Rangers are reportedly set to charge media outlets for press access this season and it’s something that hasn’t gone down too well in media circles.
The Daily Mail revealed that the Gers were set to offer clubs a range of packages – ranging from £10k to £25k in price – to secure a spot in the gantry next season.
This comes amid high-profile disputes in the press with the likes of BBC Scotland and Reach PLC in particular.
Ibrox supporters are generally empathetic to the club’s position, understanding that coverage has not been good enough from several outlets.
The Gers are objectively often unfairly treated by some outlets and commentators and after a summer of discontent, it’s hard to blame the club for deciding enough is enough.
Criticism of the approach revolves around a so-called closed shop and Rangers only working with those outlets who won’t criticise them. From where we site, it’s about those outlets who criticise the club unfairly.
Involvement with Rangers is commercially significant to press outlets and it’s clear that reportage has got to be better with the club opportunistically lambasted at every turn.
Not only that but with direct communication, social media and RangersTV, the club can put out plenty of their own in-house media to communicate with fans.
Fans have had enough of the negative, unbalanced and unfair coverage and you can see why by-and-large, the move has been welcomed by many in the support.
But it appears to have upset plenty of the club’s rivals and some established names in the press too as they rail against greater control over who gets access at Ibrox.
One such name is Hugh Keevins who followed up a column with a tweet on the issue as news broke of the Ibrox club’s demands.
If Douglas Park asked the drivers of the coaches who work for him to pay him a fee for doing their job it might be the cause of consternation, industrial relations wise!
— hugh keevins (@shinjukushug) July 12, 2021
Quite remarkably, Keevins claims that the situation is akin to the coach drivers at Parks of Hamilton paying Douglas Park to work with the company.
That’s despite the fact these journalists – many of whom persist with vexatious coverage – patently do no work for Rangers.
The claims drew the attention of Rangers fans who gave their two cents regarding the entire thing via Twitter:
That’s a really poor analogy is it not?
— JHC (@JHC17626935) July 12, 2021
Do i get the use of his Buses for nothing ? Will i not pay for my new car from @parksmotorgroup ?
No i will pay for the services and the car because thats what is the way the world works . Well done @RangersFC for charging the media its a brilliant move by the club.
— Peter Kelman (@KelmanPeter) July 12, 2021
You can disagree and challenge the idea but that’s an absurd comparison. The media don’t work for Rangers.
— Andy McKellar (@AMcKellar89) July 12, 2021
Stupid analogy – the press are not employed by Rangers. I'd much rather get my news straight from my club anyway. Most media outlets derive their news from social media platforms these days and quality sports journalism is very rare – particularly in Scotland.
— Paul T (@HamptonCaught) July 12, 2021
Journalists from tabloids aren’t employees of the club though are they..🥴
— Haining55🏆 (@haining84) July 12, 2021
But you don't work for rangers. All the MSM try and do is bring rangers down or damage their image. So your point makes no sense 🤷🏼♂️
— One of the Champions (@Arealrangersda) July 12, 2021
Serious question @shinjukushug
Why should any football club offer free access to media outlets who look to twist words to generate clickbait headlines?
If your employers wish to make money from content, then they should pay for said content
— Sempy (@sempy13) July 12, 2021
Your analogy is incorrect. Demanding free access to Ibrox so you can publish match reports to sell newspapers is like demanding free paper to print your rag, or free electricity for the office.
— Andy (@GrouvilleBear) July 12, 2021
You don’t work for Rangers… hope that helps.
— Scott (😐) (@scottberwick) July 12, 2021
Gone are the days of freebies and berating the club Hugh, yes it's OK to comment on matches but not off field business and personal dislikes.
— CHARLIE MURDOCH 🇬🇧🏴 @alliance4unity (@murdoch_charles) July 12, 2021
Woeful example. The media dont work for Rangers.
— bayernbru (@mclaughlan57) July 12, 2021
The press arn’t employees of Rangers shug.
Far far from it.
— Buddy (@Buddymk11) July 12, 2021
Lets be clear why should I pay £600 while 30 guys get in free because they then write articles or comment professionally on club affairs?
Lets be clear Rangers does not need the media, the Scottish media very much need Rangers. https://t.co/yk3wi4gQhQ
— JD (@JDgawa1) July 12, 2021
It is this type of point missing that has made you irrelevant Hugh. https://t.co/F8KuQF03tH
— This Is Ibrox (@thisisibrox) July 12, 2021
If the drivers with Douglas Park fabricated stories about Douglas park every day they would be sacked 😂 https://t.co/G2LfWOlQbu
— RoyalNavy2704⚓ (@unbawmcgaw) July 12, 2021
That is a terrible example Hugh. You seem to think you are doing football clubs a massive favour. The world has changed, we have other options now for our media, and to be honest you reap what you sow. https://t.co/SqeKudVIvz
— Every Saturday We Follow 🇬🇧🇨🇴 (@El_Bufalo20) July 12, 2021
You'd think that the media would do a bit of self-reflection and ask how they themselves can modernise as clubs begin to pursue new media strategies fit for the 21st century.
You'd think that, until you see this, and remember that this attitude is exactly why they won't. https://t.co/gDaxDqa1kq
— Ro55co 🏆 (@HeartandHutts) July 12, 2021
The media don’t work for us. They profit from us. They seem to not get this. https://t.co/ubtd9ABsjD
— The Louden Tavern (@TheLoudenTavern) July 12, 2021
Rangers are certainly taking a much sterner approach with the press and for many supporters seeing many of the club’s detractors upset about it will do little to turn them off.
Whilst the club’s policy continues to be hammered – and bruises a few egos – it’s time it gave way to real change in the Scottish media world.