It has taken Derek Jeter 20 years (and a retirement announcement), but he finally wants to speak his “unique perspective”—the vessel for said perspective, intended to revolutionize the way all professional athletes communicate with their fans, is his newly-launched media platform The Players’ Tribune.
Throughout his career, Jeter’s understated media presence has frustrated reporters and fans alike. Now, though, it looks like he’s going to have his say. The Players’ Tribune will, according to the site, “provide unique insight into the daily sports conversation” and “publish first-person stories directly from athletes” in forms that range from podcasts to written pieces. Posts will come from a seemingly to-be-determined network of contributing athlete writers.
“I realize I’ve been guarded,” Jeter wrote on the first—and, so far, Jeter’s only—entry. “I do think fans deserve more than ‘no comments’ or ‘I don’t knows.’ Those simple answers have always stemmed from a genuine concern that any statement, any opinion or detail, might be distorted.”
The second post on the site is from Seattle Seahawks Quarterback Russell Wilson, who explains his “Why Not You Foundation” and pledges to be a force in ending domestic violence.
The new media outlet already is not with its critics. The New York Daily News criticized the entire idea of the site, comparing it to a “sterilized and more boring” Twitter, and added that Jeter’s words, now that he’s retired, “still carry some weight. But not nearly as much.” Time’s outlook was more hopeful saying the site could “actually be cool.”
“Derek Jeter’s “The Players’ Tribune” could actually be cool” http://t.co/c7DSdA4HTu
— TIME.com (@TIME) October 1, 2014
However, negative media buzz is unlikely to have little impact on Jeter’s ability to knock his latest business venture out of the park. The site has already attracting a sizable following of fans, with over 28,000 followers already subscribed to The Players’ Tribune Twitter account when this article was written.