Tag Archives: Keenos

Have Arsenal fans inadvertently become grasses?

We have all been there, at an away game, in the concourse, having a sing and a dance, having a laugh, drinking a beer. Or outside (or in) a pub after a home game, singing our hearts out, playing football (outside of the pins) and enjoying the victory. Or away in Europe, taking over a square in a foreign land, beer in hand, having a sing song.

Next time you are in this situation, look around you. Notice those on the age of the masses. Standing there, not really singing, arm in the air, mobile phone in hand. They are recording you. With the plan to put their recordings on YouTube and Facebook, hoping one of their video go’s viral.

It is a problem that is throughout football. Fans recording other fans. It might seem innocent, those recording certainly do not plan any harm, but there video’s, when going online, entering the public domain, could cause all sorts of trouble.

In the concourses before away games, or the pubs or squares throughout England and Europe, a lot of songs are sung. Some are harmless. Others are a bit naughty. We act the fool. Getting drunk. Riding high on adrenaline and booze. Our morals certainly are reduced.

During the day of a game, you pass under 100’s of CCTV camera’s. On the trains going to the games. Worn by police officers in the pubs before. In the stadium itself. And more recently, body cams on stewards. It seems everyone is trying to achieve one thing. Catch a fan doing something which they should not, so they can issue a banning order.

But now, it is not only the authorities we have to be careful of. It is our fellow fans. With society currently all wanting to be news reporters, whether it is tweeting or video’ing, fans are becoming their own worst enemy when it comes to surveillance. No longer do we have to be wary of the police, stewards or football clubs recording us, we now have to be careful of fellow fans recording us.

I  myself do not like being recorded. I will happily have a sing and dance in the concourse, but as soon as the camera phones come out, I make my way to the side. It is not that I am doing anything wrong, I am very well behaved at games, it is more to do with I do not want my employer stumbling over a video with me in it, or something going too far and clubs deciding to ban anyone who uses the Y word. If you are caught on camera, anything could happen. I would rather enjoy an away day a bit less, then have a consequence cause by a way I might act.

It used to be what happens in football, stays in football, as long as you are not stupid enough to do something which gets caught on CCTV. However, there is now no need for the CCTV, all the police or football clubs have to do is go onto YouTube after a game, scan video’s uploaded by fellow fans, and dish out the bans. A ban could lead you to losing your job. That is how serious it is.

So please, stop inadvertently grassing on your fellow fans. If you want to record on your phone, go to a One Direction concert. Stay away from football.


The Arsenal Membership Pack – What a Waste of Money

This week I finally opened the Arsenal Members pack that all Gold, Silver & Red members get from the club as part of the membership scheme. And what a disappointment it was;

  • A small red and white scarf
  • A fixture list which was already out of date due to TV changes
  • Cheap tin badges
  • A membership book
  • An Arsenal Foundation book
  • A buy one get one free voucher for an audio tour

My first thought was ‘what a load of crap.’ My second thought was ‘where is the bin.’

Now I know why the packs are relevant. It is to make it look as if the club is giving something back to the fans. To appear as if the membership cost is not just a tax on buying tickets. But at the end of the day, I pay £1000+ for my season ticket. This year I will spend around £4000 on tickets (home and away), transport (over land and sea), booze and hotels following The Arsenal. A pack which cost less than a fiver to put together is not exactly the club giving back.

Now sending me a pack is a waste of money, as I am sure it is for many fan of a similar age who does not buy programmes, shirt or any other of the crap merchandise the club pedals. The club could save money by having an ‘opt out of members pack’ box that you can tick when renewing your membership.

I would not even ask for money off my season ticket or membership. The pack costs sweet FA so it would be a saving of a fiver. Not much of a saving when I am willing to spend £4000 following The Arsenal.

And the club would not exactly make an earner from it. The money saved from the packs would probably be less than the cost of a weeks wages for Nicklas Bendtner.

So my theory is this. On your season ticket renewal form, there should be a ‘donate to charity’ box that one can tick. Then, rather than me getting the pack ,it go’s to someone who would potentially appreciate it more. Add to the Christmas gifts the players take to a local hospital. Send them to Great Ormond Street. Distribute it to those living abroad who a little bit of Arsenal would brighten their day.

It would cost me nothing. It would cost the club nothing. But it could make the day of someone less fortunate.

So Arsenal, if you are reading this, allow me to donate my membership pack to someone who would actually like it, rather than send it to me to chuck in the bin.