Convergence killing NASCAR

TV ratings are “plummeting” and attendance is down more than 50 percent at some tracks:

NASCAR has seen crowds shrink at virtually every track, many of which have removed seats, and its television ratings have plummeted. At Richmond, which once routinely seated more than 100,000 fans for races in the premier Cup series, only 60,000 seats remain and they were not close to full for Sunday’s 400-lap race.

“We’re not isolated here,” France said. “Every sport is trying to unlock the new consumption levels and fan interest by a younger demographic. Of course we love our core fan and everyone does, but every sport is thinking carefully about how to reach the millennial fan to get them excited about their sport.”

He said NASCAR will convene a summit next month in Charlotte, North Carolina, bringing in experts from various fields, to discuss the issue.

France also downplayed the difficulty that some teams are having securing sponsorship for next season.

Many NASCAR fans warned of this when NASCAR decided to stop focusing on its core audience in order to reach out to the new fans who, as many predicted, proved to be almost entirely imaginary. And if you think NASCAR’s management is going to learn from their catastrophic failure, then you really don’t understand how SJW convergence works.

The NFL is about to go the same way, I strongly suspect. Notice how, whether it is a sport or a church, the desire for growth combined with a disdain for traditional supporters always results in the same consequence, a rapid and unexpected decline.

That’s something that I was discussing yesterday with Markku. Is it better to restrict the comments and only permit the old school Dread Ilk to participate? That could be done through requiring registration, but doing so might be of limited value since others could still read them, unlike the current separate system. Or is it better to go to the other extreme and permit the sort of free-for-all we witnessed yesterday?

Feel free to express your opinion. I’m not currently planning to change anything, but it would be foolish to assume that VP and Castalia House are immune from the same pattern we observe everywhere from the Episcopalian Church to NASCAR.

Of course, it’s also possible that we are several orders of magnitude away from it being even a potential problem.