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Paul J. MacArthur and Lauren Reichart Smith

The National Broadcasting Company’s (NBC) primetime broadcast of the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics over 18 nights was analyzed to determine differences between the network’s treatment of U.S. and non-U.S. Olympians. Consistent with previous findings, an American athlete was the most mentioned athlete, and Americans composed the majority of the Top 20 most mentioned athletes. In contrast to previous findings, American athletes accounted for only 38.68% of the mentions, the lowest amount recorded since studies began with the 1996 Games. In addition, a sport-by-sport analysis revealed that an American was the most mentioned athlete in 8 of the 15 winter sports, and Americans received more mentions in 4 winter sports. Regarding descriptions ascribed to the Olympians, American athletes were more likely to be portrayed as succeeding due to superior concentration, composure, and commitment, while non-Americans were more likely to be portrayed as failing due to a lack of concentration, strength, and ability. Non-Americans were also more likely to be described as modest/introverted. Contextualization of these findings is provided.

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Ulrik Wagner, Rasmus K. Storm, and Kenneth Cortsen

Recently, 12 European football clubs launched the idea of creating the European Super League. After massive protests from fans, the Union of European Football Associations, politicians, coaches, and players, the initiative was stopped. In this commentary, the authors reflect on some of the problems facing football and argue that the creation of a European Super League is not a solution to the challenges. However, European football does face problems that require actions, and thus the authors provide some suggestions to progress.

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Fallon R. Mitchell, Paula M. van Wyk, and Sara Santarossa

Through user-generated posts on Instagram, Paralympians’ self-presentation may mitigate stereotypes associated with disability, counteracting negative assumptions. Using content analyses and paired t tests, visual content posted by Paralympians was examined for the portrayal of disability stereotypes. Compared with the social media content of able-bodied athletes, which typically focus on personal and lifestyle aspects, the majority of the Paralympians’ visual content depicted them engaged in sport or fitness-related activities. By posting content that depicts physical competence and elite abilities, Paralympians may change the narrative to promote the capabilities of athletes with a disability. Through the portrayal of sport and exercise engagement on social media platforms, these Paralympians are potentially mitigating disability stereotypes with the intent to curate a culture that is more accepting and inclusive.

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Jeffrey Cisyk and Pascal Courty

Although stadium giveaways are the most common type of promotion used in Major League Baseball to increase demand, most teams supply fewer giveaway items than there are tickets sold. This study argues that giveaway availability is a major component of teams’ promotion strategies and has been largely overlooked in the literature. The authors document the choice of giveaway availability across all Major League Baseball teams over an 8-year period and demonstrate that attendance increases with giveaway availability up to the point where there are enough giveaway items to serve 40% of a stadium’s capacity. Roughly two thirds of teams set giveaway availability in a fashion that is consistent with the standard price discrimination rationale for promotions found in the economic and marketing literatures. The remaining teams exhibit levels of high availability, indicating an additional investment into fan lifetime value, which is corroborated by these teams’ unique fan relationships.