Third Rail, We Need You Right Now

Brooooooklyn2015

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There is a lot of outrage among the fans about the direction of the branding of NYCFC.

The only way NYCFC is going to change is if the supporters stand up and demand change.

It is the responsibility of the TR to be the voice for supporters.

The Third Rail need to demand a change in the direction of the branding from a Manchester centric brand to New York based brand.

We need to remind the club that fans make a club.
 

Ahab_Flanders

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Agreed.

I was about to make a thread about contacting the club over this issue, but I think it will work here just as well. Yes, the Third Rail should be reaching out to the club to express the concerns that some (not nearly all but a considerable amount) of fans have over the branding issue. Yes, this forum should forward the results of our poll to the club to show them its very mixed response.

But, above and beyond all that, we as individuals need to reach out to the team and let them know how we feel about it. Bitching on the internet won't make any difference. I wrote an email to the team this morning, and even if it accomplishes nothing it was cathartic for me to get it all out. I tried to be as logical and thorough as possible. This is the message I sent:
To whom it may concern:

I'm not sure if this is the right way to contact someone about this issue, or if this will even get forwarded along to the people whom it is intended for, but I feel compelled to reach out to the club in some way after yesterday's jersey reveal. Since I first heard about NYCFC, which admittedly was earlier this year, I have considered myself a supporter of the club and the idea of a New York team that placed local fans above corporate synergy (i.e. NY Red Bulls). I have been impressed by how much NYCFC has gotten right in terms of branding and fan involvement up to this point. The "This is your city, this is your club" ad campaign, the NYC inspired badge, bringing the fans in to vote on the badge, and contact with the supporters group from an early stage--these have all been great wins in terms of building a local identity.

Then, we have the reveal event yesterday. This event and the jersey feel like the exact opposite of the identity and fan involvement that I have been so pleased with up to this point. I was unable to attend the event itself, but from what I've heard and the snippets of video that I've seen it seems like it was a mild disaster at best. The host of the event was awkward and uninspiring in the videos I've seen, and I've heard he was worse in person. The exciting countdown to the moment that a massive jersey is slowly lowered from the ceiling--swinging like a donkey's dick, to borrow one of Gordon Ramsey's favorite phrases--was painful to watch. David Villa looked awkward and uncomfortable the entire time. And why did the event need a long video which was essentially a corporate booster for Etihad? Save that for the board room and give the fans something more exciting. This is exactly the type of corporate-synergy-over-fans display that I was praising NYCFC for avoiding earlier.

Which brings us to the kit. I admit it's not a bad looking kit on the whole. It's clean, classic, and all around aesthetically pleasing. The problem I have with it is it makes no attempt at suggesting a unique identity for the club. Do not misconstrue that to mean that I was expecting a non-sky blue shirt. The sky blue is not the issue here. The problem is that the club has said from the beginning that their colors would be sky blue, navy, and orange as an accent color. So if those are the team colors, why not involve them in the kit design? Something as simple as including navy and orange in the striping of an all sky blue kit--as in this fan-designed concept http://i.imgur.com/Poaef0B.png--would work as a nod to the individual identity of the team, while still maintaining the overall look of City Football Group. As it stands there is nothing beyond the badges to identify this kit as an NYCFC kit and not a MCFC kit. I understand wanting consistency across the teams but a little nod to individual identity would not hinder that goal and would go a long way in keeping fans of the local team happy.

Ultimately, I think that City Football Group and NYCFC missed a huge opportunity with this kit. From day one NYCFC has been saying that they are a team with a unique identity, but now, as we're getting closer to March 2015, the team has acted in such a way that does not show they are walking that walk. What could have been a statement of both individuality and tradition, by using a little creativity and combining the colors of both teams, instead became a statement of profound disinterest in local identity. Literally any employee of City Football Group or NYCFC could have asked a non-paid intern to insert the MCFC colors into an Adidas template and ended up with this kit. That does not speak of local identity, passion, or fan involvement. It speaks of the worst kind of top-down corporate thinking with a complete disregard for the local fans.

Is this enough for me to renounce my support for the team? Not at all, that is why I'm taking the time to write this. Yet it shows worrying signs as to how CFG and NYCFC see their fans and the purpose of the team. Frankly I'm a little surprised that no one there saw this coming, especially after the backlash from the Melbourne Heart re-branding. Did you all really expect that we would be overjoyed to see an uninspired clone of a kit we have seen 1000 times before? As I said above, this was an opportunity for the team to make a gesture to its own unique identity--a gesture that would have been very simple to make and required very minor changes to the final product--but you missed that opportunity by a long shot.

Sincerely,
xx xxxxx
A disappointed fan, one among many others.

If you don't agree with me, that's fine. If you think I'm a fly-by-night fan for even questioning the team I don't give a shit. Go ahead and contact the team and tell them I'm a fake fan and they're better off without me if I go. In fact, do contact the team and let them know how you feel about the kit too. This is about the team remembering fan involvement and response in these decisions, not about either side winning.

Tl:dr We all need to contact the team and let them know how we feel about the jersey/branding issue. E-mail, tweet, blog, or call your ST account representative. Whatever, just remind them that they need to be considering the fans in these decisions.
 

DiRoma

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Mar 23, 2014
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Agreed.

I was about to make a thread about contacting the club over this issue, but I think it will work here just as well. Yes, the Third Rail should be reaching out to the club to express the concerns that some (not nearly all but a considerable amount) of fans have over the branding issue. Yes, this forum should forward the results of our poll to the club to show them its very mixed response.

But, above and beyond all that, we as individuals need to reach out to the team and let them know how we feel about it. Bitching on the internet won't make any difference. I wrote an email to the team this morning, and even if it accomplishes nothing it was cathartic for me to get it all out. I tried to be as logical an thorough as possible. This is the message I sent:


If you don't agree with me, that's fine. If you think I'm a fly-by-night fan for even questioning the team I don't give a shit. Go ahead and contact the team and tell them I'm a fake fan and they're better off without me if I go. In fact, do contact the team and let them know how you feel about the kit too. This is about the team remembering fan involvement and response in these decisions, not about either side winning.

Tl:dr We all need to contact the team and let them know how we feel about the jersey/branding issue. E-mail, tweet, blog, or call your ST account representative. Whatever, just remind them that they need to be considering the fans in these decisions.
wait, you said "donkeys dick" in an email to the club?
 

DiRoma

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Mar 23, 2014
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Agreed.

I was about to make a thread about contacting the club over this issue, but I think it will work here just as well. Yes, the Third Rail should be reaching out to the club to express the concerns that some (not nearly all but a considerable amount) of fans have over the branding issue. Yes, this forum should forward the results of our poll to the club to show them its very mixed response.

But, above and beyond all that, we as individuals need to reach out to the team and let them know how we feel about it. Bitching on the internet won't make any difference. I wrote an email to the team this morning, and even if it accomplishes nothing it was cathartic for me to get it all out. I tried to be as logical and thorough as possible. This is the message I sent:


If you don't agree with me, that's fine. If you think I'm a fly-by-night fan for even questioning the team I don't give a shit. Go ahead and contact the team and tell them I'm a fake fan and they're better off without me if I go. In fact, do contact the team and let them know how you feel about the kit too. This is about the team remembering fan involvement and response in these decisions, not about either side winning.

Tl:dr We all need to contact the team and let them know how we feel about the jersey/branding issue. E-mail, tweet, blog, or call your ST account representative. Whatever, just remind them that they need to be considering the fans in these decisions.
and who did you send it to exactly...i like the email. Will send one myself
 
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Brooooooklyn2015

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While everyone sending individual email might help, we need to pressure TR to respond. A condemnation by the TR, with its 1200+ members, would get a response from the team. We are not a prop in a marketing scheme. We are soccer fans and New Yorkers, thats it!
 

kylelovescrayons

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Was planning on contacting my ticket rep and e-mailing. I feel like voicing your concern as a paying, and founding season ticket holder should be noted. Hopefully we will get a very different feeling from the other kits.
 

FredMertz

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While everyone sending individual email might help, we need to pressure TR to respond. A condemnation by the TR, with its 1200+ members, would get a response from the team. We are not a prop in a marketing scheme. We are soccer fans and New Yorkers, thats it!
Having trouble seeing the TR guys jeopardize their "most favored nation" status, as the few times I've seen them at events they appear to really enjoy it.
 
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jomosono

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I'm pretty sure that the club monitors this forum and gets a good sense of the unhappiness. Having said that I hope the TR leaders could express it directly.
 
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mgarbowski

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I sent an email yesterday (Thursday) to fanservices as well. Haven't heard anything back yet. It would be very bad form not to receive some response, even if it's little more than a "sorry you were disappointed, fans are important blah blah," but I'll let them have a few more business days before the non-response becomes an issue. I hope anyone who does receive a response will post it on the forums. I will do so.
 

Christian

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This is a GREAT idea. I'm going to send an email as well thanking ownership for their excellent efforts and giving us New Yorkers a world class club. As a season ticket holder I'm sure they'll take my words to heart.
 

Ahab_Flanders

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This is a GREAT idea. I'm going to send an email as well thanking ownership for their excellent efforts and giving us New Yorkers a world class club. As a season ticket holder I'm sure they'll take my words to heart.

Good.

In fact, do contact the team and let them know how you feel about the kit too. This is about the team remembering fan involvement and response in these decisions, not about either side winning.

Tl:dr We all need to contact the team and let them know how we feel about the jersey/branding issue. E-mail, tweet, blog, or call your ST account representative. Whatever, just remind them that they need to be considering the fans in these decisions.
 

Drainyoo

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This is a GREAT idea. I'm going to send an email as well thanking ownership for their excellent efforts and giving us New Yorkers a world class club. As a season ticket holder I'm sure they'll take my words to heart.

I was going to suggest the same. I think it's fine for those unhappy to let the club know, but the club should also know that there are folks that are happy with the jersey and what they're doing. I've been tweeting them letting them know.
 

AndreT_NY

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Took your advice. Sent an email extolling the beauty and perfection that our kit is. I hadn't thought to do so till I read this post. It is a great kit and thought they should know that not all fans are disappointed in our team.
 

Drainyoo

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Ahab_Flanders Ahab_FlandersI think some TR members might want to make their voices heard but certain members (not all) at the top SEEM IMO more interested in the perks of being cozy with the FO.

That's concerning. Even though I'm in the "I love the kit" camp I still think fans who are unhappy with it, and are being rationale, should voice their opinions to the club, and TR should be leading it, for both sides. They should sit with NYCFC and let them know what we love about the kit, and what we're not happy with. I honestly feel like NYCFC would listen and take the advice when designing future kits. They seem like a club that cares about what the fans want, unlike what others here are suggesting.

One thing I think all should keep in mind is that at the end of the day NYCFC is a business, and there are other elements involved other than the actual game and the fans. Some decisions will be made in favor of these other elements. To me the kit is an area where I'm ok with CFG laying their hands on, as long as it doesn't affect the performance on the field.