current media context, how the party-state controls sport news remains unclear, especially when a sport crisis challenges political authority (e.g., the ping-pong boycott at the 2017 China Open). Through the lens of gatekeeping theory, this case study examined information-control strategies used during
Qingru Xu and Andrew C. Billings
Sada Reed and Kathleen A. Hansen
Using gatekeeping theory as a conceptual framework, this study examines social media’s influence on American sports journalists’ perception of gatekeeping, particularly sports journalists who cover elite sports. Seventy-seven print sports journalists covering professional sports were asked if their definition of gatekeeper has changed since they began using social media for news-gathering purposes. Thirty-six participants did not think their definition of gatekeeper had changed. The 26 respondents who did think it had changed were asked to explain how. Responses were coded into 1 of the 5 categories in Shoemaker and Reese’s Hierarchy of Influences model—individual, media routines, organization, extramedia, and ideological. Results suggest that for practitioners who do believe there has been a change, they see social media as changing their day-in, day-out job routines, as opposed to extramedia influences.