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Andrea Eagleman, Lauren M. Burch and Ryan Vooris

Traditional media coverage of the Olympic Games has been shown to exhibit biases in terms of gender, nationality, and the type of sports covered, which can contribute to negative societal consequences and inaccurate historical records of such events. Scholars have suggested that because of the Internet’s expanded spatial parameters, new media have the ability to provide more equitable coverage of events such as the Olympics. In this study, we used agenda setting theory to employ a content analysis methodology to determine whether different constructions of the 2012 London Olympics were presented to media consumers on news websites in Australia, Brazil, China, Great Britain, Kenya, and the United States. Findings indicated that very few gender, nationalistic, or sport biases existed in any of the countries’ coverage, lending credence to the notion that the Internet affords media managers with an opportunity to provide more equitable coverage and thus a more accurate depiction of events.

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Qiwei Huang and Ryan M. Brewer

This case examines dilemmas evolving in China’s premier soccer league, the Chinese Super League. A plan is suggested for confronting the league’s challenges, with recommendations that focus on creating a harmonious and competitive league. Challenges arise from the political and economic transformation currently taking place in China, affecting league operations. While the league stands at a precipice of change on the eve of the Beijing Olympic Games, its viability as a going concern is uncertain. Part of the uncertainty derives from an unregulated system of league policies that have been poorly communicated and unenforced, resulting in discord. Development of league regulations and communication protocols remains largely government driven and would be best if consistent with the local culture, but commercial issues of league operations are also important. Enhancing the effectiveness and consistency of culture-sensitive communication protocols—especially between the government, media, and league officials—will increase participation from league stakeholders.

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Laurence Chalip

Research seeking to describe and explain the extraordinary attention received by the Olympic Games has elaborated useful models of fan interest and motivation. In this paper, implications for the theory and practice of marketing sport are reviewed. Olympics research shows that audience interest is maximized via the simultaneous presence of multiple narratives, embedded genres, and layered symbols. Multiple narratives create stories attractive to varied audience segments by recounting dramas of enduring cultural interest or by incorporating contemporary, nonsport political or social concerns. Embedded genres (e.g., festival, spectacle, ritual, game) appeal to a diverse audience by serving as parallel and simultaneous invitations to consumer interest. Appropriately layered symbols (e.g., awards, banners, flags, uniforms, anthems) promote spectator interest by making ceremonies and rituals representative of more than a mere game or contest. The use of multiple narratives, embedded genres, and layered symbols in the planning, design, and promotion of sporting events is discussed. These strategies are contrasted with positioning (i.e., communication strategies designed to obtain a unique representation for products in consumers' minds). It is argued that multiple narratives, embedded genres, and layered symbols function affectively and thereby complement positioning, which functions cognitively, as marketing strategies.

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Laura Misener, Simon Darcy, David Legg and Keith Gilbert

Over the last decade a great deal of work has examined major sport event legacies and event leverage. Much of this work has involved Olympic studies and this paper seeks to add to the body of knowledge surrounding major sport event legacies by examining the largely overlooked area of the Paralympic Games. The Paralympic Games are the second largest multisport event after the Olympic Games depending upon which parameters are used and since Sydney 2000 there has been an ‘operational partnership’ where bid cities are required to host both Games. Yet, few studies have evaluated the comparative outcomes, legacies and event leverage that Paralympic games have generated. This paper addresses this absence by conducting a thematic analysis of Paralympic legacy research. The thematic analysis used a combination of keywords involving event legacy across 13 major academic databases. Of the 43 articles identified as having Paralympic legacy related content only 13 articles empirically investigated Paralympic legacy. In reviewing the research, it is noted that the bulk of the research has focused on Summer Paralympic Games with little interest in the Winter Paralympic Games. The major findings for legacy-based research include: infrastructure; sport; information education, and awareness; human capital; and managerial changes. However, while these findings may seem congruent with major event legacies frameworks conceptually, an examination of the detailed findings shows that Paralympic legacy research is isomorphic and adds a new component to existing legacy dimensions.

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Kalliopi Sotiriadou, David Shilbury and Shayne Quick

The purpose of this study was to explore and map the sport development processes in Australia. A grounded theory approach identified sport development processes by examining 74 annual reports from 35 national sporting organizations (NSOs) over a period of 4 years, before and after the Sydney Olympic Games. The 3 frameworks presented in this article representing the attraction, retention/transition, and nurturing process illustrate the generic processes and strategies described by NSOs. The results show that each sport development process requires human and financial input from various stakeholders. These stakeholders initiate or implement sport development strategies for each process and each process has different sport development outputs. These results contribute to the extant literature of sport development by demonstrating that sport development is more complex and encompassing than previously described. It is proposed that the generic frameworks derived from this study be subject to more specific testing using other sport systems, as context and case studies could lead to tailoring the frameworks to represent specific sport development processes and systems.

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Daniel S. Mason, Lucie Thibault and Laura Misener

This article discusses agency problems in sport organizations in which the same individuals are involved in both the management and control of decision making. We focus our analysis on the case of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) by reviewing the behavior of selected IOC members with regard to the bidding process for the Olympic Games and the resulting reform attempts made by the IOC in an effort to address issues of corruption. After a review of examples of corrupt behavior on the part of IOC members, agency theory is introduced to discuss IOC reforms and provide some suggestions for future reform. We propose incorporating other stakeholders (in addition to the IOC members), such as corporate partners, media conglomerates, and other members of the Olympic movement (e.g., athletes, coaches, officials), into management and control functions. More specifi cally, it is suggested that these stakeholders comprise a board that oversees the operations of the IOC (similar to the IOC’s current executive committee) and be given the ability to remove and/or sanction IOC members who act self-interestedly to the detriment of the Olympic movement. Thus, by delegating the control function of decision making to a board and the management function to internal agents, greater accountability for all organization members can be achieved.

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Steve McKelvey and Anita M. Moorman

Many 2004 presidential-election campaign advertisements were strategically targeted to appeal to viewers of sporting event telecasts. The Bush–Cheney campaign’s unauthorized use of the term Olympic in advertisements that aired throughout the 2004 Summer Olympic Games telecasts raised novel legal issues at the intersection of trademark law and constitutionally protected political speech. This article provides an analysis of the legal issues surrounding the Bush–Cheney campaign’s unauthorized use of the term Olympic. This article first examines the viability of trademark, unfair competition, and misappropriation-based claims potentially available to the United States Olympic Committee and other sport organizations. The article then examines some state-based regulations and case law regarding false and deceptive political campaign advertising that suggests a possible legal challenge to future political advertising campaigns that use sport organization trademarks without authorization. In addition to providing implications for sport managers, this article suggests that Congress may need to revisit latitudes afforded political speech to prevent a dangerous trend of political candidates’ misrepresenting their association with sport organizations.

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Xiaoyan Xing and Laurence Chalip

Sport mega-event organizing committees have three uniquely challenging characteristics: They grow rapidly; they are temporary; they are accountable for event symbolisms. Effects of these characteristics are examined via participant observation and in-depth interviews with twelve lower-level employees of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games (BOCOG) two years before the Beijing Olympics. Four themes about their working lives were identified: The daily work is mundane; BOCOG is bureaucratic; privilege has its privileges; my immediate working environment nurtures me. The mega-event context was also important; workers described it using: The Olympics are great and grand; the Olympics are valuable for China; the Olympics illustrate the challenges that China faces in the 21st century; BOCOG is uniquely high profile; BOCOG helps us to understand Chinese society. Employees used four themes to describe the coping strategies they applied to manage the challenges of working for the organizing committee: I have to confront or adjust; my work at BOCOG allows me to develop myself; working at BOCOG represents a passionate life with idealism; I get to be part of history. Findings suggest that social support, the symbolic significance of the event, and learning through event work mitigate the stresses of working to host a mega-event. Future work should examine the workers’ lives longitudinally over the lifespan of an organizing committee to delineate the dynamics of meanings and experiences in mega-event work.

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Lance Kinney and Stephen R. McDaniel

Event sponsorship has become a multibillion dollar industry (Levin, 1993), yet little theory-driven research exists exploring sponsorship effects (Cunningham & Taylor, 1994), Keller (1993) noted that customer-based brand equity is the appropriate goal of all elements of the marketing mix, including promotions such as sponsorship. The effectiveness of these promotions may be observed through what Keller terms “direct measures pitting known brands against unknown or fictitious brands.” This study uses an experimental design employing attitude-toward-the-ad (AAD) as a direct measure of sponsorship support, advertising impact on attitude-toward-the-brand (AH), and purchase intention (PI) for official sponsors and ambush marketers in the fast food and credit card product categories of the 1994 Winter Olympic Games. Ambush marketers are those companies that use advertising to make it appear as if they are associated with the Games without purchasing official sponsorship rights (Sandier & Shani, 1989). Based on these results, there appeared to be no competitive advantage for official sponsors in terms of AAD's influence on PL These findings suggest that leveraging a sponsorship with advertising does not always ensure competitive advantage in terms of building customer-based brand equity.

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Wei Gao and Keqiang Cao

, do not translate into improved public health because most of these sites are not readily accessible to or usable by the public, making the promotion of PA at the population level challenging. Most large-scale sports venues in China are built for major sporting events, such as the Olympic Games, Asian