Sports Media and Advancing Communication technologies (2)

Sports Media and Advancing Communication technologies



Sports Media and Advancing Communication technologies

Question 1

Communication Technology Drives Sports Media Changes

Characteristics of Sports Content Coverage

The advancement of technology has resulted in significant changes in coverage, audience recruitment, and sports content dissemination channels. The Internet in the 21st century has taken the central role in influencing how individuals are recruited and follow sports as funs. Besides, the unremitting coverage of sports celebrities and their integration in sport continues to persist in the mainstream media (Poulton & Roderick, 2008). The internet offers a higher democracy interaction and access to sports content. In this view, internet channels such as social media have become the main channel through which sports content is disseminated to sports audiences across the United States.

In the last two decades, the sport political economy has immensely transformed due to different communication technologies such as satellite television and digital technologies. The traditional method of presenting sports content predominantly exclusive and live through one channel of distribution has evolved into one that is represented by a multi-organizational and multifaceted approach. The digital broadcasting era creates an immense alteration to the supply of sports content created by competitions, events, and professional sports leagues. Different distribution systems have been developed and influence how sports content is developed and distributed. For instance, satellite and cable TV creates a significant opportunity for fans to streamline sports events and competitions. The sports fans today value the quality of stream or broadcasting and as such, sport media organizations have invested in the high definition technologies to boost the quality of their coverage (Poulton & Roderick, 2008). As such, sports streaming is the primary social experience among a majority of the sports audience.

Sports coverage today not only focuses on the performances of the athletes on the field but also off the field. The digital platforms have created an exciting channel through which the character and behaviors of sportspersons can be examined away from the field. Social media, for instance, has influenced an understanding of the players’ character off the pitch. Media houses follow up the comments and posts of the athletes and offer an analysis of their characters in a different way (Thorpe, 2017). As such, the sports content today is not only about the players in the field as it was in the traditional approaches of coverage.

Sports Media Changes from the Audience’s End

Changes in communication technology have resulted in innovations and changes in different sectors including the sports industry. While the regulations and rules of the games are unchanged, how it is consumed, watched, and interpreted has changed significantly. Gone are the times when television was the only channel of transmission to watch live games (Poulton & Roderick, 2018). Live streaming on the ‘over the top’ platforms has resulted in great convenience to the sports audience. Unlike in the past when people would only watch TV or listen to the radio of live commentary, today people can watch live sports events on the go as long as they have an internet connection.

Audiences can share real-time updates about the sports events particularly through, Instagram pages, Twitter feeds, and Facebook walls. Such digital platforms increase engagement rates with an audience. Besides, different sports news media houses share real-time updates on different accounts and portals to help fans to know about different happenings in the sports world both on the field and off the field. Virtual reality technology has also boosted the viewing experiences of sports audiences. With technology, fans that cannot go to the stadia can enjoy the same experience. The sound quality and picture clarity have significantly improved to enhance the watching experiences of the viewers (Thorpe, 2017). Hence, the advancement of technology has significantly improved and changed the experiences of the sports audience.

Sports Media Marketing

Communication technologies have significantly impacted sports media marketing in different ways. The increased flexibility, accessibility, and convenience created for the sports fans by the new technologies increase the marketing audience. The increased accessibility of sports events results in an increase in viewership which boosts the chances of marketers to access a huge market base. Besides, social media real-time updates create an opportunity for marketers to engage their audiences in different ways. In this view, consumers of different sports events can watch various marketed content which may influence their purchase decisions (Williams & Chinn, 2010). Overall, the new technologies have increased the marketing audience base and means of engaging consumers.

The advancement of technology has led to the development of new sports outlets and killing others. For instance, the print media has significantly lost in the advent of the internet and digital platforms. In this view, the print media organizations have had to transform their operations and also join the digital platforms while those which have not managed to change have been adversely affected. The over the top organizations have developed with the advancement of the communication technologies, for instance, Eleven Sports, FuboTV, and Turner sport among others. The media house that has not purchased the rights to cover important matches have also suffered since they lose subscriptions and viewership.

Sports Media Revenue Streams for Sport Teams

Like any other industry, the sports industry is also focused on generating revenue. The sports media creates a significant opportunity for sports teams to increase their revenue streams. The introduction of multi-organization and multifaceted approach of transmitting sports events makes it possible for sports teams to increase their revenue from television broadcasting rights. The development of streaming channels allows sports teams to create an increased marketing platform to earn income from sports marketing. For instance, Addidas is a key feature in some of the MSL sports team’s channels. Through special media platforms, the sports teams can engage their fans and drive their revenue streams.


Poulton, E., & Roderick, M. (2008). Introducing sport in films. Sport in Society, 11(2-3), 107-116.

Poulton, E., & Roderick, M. (Eds.). (2018). Sport in films. Routledge.

Thorpe, H. (2017). Action sports, social media, and new technologies: Towards a research agenda. Communication & Sport, 5(5), 554-578.

Williams, J., & Chinn, S. J. (2010). Meeting relationship-marketing goals through social media: A conceptual model for sport marketers. International Journal of Sport Communication, 3(4), 422-437.

Question 2

Sports Media and Cultural Agenda

Sports Media’s Cultural Agenda

Sports media often has cultural agendas because of various reasons. Firstly, the United States teams majorly use Native American Mascots as their symbols which promote culture. The use of mascots is often seen as a way to build a culture of inclusion and diversity through sports. However, it is largely seen as a controversial issue across the United States. Since the 1960s there have been concerns over the use of mascots and representation of Native Americans in the sports teams’ symbols. Some of the targeted names and logos include the Chief Wahoo and the Washington Redskin. These issues are local, have strong impact and are familiar among the audiences. As such, when a media platform covers them they increase traffic because people can associate with them. Consequently, the media houses can increase their viewership which boosts their marketing viability.

The sports media often have a cultural agenda since these issues are always discussed particularly on the offensiveness of certain images and terms (Billings & Hundley, 2010). Therefore, there has always been a heated debated about the use of mascots among sports teams. As such, the sports media will always play a role in critiquing the role that sports play in enhancing cultural cohesion and appropriate cultural representations. This increases its programming and viewership. Besides, the cultural agendas also improve the viewership of different media. As such, when the media covers cultural issues that are aligned to a given audience it gets more viewership and its marketing platform gain more markets and organizations. Besides, the media focuses on cultural agendas to attract the cultural industry to use their platforms to market their products. Furthermore, these cultural activities influences the sports environment since it helps eliminate and put into perspective some of the issues considered as offensive and racial in nature.

Gatekeeping and Cultural Agenda in Sport Media

Gatekeeping is the process whereby news extraction and selection is done by passing them via several gates before it is transformed into the news or media content. These processes are significant in setting the cultural agenda in the sports media industry to ensure that the information created is not offensive and settles well with the audience. In the United States, the cultural agenda in sports is very controversial, particularly about the Native Americans and Mascots. Gatekeeping is essential in the process of setting the cultural agenda due to the increase of fake news and inappropriate content particularly in social media (Kavakli et al., 2011). The sport media platforms aim to disseminate content which may not affect its viewership in the short term and long run.

Through the gatekeeping approach, the cultural news is reviewed and the most appropriate agenda chosen. The sport media channels always focus on the cultural news that creates the strongest impact. Different cultural news is reviewed to ensure that the chosen content can be personalized without losing its main importance. This content is also reviewed for familiarity to ensure that the audience can directly or indirectly relate with the information to ensure that it can gain more attention. Besides, gatekeeping also helps in the review of the content to ensure that is more local since consumers like local issues (Billings & Hundley, 2010). In this view, a majority of cultural content focuses on the Native Americans because it is the most relevant news in the United States both in proximity, impact, and familiarity. Overall, gatekeeping helps sports media to identify the most significant news that addresses the sports cultural issues in the United States.


Billings, A. C., & Hundley, H. L. (2010). Examining identity in sports media (pp. 1-15). Los Angeles, CA: Sage Publications.

Kavakli, E., Cossiavelou, V., Bantimaroudis, P., & Illia, L. (2011). The media gatekeeping model updated by R and i in ICTs: The case of wireless communications in media coverage of the olympic games. International Journal of Interdisciplinary Telecommunications and Networking, 3(4), 49-74.

Question 3

Social Network and Sustainability in Sports Industry

Social Network and Cultivating Attention

The social networks have played a critical role in the sports industry. A huge number of internet users across the United States have social networks accounts. A high percentage of smartphone users are attributed to have a twitter, facebook, or Instagram account. Besides, almost every league, sports association, and the team has a social media account on twitter. Athletes from the retired to the youngest are all connected to twitter. As such, social media has a significant force in the industry of sport. Studies show that approximately 67% of sports fans are likely to utilize twitter to boost their viewing experiences compared to non-sport fans (Yan et al., 2019). This shows that social networks play a critical role in enhancing the entertainment experiences of football fans.

To utilize this huge platform, media houses and sports teams use the social network to engage with the fans and boost their passion for the team. For instance, sports media utilizes short highlights as the main source of capturing the attention of its fans. The primary aim of attracting and maintaining the attention of the consumers is to boost their viewership to the advertisements that are attached. Besides, every sports event or competition has and hashtag associated which drives engagement and boosts the relationship between the team and the audience. These hashtags create more attention to the event and the sports fans are often encouraged to watch it. Besides, the constant updates help the teams and media houses to attract the attention of the fans (Reed & Hansen, 2013). The updates are always limited to the entertaining scenes to ensure that the consumers can have the urge to watch the entire event live. This economic attention, therefore, drives an increase in the consumption of different live events and other programs. Subsequently, they boost the marketing opportunities for different products and partner brands resulting in generation of high revenue.

Challenges Created for the Entertainment Industry through building social Networks

Many challenges are associated with trying to build and maintain social networks. The need to sustain social networks requires the media platforms to create hyper-time content. The media houses and teams must cover events and post them immediately and ensure that the covered content is distributed to all partners within a few minutes. They’re also a need to maintain the social posting at 24/7 hour marks (Williams & Chinn, 2010). The sports fans in social networks are always eager to the consumer the sports content throughout the day and night.

While the reporters and social networks account managers struggle to disseminate real-time updates with urgency, it is important to acknowledge that not all news is appropriate or good news. The need for fast and real-time updates creates challenges since it surpasses the gatekeeping approach. This creates an issue particularly when not all the content realized to the fans is analyzed. As a result, the media company may not be able to protect the brand partners. For instance, when an arrested player trends on social media, a publisher is faced with a challenge of whether to post it or wait for an editorial decision. If the publisher waits for the editorial decision, the news becomes stale and the channel cannot be regarded as one of the best channels that relay consistent and real-time updates (Reed & Hansen, 2013). Another challenge created by social networks is the ability to balance between traffic goals and monetization with the capability to create and provide the video content that is required by the fans particularly in the era that video consumption is considered to be rising over time. Hence, the need to cultivate and maintain social network attention can create problems in the entertainment industry.


Reed, S., & Hansen, K. A. (2013). Social media’s influence on American sport journalists’ perception of gatekeeping. International Journal of Sport Communication, 6(4), 373-383.

Williams, J., & Chinn, S. J. (2010). Meeting relationship-marketing goals through social media: A conceptual model for sport marketers. International Journal of Sport Communication, 3(4), 422-437.

Yan, G., Watanabe, N. M., Shapiro, S. L., Naraine, M. L., & Hull, K. (2019). Unfolding the Twitter scene of the 2017 UEFA Champions League Final: Social media networks and power dynamics. European Sport Management Quarterly, 19(4), 419-436.

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