August 30th, 2008
And Now a Word from Brian "Maceman" Mace
Some interesting thoughts from Texas disc golf promoter Brian Mace on his website www.maceman.com
on working for free, the future of disc golf promotion, how we as a community are sometimes our own worst enemy, etc. This guy is a legend in Texas DG and a very experienced TD and promoter. I'm putting this in the ORS thread because I think it is relevant, but if you want to continue speculating and arguing over who bought and owns the tables and trailer and all the stuff, and who did or didn't make or "donate" money to the ORS please consider posting it in the "turd-dropper" "$80,000 donation" thread. I think there's something we can all learn from Brian Mace.
The Future and all that other stuff
At this point in time I have made the decision to discontinue operation of The North Texas Series. I will continue to run some of the events that I have run in the past, but the number will be down significantly from years past.
I will no longer be working in Disc Golf as a means of support effective immediately. I will be doing some stage work again, as well as exploring other business opportunities. I have put myself second for far too long and that will not continue. I will split my time in a manner that is more beneficial to me from now on.
Thanks to all that have supported me, and gone the distance with and for me. I am truly grateful and I can't thank you enough. Anyone who put me up or set me up with a friend to stay with along the way, I wish I had made a list so I could send you a thank you letter. But those of you who really know me know I would not get around to it. So I will thank you here. I could not have done all of the things I have done in the last 14+ years without your help, thank you very much. The countless friendships and good times that have come my way through out all of this are the great reward that I will always cherish. Thank you all so much.
I will continue to run PIO (January), Cedar Hill (post Super Bowl), Z Boaz Open (late April), A to Z Doubles (late Feb or early March, in a similar time frame as other doubles events in TX), and Waco Charity Open (late May or early June). There will not be a Big Show series again any time soon.
In the future I will run these events in very different manner, with a completely different approach. That approach will be based firmly in reality. You want a big event? You want to receive the benefits of a big event? You have to pay for it. I am certianly not going to pay for it any more. Nor will I go out and beg people in the local community to give us money because our sport is so cool and we are even cooler than that. You want to see a big event than buy a fundraiser disc. You want to see an even bigger event than help me sell some fundraisers in your neighborhood or town. You want more? Are you a top player? Than allow me to sell a round, a half day, or a full day with you on and around the course. It only makes sense. You want more than do more. I currently have around 40 CFR Destroyers that I will ship for $25 ea, that money will go to PIO and generate more support for subsequent events. Email me firstname.lastname@example.org
You may not want to hear this, but we are not that cool and we are not going to get there any time soon. We do not have any power in the advertising market, and we are not capable of generating anywhere near the attention necessary to pull down the sponsorship that many of us demand. I am going to let you in on a secret, sponsorship is advertising. Advertising is done to generate business, not to make beggars happy.
Unfortunately we are not that good at supporting our sponsors, and we are seen as a group that receives but rarely gives in return. Besides all of that we are just us, no spectators' just players. We aren't even drawing a crowd that is large enough to pull down the dream sponsor money at the biggest and greatest event in the game why would the XYZ Open suddenly be the one to make it happen?
This sport has a lot of good people that have the bad habit of talking really loud about a topic they have little to no knowledge of. It is amazing how many people there are in this game that know more about running a business and or events than the person that actually does it. Then lets throw in some unrealistic expectations and demands on top of it all. The end result is a person giving it his all, and the reward is a sound beating in one form or fashion from the main beneficiaries. Not to mention the bonus end reward, the reputation that comes from all the kind words of all the winners that hauled home the inadequate payout at the end.
Have you ever heard of the bucket crab mentality? If you take one crab and a bucket, put the crab in the bucket. He can easily reach the top and pull himself up and over the edge to freedom. But if you put a few crabs in the bucket, the one on top can easily reach up and pull himself over the edge to freedom. The problem is that the other crabs see the one "getting ahead of them" and they reach up and grab the crab and try to pull themselves up as well only to pull the first crab back down on top of them again.
Unfortunately disc golfers are a lot like bucket crabs. The local promoter is the first crab, and the players are the other crabs in the bucket. Most bucket crabs don't know or even care what is going on. But there's that one super sleuth crab that has appointed himself as the local watch crab. He's on the job keeping anyone from "getting rich" or gaining freedom, and if there is the hint of progress or something appears slightly out of line he will be on the scene. But not really, he will be out there somewhere talking really loud, but never taking the time to do all of the home work. Preaching in his outside voice about the perceived injustice but never really doing a complete investigation on the situation. Gathering all the facts "I need" as proof, and then pushing through the conviction without a trial and moving straight to the punishment.
If that local promoter isn't entitled to anything for his efforts, why should he do the work? Who among you will work this week for free? I know the answer is a resounding no from all, so why then should this or any local or national promoter do any of this for you with no pay? It is work, it takes up time, and it should be rewarded. The thing that is sad is that it goes on in every town in every state in the game. The names are different but the game is the same.
In case you didn't read the paragraph above I ask again, if you are not willing to work this week for free, why should your local disc golf promoter work for you for free????
Wake up you local promoters. Your merch has a value and in order for the game to move forward and you to succeed you need to realize that value. Otherwise we are just moving the same money around over and over again. All of the basic equipment is so cheap even at full retail compared to other sports equipment. It is so counterproductive to try and work a promoter for a dollar or two on a disc price, when that is the actual growth of the sport.
This is all so simple and so stupid all at the same time. Here are my recommendations as of September 2008.
Players wise up and enjoy what you have. Stop beating on your local promoter unless you are willing to do what they are doing, and if so you must do it better than the person before you or why get rid of them dumb ass? You keep throwing stones at that guy or gall doing all the work for you, and they will go away after they get hit enough times. Then who will you have to throw stones at???
Promoters take the time and learn what you are doing. You and the game really need to get the full value from your products; it is the only thing that the economy of the game can count on year after year. You are not Sam Walton, and the sport is not Wal-Mart. We are all the sport has, no sponsor is going to come along anytime soon and take us to the next level. We have to wise up and become real business people or get out. If your not swimming your treading water and you just as well get out of the pool. DO something original, gain an edge and compete with that. Don't hide behind a cut rate price because you aren't really bringing anything to the plate in the first place. Don't exist in this business just to rape the market and the game, do it some good or move on.
You can agree with me or disagree I don't care and I wasn't asking. I am telling you what I think and how I feel. Disc Golf used to be my passion. That was taken away little by little over time, and now I don't know what to say. I feel like I have been robbed in many ways. I can't afford to give my life away for free any more.
You can send me an email or we can discuss any or all of this on the discussion board here on maceman.com when I get around to it. email@example.com
To those of you who have gone out of your way to undermine me and my efforts, you can fill in the blanks _ _ _ _ _ _ _.