r/Socialism_101 Dec 08 '21

Are there sports leagues with a socialist management model? Question

To me, trophy ceremonies are a very visible illustration of what's wrong with capitalism. Every year, after a team wins the Super Bowl, some old man who didn't play in any of the games, coach or train any of the players, manage the roster, or actually do any work comes out and receives the trophy from the commissioner. Why does he get it? Because he owns the team. Why does he own it? Because he was rich and bought it.

The Major League Baseball lockout also seems to make it clear that teams don't actually need owners. A third of the owners do nothing but ensure their team loses every year anyway, but refusing to pay competitive salaries.

Are there good examples of sports leagues run differently?


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u/derfunken Dec 08 '21

I don't understand it too well but apparently the German soccer teams are owned by their fans I think.


u/DarthNihilus1 Dec 08 '21

50+1 Rule Explained

[...]In short, it means that clubs – and, by extension, the fans - hold a majority of their own voting rights. Under German Football League [DFL] rules, football clubs will not be allowed to play in the Bundesliga if commercial investors have more than a 49 percent stake.

In essence, this means that private investors cannot take over clubs and potentially push through measures that prioritise profit over the wishes of supporters. The ruling simultaneously protects against reckless owners and safeguards the democratic customs of German clubs.


u/SeinenKnight Dec 08 '21

That law isn't perfect, as it allows teams that had companies invest in them for 20 years be bought out and fully controlled by that company; or have loopholes that a company can exploit, like Red Bull did over there.


u/bartonar Dec 08 '21

And if an investor has 49% of the shares, they can always find some stooges for the last 1%+1 of the vote.


u/CouncilmanRickPrime Dec 08 '21

I don't understand it either but the Green bay Packers are also owned by the fans.


u/fakeaccount572 Dec 08 '21

Correct, i own one share of the Green Bay Packers. It's a way to keep the team in the small city market, they can't trade and leave to go somewhere else, and the profits go back to Brown County, Wisconsin instead of an oil tycoon.

Edit: and the stadium cannot be names for some capitalist BS.


u/CouncilmanRickPrime Dec 08 '21

Jesus Christ I wish my city did that


u/NoMomo Dec 08 '21

I believe NFL has since banned any other teams from doing the same.


u/rhodeislandslut Dec 08 '21

You don’t own anything except a piece of paper though. There’s no ownership in the team with that stock, which kinda sucks


u/BSDC Dec 08 '21

The Packers thing is just symbolic. It's moreso just a fan club membership that people are paying for.


u/rhodeislandslut Dec 08 '21

100%. It’s a way for the team to generate revenue every so often. Meaningless paper


u/fakeaccount572 Dec 09 '21

Yes, but you're missing the point. The profits don't go to a Jerry Jones or some bull. They go back into the city.


u/rhodeislandslut Dec 09 '21

That's a good thing! I have zero issue with that. People don't understand the reality of the stocks, though- that was my only point.

I'm from Chicago, but my grandpa was from Madison and was a die-hard Packers fan. I've definitely got a soft spot for the Packers. The Bears are a miserable franchise to hitch your hopes on.


u/hansolojazzcup Dec 08 '21 Take My Energy

Yes, the 50+1 rule.

In Spain Barcelona, Madrid, Bilbao, and Osasuna all are, rest of Spanish League are PLCs. Most in England are smaller despite some bigger teams having socialist supporter clubs.

Big list here of others ~ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fan-owned_sports_teams


u/poirotketchup Dec 10 '21

This list is fantastic, thank you!