theres no evidence at all to sugest short matches=new fans and yet that for some bizzare reasoning seems to be what is thought ?
there was a great article in snooker scene from dave hendon
ive scanned it for thoes who did not see it
It seems to have become a universal truth, commonly accepted, that in the 21st century, attention spans have been reduced.
There is so much to do, so much technology and choice, that modern life and all it has to offer is consumed in bite-sized chunks with sport no different to culture.
But is any of this actually true?
Films still manage to hold an audience for a couple of hours, sometimes longer as in the case of the Harry Potter series, which is actually one film longer than the books, or the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
What is interesting about these two behemoth franchises is that their films are mainly aimed at the young - the very group who are supposed to have the attention spans of your average gnat.
Yet, give them something meaningful that they can engage with and they will stick with it. J.K. Rowling's seven Harry Potter books are an example of this. The books got thicke^ in size - and more popular - with every release.
The television success stories of today have not made any concessions to length either, quite the opposite in fact.
The great phenomenon of the last few years is The X Factor, aimed at the very people who are supposedly incapable of sustaining their concentration longer than a few minutes.
In fact, the average X Factor
episode lasts close to two hours and keeps its audience throughout.
In America, the ultimate consumer society, television dramas often run for 20 or more episodes per season for several years, taking audiences the world over along on the ride.
All of which brings us to sport, and snooker in particular.
There have been attempts to quicken the pace of various sports and shorten their duration, most particularly in cricket first with limited overs matches played over a single day and then Twenty/20, a slog-fest that can be fitted into just a few hours.
Test matches over five days can peter out but they are recognised, as their name implies, as the ultimate test of strength and even the onesided England v India series attracted huge crowds.
Tennis introduced the tie-break for understandable reasons, but there were few more compelling sporting encounters last year than the extraordinary battle at Wimbledon between John Isner and Nicolas Mahut, which Isner finally won 70-68 in the fifth set.
Golf recently experimented with a shortened Power Play version but nobody seriously thinks it will threaten the established four-round stroke play model which serves it so well week in, week out, all around the world.
No one wants to make football matches shorter
than 90 minutes although the penalty Shootout - sport's greatest endgame - is a uniquely dramatic and not greatly time consuming way of resolving deadlocks.
Snooker should resist too many attempts to artificially quicken up or shorten the test of skill, stamina and nerve that its biggest occasions demand.
There is no suggestion - at the moment - of shortening the World Championship but the UK Championship will this season be reduced from best of 17 frames to best of 11 up to and including the quarterfinals.
In the eyes of many, this diminishes its prestige. Indeed, when the final was reduced from best of 31 frames to best of 19 in 1993 the UK Championship became less like a close cousin of the World Championship and more like the circuit's other tournaments.
The shot clock was brought in by Sky for the Premier League and, as a one-off, is an interesting variant to distinguish the event.
However, in a ranking event, it would be far more controversial. There is not, generally, a problem with slow play. Referees have it within their discretion to warn players who they feel are taking too long over their shots.
Furthermore, if players are struggling for form, why would being made to speed up raise their standard of play?
If anything, it would be more likely to drag them down further.
Snooker is a game of great skill played in a high pressure environment. Sometimes players need a minute or so to study the table and clear their minds.
New or shorter formats have their place. Last season's Shoot-Out was great fun and the reduced amount of frames at the World and Welsh Opens still produced not unexpected winners in the form of Neil Robertson and John Higgins respectively.
But what many snooker fans most enjoy is the slow burning drama of longer matches where there is time for the balance of power to turn round, time for the player in front to crack psychologically and for the balance to shift in favour of his opponent.
Tension builds and this has created sporting drama of the highest order over the last three decades.
This simply cannot happen in a best of five or best of seven frames match.
Snooker at its best, like so much sport, and like the best film, television, theatre or book, becomes engrossing and draws its audience in.
Once there, many do not leave until the conclusion, however long it lasts.
The current circuit boasts a mix of formats, and that is as it should be, but snooker should not swallow the line that nobody can concentrate for longer than a few minutes anymore
Barry Hearn should Take Heed different Formats does not mean Reducing Everything people and Snooker Fans can get their Heads Round some things Increasing.