Surfertoday.com recently posted an article identifying the most influential people in wave sports (whatever wave sports are).
Of the 25, surfers like Kelly Slater, Gabriel Medina, Al Merrick, Garrett McNamara, Bethany Hamilton and Dane Reynolds were cited as people that “are able to change the course of their sports, with a few phone calls and emails."
The list is fairly obvious, but it had us thinking, no mean feat. What about the least influential people in surfing, and how come they never get their own list?
Well that’s about to change. Here is the definite list of the eight least influential people in surfing.
Jeff Fingleton, 44, amateur surf photographer
“I brought a Canon 7D with 700ml lens and have been to five World Tour events this year," said Fingleton proudly. “I want to become a surf photographer and give up being a printer cartridge changer. That’s my dream. I haven’t actually sold any photos, but my nephew did “like" a shot of Taj Burrow on Facebook, so that’s a start. I've had heaps of offers for my work to be used in return for a credit to my Instagram, which seems fair."
Jeff is in this crowd in Hossegor, shooting.
Sophie Green, 21, marketing assistant, Surf Brand Inc.
“I have been here six months. It’s been awesome, although mainly filing, and mainly (totally) unpaid work. One day John John came into the office. I didn’t meet him, or see him, but he was there, which is cool. I don’t surf, I just see this as a stepping stone to a getting a proper job in real fashion."
Jade and Jack Dirmbach, 23, new surf brand owners
“Our new surf fashion brand is ethical, fashionable and totally unique. At this stage we just do t-shirts, but the cotton is sourced from sustained yak farms and no Chinese children have died in the process. In five years we want to be as big as Quiksilver, we believe in this brand that much. Last year we sold 50 shirts, and the year before just 20, so the growth has been amazing."
RotterCock, 22, Internet surf blogger
“I watch the webcasts and then tweet, snapchat and blog about how shit pro surfing is. It’s kinda ironic, but also with an inside take, though essentially looking in from the outside. It’s really sarcastic and really funny. Last week Surfermag included a tweet of mine in their social media weekly roundup. So that’s shows you how real I am, although those guys suck corporate cock, they're bullshit. Thinking about it, I'm gonna ask them to take my fucking tweet down right now."
Ted Bundy, 37, Online Editor, Surf Magazine
"I started in magazines, when they existed, but now with the Internet you have to come up with stuff all day, everyday. Some of the stuff I literally make up. And for what? All I really have to do to get hits is put up a hot chick in a bikini. And if I can't find a hot chick, then Alana. I’m not sure why I bother."
Thierry LaRouche, 37, ex sponsored surfer
“I was sponsored for three years by a minor label. I scored a box of free clothes and even once went on a boat trip and had three photos in Surf Zone. Then I was dropped. I still surf and still wear same clothes, which are kindy baggy with big logos, since it was 2004."
Ed Tenward, 26, Surf Writer
“I’m into the long read and think there is space for well-researched, well-written 4000 word essays on the issues that the corporate run surf media won’t tackle. I have had one article, which dissected the fundamental disassociation between brands and surfers, and the misogyny that reigns in that corporate space, published. That was two years ago."
Rick Wakefield, 26, mainstream non-endemic WSL event sponsor target.
“I don’t surf, I live about 5 hours drive from the beach. But I might watch it on TV, for like five minutes, if there was nothing else on. I like it when the surfer guys shoot through the air when they end a wave. That shit is super cool."