Time magazine (July 22) reported the move of Nate Silver, baseball-stats analyst who turned election data-cruncher, and predicted the last two presidential elections more accurately than politicians and pundits from New York Times to ESPN under the headline, “There is a 99.45% chance that Nate Silver is changing journalism.”


In the subhead line, the Time says:

“His deal with ESPN is about more than Disney vs. the New York Times. If Silver-style analysis spreads, everyone can win.” What does “His deal with ESPN is about more than Disney vs. the New York Times?”

What is the legitimate link between Disney and the New York Times? Is this a well-turned expression?

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    I do not think that "Disney vs the New York Times" is a common expression. According to wikipedia, Disney owns ESPN, so I think that is merely the author referring to the 'parent company' of the two organizations. Further in the article, he mentions that Silverman's deal was "with Disney".
    – Gus
    Commented Jul 22, 2013 at 21:05
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    @Gus Yep. No need to rely on Wikipedia. ;) thewaltdisneycompany.com/disney-companies/media-networks
    – ghoppe
    Commented Jul 22, 2013 at 21:08
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    The expression in bold simply implies: "There's more than meets the eye"
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Jul 22, 2013 at 21:13
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    Yoichi, I agree with you that not native speakers should be admitted as a part of EL&U, even because some of them, as it seems to me, are able to speak better than natives, but, for what is worth, I do see no downvotes cast to this question, as your reputation page shows.
    – user19148
    Commented Jul 22, 2013 at 22:02
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    Carlro_R. Thanks for your encouragement for entitlement of non native speakers in EL&U community. As for down-vote I requested for the voter’s clarification for reason, I saw it within 5 to 10 minutes after posting this question. The down-vote has gone away in 15 minutes and was replaced with an up-vote. Down-vote(s)-no-later-than-posting question frequently had happened some time ago, for which I posted a complain in meta EL&U section once. The practice has ceased recently, but I observed the resurgence of it again this morning. Perhaps I’d better to deal with this subject in Meta section. Commented Jul 22, 2013 at 22:45

1 Answer 1


As detailed by Politico, ESPN and ABC News, both of which are owned by Disney, lured Nate Silver away from the New York Times as the NYT's licensing agreement for Silver's political progostication blog, FiveThirtyEight, was due to expire.

As the rest of the Time Magazine article goes on to elaborate, Nate Silver's move means much more than his leaving one employer (the New York Times) for another (Disney, ESPN's parent company), or taking FiveThirtyEight.com from the New York Times to ESPN.

The next-to-last bullet point in the article probably best summarizes the writer's point:

The distinctive thing about Silver’s deal with Disney, and maybe what intrigued him most, is its scope: his new venture will try to apply his kind of analysis to fields from entertainment to science to technology.

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