Sport and Media have been joined at hip since Ted Turner incorporated both his sport franchise (Atlanta Braves) and his media corporation (WTBS). Since this collaboration Sport and media have been linked in many different ways. As an inspiring Sport Manager, when I looked at what I have learned from this course it makes me think sports and how media has changed the industry. My first example would be how media allows sport to flourish and exist. As many know, sport cannot be seen by everyone without TV deals and radio broadcasts. This is where media comes in, they become the entity that is responsible for exposing the sport to the public. As Ted Turner learned, the public is very interested in sport, and they want to see it 24/7. He incorporated sports highlights into the evening news and people became obsessed. This led to the beginning of sports only based media corporations that have led to todays mega corporations like ESPN and TSN. Sport cannot survive without media as the hundred million dollar TV deals that keep leagues afloat would certainly disappear leaving leagues in limbo for future seasons. Media Corporations are also becoming the owners of some sport franchises which makes it even more important to have media involved in sport.
Media can play a positive and negative effect for sport. Some athletes have gotten into some legal issues that allowed the media to portray them in a negative light. That being said, the media has also painted athletes in a positive light, showing that not all athlete are alike. The media plays a huge role in the character painting of athletes as they hold all the power to hinder or benefit the athlete. Take Richie Incognito, of the Miami Dolphins. His story was front page news for weeks, as his bullying of a teammate became headline news in the sports industry. Not once did I hear anything about the validity or creditability of the sources, all you heard was how bad this guy is and what a disgrace athletes have become. Now it is understandable that a guy making millions of dollars to play a game some would do for free should be held accountable, but in todays media world, false stories come out and nobody thinks to look into them. As it turns out, Incognito was not the only one involved, he is just taking the brunt of the backlash as his friendship with the teammate that was bullied is now public record. The two seemed like friends until the locker room environment became too much and the media placed blame on the bad reputation of Incognito. The media simply jumped to conclusions before the whole truth came out. Todays media coverage is so intense and so lucrative, people will make up facts or stories just to be the first to report a new story or fact of a story. Sometimes the media actually gets it real. As in the case with Dwayne Wade and Danica Patrick, their stories gave a better understanding of who they are to the public. Wade, a 3-time NBA champion is also a single father raising three young children. His role as a father has been questioned due to his job and fame. Rightfully so he is away for games a lot, but that does not change the fact he is playing the role of two parents while being a top tier professional athlete. Danica Patrick is a trailblazer as she showed the media and the rest of the world women can drive cars too! Her ability to drive with top ranked professionals and keep up showed women across the globe they can compete with men in the sports world. The media has the ability to alter peoples perceptions with the blink of an eye, it todays society, media can be a life changer!
The last aspect of media and sport I learned from this course is how the industry of sport has been altered forever by the media. The Olympic Games have become the mecca of sports, the media has allowed this transition because they stand to benefit greatly from it. 25 years ago paying hundreds of millions of dollars for a two week exclusivity would have seen outrageous! Now it is common to see that type of price tag on sporting events. The popularity of sports has grown due in large part to the media making the industry more accessible and available to more people. Speciality channels and packages allow fans to watch 5 games at once and watch games half way across the world, live!
The media holds all the power as they hold the distribution and production of most major sports, thus making them one of the most powerful groups in society today. As the athletes make the millions, the media corporations and those involved will make the billions!
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTrUmPv_sDU Ted Turner
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u4aCBi026qY Incognito bullying
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n1i8GzkcFMM Media Corps
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mRmzfkWkzGE Danica Patrick
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ttF29PAV-s D Wade
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ay3h15Bx_-M Olympics