This study examined contemporary daily sports journalism through the lenses of media sociology and new institutional theory. In-depth interviews with 25 sports journalists (reporters and editors) identified the institutionalized norms, values, practices, and routines of American sports journalism; demonstrated how that institutionalization affects story selection; and showed how the profession is changing due to digital and social media. The interviews show that although traditional sports journalism is highly institutionalized, digital sports journalism is far less so. Traditional sports journalism is still centered around a story, and digital sports journalism follows Robinson’s journalism-as-process model. The journalists interviewed are expected to perform acts of both traditional and digital journalism during the same workday, which leads to tension in how they do their jobs.
Marie Hardin, Stacie Shain and Kelly Shultz-Poniatowski
In the first part of a longitudinal study to explore the factors that impact career longevity of women in sports journalism, women who have worked in the field for less than two years were interviewed about barriers and opportunities in regard to their career success. Three general themes emerged during the interviews: (a) being a woman is not a barrier but is instead an (unfair) advantage; (b) the world of sports is a man’s world; and (c) family responsibilities will likely change, or perhaps end, their careers. The outlook of participants is grounded in the belief that gender roles, which will force these women from their careers, are natural. These interviews suggest that it no longer takes locker-room harassment to turn women away from practicing sports journalism; it simply takes the prospect of having a family.
Elizabeth Arveda Kissling
In this paper, I examine newspaper coverage of Uta Pippig’s 1996 Boston Marathon. Pippig won the Boston Marathon for the third time in a row, in spite of being slowed by menstrual cramps, heavy menstrual flow, and diarrhea. These obstacles and Pippig’s victory over them, as well as her competitors, received disparate treatment in newspaper coverage of the marathon. This coverage provides a rare look at how menstruation is constructed, and erased, in sports journalism.
Shawn Forde and Brian Wilson
, & Musto, 2015 ; Silk, 2013 ; Young, 2013 ; Weedon, Wilson, Yoon, & Lawson, 2016 ). However, little attention has been paid to the forms, practices and contents of what we might think of as ‘alternative’ sports journalism – namely, journalism that focuses on and takes seriously many of the issues that
Jason Genovese and Marie Hardin
In most countries, live broadcasts of sports events generate enormous numbers of viewers and reach impressive market shares. In this article, the author examines the structures of major football (soccer) broadcasts on German television and makes conclusions on the quality of sports journalism. A longitudinal analysis is made of the broadcasts of the last 9 German matches in World and European Cup championships of the past 16 years on German television. A closer look at different parts reveals an increasing loss of meaning for live coverage, as well as rising preliminary and postreporting within the broadcasts. A finer cross-section examination of the football finals in 2006 and 2010 shows a lack of journalistic programming in the live broadcasts, with an increasing loss of meaning for sports journalism
Brad Schultz and Mary Lou Sheffer
A theoretical perspective of technological determinism was used to assess what, if any, changes Twitter is causing in journalism news work. This change was assessed based on the responses of sports journalists around the country. Results indicated very little change in terms of the journalists’ perceptions, but different groups were using the new technology differently. Younger and broadcast journalists were more likely to see Twitter as having stand-alone value and use it in forward-thinking ways. Older and print journalists were more likely to use Twitter for traditional purposes such as promoting printed work on other platforms.
Mary Lou Sheffer and Brad Schultz
This was an extension of research by the same authors (2010) that investigated sports reporters’ perception of their use of Twitter as part of their professional journalistic duties. Using content-analysis methodology (N = 1,008), the authors investigated how sports reporters actually used Twitter. Analysis showed a discrepancy between journalist responses and measured content. Although journalists said they were using Twitter for breaking news and promotion, the dominant result of the content analysis was commentary and opinion. There were also differences related to print and smaller media outlets. The implications of such differences are discussed, including a possible paradigmatic shift in journalists’ approaches.
Peter A. English
Exclusive news is a demand of most news organizations, but previous research suggests the pursuit of unique material leads to uniformity of content among competitors. Bourdieu is among those who have argued homogeneity dominates journalism, and aspects of his field theory will be used to analyze the extent to which this occurs in sports journalism. Employing a sample of 6 broadsheet/quality sports sections from Australia, India, and the United Kingdom, this study examines the amounts of exclusive content and the same and similar articles in the sports pages. Thirty-six in-depth interviews with sports journalists from the titles were conducted, along with a content analysis of 4,103 print and online articles. The results show small levels of exclusive material and a tendency for domestic rivals to produce larger amounts of similar stories. This was often in contrast to the views of the sports journalists.