Posted by: eldrickbone | October 9, 2014

Can I get a Sound Check? A Reality Sound Check?

Reading about the reality that media produces brought up an instance in which I knew I was hearing something that was not real through a medium that was supposedly a live broadcast.

In 2007 during an NFL game featuring the New England Patriots and Indianapolis Colts, an audio “miscue” was heard on American television. While Tom Brady was calling his next play, you can hear fans at the stadium cheering. It was loud. And then suddenly, the cheers and crowd noise lowered to a level I would describe as soft. The announcers were speaking at a regular level and the players on the field could still be heard, bur the ear piercing growls of the crowd had gone away and then, just as abruptly as before, the roars were back.

Blogs and comments were posted over night. All with the similar title of “Did you hear that during the game last night?” The Patriots claimed the Colts were cheating by playing crowd noise through their stadium speakera. The NFL claimed it was an error from the CBS production truck that allowed the sound to be played during their broadcast.

I became as skeptical as a conspiracy theorist over sports broadcasts from there on out. The NFL games must have not been that exciting after all and CBS was using cheap parlor tricks to gain more viewers. Since then, it is impossible to find a video or audio online of the incident.


  1. This reminds me of that section in the reading about who actually experienced the parade, the person on the sidewalk or the person watching on TV. We can also tie this in the bburk2014’s post. Is this where the difference lies between our two programs, or where they overlap?

  2. That’s like a restaurant feeding an aroma to stimulate or trigger our response to become hungry or hungrier.

    Deceiving? Depends on how you view ‘viewing a game’. Cheating? I’m not sure, I don’t see the correlation between degrees of audible levels surrounding a players’ competitive environment and their ability to perform therein. I would argue that all high-performing athletes maintain a level of tunnel-vision which obfuscates all external stimuli. Yeah, a player might be pulled away from focusing on the task at hand for a brief second during a lapse of concentration, but I’d argue that turning the dial to 11 doesn’t have any sort of exponential consequence.

    Now, whether or not it was intentionally done and later denied is another matter; if you did on purpose, own up to it. Who knows, maybe you’ll set a new trend.

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