Something here isn't passing the smell test. What the heck are Chris Cooley and other locked out NFL players doing making appearances on NFL Network? Doesn't the NFL own NFLN in its entirety? I saw the headline over at our brother blog, HogsHaven.com, and had to post a quick opinion on the matter. There is no way that I'm giving my bosses who aren't paying me any kind of boost to their revenue, and that's exactly what continued player appearances means to the network.
Follow my train of thought. You work for a company that takes part in an exclusive market. Outside of this select group of closely related revenue sharing partners, no other entries into this specific industry carry any weight with the public. They all clamor for the conglomerate you've been hired into. You are paid handsomely, able to do pretty much anything your imagination can come up with for leisure, and more importantly you have the bandwidth to make your family comfortable for generations. Over the past 50 years, your predecessors have negotiated better compensation and benefits for employees just like you. Owners in the conglomerate concede begrudgingly, over the years, although a handful of work stoppages sprinkle the history of the industry.
Somewhere along the timeline of the past 20 years, public interest in the industry skyrocketed. People can't seem to get enough. People flock to their televisions in record numbers to watch the industry's weekly public spectacles. So much so, that broadcast companies promise your industry billions upon billions of dollars just for the right to bring your product to the public. The ownership group figures, if they are paying us billions to show our product, it must be a windfall for them with their advertisers. They wise up, and create their own broadcast partner, and siphon off some of the product to keep all profits in house. Not only do they broadcast some of the conglomerates activities, but they devote resources and shows to the discussion of said product. To add to the authenticity of their product as compared to those that normally would have the broadcast, the conglomerate asks it's employees, you and your coworkers, to make appearances on said network. It may or may not offer you some direct compensation for your appearance.
Primarily though, the employee appearances are a large benefit to the conglomerate machine, and a minor benefit to the employee. After a few years of growing grumbles, the conglomerate feels it necessary for another work stoppage, in order to convince the employees to go along with the owners proposed labor and revenue sharing deal. This action, prevents you and all of your coworkers from earning a salary. It prevents you from using all of the resources necessary for you to maintain your elite level of performance; the reason you were hired.
Many companies within the conglomerate decide that they are going to reduce or withhold the salaries of other sets of employees, who have lesser skill sets and salaries than your independently maintained division. With all this going on around you, what are the circumstances that would lead you, a locked-out employee, to still make appearances on the conglomerate's network?
Sure, supporters would like to get insight as to what is going on with an employee here or there. Personally though, I'd much rather know that the employees whose stance I've supported, are remaining true to the cause and to each other. Are the players appearances a conflict of interest with the NFLPA's position, or am I completely off base (always possible)? Inquiring minds want to know.