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Commentary: The Misunderstanding Of The Who Dey Perspective

During James Walker's weekend mailbag, Mike from Cincinnati wanted to know Walker's impression of the Who Dey Perspective.

Here's the exchange.

Mike from Cincinnati writes: Just curious if you have seen what the Bengals have dubbed the "Who Dey Perspective"? It seems like a feeble and pathetic attempt by the organization to try an combat negative public opinion by sugar coating everything that fans view as negative. I find it in poor taste, and feel it is ridiculous that a team with the reputation of the Cincinnati Bengals think this is acceptable. What do you think?

Walker: Mike, I've read most or all of the "Who Dey Perspective" posts on the Bengals' team site and I don't think it's a bad idea. Cincinnati gets a lot of bad press here and elsewhere for its shaky decisions and regularly putting a poor product on the field. So if the Bengals want to give their side to the story, I think that’s fine. At the end of the day it’s up to the public to believe what it wants to believe.

The problem is that the "Perspective" was hatched out of the idea that no one wants to hear their side of the story, like the wrongly accused that no one cares to hear from because of self-made conclusions.

Unfortunately, that's exactly how it's worked out. The Perspective has little do with fans as it does getting their side of the story out there. This isn't a forum for the Bengals front office to detail their thoughts on the players, the team on the field, the coaching staff or how they'll reduce ticket prices to help people severely struggling with the depressed economy.

Since going live in mid-February, the posts have ranged from responses (actually rebuttals) to Cincinnati Enquirer articles, how practices bring revenue in for the city, how a fan was going to call the Bengals fourth round pick and a glowing love letter to all of the fans. Additionally, there's been one "Perspective" since May 13.

Originally the idea of the "Perspective" seemed nice during a period of time that the Bengals could have used strong publicity, as a means to speak directly to their fans -- and not in that car salesman-like grin and laugh to sell season tickets (apologizes to actual car salesmen reading this post). In the end, it wasn't about the fans. It was about themselves.