Open Science Research Excellence

Open Science Index

Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Abstract Count: 66606

1
128696
The Coverage of Women's Sport of Greek Sports Websites
Abstract:
Despite the fact that women's sport has flourished in recent years, its media coverage remains low, as it is observed that every day men’s sports stories dominate the most popular sports websites and the same doesn’t apply to women. Many studies in the past have demonstrated that the participation of women in sport is greatly underrepresented in the media and even when it does get covered, the focus is often on femininity and attractiveness, not athleticism. This means that female athletes are often portrayed in a sexist manner and, in general, they are more deserving of media coverage as celebrities rather than because of their sporting achievements. Scholars have argued that sport is a place where sexism is cultivated, as gender roles are constructed and disputed based on social context. Although images and information about women athletes are now more than ever, thanks to Social Media where they also act as 'producers', sport is still considered as «masculine». There are many reasons why this happens, the most important of which are: a. It is considered that females don’t have the physical and athletic qualifications such as men and b. Women's sport is less commercial than men’s, so the interest is lower. Moreover, scholars have pointed out that men journalists/reporters don’t cover the women’s sport: it is more common for a woman to write about a women's sport or a female athlete. This has its roots in the conception that sport is synonymous with masculinity - which is defined as the opposite of femininity – and so if men deal with women’s sport, this will probably menace their association with masculinity. Given the above, this paper seeks to examine the amount of women’s sport coverage of five Greek popular sports websites (metrosport.gr, gazzeta.gr, sport24.gr, sdna.gr, sport-fm.gr). The posted articles from these Greek websites from January to June 2020 were selected for my content analysis, which will be used to categorize the themes in order that the following research questions could be answered: 1) Are there any articles that cover women's sports or that refer to female athletes?, 2) And if so, are they articles/reports or is it a reproduction of the press release?, 3) What kind of sports do they refer to (individual-team sport)?, 4) Are the articles signed? And if so, are they written by men or women?, 5) What textual practices are used to cover women's sport/female athletes?, 6) Based on the findings, could we argue that we have entered a new age of media coverage of women’s sport in Greece with a shift towards greater gender equality or not?