Since 2010, major college athletics departments have expanded a trend of hiring former beat writers to the hybrid position of sportswriter/public relations (PR) practitioner. This case study explored the routines and roles of a former sportswriter in his PR position at the University of Washington. After observing how he moved through social and professional settings and occupational routines, the author identifies 3 themes surrounding his routines. The themes are sport journalist, PR practitioner, and subordinate. Given the historic antagonism between journalists and PR practitioners, the routines are sometimes at odds with one another. The results indicate that the routines affect content while engaging stakeholders.
The author is with the Dept. of Journalism, Quinnipiac University, Hamden, CT.