well, i'm not on simon's side on this one. i'll try to make it short but that's probably impossible. i don't think that pulling the "economic argument" means that it is a valid "natural argument". economy is based a lot on assumptions, and as you said, claiming that Women tennis is not as attractive is certainly a matter of opinion, not a fact of nature.
Well, you don't agree that economic argument is the "natural arguement". I suppose you mean it is not the only argument? Because if you mean it is not a valid argument, then why not? Every other sport is paying their players by this little economic fact, it is how the world works, well, at least it's how the capitalistic world works. Why should tennis operates on something other than economic function. Tell me what business doesn't run based on an economic functions? Non-profit? Should tennis be run as a non-profit then?
What is a fact of nature anyway? Why is not any other sports ever follow this fact of nature except tennis?
i admit, can't really stand women's tennis nowadays. but is that a reason to pay them less to be pros? i doubt it. simon feels comfortable hiding behind that obscure economic value, but where does he get the whole info that women's tennis is not profitable? and why not take it 1 step further? how many people would actually pay to see him play? as a die hard fan i can say not a lot. probably not more than the average WTA player ranked parallel to him and perhaps even less. so, basing it on this "economic argument" - that i don't "feel" he can attract a lot of crowd, he should be making probably less money than he does today.
Claiming Women tennis is not attractive is a matter of opinion, and that opinion is based on the fact that:
1: in GS, SF and F, there's a different pricing structure for Men and Women, Men matches ask for higher price. I can safely say that Men generates more overall then Women just based on this pricing scheme.
2: ATP tournaments has higher prize money than WTA tournaments. I can only imagine ATP has higher revenue, cos more ppl pay to come to watch Men events. Otherwise, what else? If ATP tournaments bring in the same revenue than WTA tournament but they pay more to the players, then shouldn't ppl be accusing the WTA tournaments as abusing the WTA players by not giving them their fair share?
These 2 are facts that helps to form the opinion. There is no one that counts every match to tell you that Men tennis are more attractive, but the pricing system is clear to tell you that which product sells better than the other. Of course you can decide to ignore these 2 facts to form your opinion.
If Federer said what Simon said, does it make the exact same argument more valid? Men's match are more attractive than Women's match cos Fed said so. Because Federer's popularity is no comparison to anyone, not even Maria. Simon said it so you compare his match to other WTA's matches. But if Federer said it, do you compare Federer's match to Maria's and said, okay, you are right, Men's more attractive than Women's because Fed's match is more watched than Maria's. And now that Tsonga, Roddick, Murray's and others had said they agree with Gilles, do you compare each one of this player to their WTA counterpart to determine if their opinion is valid or not? Why would that be then if a different person said the exact same argument that would make it more valid? It means, that you are basing the argument on an invalid factor (that is comparing that individual to another individual). Then you say: "but Federer didn't say what Simon said. That is not the point, because the point I'm trying to make is, if you want to argue individual player against individual player, then compare Simon to any other players of your choice, but you are turning this argument into something else other than what is being discussed here, because the only conclusion for comparing Simon to any other players is that his match isn't as attractive, it doesn't extend to Men's. The discussion is Men tennis vs Women tennis, the exact claim is "Men tennis is more attractive than Women", NOT "any other women's match is more attractive than Simon's". I can argue that same fact, since I am not a player, you cannot compare me to any other women player, does it automatically invalidate my argument? No. It doesn't. Why? Because we are not comparing individual, we are comparing 2 groups Men and Women. Hence, yours or mine's opinion can be equally sound if we have the supporting elements, even if no one in their right mind will ever watch me play.
let's take it another notch. Federer, Nadal and even Djoko and Murray are subsidising Simon's profits. in that same "economic argument", Simon has to set aside a portion of that money to them. why base the decision simply on gender if we are talking about economy?
Are the top players subsidizing the lower ranks like Simon? Could be. But if the lower rank doesn't exist, then the top players won't either. Can you run a calendar of 52 weeks with like over 100 tournaments and play a format of Top 8 in every one of them? Can you hold a 2 weeks slam and not have 128 players playing? If the lower ranks weren't there to lose to the big boys. If they only has a rank system of 1 to 10 and no more. Does it sound as impressive when you said I'm #1. It is true that ppl come to watch the big guys, but the big guys need the lower rank players, that is obvious. Besides, they are getting paid a lot more than the lower ranks anyway. The small tournaments pay appearance fees to big guys to headline the show. The big tournaments don't, but they show up anyway cos they are required. So what does this little fact that Top players need lower ranks to make a show has anything to do with that economic argument , you ask? If doesn't. That's exactly the point. The Top ranks helping out the low ranks has nothing to do with Men's tennis helping out Women tennis, because Top Men needs the little guys to exist, Men tennis doesn't need Women tennis to exist. So you are once again comparing apple to orange (just does the previous pt of comparing individual against individual VS Men against Women as a group).
Nadal and Djoko played the Rome final, 2 sets in 2 and a half hours if i remember correctly. so, should they be paid more because the match lasted longer? Federe's matches are shorter on Avg than the rest. should he be taxed for that? what should we conclude about it? that tennis is an hourly paid job and therefor the players who take more time on the court should be paid more, by the hour? one might claim that for the sake of equality, women should play a 5 setter in GS. however, that's a moral decision. not so long ago a lot of the masters were best of 5 in the finals. it was cancelled, probably for TV and other commercial stuff, thus, the economy. was that a sportive decision? are prize money any lower now? don't think so. once again, the "economic argument" is mixed with other agendas. tennis in general is a sport and so the salaries are not determined by the amount of time you spend on court, it derives from the level you are able to reach and the amount of people taking interest - regardless if it's in a long tennis season or a very short NFL season. again, in terms of equality, one could ask for women to play 5 sets in GS. in that same perspective, men can play best of 3. prize money shouldn't alternate massively because of that.
Gilles already said that number of sets or length isn’t the point. It is not about how long each match was played, he also said he is not asking the women to play 5 sets. But then he said it is not his mission to change the equal pay scheme, but no one seems to care either but continue to accuse him of having a greedy agenda. So I guess it doesn’t matter what Gilles has said.
not so long ago, women's tennis had Venus and Serena, Justin and Kim, Maurasmo, Devenport, Capriati here and there - on the men's side things were pretty dull, you know, Federer. today, the WTA is probably at a low point. still, things could change. are we going to to ruin the only sport in world that at the moment pays equal prize money and can produce house hold icons like Serena and Maria because of what? in a couple of years who know, the WTA can be on the rise again and the ATP in the slumps. so should we pass the money back and forth based on our ideas and thoughts of what is "good and proper" tennis? i'm sorry, but the world is not fair to women, and every person is infected with it, well almost. yes, myself included. however, the fact that women's tennis is as successful and is able to pay players and make women as famous as men is a blessed thing. one should only hope that other sports follow. as for the WTA situation today, they certainly have a big problem there, but it's a management and leadership problem and i'm sure it's a question of tides and lows.
It’s funny, Wimby and AO just recently became equal pay, when the era of Women tennis in a slump. But anyway, that’s not a point, just my observation. Now the 4 slams are equal pay, and no talks is going to reverse it. And once again, Simon said it is not his mission to have it changed. And once again, this whole controversy wasn’t started because Gilles wants Men to get pay more, it started bcos of his one line, that "Rome became a joint event to help out Women", and he said it against joint event, not attacking equal pay. It is because that got blown up so much by the media that he has to keep explaining the nuts and bolts of economic to defend why he thinks that.
few things i can agree is that joint events probably crowded, they should answer that problem if most players feel that. again, didn't hear Roger complaining about it but that's not the point anyway. and that players should earn more money in early rounds, especially in smaller tournaments. Tipsi had a valid point: in NBA, the players get 51% or so if the revenue. in tennis only 13%. if you want to pick up a fight, that's where you need to go, not bashing the women tour.
Federer doesn’t complain, if you have read up what it’s been around, the players said Fed isn’t too concern of their welfare enough. He is still the chairman of ATP players council though. Because you know why? Bcos other players has no weight if they have to negotiate with the tournaments. Did anyone besides the L’Equipe reported what else Simon said about the tour? The things the players want change: LL rule, 2014 calendars, grass season duration? No. If Fed has said that, what do u think? It’s all over every single paper out there. The players council needs Fed’s weight, but he never talk on behalf of the lower ranks. Besides, Federer doesn’t face the same problem the lower ranked players face. Do you think Federer will have any trouble getting a training court? He practices on Center Court, not that court that Sloane Stephens practice on. Again, Gilles is not going against the slam, he is concerned about the trend of tournaments becoming joint event. Canada Open is about to be one, after Rome has just been changed to one. It creates problem for the “nobodies”, not the superstars. And unfortunately, there is a lot more nobodies than superstar in the tour. And Gilles got the idea of representing them and speak up for them because he has accepted his elected position of the player council. I’m not saying it’s noble, I’m saying he is taking his responsibility seriously, and he does have the other lower ranks ppl in mind. Federer has too much to lose to touch on such a sensitive issue. A little bit of prize money difference is not much to the potential of losing a portion of his sponsors, since his income % is about 20% from prize money and 80% from sponsors. A change in prize money only helps out the little guy, who needs the money to get a coach or a physio or simply to pay the airfare. To say that the prize money issue has very little impact to the big guys than the small guys is not an opinion, it's a fact. And in fact it's probably very little impact to Simon than to 100 ranked player.
And the players had already been fighting that % payout thing, where have you been? The pay rate of 13% is not going to go up to 50% any time soon, or ever. But GS has already increased their % starting FO, and I think they will keep talking and putting pressure to make the % to go up bit by bit. Tipsy also said Women tennis don’t deserve equal pay because Women players are fat and lazy, now there’s a sexist when you see one.
p.s. in all this argument, i still think he was very unwise to vocal his opinion on equal pay. some questions, especially in his status, are better left unanswered. nothing brave about it, just immature.
Honestly, I cannot stand ppl saying that he should shut up because he is a nobody. I mean, if Federer or Nadal said the same thing, it is an opinion of value? but if Simon said it is not? What is that? Are we still living under Feudalism? And it’s just ironic to think that those ask for equal pay for Men and Women because they think every gender should be equal, yet they think Simon is not equal to a higher profile player because he is a nobody. Now if it’s not double standard then I don’t know what it is, maybe we can call it selective discrimination then.
Do I have preferred that he didn't say anything at all to begin with? Yes if and only if it was his agenda to have this talk in order to gain financially, because he has too little to gain to take all these criticisms. But I believe it was not his agenda to gain anything, that he simply said that because that's what the Men's opinion is, and he said without considering the PC of it. He is always known to be not afraid to speak his mind. This is in line with his character to say sth even if that sth is a Taboo. He criticizes Forget in DC knowing that Forget is his boss and the only thing he could gain from that talk is a place in the doghouse. Love him or hate him, but he is not the one who will just keep quiet to save his own skin.
well, hope no one gets too pissed off that i don't take Simon's side, i just feel very disappointed with this. still, if anyone knows how to get a practice session with him, please lemme know
I’m not pissed at all. I’m glad you said all that, cos obviously I still have a lot in my chest that I need to vent. I thank for the opportunity to elaborate more. And finally, good luck, I hope you got to practice with Gilles and come back and tell us all about it.