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Katherine Sveinson and Larena Hoeber

Female sport fan research has been gaining momentum in recent years (e.g., Farrell, Fink, & Fields, 2011; Osborne & Coombs, 2013; Pope, 2011, 2013; Sveinson & Hoeber, 2015). Much of this research focuses on the marginalization that these sport fans experience (e.g., Crawford & Gosling, 2004; Jones, 2008; Sherlock & Elsden, 2000), with little attention given to experiences of empowerment. Therefore, this study sought to explore if female sport fans’ experiences involve marginalization, empowerment, or both and what contributes to these experiences. Multiple individual interviews were conducted with seven highly identified, displaced female sport fans. The data were analyzed through a three-step process involving open, axial, and selective coding (Strauss & Corbin, 1990). The findings demonstrated that the participants experience marginalization based on assumptions that women are inauthentic sport fans. They also felt empowered when they were able to demonstrate legitimacy and authenticity in their fanship.

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Seong-Hee Park, Jae-Pil Ha and Daniel Mahony

While there is a relatively rich literature measuring curiosity outside of sport, there is little research on measuring sport fans’ curiosity. Based on Berlyne’s (1960) two dimensions of curiosity, the current research project aimed to develop a reliable and valid measurement scale for sport fans’ specific curiosity. Convenience samples of university students were used. Three studies were used to develop the 11-item Sport Fan Specific Curiosity Scale (SFSCS) was developed. Specifically, the SFSCS consisted of three factors: specific information (5 items), general information (3 items), and sport facility information (3 items). The SFSCS was found to be a reliable and valid scale to measure sport fans’ specific curiosity. The scale should be useful in predicting aspects of sport fan behavior for sport fans at various stages.

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Craig Hyatt, Shannon Kerwin, Larena Hoeber and Katherine Sveinson

The literature on sport fans suggests that parents, most commonly fathers, have a significant influence on what teams their children come to support ( James, 2001 ; Kolbe & James, 2000 ; Spaaij & Anderson, 2010 ; Wann, 2006 ). However, in two studies involving former fans of National Hockey

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Seong Hee Park, Daniel F. Mahony and T. Christopher Greenwell

Curiosity has been regarded as a key intrinsic motivational drive for facilitating human exploratory behaviors in many domains, such as psychology, education, and sport. However, no attempt has been made to measure curiosity in a sport context. The purpose of this study was to develop an effective and efficient sport fan exploratory curiosity scale (SFECS). A total of 657 participants were recruited and completed surveys. Various statistical analyses were used to examine the reliability and validity of the scale. The analyses resulted in a reliable and valid scale with three factors (Excitement, New Sport Events, Sport Facility) and a total of 10-items. The SFECS was useful in predicting various sport fan behaviors. Future research should be done in an effort to further refine the scale and to examine the role of curiosity in various practical areas in a sport context.

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Seong-Hee Park, Daniel Mahony and Yu Kyoum Kim

Most literature on sport fan behaviors has focused on highly identified or loyal sport fans. While the literature has found that factors influencing current sport fans and their behaviors are related to, and based on, various psychological, social, and cultural factors, only a limited number of studies have investigated what factors initially attract individuals to consume sport. Curiosity has been found to be one of the crucial motivators that initially influence human exploratory behaviors in many domains. Using theories of curiosity, the present review aims to shed light on the role of curiosity in explaining various sport fan behaviors.

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Sukjoon Yoon, James F. Petrick and Sheila J. Backman

Sport fans who have formed strong connections to their favorite team may be termed loyal fans. One popular communication tool for such fans is Twitter, which has been found to be an important medium for sharing news and events, yet few studies have examined the moderating of Twitter use in a sport context. Adopting the relational approach examining the determinants of sport-fan loyalty, this study examined how Twitter use moderates the building of fan loyalty. Findings revealed that team attraction, team trust, and team involvement are positively related to team attachment. While team attachment was found to positively influence fan loyalty, sport fans’ Twitter use was found to significantly reinforce their loyalty. Specific implications for both theory and practice are discussed.

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Meghan M. Ferriter

This article explores the socially constructed space of Wikipedia and how the process and structure of Wikipedia enable it to act both as a vehicle for communication between sport fans and to subtly augment existing public narratives about sport. As users create article narratives, they educate fellow fans in relevant social and sport meanings. This study analyzes two aspects of Wikipedia for sports fans, application of statistical information and connecting athletes with other sports figures and organizations, through a discourse analysis of article content and the discussion pages of ten sample athletes. These pages of retired celebrity athletes provide a means for exploring the multidirectional production processes used by the sport fan community to celebrate recorded events of sporting history in clearly delineated and verifiable ways, thus maintaining the sport fans’ community social values.

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Charles H. Hillman, Bruce N. Cuthbert, Margaret M. Bradley and Peter J. Lang

Psychophysiological responses of two rival sport fan groups were assessed within the context of Lang’s biphasic theory of emotion. Twenty-four participants, placed in two groups based on their identification with local sport teams, viewed 6 pictures from 6 categories: team-relevant pleasant sport, team-irrelevant sport, team-relevant unpleasant sport, erotica, household objects, and mutilation. Fans rated appetitive sport pictures higher in pleasure and arousal compared to aversive sport pictures. Physiological measures (startle probe-P3, the startle eye-blink reflex, slow cortical potentials to picture onset, and skin conductance) differentiated both appetitive and aversive team-relevant categories from team-irrelevant pictures, and increased orbicularis oculi EMG was found only for team-relevant appetitive pictures. These results suggest there are differences between rival sport fans in response to the same pictorial stimuli, and further suggest that fans provide an ideal population in which to measure motivation toward appetitive stimuli.

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Sanghak Lee and Seung-Chang Lee

Sport sponsorship has grown tremendously as the development of sport media, and popular companies such as Coca-Cola, Nike, Toyota, and Samsung have used sport sponsorship as one of their marketing communication channels. In addition, retailers (e.g., Home Depot, Target, Lotte Department Store) have become involved in sponsorship to achieve their marketing communication goals. Although many retail companies have invested in sponsorship, no retailer-specific sponsorship study has been suggested. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to propose a new sponsorship-effect measure using retail service quality (R-SERVQUAL). This study hypothesized that brand recall and team identification would influence R-SERVQUAL. The 2-way ANOVA revealed that the mean scores of R-SERVQUAL were high when sport fans’ brand recall (F = 12.58, p < .001) and team identification (F = 65.88, p < .001) were high, and R-SERVQUAL is suggested as a tool to evaluate the effects of sponsorship communication on the retail industry.

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Lindsey Conlin, Dylan M. McLemore and Richard A. Rush

Female sport fans account for over 45% of the fan base in some major professional sport leagues. This study analyzes every verified Pinterest account from teams in the 4 major North American sport leagues to investigate how teams use a social network consisting largely of female users to reach this growing target audience. The study finds that sport teams use Pinterest to promote purchasable items, share information about the team, highlight the fan experience, and share creative content—although to a lesser extent than the typical Pinterest user. Differences between leagues and details of content frames are discussed. Future directives for understanding how sport teams use Pinterest are presented, and the utility of visual framing for investigating new media is discussed.