<strong>The Social Annihilation of the “Sweet Science”</strong>
December 29, 2022
Anthony Saldana (149 articles)

The Social Annihilation of the “Sweet Science”

By Anthony “Stacks” Saldaña

The opinions expressed are solely my own and do not express the views or opinions of Supreme Boxing

In this new day and age of so-called boxing media,Click-Bait” or post so tantalizing that it stimulates the mind of the boxing fans has become the latest rage of the sport. It’s really hard to remember a time when you could scroll through boxing social media and not see fake fight poster or a caption on a image that draws you in. Instead of presenting objective facts, clickbait headlines often appeal to your emotions and curiosity. Once you click, those outlets that post the link can earn revenue from advertisers, but the actual content is usually questionable, and most of the time far from accurate. This type of reporting can be damaging and even detrimental to fighters, managers, promotion companies, and sanctioning bodies to name a few, as many times readers spread the content on their own social media, sometimes causing this “Fake News” to go viral. For someone like me who grew up in the 80’s publications like the “National Enquirer” made it easy to tell fake news from what was real. Now days the power has shifted from print to subscriptions and the sole desire for views and likes. Of course the stories of fighters and events and news needs to be told, but how and by whom? These days, with old journalism dead and a different agenda of ‘new media’, it’s hard to say.

Like a good deal of today’s “influencers” on social media, many so called boxing journalists rely on views as a way of getting paid. Long gone are the days of “getting the facts right” and any type of ethics. As media we can’t always guarantee ‘truth’ but getting the facts right is the cardinal rule of journalism. We should always strive for accuracy, and not being “the first” or the outlet that “breaks” the news. Another major issue with boxing media today is the lack of credit given when others actually go out and do the leg work of securing quotes and interviewing people involved in the story they’re telling. Too many times these same outlets will plagiarize stories, poach pictures and quotes, slapping their watermark on it as if it’s their own content.  Throughout the years of being part of the boxing community I have built connections with experienced and reputable people in the sport including, managers, promoters and fighters to try to get the facts directly from them before publishing an article or posting on social media. I also do what I do for the love of  boxing, not for a payday or for likes and views, this isn’t “My Hustle”. I have however been afforded the opportunity to meet people from around the globe and become best friends and family with some of the biggest names in the sport. The truth of the matter is the integrity of good journalism is gone. The way news is covered, reported, written, and edited has completely changed, making it easier to publish what fits your own agenda including fake news. It’s simply tragic that for the first time in my life I’m watching the ignorance of some outlets take over as reliable boxing news sources. 

When some of these boxing media outlets run with fake news and half truths in the sport, it really becomes a method to stir up and intensify social conflict through arguments about race, nationality, boxing legacy, drug use and many times the personal lives of boxers. Stories that are untrue and that intentionally mislead readers have caused growing tension and divide in a sport like I’ve never seen. Often times, even the fighters themselves go to these social media post to strangely enough have wars in the comments with boxing fans. Here’s a clear example, in these past few years there’s been a ton of posts from these outlets that have posted on their pages “The Latest” on fighter negotiations. These posts come across as if they were sitting with the the fighter’s, the managers and the lawyers during these meetings then have the audacity to give their opinion towards the fighters “ducking” their opponent.  When in fact many of us know that a World Title does not come easy or cheap for a fighter or their team. It is years of blood, sweat, tears and tireless dedication to reach that top level of competition. Years of paying for trainers, food, nutritionist and Managers taking their cut. These post however can cause a biased opinion about certain fighters and a bigger divide amongst fans. Another aspect comes from the field of Sport Psychology. Boxing as we all know is not just physical but mental as well. There have been many models created to explore arousal and anxiety levels as they relate to athletic performance. Including “The Multidimensional Anxiety Theory by Martens et al. (1990), for instance, that focuses on the anxiety response that accompanies high levels of stress. When false and negative stories of boxers are posted. Both science and history tells us that anxiety increases, and athletic performance decreases. Let’s take Iron Mike Tyson for instance, he’s convicted of rape. Bites Evander Holyfield’s ear off, has personal problems, but up until the early 1990s, Tyson seemed unbeatable. However, as his personal life became public and the media had an increased negative focus when reporting about him, Tyson quickly diminished. Now although many of those problems were created by his own doing. The media played as fuel to the fire especially during his trial where his attorney Alan Dershowitz stated “tendency to go for publications or trials that are in the limelight…are seemingly for the purpose of generating attention.”

Mike Tyson on the cover of Penthouse Magazine, May 1993



Although true journalism is dying, if we want things to change with “clickbait” on boxing social media there are many little things that we can do including looking at the source. Are they reliable? Fact check the story before reposting or running with it. Make sure the quotes are verified and always remember these sites and outlets are competing for your attention for their own agenda. To get paid. With social media having so many widespread platforms like IG, Facebook and Twitter that are full of these fly by night boxing media outlets for everyone to have their say and no one stopping them. So sadly it seems like they’ll be here to stay. Now it’s up to us as fans to do our part, and promotion companies to do their part. Lets hold the outlets that give us this fake information accountable by not following them and unsubscribing and stop credentialing them.



Anthony Saldana