Going to the footy has always been a great way to take a break from the pressures and reality of modern life.

It’s a great opportunity to cheer on your team, and let the umpire know you disagree with the veracity of his decision. And it’s even better if you’re enjoying the game with your family or mates.

Yet in recent times the AFL has been desperate to improve the “match-day experience” for its consumers (sorry, fans).

The heaven of standing up at quarter time to have a chat about how the game is unfolding, has been replaced by the hell of loud screeching promoting one of the AFL’s many sponsors. It’s just too much.

So what is the solution?

The first one is obvious. Get rid of the screaming and shouting from the ground hosts. Our game sells itself, we don’t need to be sold products from the AFL’s sponsors when we are just trying to enjoy the game.

The second is to bring back the curtain-raiser. Arriving at the footy, hearing the sounds of the crowd yelling ‘Baaalllll’ is a far greater addition to the “match-day experience” than kiss-cam could ever be.

I am not aware of any movement among fans who thought the game dull and boring and sat there at quarter- time sighing and remarking to one another how much better it would be if the AFL brought in someone to talk over the top of them all day and otherwise batter their eardrums into mushy submission. Maybe the researchers misheard them.
Greg Baum

You can’t hear the roar of the crowd as you approach the ground, as you once did and there is little crowd noise once you’re inside. There’s just loud, loud music. Followed by loud ads, the annoying spruiker and more loud music. Never mind getting a good chant or a song going, it’s hard enough to have a conversation with the person next to you.
Brendan O’Reilly

So out went the curtain-raiser and in came the American-inspired concept of match-day entertainment. Instead of Reserve grade matches played ahead of the main event, crowds got hip-hop troupes, volunteers convinced to dress up as white goods products and excitable ground hosts. The weekend ritual, so beloved by families for generations across the country, so embraced at the end of the working week, was now hostage to a top-down imposition of selling forged as entertainment. The irony of a multi-generational audience, which had endured for 120 years, now being instructed when to clap, cheer and pay attention was lost. At certain venues, fans literally could not hear each other amid the contrivance. Multiple complaints fell on tin ears.
Elliott Cartledge

How the AFL is killing footy for the fans
Quiet! I can’t hear myself think
Optus Stadium: footy fans say ‘no’ to loud music played before, during and after AFL games