Coverage of the Gay Games From 1980–2012 in U.S. Newspapers: An Analysis of Newspaper Article Framing

in Journal of Sport Management

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Soonhwan Lee Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis

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Seungmo Kim Hong Kong Baptist University

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Adam Love Mississippi State University

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Many members of the LGBT community have viewed the Gay Games as an opportunity to challenge dominant ideologies concerning sexuality and sport participation. Members of the mass media, however, play a potentially important role in how the event is perceived by the general public. Therefore, the primary purpose of the current study was to examine how the Gay Games have been framed in newspaper coverage. A total of 646 articles published in the United States covering the eight Gay Games events held during the 32-year period of 1980–2012 were analyzed in terms of three aspects of framing: (a) the types of issues highlighted, (b) the sources of information cited, and (c) the manner in which either episodic or thematic narratives were employed. The results of the current study revealed that issues of identity and optimism were most commonly highlighted, LGBT participants were most frequently cited as sources of information, and thematic framing was most commonly employed in newspaper coverage of the Gay Games.

Lee is with the Sport Management Program, Department of Physical Education, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), Indianapolis, IN. Kim is with the Department of Physical Education, Hong Kong Baptist University, Kowloon, Hong Kong. Love is with the Department of Kinesilogy, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS.

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