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A reply from the CSA


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Dear Nazz,

Earl Cochrane has passed your email on to me as I have responsibilities in the

area of hosting of international events.

First let me thank you and the Voyageurs for the support of our National teams.

Having Canadians supporting Canada is indeed important and significant.

I am sorry that you feel that we offended the Voyageur group as that was not the

intent at all, rather the reason the banner was removed from the metal guard

rail was because of the location of the banner not the message or name. Banners

such as yours and others as long as they do not conflict with our sponsors are

welcome, however, location of them in the stadium is important. Due to the

contracts that we have with existing sponsors, it is important that the area of

field signage is limited to those companies which financially support

(significantly dollars) to our game. It was unfortunate that the banner was not

seen earlier as I was involved with issues most of the first half on the

concourse on the west side.

Once again we apologize if we offended the Voyageurs but hope you understand our

reasoning.

Kind  regards,

John Billingsley

Deputy Chief Operating Officer

I accept Mr.Billingsleys answer and hope that others do as well.I have told Mr.Billingsley that the Voyageurs wish to work with the CSA in the future to try and increase the level of fan support at National teams home games.

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quote:Originally posted by Vancouver Fan

Dear Nazz,

Earl Cochrane has passed your email on to me as I have responsibilities in the

area of hosting of international events.

First let me thank you and the Voyageurs for the support of our National teams.

Having Canadians supporting Canada is indeed important and significant.

I am sorry that you feel that we offended the Voyageur group as that was not the

intent at all, rather the reason the banner was removed from the metal guard

rail was because of the location of the banner not the message or name. Banners

such as yours and others as long as they do not conflict with our sponsors are

welcome, however, location of them in the stadium is important. Due to the

contracts that we have with existing sponsors, it is important that the area of

field signage is limited to those companies which financially support

(significantly dollars) to our game. It was unfortunate that the banner was not

seen earlier as I was involved with issues most of the first half on the

concourse on the west side.

Once again we apologize if we offended the Voyageurs but hope you understand our

reasoning.

Kind  regards,

John Billingsley

Deputy Chief Operating Officer

I accept Mr.Billingsleys answer and hope that others do as well.I have told Mr.Billingsley that the Voyageurs wish to work with the CSA in the future to try and increase the level of fan support at National teams home games.

I think that this has been handled with the upmost class on the part of Vancouver Fan. You have upheld what the Voyageurs stand for, which is progress. I agree that working together is critical, and I am all for it. Enough of the scrapping, let's just get to South Africa!

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If we all do our part and show people our mens national team and spread the world we can achieve anything. We can make a difference for the friendly against jamaica

I am bringing 20 new people who are willing to give our team a chance as long as they don't looose or play poorly. I did this by talking and showing goals such as derosarios which prooves that canadians can do more than play hockey. This gives people confidence and hope.

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Thanks for the words of support but there is a terrible amount of work that needs to be done to move forward. As fans all we can do is show up and give Canada the support that they deserve. The players sacrifice an awful lot to play for Canada.

I think that all Voyageurs want to show their support to the players but I think we feel challenged sometimes when the visiting fans overwhelm our stadiums. I shouldn't even call them visiting fans as many of them live in Canada.

Rudi and Sean Keay is trying to get a section in Toronto for the U20 game against the U.S. I'm very interested to see how the CSA reacts to his requests.Some ground will be made if he is successful. Please, I urge everyone to support this.It will be a good tune up for the players but also for the Voyageurs.

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quote:Originally posted by Richard

"I have told Mr.Billingsley that the Voyageurs wish to work with the CSA in the future"

Now that's the way to achieve some progress, enough of the confrontation stuff.

Yes all is forgiven for 20 years of CSA failure to develop the game in this country or even have a decent world cup run.

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How sad is it that the likes of Telus, Adidas and CIBC are somehow threatened by the presence of alleged "advertising" by a wholly unrelated, non-competing, non-profit, non-corporate entity?

As if the Voyageurs are somehow a menace to cell phone sales and RRSPs, FFS!

Props to Vancouver Fan for spearheading the attempt to extract answers from the CSA, but I for one am not the least bit satisfied with this weak response.

If we were seated in a so-called "no banner zone" there should have been a notice posted somewhere announcing that fact.

And as good Canadian fans, we should have ripped down that notice and told whatever CSA monkey butler who dared venture to our section to stuff it up his or her respective arse because we as fans are doing far more to raise awareness about the CSA's programs than any half-assed part-time, short-term corporate sponsor ever will.

Sad facts:

The CSA puts ad dollars ahead of national support.

The CSA puts South American interests ahead of national support.

The CSA puts quick and dirty ad revenue ahead of national support.

We as a nation deserve better than what we're getting.

Raise hell, and never surrender.

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quote:Originally posted by G-Man

Yes all is forgiven for 20 years of CSA failure to develop the game in this country or even have a decent world cup run.

Not quite. I think the issue here is that we are ready to live and let die, as long as progress is attempted at this point. The past is what it is, so let's all together, focus and work together on moving this game/team forward in this country.

What I am saying (and only I, not the others necessarily in this thread), is that I'm giving them another chance. Begging if you will...

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Not quite sure what to make of that responce.

As I read it if the explanation is true, or seems at least reasonably plausable then fair enough. The responce seems to imply that were Mr. Billingsley aware that the banner was being targetted by some others who are less knowledgable of the Voyageurs existance that he'd acted to see that the banner was left well enough alone or (more probably) relocated to acceptable territory. In which case chalk all this up to the work of some by-the-book banner nazi. So **** happens, lets move on.

Or, he's just blowing us off with the easiest answer.

Either way good work as all ways, VF. Glad you got a response you can accept.

By the by, wondering if Mr. Billingsley was the fellow responsable for making the final decision on the banner coming down?

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Nice to get a response and an apology - however, although it was the reason which I suspected way back at the start of that other thread, I still don't really like it. I could understand it more if the banner was taking up space that was supposed to be used by a corporate advertisement, but I didn't get the impression that this was the case here.

Anyway, it will be interesting to see what happens on July 7th, though with the Skydome's seating structure the issue may not even arise.

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quote:Analizing the C.S.A. response

Earl Cochrane has passed your email on to me as I have responsibilities in the

area of hosting of international events.

No thank you for bringing matter to their attention. The matter of responsibility for hosting international events needs only to be disclosed in the signature of the letter.

First let me thank you and the Voyageurs for the support of our National teams.

Good, he recognizes the existance of the Voyageurs.

Having Canadians supporting Canada is indeed important and significant.

Just Canadians? again no appreciation for the support on behalf of the Csa, players, coaches, financial, etc.

I am sorry that you feel that we offended the Voyageur group as that was not the intent at all

Feeling of sorrow is fine, but an apology would have been better.

rather the reason the banner was removed from the metal guard

rail was because of the location of the banner not the message or name.

I wonder if the banner had said "Thank you CSA" whether it would have been removed. Insofar at its location I don't think it violated Law 1 of Fifa and since he did not quote any additional restrictions enacted by the CSA, it is a lame excuse.

Banners such as yours and others as long as they do not conflict with our sponsors are welcome, however, location of them in the stadium is important.

Well you want your banner to be seen by the players and public. Has the CSA published locations where banners can and cannot be displayed. They cannot make up rules as the game is in progress. An apology for not planning locations beforehand would have been better.

 Due to the contracts that we have with existing sponsors, it is important that the area of field signage is limited to those companies which financially support (significantly dollars) to our game.

A bit insulting to expect the Voyageurs to financially support with significant dollars amount. I wonder how much the Brazilian troupe financially supported them.

It was unfortunate that the banner was not seen earlier as I was involved with issues most of the first half on the concourse on the west side.

What he was doing elsewhere is of no concern to us and it does not belong in the letter. He adds insult to injury by saying it was unfortunate the banner was not seen earlier. I wonder if he would have arranged then for relocating it rather that remove it.

Once again we apologize if we offended the Voyageurs but hope you understand our reasoning.

Good that he starts the phrase with an apology, but then it is conditioned to their reasoning, which negates it altogether. No promises as to how to deal with similar matters in the future, nor an invitation to discuss a suitable arrangement and understanding.

Kind  regards,

John Billingsley

Deputy Chief Operating Officer

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quote:Originally posted by Johnnie Monster

Sad facts:

The CSA puts ad dollars ahead of national support.

The CSA puts South American interests ahead of national support.

The CSA puts quick and dirty ad revenue ahead of national support.

We as a nation deserve better than what we're getting.

Raise hell, and never surrender.

Johnnie, I don't know what industry you work in, but let's put this in perspective for a moment...how can we ever hope to have matches in Canada if we don't have The Man paying for them? Are ticket sales alone going to be enough to fly our players (playing in Europe or US b/c we have no decent domestic pro league) home to play? I doubt very much that adidas, telus, or whoever else is threatend by a Voyageurs banner, but sponsorship works on the fact that if they pay to be the only banners around the field, then they should get it! Who knows how much they pay (I guess the CSA does), but they do foot the bills. Check out any pro match in Europe or US...do you see non-corporate banners around the pitch? sure this one wasn't RIGHT on the touch-line, but if you watch the TV broadcast, it does look like an official CSA banner (good work on that one Vancouver Fan!)

We can all lament the invasion of corporate Canada into the realm of the sports fan (i.e., 200 empty Platinum seats at the beginning of every period at a Leaf's game), but the said fact is that it is necessary. Let's get the CSA to make a Canadian fans section (like VF mentioned) and turn that piece of Roger's Centre into a Red & White, ear-drum shattering place of pride!

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The CSA needs all the advertising dollars they get and as such need to make sure that they product they sell the sponsors has value. The product in this case is field level advertising and if they think that the product is devalued by having a Voyageurs (or other soccer banner) at field level then they are in their right to remove it.

The issue is not the existence of the banner, but rather the location. This would not be an issue in Commonwealth Stadium because the banner would be hung on the rails at the end of the seating section rather than field level. The only way around it is if the Voyageurs were to get approval from the sponsors in which case I'm sure the CSA wouldn't care.

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Guardian

Well I'm glad you don't know what industry I work in, because it's none of your god damn business, and wholly irrelevant to the conversation. You don't see me here asking you about the daily toils behind the scenes at Monkey Butler HQ, do you?

For someone whose made less than 20 posts here, your condescension as an all-wise, all knowing Canadian soccer "insider" is a bit much. Stop acting the fool.

Yes, corporate Canada pays the CSA's bills. Bravo for that brilliant deduction.

My point is and always has been that the CSA's narrow vision for the national programs has left them blind to anything outside of scrambling for piece meal ad revenues and hosting multicultural festivals for South Americans instead of Canadian soccer games.

Money does bugger all to fuel the national passion for the game.

If Canadian fans (especially kids) are being told to sit down, shut up and put their flag away, it stifles the very emotion and excitement that encourages future generations of players to make the leap from recreational soccer on the weekends to a more serious commitment to playing at a professional level.

Right now we are losing good players to other countries becasue they see better opportunities elsewhere. I don't blame them.

You can't develop a national program without respecting and supporting the fans.

Let me put this in another context...

At a major daily newspaper, the advertising pays approx 90% of the bills, subscriptions pay about 10%.

A publisher can spend all his time selling ad space but if he repeatedly pisses off his readership, what is he really left with? A product nobody wants to read.

With no sustainable audience, those treasured ad dollars will be harder and harder to come by.

The CSA needs to recognize this immediately. Telus, CIBC et al won't be nearly as eager to provide financial support to the nats if fewer and fewer numbers are in attendance.

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Well people complain we don't have enough games for our MNT especially at home then people complain that the CSA puts advertising/sponsorship revenues ahead of everything else. Guys, you can't have your cake and eat it as they say. No money, no games, period.

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I am less than pleased with this response. For the following reasons:

A) Why was the voyageurs banner asked to be removed and not the "Brazilian Community Association" who also had a sign hanging?

B) The same sign was hung at 2 Previous matches at similar locations in the stadium. Why did it take until the 3rd game 60 minutes in before we were asked to take it down.

C) Does the CSA expect us to pay for advertising?????? That is kind of what I gather by the reply e-mail.

VF, Can you PM me Mr. Billingsley's E-mail. I'd like to ask him some questions about the Samba Fest as well. Thanks.

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quote:Originally posted by Richard

Well people complain we don't have enough games for our MNT especially at home then people complain that the CSA puts

advertising/sponsorship revenues ahead of everything else. Guys, you can't have your cake and eat it as they say. No money, no games, period.

I partially agree, however, my contention was that the Voyageur banner

DID NOT cover or INTERFERE with any sponsor's sign, so I didn't see

what the concerns were in the first place.

I really don't know what to make of the CSA response except to say

that it's better to accept it and take a wait and see attitude.

Maybe it's the responses that Guardian provided that basically further

soured my perception of the CSA organization. Almost got me to

write to the sponsors and complain as I am an individual &

institutional shareholder of their companies.

What's accomplished is that the CSA may now recognize our group

and hopefully this translates to having a Canadian section that

we're hoping for. But ANY travel to an MNT game in the near future

is on hold.

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Redhat, my remark about money was not directed at the Voyageur banner incident at Swangard but was a general comment. It seems requiring that this banner be removed was an overzealous act by some ill-informed minion and I suggest that Earl has effectively admitted this and apologised. In future it might be wise to seek out a CSA official before the game starts and obtain clearance, at least until the folks on the ground at these games become more familiar with the Voyageurs banner. Just a suggestion.

One positive outcome of this saga is that it has brought the Voyageurs to the attention of the CSA again and opened another line of communication - all good stuff. Nothing like communication for promoting a positive, constructive relationship.

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quote:Originally posted by Vancouver Fan

Do any of the Toronto Voyageurs want to take the infamous banner for the July 7th match? I could mail it out to you.

How big is the banner when folded up? Could it fit in a backpack or similar bag?

I ask because I'll be taking the train to the match, and if I have the banner I would have to carry it around somehow.

If it's too big, perhaps one of the Toronto guys that is planning to drive will volunteer to take it.

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quote:Originally posted by Vancouver Fan

Do any of the Toronto Voyageurs want to take the infamous banner for the July 7th match? I could mail it out to you.

How big is the banner when folded up? Could it fit in a backpack or similar bag?

I ask because I'll be taking the train to the match, and if I have the banner I would have to carry it around somehow.

If it's too big, perhaps one of the Toronto guys that is planning to drive will volunteer to take it.

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quote:Originally posted by Johnnie Monster

Guardian

Well I'm glad you don't know what industry I work in, because it's none of your god damn business, and wholly irrelevant to the conversation. You don't see me here asking you about the daily toils behind the scenes at Monkey Butler HQ, do you?

For someone whose made less than 20 posts here, your condescension as an all-wise, all knowing Canadian soccer "insider" is a bit much. Stop acting the fool.

Yes, corporate Canada pays the CSA's bills. Bravo for that brilliant deduction.

My point is and always has been that the CSA's narrow vision for the national programs has left them blind to anything outside of scrambling for piece meal ad revenues and hosting multicultural festivals for South Americans instead of Canadian soccer games.

Money does bugger all to fuel the national passion for the game.

If Canadian fans (especially kids) are being told to sit down, shut up and put their flag away, it stifles the very emotion and excitement that encourages future generations of players to make the leap from recreational soccer on the weekends to a more serious commitment to playing at a professional level.

Right now we are losing good players to other countries becasue they see better opportunities elsewhere. I don't blame them.

You can't develop a national program without respecting and supporting the fans.

Let me put this in another context...

At a major daily newspaper, the advertising pays approx 90% of the bills, subscriptions pay about 10%.

A publisher can spend all his time selling ad space but if he repeatedly pisses off his readership, what is he really left with? A product nobody wants to read.

With no sustainable audience, those treasured ad dollars will be harder and harder to come by.

The CSA needs to recognize this immediately. Telus, CIBC et al won't be nearly as eager to provide financial support to the nats if fewer and fewer numbers are in attendance.

Why the personal attacks?? I've only posted 20 or so times on the site b/c I just found it again (I was abroad all of last year) last week.....it doesn't make me any less of a fan than you.

To your point and example of the newspaper...if the paper doesn't have it's 90% ad revenue, how is it going to afford to put out the bloody paper?? Someone else on this thread made a good point that if we don't have sponsor cash how can we hope to host more matches? Yes we need to develop national pride by showing canadian fans a good time, but where is that good time if we can't afford to host a match? You're correct that the sponsors won't be willing to pay as much as they do if fan numbers drop...but let's be serious for a second, we're not exactly selling out major stadiums as it is. But yes, I agree that companies want to see fans in the seats reading their ads. Ergo, we're stuck in a catch-22 that we need to work with "Monkey Butler HQ" to find the correct solution to.

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