“Trainjumping” Sponsorship article by DAVE PAINE circa ’96


          During last week’s “Rollerblading Throwback #7” which was BOX Magazine Issue #11, I came across an interesting article about sponsorship entitled “Trainjumping” written by a man that has captured some of the most legendary Roolerblading to date with his legendary VG series DAVE PAINE.

          Eventhough this was written in ’96 I thought that this would spark some discussion or even show the new generation of Rollerbladers how sponsorship was viewed years ago. So, here is the entire article for you to enjoy from DAVE PAINE himself.

          Sponsorship Jumping: It is best to write from an observatory point of view, while leaving all personal connections aside. Thus, I used “puppies” to save the names of the unknowing.

          I am not here to tell you what to do, but I will speak of what I see concerning the recent (and expected) sponsorship game being played behind closed doors. I can only offer options to all who wish to be open domain.

          Let’s talk about the point for a moment. So many of the Pro skaters these days fail to see the perspectives of the kids who look up to them in videos, contest demos, etc. (contrary to popular belief there is more to skating than that). Everything you do is going to be percieved as part of who you are and what you represent. Sponsorship decisions, offers and bidding has been happening for years now. Some choose to snap like a young puppy at a pound for the first buyer to show interest. The young pup gets fed real good for the first couple of nights until the master gets what he needs. Soon enough, he’s fetching the paper and eating kibble. Next thing, the young pup is straying further and further away from home. “This isn’t what I was expecting”, he thinks. The pup now looks for a new home.

          But what about the puppies who really hold out for the right owner. This usually saves endless potty training hours in the early years. Most likely, runaways are less likely as well. This analogy about puppies may seem silly. If it does, read it again.

           Now there is the other side called company expectations of skaters. No matter how you slice it, the skater is the product. This is not mean, impersonal, or selling out. It’s the truth. You should not have to skate when they command. Play on your own terms and be happy and excited about who and what you skate for. If you’re not happy, you do not belong there. This is what makes the first decision that much more important. Being sponsored is an honor and should be treated with mutual respect. Faith in rider/company relations is reflected to all in public domain. If a young pup keeps going from pound to pound, no one will ever give him respect no matter how many times he finds a home. So the point is this, the companies expect you–as a sponsored rider–to back who and what you ride for. If you’re just in it for what they can do for you, it won’t last very long. Otherwise, you find yourself constantly playing stray dog. Catch my drift boy. Fetch my knowledge.

          I’ve seen so many dogs run astray that it has urged my pen to move in a postive direction. There are very good skate sponsorship opportunities out there by skater-run and influenced companies. Just think long and hard about what you choose. You may or may not know, but these days someone is always watching when you enter the public domain.

-Dave Paine


2 Responses to ““Trainjumping” Sponsorship article by DAVE PAINE circa ’96”

  1. Good short little read that’s still relevant to today.

  2. roya7 jenkin$ Says:

    …pretty real shit there……i feel like this still can apply to our dedication to the sport and culture .u gotta stick to your shit like your style,your sites, your favorites-skates ,wheels,clothing etc etc etc………..things are also born out of need so if u need a sponsor or your homies do- it doesnt hurt to try and bring those thoughts and needs to a reality…the grass roots companies are the ones that seems to last or resurface…like 616 and scribe…scribe outlasted senate…why? probly cause they have people who still believe in it in their own scene let alone the rolling world…with the lack of corporate interest we as bladers have the opportunity to have REAL good solid companies ,with real products and riders that are dedicated to them and we need to TAKE ADVANTAGE of that.

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