I Am Woman, But Not Roaring: An Examination of Similarities and Differences in How Male and Female Professional Athletes are Using Twitter

Brandi Watkins, Regina Lewis

Abstract


The Twitter activity of male and female athletes was analyzed in this study to determine how they connect with fans and enhance their public profile. The emergence of social media provides female athletes more control over their public image. Drawing on research in public relations, a quantitative content analysis of tweets produced by athletes was examined using the dialogic principles and the use of the structural features of the platforms. Findings from this study indicated some difference between male and female athletes’ use of Twitter. Males employed the “generation of return visits” principle along with the use of hashtags that indicate a more strategic use of social media, and female athletes tended to produce original tweets with useful information and frequently interacted with other users.  


Keywords


social media; Twitter; sports; women in sports

Full Text:

PDF

References


Bernstein, A. (2002). Is it time for a victory lap? Changes in the media coverage of women in sport. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 37 (3-4), 415-428.

Billings, A. C., & Angelini, J. R. (2007). Packaging the games for viewer consumption: Gender, ethnicity, and nationality in NBC’s coverage of the 2004 Summer Olympics. Communication Quarterly, 55(1), 95-111. doi: 10.1080/01463370600998731

Billings, A. C., Angelini, J. R., MacArthur, P. J., Bissell, K., & Smith. L. R. (2014). (Re)Calling London: The gender frame agenda within NBC’s primetime broadcast of the 2012 Olympiad. Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, 91, 38-58. doi: 10.1177/1077699013514416

Billings, A. C., Halone, K. K., & Denham, B. E. (2002). “Man, that was a pretty shot”: An analysis of gendered broadcast commentary surrounding the 2000 Men’s and Women’s NCAA Final Four Basketball Championships. Mass Communication and Society, 5(3), 295-315. doi: 10.1207/S15327825MCS0503_4

Bortree, D. S., & Seltzer, T. (2009). Dialogic strategies and outcomes: An analysis of environmental advocacy groups’ Facebook profiles. Public Relations Review, 35, 317-319. Doi: 10.1016/j.pubrev.2009.05.002

Browning, B. & Sanderson, J. (2012). The positives and negatives of Twitter: Exploring how student-athletes use Twitter and respond to critical tweets. International Journal of Sport Communication, 5, 503-521.

Bruning, S. D., Dials, M., & Shirka, A. (2008). Using dialogue to build organization-public relationships, engage publics, and positively affect organizational outcomes. Public Relations Review, 34, 25-31.

Clavio, G. & Kian, T. M. (2010). Uses and gratifications of a retired female athlete’s Twitter followers. International Journal of Sport Communication, 3, 485-500.

Coche, R. (2013). Is ESPN really the women’s sports network? A content analysis of ESPN’s Internet coverage of the Australian Open. Electronic News 7, 72-88. doi: 10.1177/1931243113491574

Coche R. (2014). How golfers and tennis players frame themselves: A content analysis of Twitter profile pictures. Journal of Sports Media, 9(1), 95-121.

Cooky, C., Messner, M. A., & Hextrum, R. H. (2013). Women play sport, but not on TV: A longitudinal study of televised news media. Communication & Sport, 1, 203-231.

Connell, R. W. & Messerschmidt, J. W. (2005). Hegemonic masculinity: Rethinking the concept. Gender and Society, 19(6), 829-859.

Delorme, N. (2014). Were women really underrepresented in media coverage of Summer Olympic Games (1984-2008)? An invitation to open a methodological discussion regarding sex equity in sport media. Mass Communication & Society, 17(1), 121-147. doi: 10.1080/15205436.2013.816740

Esrock, S. L. & Leichty, G. B. (1999). Corporate world wide web pages: serving the news media and other publics. Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, 76(3), 456-467.

Fanpage (2013). Retrieved September 5, 2013 from http://fanpagelist.com/category/athletes/view/list/sort/influence/.

Filo, K., Lock, D., & Karg, A. (2014). Sport and social media research: A review. Sport Management Review, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.smr.2014.11.001

Fischer, E., & Reuber, A. R. (2011). Social interaction via new social media: (How) can interactions on Twitter affect effectual thinking and behavior? Journal of Business Venturing, 26, 1-18. doi: 10.1016/j.jbusvent.2010.09.002

Fisher, R. J., & Wakefield, K. (1998). Factors leading to group identification: A field study of winners and losers. Psychology & Marketing, 15(1), 23-40.

Frederick, E., Lim, C. H., Clavio, G., Pedersen, P. M., & Burch, L. (2012). Choosing between the one-way or two-way street: An exploration of relationship promotion by professional athletes on Twitter. Communication and Sport. Retrieved from http://com.sagepub.com/content/early/2012/12/12/2167479512466387

Hallmark, J. R., & Armstrong, R. N. (1999). Gender equity in televised sports: A comparative analysis of men’s and women’s NCAA Division I Basketball Championship Broadcasts, 1991-1995. Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, 43(2), 222-235.

Hambrick, M. E., Simmons, J. M., Greenhalgh, G. P., & Greenwell, T. C. (2010). Understanding professional athletes’ use of Twitter: A content analysis of athlete tweets. International Journal of Sport Communication, 3, 454-471.

Ioakimidis, M. (2010). Online marketing of professional sport clubs: Engaging fans on a new playing field. International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, 11(4), 271-282. Retrieved from http://www.imrpublications.com/JSMS/

Jones, A., & Greer, J. (2012). Go “Heavy” or go home: An examination of audience attitudes and their relationship to gender cues in the 2010 Olympic Snowboarding Coverage. Mass Communication & Society, 15, 598-621. doi: 10.1080/15205436.2012.674171

Kassing, J. W., & Sanderson, J. (2010). Fan-Athlete interaction and Twitter Tweeting through the Giro: A case study. International Journal of Sport Communication, 3, 113-128.

Kent, M. L., & Taylor, M. (1998). Building dialogic relationships through the world wide web. Public Relations Review, 24(3), 321-334.

Kerr, A. K., & Gladden, J. M. (2008). Extending the understanding of professional team brand equity to the global marketplace. International Journal of Sport Management and Marketing, 3(1/2), 58-77.

Kian, E. M., & Hardin, M. (2009). Framing of sport coverage based on the sex of sports writers: Female journalists counter the traditional gendering of media coverage. International Journal of Sport Communication, 2, 185-204.

Knight, J. L., & Giuliano, T. A. (2001). He’s a Laker; She’s a “Looker”: The consequences of gender stereotypical portrayals of male and female athletes by the print media. Sex Roles, 45(3/4), 217-229.

Krane, V., Ross, S. R., Miller, M., Rowse, J. L., Ganoe, K., Andrzejczyk, J. A., & Lucas, C. B. (2010). Power and focus: Self-representation of female college athletes. Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise, 2(2), 175-195. doi: 10.1080/19398441.2010.488026

Lebel, K., & Danylchuk, K. (2012). How tweet it is: A gendered analysis of professional tennis players’ self-presentation on Twitter. International Journal of Sport Communication, 5, 461-480.

Levenshus, A. (2010). Online relationship management in a presidential campaign: A case study of the Obama campaign’s management of its internet-integrated grassroots effort. Journal of Public Relations Research 22(3), 313-335. doi: 10.1080/10627261003614419

Linvill, D. L., McGee, S. E., & Hicks, L. K. (2012). Colleges’ and universities’ use of Twitter: A content analysis. Public Relations Review, 38, 636-638. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pubrev.2012.05.010

McAllister, S. M., (2012). How the world’s top universities provide dialogic forums for marginalized voices. Public Relations Review, 38, 319-327. doi: 10.1016./j.pubrev/2011.12010

McAllister-Spooner, S. M., & Kent, M. L. (2009). Dialogic public relations and resource dependency: New Jersey community colleges as models of web site effectiveness. Atlantic Journal of Communication, 17, 220-239, doi: 10.1080.15456870903210113

Pedersen, P. M. (2002). Examining equity in newspaper photographs. A content analysis of print media photographic coverage of interscholastic athletics. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 37(3-4), 303-318.

Pegoraro, A. (2010). Look who’s talking ­­— Athletes on Twitter: A case study. International Journal of Sport Communication, 3, 501-514.

Rybalko, S. & Seltzer, T. (2010). Dialogic communication in 140 characters or less: How Fortune 500 companies engage stakeholders using Twitter. Public Relations Review, 36 336-341. doi: 10.1016/j.pubrev.2010.08.004

Seltzer, T., & Mitrook, M. A. (2007). The dialogic potential of weblogs in relationship building. Public Relations Review, 33, 227-229.

Seo, W. J. & Green, B. C. (2008). Development of the motivated scale for sport online consumption. Journal of Sport Management, 22, 82-109.

Smith, B. G. (2010). Socially distributing public relations: Twitter, Haiti, and interactivity in social media. Public Relations Review, 33, 82-109.

Stever, G. S., & Lawson, K. (2013). Twitter as a way for celebrities to communicate with fans: Implications for the study of parascoial interaction. North American Journal of Psychology, 15(2), 339.

Sutton, W. A., McDonald, M. A., Milne, G. R., & Cimperman, J. (1997). Creating and fostering fan identification in professional sports. Sports Marketing Quarterly, 6(1), 15-22.

Trujillo, N. (1991). Hegemonic masculinity on the mound: Media representations of Nolan Ryan and American sports culture. Critical Studies in Mass Communication, 8, 290-308.

Vaynerchuk, G. (2013). Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World. New York, NY: Harper Business (1st edition).

Wallace, L., Wilson, J., & Miloch, K. (2011). Sporting Facebook: A content analysis of NCAA organizational sport pages and Big 12 conference athletic department pages. International Journal of Sport Communication, 4, 422-444.

Wann, D. L., Royalty, J., & Roberts, A. (2000). The self-presentation of sport fans: Investigating the importance of team identification and self-esteem. Journal of Sport Behavior, 23(2), 198-206.

Waters, R. D., Burnett, E., Lamm, A., & Lucas, J. (2009). Engaging stakeholders through social networking: How nonprofit organizations are using Facebook. Public Relations Review, 35, 102-106.

Waters, R. D., Tindall, N. T. J,. & Morton, T. S. (2010). Media catching and the journalist – public relations practitioner relationship: how social media are changing the practice of media relations. Journal of Public Relations Research, 22(3), 241-264. doi: 10.1080/10627261003799202

Waters, R. D., & Williams, J. M. (2011). Squawking, tweeting, cooing, and hooting: Analyzing the communication patterns of government agencies on Twitter. Journal of Public Affairs, 11(4), 353-363. doi: 10.1002/pa.385

Weathers, M., Sanderson, J., Matthey, P. Grevious, A., Warren, S., & Tehan, M. (2014). The tweet life of Erin and Kirk: A gendered analysis of professional sports broadcasters’ self-presentation on Twitter. Journal of Sports Media, 9(2), 1-24. doi: 10.1353/jsm.2014.0008

Whiteside, E., & Rightler-McDaniels, J. L. (2013). Moving toward parity? Dominant gender ideology versus community journalism in high school basketball coverage. Mass Communication and Society, 16(6), 808-828. doi: 10.1080/15205436.2013.77899


Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


The Journal of Social Media in Society is published by the Texas Social Media Research Institute, based at Tarleton State University in Stephenville, Texas.