- in basketball

  11. #191
    Quote Originally Posted by PhDeac View Post
    Rafi, we are talking about ďlaborĒ the noun, not ďto laborĒ the verb. You can have fun doing labor and itís still labor.
    Interestingly, to me anyway, seems remarkably close to the Arbeitskraft and ArbeitsvermŲgen in Marx

  12. #192
    Quote Originally Posted by JuiceCrewAllStar View Post
    MLS is continuing to push the academy system and pursuing young international talent; the draft is getting weaker and weaker and eventually will -- as it should -- not be a source for top end talent; and MLS is still not a top-10 league -- a raise in profile for the league will mean even fewer kids who played in college, as they should. The rise of MLS is actually diminishing college soccer, as more young international guys make up squads. The kids who played in college -- the ones that actually see the field -- are still academy products by and large, and not coming through the draft. Again, the problem here is the lack of a true minor league system that feeds into the senior club, unlike Europe.

    You did not address the point that the European countries looking to add college sports are doing it for the second tier of kids, the ones we agree should be playing in college. Do you really think this new trend in European college sports is going to change things for any professional sport of note in any of those countries?

    The key argument here isn't whether or not people will pay money to watch college sports -- the key argument is that we should build a system where people that want to be a professional athlete do not HAVE to go through the college system to do it like they currently do in football, and -- with some notable exceptions -- in basketball
    I donít think the rise of MLS is going to hurt college soccer. I agree that it may keep some talent from the college game, but the popularity of pro soccer in the US (MLS, EPL, etc) will also increase the popularity of college soccer.

    There are more international players coming to the US for soccer. The high school national player of the year was never an international player until 2012, and since then 5 of the last 9 have been international and they have all gone to college soccer. This trend is occurring in all college sports as international athletes and families see the benefits of the US college sports system.

    I agree that having many paths to the pros is great, but i donít think that will negatively affect the popularity of college sports. In fact, it may enhance it, as it will increase stability of those choosing the college route.

  13. #193
    which is my point all along: that college soccer as is is what football and basketball should be -- a secondary or tertiary path to the highest levels of their sports; they'll still have a following and be popular but you solve a lot of the payment issues by having paid minor and developmental leagues and by removing any age/time served requirements at the top league level

    I disagree with your take that if basketball and football had paths to the pros like soccer that the fan interest in college sports would not be diminished -- people would still be interested, just like people like you and me like college soccer, but the overall interest would go down, as it should

  14. #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by JuiceCrewAllStar View Post
    which is my point all along: that college soccer as is is what football and basketball should be -- a secondary or tertiary path to the highest levels of their sports; they'll still have a following and be popular but you solve a lot of the payment issues by having paid minor and developmental leagues and by removing any age/time served requirements at the top league level

    I disagree with your take that if basketball and football had paths to the pros like soccer that the fan interest in college sports would not be diminished -- people would still be interested, just like people like you and me like college soccer, but the overall interest would go down, as it should
    I don't think you can do the same thing with American football you can do with basketball or soccer. Among the reasons are the number of kids a feeder league would need would make this untenable as would how big kids would have to be identified in middle school. How many won't grow? How many are late bloomers? How about the likelihood of more serious injuries with more intensity at a younger age?

    In basketball, I think they are moving in the right direction. A limited number of players will go to the G-League with a majority still going to college. In many ways, getting rid of one and done could make college more popular as people will get to know the players who go to college. TV will be able to highlight returning players.

    I'm not saying college players shouldn't get money. They absolutely should.

    One of the major problems for implementing that in the US is the sneaker companies others leaving the kids who don't make it out in the cold.

  15. #195
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    Quote Originally Posted by JuiceCrewAllStar View Post
    which is my point all along: that college soccer as is is what football and basketball should be -- a secondary or tertiary path to the highest levels of their sports; they'll still have a following and be popular but you solve a lot of the payment issues by having paid minor and developmental leagues and by removing any age/time served requirements at the top league level

    I disagree with your take that if basketball and football had paths to the pros like soccer that the fan interest in college sports would not be diminished -- people would still be interested, just like people like you and me like college soccer, but the overall interest would go down, as it should

    There are several differences between American football and other sports. The biggest one is that American football is a domestic sport that has little international fanbase and less international participation.

    The other big difference with American football is an 18 year old has no business whatsoever on the same field as a 28 year old. Even at 21-23 years old, not many NFL rookies are all that productive. And that's one reason why watching 18-22 year olds who aren't nearly as skilled as the adults is so unique lucrative in ways that other sports are not. There's no other sport I can think of with such a huge gap in physical readiness and skills between 18-21 year olds and fully grown adults.

    Along with that, the NFL has little to no desire to pay for and manage a developmental league like the NBA has done. And there's little market for semi-pro or lower level professional football like there is for minor league baseball.

    For those reasons, I don't see any real path forward that doesn't modify the existing system.
    Last edited by PhDeac; 04-05-2021 at 01:55 PM.

  16. #196
    Are we supposed to hear about Amazon vote today?

  17. #197
    Quote Originally Posted by PhDeac View Post
    There are several differences between American football and other sports. The biggest one is that American football is a domestic sport that has little international fanbase and less international participation.

    The other big difference with American football is an 18 year old has no business whatsoever on the same field as a 28 year old. Even at 21-23 years old, not many NFL rookies are all that productive. And that's one reason why watching 18-22 year olds who aren't nearly as skilled as the adults is so unique lucrative in ways that other sports are not. There's no other sport I can think of with such a huge gap in physical readiness and skills between 18-21 year olds and fully grown adults.

    Along with that, the NFL has little to no desire to pay for and manage a developmental league like the NBA has done. And there's little market for semi-pro or lower level professional football like there is for minor league baseball.

    For those reasons, I don't see any real path forward that doesn't modify the existing system.
    I'm indifferent to whether or not the NFL wants to -- I'm saying they should and that there is absolutely no reason to connect developmental programs for professional sports with the university system


    I know it will be this way until I die, but I do not think that makes it the right thing

  18. #198
    As someone who has inhabited several of the categories used as examples on this thread -- ncaa athlete (cross country, to boot), international "collegiate" athlete, grad student instructor -- I've always struggled with this debate because I've not considered these positions, or the athletic ones at least, to be "labor". A few of my teammates were genuinely elite athletes (or elite prospects) but for the most part an xc. Scholarship got them into a better school than they would have otherwise qualified for and gave them the opportunity to compete at a competitive level in a sport they loved. The grad student one is a lot more complicated because the "apprenticeship" model made sense when there was a guaranteed job on the other end.

    And the thing that a lot of people miss about this debate (though not on this thread) is that the conversation about fair compensation is really only aren't football and, to a lesser extent, men's basketball.

    Anyways, all this to say that this is a productive conversation, and I'm enjoying reading it. Please don't let it devolve.
    Last edited by wakephan09; 04-05-2021 at 09:20 PM.

  19. #199
    I haven't seen any data on how the votes went, but this article says approximately 3,215 of the 5,800 eligible employees voted and Amazon is challenging a few hundred ballots

    https://www.theguardian.com/technolo...rs-union-drive

  20. #200
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    https://www.npr.org/2021/04/08/98549...ay-of-counting
    At the end of Thursday, more than two-thirds of the tallied votes were against unionizing, with no votes outnumbering yes votes 1,100 to 463.
    A total of 3,215 ballots had been cast by Amazon workers on whether they wanted to join the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union. That's about 55% of all the workers at the warehouse in Bessemer, Ala., who were eligible to vote.

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