Passion is not a crime, we now need others to understand



Laurence (@MVFCLR22) looks at how football fans across the country united as one on Wednesday night.


19th of December 2012, mark it down as the day that all football fans across the country took a stand for what’s right.

Our game has been ridiculed beyond belief for generations upon generations and post the momentous 2006 World Cup qualification, this has only intensified as  football fans across the country started to support the game in their backyard.

The aftermath of Saturday night’s appalling media coverage in regards to a mere 3 people being ejected has been enormous. Certain sections of the non football world have had their word, whether it means much to us fans or not. We have been laid bear and forced to take it but on a normally quiet Wednesday night, things exploded on social media.

Loyal and passionate fans took to the Facebook page of Channel 9, calling them out for their ignorant and negative coverage of the Derby. What was to follow was to shock even the most one eyed football fan. Channel 9 posted a comment on their page saying that they will report what they see fit to report, a complete smack in the face to the members of active supporters groups around the country.

The hash tag #passionisnotacrime was created and within a mere hour, it was trending across Australia. A simple comment by a media network on their Facebook page was ultimately the straw that broke the camels back. Fans from all 10 A-League clubs as well as passionate fans of all codes bandied together for the one cause. We have had it with certain media organisations and pieces written in national papers demeaning our game for no apparent reason. There were even some suggestions between the most bitter of rivals in the lead up to Melbourne Derby to create a joint banner to unite us all as football fans, not just a Heart fan or Victory follower.

Through this extraordinary campaign on twitter, we captured the imagination of all sports followers. This isn’t about asking for positive coverage, rather just a fair go in Australia’s ever changing sporting landscape. From the ugly coverage regarding a small minority in Season 2 to the latest media bias at the Sydney derby, football followers across the country had enough and finally took a stand for what’s right.

Football is unique and thus in the ever changing media landscape, it will take time for those not familiar to the game to accept singing and changing for 90 minutes is about passion and a simple flare isn’t violent. Admittedly, flares aren’t good for the image of the sport but in no way letting them off is a federal offence like some in the media have portrayed them to be.

Football is an ever growing code in this country and over time, people that have dismissed it as nothing but a fad will be proven wrong. It may take a generational change to eradicate this ridiculous behaviour from certain sections of the media but what I am sure of is that loyal and passionate football across the A-League will continue to support their clubs. It’s up to us to educate them and include them in what makes football unique.

All we ask for is that people don’t  have to love our game but that those among us that dont have a passion for football treat it with the respect that it deserves. The 19th of December was a red letter day for all fans across the country. It will forever be remembered as the day that all fans united as one for a common goal, the love of football.




  • Steve

    Great article again. It is a brilliant piece!

  • Kurto

    Is tonight the night when the giant awakens 19/12/12 PASSION IS NOT A CRIME

  • Liam Ruz

    sensational piece mate! spot on the head, we have finally had enough and we won’t stand down in showing mainstream media that we are football and that we are here to stay #passionisnotacrime

  • Matt

    Fantastic article again #passionisnotacrime

  • Blake

    bring on the Heart & Victory banner!

  • Dean Smith

    Fantastic piece

    Well written and sums up situation perfectly

  • Scott

    Agree with 99% of what was written. 1 thing, while it isnt just about flares and it is biased media coverage. Flares are illegal in this country (except for maritime emergancies) and those who bring them dont help us as supporters of our great game.

  • Peter

    To WSWFC fans. You have to fight fire with fire. I urge those in the RedBlock Army to tell those ‘main-stream’ commercial news networks that we are not going to take it. In HA1, MVFC were being unfairly treated by the Melbourne News. The next home game they created an ‘Axis of Evil’ banner with Herald Sun,3AW,C9 logos on it. Stand up be heard and kick em were you can. “IF you watch channel 9 …… you’re a bloody idiot!”

  • Jay

    Sums it all up, Flares aren’t an offence or anything. The cops don’t want us to be like “Europe” so how else is the game going to become more popular and noticed by Europe? No wonder AFL is only an Aussie sport.

  • David

    Great article, I think you have hit on the head what a lot of football fans have been feeling but can you not see that you can keep the passion without the flares. Stop using flares, you give them nothing to report.

  • Andrew

    People need to realise that mainstream media have some morbid fascination with Flares as though they are letting off shotguns. Whilst I agree that they are over the top with thier portrayal of flares there is absolutely no need for them and everytime there are flares let off at a game the media go on an on about the same crap. Use your brains people and just dont take flares to the games and you wont get this coverage, its not that difficult, they dont bring anything to the game. only a brain dead 15yo would think they are cool. Just leave them out of it and dont give the media the excuse they need to have a go.

  • Billy Biggins

    When did anyone start worrying about what Channel 9 news has to say?

  • Robbie

    @Andrew – sorry but flares are cool. I agree with everything you said about them, except that they aren’t cool. I think that when you look at how they’re used around the world they can be absolutely spectacular, but of course they’re best left at home here.

  • Great article. As a football fan new to the A-League my preconceptions about the lack of popularity for the football in Australia have been quashed by the passion fans have shown this week. Standing up against the media, for the good of the game is something that football fans all over the world should appreciate.

    What is the next step for #PassionIsNotACrime? Have a look here

    We need to bring the mantra with us to A-League matches all over the country this weekend and continue to shout it loud and clear, so Channel 9 can hear

  • harryK

    why are C9 getting must of the stick, C10 & C7 are also scum. they are all the same shit