Inclusion of Persons With Disabilities Through Media Sports: Attitudinal and Behavioral News-Framing Effects

in International Journal of Sport Communication
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  • 1 German Sport University Cologne, Germany
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Previous studies have demonstrated that the media, by specifically framing news articles, may systematically affect a nondisabled recipient’s perception of athletes with disabilities (AWDs). However, it remains unclear how specific sports news frames affect a recipient’s quality perception of a journalistic product and if news frames further affect an individual’s postexposure behavior in social interaction with a person with a disability (PWD). To shed some light on these potential news-framing effects, 2 experimental studies (between-subjects designs) were conducted. Study 1 revealed systematic news framing’s effects on recipients’ attitudes toward a depicted AWD and showed effects on a recipient’s perceived quality of a news story. Study 2 further revealed that specific news frames may (automatically) affect a recipient’s behavior (e.g., verbal communication performance, visual attention/ eye contacts) in a subsequent face-to-face social interaction with a PWD. The findings are discussed regarding their implications for the journalistic coverage of disability sports in the media.

The authors are with the Inst. of Communication and Media Research, German Sport University Cologne, Cologne, Germany.

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