People start deleting their past when there’s a lot on the line.
Maybe you’re competing for that big promotion at the company you’ve been eating shit at for the last 15 years. So you start spreading rumors about your competitor who’s been nothing but kind to you and ask your mother to delete that black face photo from ‘94 from Facebook where she dressed you up as an African princess, even though it makes her happy and you’re completely innocent in that situation.
Companies do the same weird things under pressure too. When DraftKings went public in April 2020, someone, maybe a board member, a big investor, or a major partner, probably told them that they better clean their shit up, especially when it came to their content.
Even though DraftKings is famous for offering fantasy sports tournaments and gambling services, they also publish articles giving betting advice. This content used to be hosted on a janky website that looked like they sold rhino dick pills and fentanyl coke after the sports betting business closed for the day.
So one of the first changes we saw after DK went public was transferring all their content to SB Nation (a sports content conglomerate), making it look 20 times better.
When that happened, almost every article prior to 2020 was gone. My first thought was that DraftKings figured it wasn’t worth the time and effort to upload all their old articles on the new website. After all that would take up storage space, man power, and time.
But they just raised billions of Dollars in an IPO. Paying a couple developers to automate uploads from the old site to the new shouldn’t be a drop in the bucket. But then again sports and sports betting content is inherently time sensitive. Once the game takes place, most content relating to it is useless. So maybe it wasn’t even worth a few thousand dollars to upload that old content. Fair enough.
But I took an Adderall that day so naturally I had to dig deeper. I was trying to create the best sports betting algorithm out there, and DraftKings’ trove of stats and past predictions were going to come in handy.
So I went to The Internet Archive where it’s usually easy to find old articles from major websites like DraftKings. But as far as I could tell, with the exception of SEVEN articles, EVERY MMA article prior to 2020 was completely wiped.
This wasn’t just a normal delete. This was a permanent “Shift + Delete” from DraftKings that costs money to do. They made sure to take extra steps to completely scrub their past from the internet. There are more archived articles for other sports, but it’s not even close to how many they originally posted.
It’s difficult to know exactly why they decided to go above and beyond to scrub their past, but I have a theory: In the due diligence process for the IPO, someone found a non-PC sentence in their content. Or maybe they found 20 non-PC sentences. Either way it’s easy for those slip ups to happen when you employ or contract thousands of writers. So they decided it’s not worth reviewing every single article to purge every weird sentence, because nobody reads those old articles anyway and it opens them up to the risk of some bored neckbeard-warrior finding a sentence they don’t like few years down the line, causing an unnecessary headache.
It’s also possible that they made some lavish claims that turned out to be untrue at a time when they didn’t have the resources to provide all their writers with legal/PC training. So in the past they may have said something like “The Chief are DEFINITELY winning the Super Bowl”, instead of saying “Based on our research, the Chiefs have a better offense so they usually score more points.” Perhaps it wasn’t worth risking a frivolous lawsuit in the future for “false claims” on articles that 99% of people won’t revisit.
It’s easy for us to sit here and say DraftKings is censoring themselves, they’re deceiving the public, and that giving even an inch to woke-politics or nonsense lawsuits when you have billions of dollars is a weak move.
But let’s be real. If Ronda Rousey said she’d only partner with us if we wrote an article saying Travis Browne (her husband) is the greatest Heavyweight MMA fighter of all time, we’ll run that article. Fuck it we might run 2 articles just to show Ronda that here at MBS Report, we always go above and beyond.
DraftKings, we were nice to you in this article – so please sponsor us. Let’s go.