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Reporter defends taking Bart Scott’s picture in Jets’ locker room


Jets linebacker Bart Scott threatened to punch a reporter who took his picture in the Jets’ locker room on Friday, and now the reporter is standing by the actions that drew Scott’s ire.

The reporter, Dan Leberfeld, writes at that he was merely trying to document instances of Scott talking to other reporters for a story Leberfeld is writing about Scott’s media boycott. Scott has said he won’t talk to reporters because he’s angry that the media have portrayed the Jets’ locker room as a circus, and Leberfeld apparently wants to show that Scott is, in fact, talking to some reporters.

So is it appropriate to take a player’s picture in the locker room? Some teams have rules prohibiting any photography in the locker room, but Leberfeld says he has regularly taken pictures in the Jets’ locker room in the past, and no one has ever objected before. Leberfeld refers to his actions as “100 percent within the rules.”

However, Leberfeld then acknowledges in the same paragraph that the rules say players can only be photographed when fully clothed, and that Leberfeld took one picture of Scott when his shirt was off. So apparently Leberfeld’s actions weren’t “100 percent” within the rules.

A dispute has also arisen about whether Friday was the first time Scott objected to Leberfeld taking his picture. Neil Best of Newsday reports that Scott swore at Leberfeld repeatedly after Leberfeld took Scott’s picture on Wednesday. And the Associated Press reports that the reporter Scott was talking to on Wednesday was upset at Leberfeld for taking the picture. Leberfeld, however, says that Scott’s tirade on Friday was the first time he heard anyone raise any objections.

The Associated Press story has some details that don’t make a lot of sense. For instance, it refers to Scott’s conversations that Leberfeld photographed as “off the record.” But when reporters want to have off-the-record conversations with players, why would they do it during the times when all the media have access to the locker room? Those media access times are specifically designed for reporters to interview players on the record. If a reporter and a player want to talk off the record, they should choose a more private setting.

It’s also odd that the Associated Press specifically mentions that both of the reporters Scott was talking to, on Wednesday and on Friday, were female. How is the sex of the reporters relevant? The Associated Press doesn’t say.

The Jets expressed concern in a statement released by the team.

“We work hard to foster an appropriate working environment,” the team said. “We regret this incident occurred and are reviewing the matter.”

Scott has previously been fined $10,000 for giving the finger to reporters at the Jets’ facilities. The team should make it clear to Scott that he needs to conduct himself like a professional when dealing with the media. And the Jets should also clear up what the rules are on taking pictures in an area where players are often not fully clothed.

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29 Responses to “Reporter defends taking Bart Scott’s picture in Jets’ locker room”
  1. timpiker says: Sep 22, 2012 10:15 AM

    Screw Bart Scott – what makes him think he’s so special? Go get a job flipping burgers you piece of crap. Can’t wait until you get into the real world, lose all your money then have to start treating people with respect.

  2. pftcensorssuck says: Sep 22, 2012 10:24 AM

    Random thoughts here;

    If Bart Scott wants to boycott only certain reporters, that’s his prerogative. If Leberfeld is one of those reporters Scott chooses to not speak with, too f-ing bad for HIM, Maybe he shouldn’t be such a d-bag to Scott.

    Why would any team let any “reporter” take pictures in any locker room? Just asking for trouble, which they clearly just found.

    Can someone check the age of this reporter, he sounds like a 15 year old on the high school paper.

    Bart Scott is not responsible for what the AP writes, rregarding “off the record” conversations with reporters. The AP said there were “off the record” conversations in the locker room. Bart Scott did not.

    I can’t believe I’m defending Bart Scott.

    The Jets aren’t a “circus”, the man said …. right? Right.

  3. eyeh8goodell says: Sep 22, 2012 10:24 AM

    Media guys aren’t special. Professionalism goes both ways. I’m no Jets fan, and I can’t stand Bart Scott, but when you’re in that locker room you’re in his world. Media guys are like those idiots that get attacked by sharks when they go to the beach and then want to blame the sharks. The media are talentless leaches.

  4. citiciti says: Sep 22, 2012 10:25 AM

    The Jet’s are a circus!

  5. nashwaakkidd says: Sep 22, 2012 10:26 AM

    they are both idiots , tie one of scott’s hand’s behind his back to even things up and let ’em scrap it out!

  6. mazblast says: Sep 22, 2012 10:26 AM

    Screw Leberfeld. He knew the rules and broke them, no doubt trying to provoke the easily-provoked Scott (or give himself some free wanking material). Then when Scott gives him the desired reaction, he comes up with one of the lamest comebacks ever, “I’ll sue”.

    If I were in Scott’s shoes, I’d wait until the off-season, then go to Leberfeld’s home and have a “discussion” with him, man to whatever. Subsequent call to 911 optional.

    In the meantime, again if I were Scott, I’d simply say to the rest of the media folks, “I’m not saying a word while that POS is around”, and stick to it. Tell the reporters to do a little self-policing. I realize that this will generate a fine from the league (God forbid there should be standards that the media have to observe), but sometimes making your point is worth a few bucks.

  7. deadeyedesign23 says: Sep 22, 2012 10:27 AM

    @timpiker: in the real world people don’t get paid money to take topless pictures of you against your will. Don’t be bitter because he’s doing a job you wish you had.

  8. felonius1 says: Sep 22, 2012 10:27 AM

    This guy is a clown nowadays. To bad ray ray isnt there to baby sit and set up plays for him.

  9. ripseau says: Sep 22, 2012 10:28 AM

    Thats stupid. An nfl job is a real job, its just in the public eye. And since when is flippin burgers a real job? Thats for teenagers or immigrants. He brings home real money and hes good at what he does. How do u think a doctor would react if someone was taking pics of him shirtless

  10. apallace says: Sep 22, 2012 10:31 AM

    He’s so caught up in trying to make some epic protest that he’s failing to see the irony of the whole thing. How about you just stop talking to the media instead of talking about how you’re not talking to the media.

  11. zackattack006 says: Sep 22, 2012 10:51 AM

    Barf Scott is acting like he’s Ray Lewis… I say the Jets dump him, have the other NFL teams ignore him, and let him die in his on ego… just like Chad Johnson…

    He’s more focus on the reporters than doing his job… just play the game!!!

  12. mustbechris says: Sep 22, 2012 10:54 AM

    I really wish you guys would stop reporting about this. Listen, I’m a Jets fan, but how can you not see the publicity stunt this is? Getting beat up in the Jets’ circus locker room would be the only thing better for his Website than simply ALMOST getting beat up in the Jets’ circus locker room…but this has worked pretty fine for him so far. Only taking pictures of players when they’re clothed is a rule for many teams in all four sports. For a reporter/blogger/whatever like this guy who has press credentials, there’s no chance that he doesn’t know that ahead of time. So he toes the line with a rule and does it to a guy he knows has a short fuse with the media, and boom, he creates a firestorm. I bet his page views have been through the roof with sites like this one (as well as Facebook/Twitter) constantly linking to it.

    Plus, he’s getting to write several stories about it on his own site, which makes his job easier.

    Please don’t give him the undeserved attention. I’ve seen you guys refuse to report on stories before because you didn’t want to feed into an attention grab. This is no different.

  13. cakemixa says: Sep 22, 2012 10:58 AM

    I can’t figure out who is worse… New York players or New York media?

  14. georgeremus says: Sep 22, 2012 10:59 AM

    Circus?? The Jets locker room is a circus and a lot more!! For God’s sake didn’t a Pepsi truck crash through the locker room?

  15. wizahdry says: Sep 22, 2012 10:59 AM

    I have always felt reporters should not be allowed in the locker room. There should be a designated area right outside the locker where players must go and be available for questions. Despite this Scott or anyone else should not be threatening anyone with violence. In the real world if you threaten someone you risk getting arrested!

  16. blogatron2000 says: Sep 22, 2012 11:03 AM

    Sounds to me like the Jets’ locker room is a circus. It also sounds like Leberfeld and his brethren are a prime reason for it and, in trying to protest, Scott has ensured that they’re going to drag him into the center ring.

  17. laffers says: Sep 22, 2012 11:11 AM

    Believe me, I’m no fan of Bart Scott, however, in this instance Scott is right. If he doesn’t want his picture taken this reporter should respect his wishes.
    It seems more and more, people in the press “become the story” instesd of simply reporting the news; is there an “entitlement issue that i’m not aware of?
    If the boys of the press corps can’t conduct themselves appropriately, simply ban them from the locker room and get their story from the press conferance

  18. raneking22 says: Sep 22, 2012 11:21 AM

    This was so exciting it woke up Mike Francesa!

  19. mhohmann says: Sep 22, 2012 11:26 AM

    F### them both. The JETS are a circus who want more than anything to dominate the back page whether negative or positive. All press is good press and this is just another example of “JETS press”. Giants win…Jets blah blah blah

  20. sabatimus says: Sep 22, 2012 11:55 AM

    AP has been an utter joke for a long time now.

  21. hehateme2 says: Sep 22, 2012 12:15 PM

    The jets are DESPERATE for attention, at any cost!

    They are so overshadowed by the G-Men that they will do anything to:

    1) Try to sell more overpriced PSL seats
    2) Attempt to prove they are relevant
    3) Get their rabble/babble in the papers
    4) Move from the back page to the front page

    None of this should be a surprise based on their actions since Rex arrived. Funny how the winning franchises simply go about their business and just,um…like win games and titles.

  22. dannyglover21 says: Sep 22, 2012 12:28 PM

    Threatening a reporter, what a tough guy.

  23. EJ says: Sep 22, 2012 12:50 PM

    Let me make myself clear, I am in no way sticking up for that Jerk-off Bart Scott. I am however wondering why these players have to answer questions from these reporters, especially the reporters that are looking to bring certain players down, they are out there. Bart Scott sticks out like a sore thumb when It comes to answering questions, he’ll say whats on his mind, regardless if it gets him or someone else in trouble. Mix that with a reporter who is looking to get that big story and nothing but trouble can come from it. If you ask me, there should be a team rep that speaks on behalf the players, It solves the whole thing.

  24. mwindle1973 says: Sep 22, 2012 2:05 PM

    So what if he broke rules, Scott threatened him, that’s technically breaking the law. Scott needs to just focus on improving declining play on the field. How does an NFL player boycott reporters. It can’t be a 100% boycott can it? I thought that all players have certain times when they must make themselves available to the media?

  25. mwindle1973 says: Sep 22, 2012 2:09 PM

    Let me make myself clear, I am in no way sticking up for that Jerk-off Bart Scott. I am however wondering why these players have to answer questions from these reporters, especially the reporters that are looking to bring certain players down, they are out there. Bart Scott sticks out like a sore thumb when It comes to answering questions, he’ll say whats on his mind, regardless if it gets him or someone else in trouble. Mix that with a reporter who is looking to get that big story and nothing but trouble can come from it. If you ask me, there should be a team rep that speaks on behalf the players, It solves the whole thing.


    Players have to talk to the media because their employer makes them! The NFL and it’s players have nothing to gain from blocking out the media. Why would they want to do anything that made the sport less visible, and thereby less profitable?

  26. senky3 says: Sep 22, 2012 2:37 PM

    this player said that he isn’t talking to the MEDIA and then is seen talking to the media. the reporter wants to take pics as proof that the player was talking to the media. why would the female reporter get upset that he took the pic?? unless scott was arranging dates with these two women, why would the women be upset??

  27. bangitfootball says: Sep 22, 2012 3:05 PM

    Also threatening a reporter is a crime and Bart Scott should be severely disciplined by the Jets and Goodell. You hit someone by accident in a game a little “too hard” and you get suspended 2 games and fined but a player physically threatens a civilian in an NFL locker room while the guy is just doing his job and nothing happens. Thats just wrong.

  28. jhunt55 says: Sep 22, 2012 6:40 PM

    RIPSEAU- I would personally question why a doctor has his shirt off in the first place.

    I hate the Jets, naturally because I a Dolphins fan, but I hate the media even more. They hide behind this false sense of machismo because they think they are above everyone else. Sounds like this guy needed a wallop from Scott to teach him he cant just do whatever he wants. They sit there and repeatedly push the boundaries because they think they can hide behind their paper and pen. Teams should just ban media from the locker rooms in general.

  29. hauts81 says: Sep 23, 2012 1:00 AM

    Leberfeld’s story is a little flimsy. He doesn’t need visual evidence to back up his claim that Scott was talking to a couple other reporters. I’m sure they would vouch for him.

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