Monday, April 27, 2015

Sports and the Media

By Samantha Burden

Sports are more than just games, teams, players and coaches. Sports, all sports, provide outlets to people all over the world; they remind us that anything can happen with hard work, perseverance and determination. Sports give us something to cheer for, follow, and believe in. Some people care more about “their” beloved teams than anything else; they buy thousands of dollars worth of memorabilia, tickets, and television programs to ensure that they will never miss a game.

And so, due to this clear importance of sports in our culture, it is imperative that there is a medium that allows us to be connected with them at all times. The media has been such medium for people in modern society.

Media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat along with many others cover sporting events and news. This allows us to keep up with our favorite teams and players easily. With our lives getting busier and busier, social media has allowed us to keep up with sports without sitting in front of the television. Live updates of games on social media keep us connected to the game; and, additionally, some accounts on Twitter, for example, such as ESPN, will upload short highlight clips for their followers to watch so that they can view some of the game. This is similar to features on Instagram and Snapchat.

The NCAA men and women’s basketball final games provide examples of how the media covers sports. Pre-game coverage and interviews were not only shown on television, but they were also shown on social media. Sports analysts and broadcasters gave fans an insight of the festivities by tweeting live during them.

Some players such as Breanna Stewart and Moriah Jefferson of the UConn Huskies, took to Instagram moments before the championship game, posting a quote from legendary coach John Wooden, “Winning takes talent, to repeat takes character.” This allowed us to get into the minds of players right before they played! Their followers knew exactly what she was feeling and thinking before the game.

This insight that we now get as fans was never possible before social media; interviews were the closest thing we had and now we are able to dive even deeper. Athletes and the fans are connected more tightly than ever before and we have the media to thank for that.

Samantha Burden is a sophomore at St. Thomas Aquinas College, majoring in Marketing and minoring in Communication Arts. She is also a member and co-captain of the women’s basketball team.

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