no favorite English Premier League team until his son began supporting Liverpool. According to the child, his dad now cheers for Liverpool “because I started liking Liverpool” ( Thomson & Williams, 2014 , p. 335). Their call for more research on how children can influence parental fandom serves as a
Craig Hyatt, Shannon Kerwin, Larena Hoeber and Katherine Sveinson
Aaron C. Mansfield
of parenthood and sport fandom (e.g., Hyatt & Foster, 2015 ; Hyatt, Kerwin, Hoeber, & Sveinson, 2018 ; Tinson, Sinclair, & Kolyperas, 2017 ). Such work, however, has not reflected the distinct stages of parenthood ( Galinsky, 1981 ); new parenthood, for example, bears little resemblance to the
Adam C. Earnheardt
The extent to which television viewers are fans of sports and their motivation for viewing sports may affect their judgments of athletes’ antisocial behaviors. The uses and gratifications theoretical framework guided exploration of possible predictors of judgments. The sample (N = 347) consisted of sports television viewers. Fandom correlated significantly with motives for viewing televised sports, parasocial interaction, and identification. Fandom was negatively related to judgments of violent crime behaviors and uncharitable/dishonest behaviors. Women who were engaged in other activities while viewing televised sports were more likely to judge violent crime behaviors as most wrong, or negatively. Additional analyses suggested that women who reported lower degrees of fandom, weaker affinity for televised sports, weaker intention to watch sports, weaker self-esteem/achievement and entertaining relaxation motives, and paying less attention to televised sports were the viewers who tended to judge athletes’ violent crime behaviors, uncharitable behaviors, and drug- and steroid-use behaviors as most wrong.
This discussion illustrates how fans of women’s artistic gymnastics have used rapidly innovating platforms for user-generated content to create and access sporting information. In doing so, these fans are contributing to the formation of rich collective intelligences around the sport and how these new-media texts are beginning to affect mainstream sports media coverage. Using gymnastics fandom as an example, this discussion demonstrates how online culture has become a prime outlet for those with niche sporting interests. These new-media forms such as blogs, video platforms, and message boards augment and act as supplements to the mainstream sports media coverage, as well as expanding the kinds of information sports fans now can access in this enriched information environment.
John Hughson and Marcus Free
In sociology of sport, a considerable amount of scholarship concentrates on sport as an arena of social resistance. Fundamental to understanding resistance within practices of sport following and fandom is an underlying knowledge of the nature of sport as a cultural commodity in which fandom and following are invested. This article draws on Paul Willis’s theoretical work as a means of examining contemporary cultural commodities and the commodity nature of sport in particular. The theoretical discussion is illustrated by an empirical study of developments within English soccer involving collective supporters’ resistance to heightened corporate intrusion into the control of professional clubs.
Dunja Antunovic and Marie Hardin
The emergence of social media has provided a space for discourse and activism about sports that traditional media outlets tend to ignore. Using a feminist theoretical lens, a textual analysis of selected blogs on the Women Talk Sports blog network was conducted to determine how fandom and advocacy for women’s sports were expressed in blog posts. The analysis indicated that bloggers enhance the visibility of women’s sports, but their engagement with social issues varies. Some bloggers may reproduce hegemonic norms around sports and gendered sporting bodies, while others may offer a more critical, decidedly feminist view and challenge dominant ideologies. While the blogosphere, and particularly networks such as Women Talk Sports, can serve as a venue for activism around women’s sports and the representation of athletic bodies, its potential to do so may be unmet without a more critical perspective by participants.
Michael Kirkwood, Sheau-Fen Yap and Yingzi Xu
sport fans and other members of fandoms who share common interests and enthusiasm via online platforms are also influential in shaping their attitudes and behaviors ( Baiocchi-Wagner & Behm-Morawitz, 2010 ). The fact that online communities have become a platform in which marketers can reach sport fans
Teresa Gil-Lopez, Saifuddin Ahmed and Laramie D. Taylor
“El Clásico,” the soccer competition between Real Madrid and Barcelona FC, is one of the most fervent events in Spanish popular culture. Over the years, the related fandom has acquired an increasingly global reach, in part due to the availability of Web 2.0 technologies that allow for the sharing of content and the creation of multilingual spaces for discussion. The structural and communicative affordances of Web 2.0 technologies allow scholars to investigate multilingual fandom irrespective of geopolitical boundaries; yet scholarly research on such soccer fandom behavior is limited. By analyzing 2,343 Spanish and English fan-posted comments on YouTube related to El Clásico, this study compares the similarities and differences between 2 distinct fan communities surrounding the same context. The findings indicate that, aside from some similarities, both communities differed in their degree of identification with teams and the presence of political references. Implications of the findings and limitations of the study are discussed.
Francis L. F. Lee
This article examines the role of the news media in the production of media sports spectacle through representation of soccer fandom and articulation of the meanings of sports events. The article analyzes the visits of two European soccer teams (Liverpool FC and Real Madrid) to Hong Kong in the summer of 2003. Newspaper discourses are found to generate a picture of generalized fandom and normalized fanaticism towards these events. At the same time, the media articulated the meanings of the events within the context of both global and local processes. The overall result is that public discourse embraced the commercialization of sports, and the media helped to transform the preseason “friendlies” into hugely successful spectacles. These results are understood within the theoretical framework of the society of the spectacle proffered by Debord (1995), though the analysis also points to the limitations of Debord’s framework.
Katharine W. Jones
In this article I consider women’s relationship to football culture, showing how women sometimes downplay their gender identities to reinforce their fan identities. To accomplish this I interviewed 38 female fans at English men’s football (soccer) matches and analyzed their responses to abusive or insulting behavior by male fans. Women used three strategies to respond to sexism and homophobia. First, they expressed disgust at abuse, sometimes redefining fandom to exclude abusers. Second, they downplayed sexism. Their third strategy was to embrace gender stereotypes, arguing that femininity was inconsistent with “authentic” fandom and that abuse was a fundamental part of football. Finally, I suggest that examining nontraditional male fans using a similar framework might yield useful results.