ESPN NFL reporter Adam Schefter is known for his inside information and for winning the competition. But a Bloomberg report today raised the question of whether his recent investment in a gaming app would compromise his journalism.
Schefter, along with New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and others, recently invested in Boom Entertainment, a creator of sports apps and casino games, including NBC Sports Predictor.
Bloomberg has raised the question of whether a reporter who relies on internal connections can be seen as likely to undermine their own financial situation with their reporting.
“Viewers and Schefter’s 8.5 million Twitter followers might end up wondering if he will qualify his opinions or bury important information if he has direct or indirect money on games and athletes,” the Bloomberg article said.
He also wondered aloud if his association with Kraft would hurt his coverage of the New England Patriots.
“Others in the media are already wondering if and to what extent this business relationship will impact Schefter’s coverage of the Patriots,” Bloomberg reported.
Bloomberg said ESPN declined to comment on whether it has a policy on such potential conflicts.
Schefter’s situation may not be the last such conflict if Disney continues its momentum. CEO Bob Chapek told an investment conference this week that Disney plans to be “aggressive” in sports betting.
“There is a long road between integration into the ESPN business model and licensing,” he said. “Let’s just say our fans are really interested in sports betting. Let’s say that our partners – with the leagues – are interested in sports betting. We are therefore interested in sports betting.