Socially constructed ideals regarding gender, sexuality, and corporeality often work to constrain efforts by marginalized groups to claim subjectivity through participation in sport. Increased participation in sport by female athletes has generated increased attention by national and international sport media. Though this might be thought of as a positive consequence, some researchers find that mainstream media contribute to dominant ideologies that depict sport as primarily a male (and nondisabled) domain. The purpose of this paper is to explore, through the example of Paralympian Hope Lewellen, how a woman athlete with a disability may claim subjectivity through sport, thereby subverting stereotypic concepts of gender and disability. Further, we analyze how the sport media simultaneously works to repress Lewellen’s subversive potential by portraying her in stereotypical ableist ways.
“Beez” Lea Ann Schell and Stephanie Rodriguez
Michael B. Devlin and Natalie Brown-Devlin
The purpose of this study was to first examine the effects of individual personality on the average time spent consuming sport media each week, and then to examine the extent that team identification mediated the effects of personality on sport media consumption. Personality was assessed using the HEXACO Personality Inventory, which provides a theoretical framework to examine the degree to which six broad personality domains and several underlying personality traits influence behavior. A survey using a national sample of 715 participants indicates that personality traits significantly predict team identity, and directly and indirectly predict sport media consumption. Using this personality framework presents a new area of research for sport communication theories and offers practical application for targeting specific types of individuals when promoting mediated sports events. Future research examining the role of personality in a variety of sport communication areas are offered in conclusion.
To critically investigate mainstream media representations of female high school wrestling within the broader sociocultural and historical context of the 1990s and early 2000s, I employ a critical cultural studies perspective with an eye toward understanding intersecting power relations (Birrell & McDonald, 2000; McDonald & Birrell, 1999). Several reoccurring themes emerged highlighting the gendered tensions surrounding girls wrestling boys: female wrestling not being taken seriously; worries about girls’ safety; questions of how to understand female’s motivations to wrestle; and the effects of female wrestling on male participants and the sport itself The main underlying concern relates to wrestling being a male preserve, which works to define masculinity. Media attention demonstrates the cultural work that the sport of wrestling does in maintaining, and potentially resisting, gender norms and relationships. While girls’ wrestling might offer resistant or transformative potential, mainstream media, in this case, primarily works to support masculine hegemony in wrestling.
James J. Zhang, Dale G. Pease and Dennis W. Smith
This study assessed the relationship between broadcasting and the attendance of minor league hockey games in terms of 5 media forms: cable television broadcasting, commercial television broadcasting, radio broadcasting, broadcasters, and overall broadcasting media. A random sample of spectators (N = 2,225) responded to a survey on attendance level and media use conducted in the arena during the intermissions of games from 6 second-half 1994-1995 season home games of an International Hockey League (ML) team. CM-square, f-test, and regression analyses revealed that viewing home games on cable television and away games on commercial television, listening to games on radio, and the quality of television and cable broadcasters were all positively associated with attendance, with approximately 6-11% game attendance variance explained. It is concluded that the current broadcasting arrangement is positively related to game attendance in providing information for and increasing the interests of spectators.
Michael L. Naraine and Milena M. Parent
This study’s purpose was to uncover national sport organizations’ (NSOs) perceptions of social media to understand how social media are situated and implemented. Specifically, the study sought to understand the perceived utility of social media, the rationale for the content produced and disseminated, and the factors affecting social-media implementation. Through semistructured interviews with Canadian NSOs, results were grouped into 3 themes: the value of social media (i.e., benefits, potential, and credibility), social-media use (i.e., content, types of social-media platforms, and rationale/motivations), and the challenges associated with social media (i.e., capacity, language issues, stakeholders engagement or lack thereof, and resistance). NSOs implement social media solely for business-to-consumer purposes. Social media act as a “double-edged sword”: NSOs believe that a good social-media presence requires sufficient resources but remain unconvinced of the “true” strategic value of social media.
Glynn M. McGehee, Armin A. Marquez, Beth A. Cianfrone and Timothy Kellison
implications of organizational communication to diverse groups of stakeholders regarding a stadium-centered development project by identifying and discussing the emerging themes of (a) GSU’s communication to public stakeholders via social media throughout the planning process of the stadium project and (b) the
Mary Jo Kane and Jo Ann Buysse
In the aftermath of the passage of Title IX, Michael Messner laid the theoretical groundwork for what was at stake as a result of this landmark legislation. He argued that women’s entrance into sport marked a quest for equality and thus represented a challenge to male domination. He further argued that media representations of athletic females were a powerful vehicle for subverting any counterhegemonic potential posed by sportswomen. Scholars should therefore examine “frameworks of meaning” linked to female athletes because they have become “contested terrain.” Our investigation addressed Messner’s concerns by examining the cultural narratives of intercollegiate media guides. We did so by analyzing longitudinal data from the early 1990s through the 2003–04 season. Findings revealed an unmistakable shift toward representations of women as serious athletes and a sharp decline in gender differences. Results are discussed against a backdrop of sport scholars in particular—and institutions of higher education in general—serving as agents of social change.
Thomas Patrick Oates
This essay identifies an emerging form of pleasure offered to fans of elite football. I name this mode of engagement “vicarious management” and focus on its emergence in National Football League (NFL) related products of fantasy football, media coverage of the NFL draft, and the video game Madden NFL. Through an analysis of sports marketing literature and promotional materials provided for consumers by ESPN and EA Sports, the article posits that the emergence of vicarious management is overdetermined by emerging financial opportunities in media culture and ideological instabilities within race and masculinity. I identify how vicarious management offers new opportunities for integrating and expanding corporate reach while constructing masculine athletic subjectivity in ways that addresses deeply felt anxieties in White masculinity.
Tina Lankford, Jana Wallace, David Brown, Jesus Soares, Jacqueline N. Epping and Fred Fridinger
Mass media campaigns are a necessary tool for public health practitioners to reach large populations and promote healthy behaviors. Most health scholars have concluded that mass media can significantly influence the health behaviors of populations; however the effects of such campaigns are typically modest and may require significant resources. A recent Community Preventive Services Task Force review on stand-alone mass media campaigns concluded there was insufficient evidence to determine their effectiveness in increasing physical activity, partly due to mixed methods and modest and inconsistent effects on levels of physical activity.
A secondary analysis was performed on the campaigns evaluated in the Task Force review to determine use of campaign-building principles, channels, and levels of awareness and their impact on campaign outcomes. Each study was analyzed by 2 reviewers for inclusion of campaign building principles.
Campaigns that included 5 or more campaign principles were more likely to be successful in achieving physical activity outcomes.
Campaign success is more likely if the campaign building principles (formative research, audience segmentation, message design, channel placement, process evaluation, and theory-based) are used as part of campaign design and planning.
Kate A. Heelan and Joey C. Eisenmann
It is uncertain as to whether physical activity (PA) may influence the body composition of young children.
To determine the association between PA, media time, and body composition in children age 4 to 7 y.
100 children (52 girls, 48 boys) were assessed for body-mass index (BMI), body fat, fat mass (FM), and fat-free mass using dual energy x-ray absorbtiometryptiometry (DXA). PA was monitored using accelerometers and media time was reported by parental proxy.
In general, correlations were low to moderate at best (r < 0.51), but in the expected direction. Total media time and TV were significantly associated with BMI (r = 0.51, P < 0.05) and FM (r = 0.29 to 0.30, P < 0.05) in girls. In boys, computer usage was significantly associated with FM in boys (r = 0.31, P < 0.05).
The relatively low correlations suggest that other factors may influence the complex, multi-factorial body composition phenotype of young children.