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How Television Shapes the Gender Issues in Sports

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How Television Shapes the Gender Issues in Sports
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  13215698 Mak Hoi Wan Date of submission: 19th May, 2015 Term Paper: How television shapes the gender is  CONTENT 1.Introduction....................................................................................................................12.Background information on gender issues....................................................................13.Relationship between television and gender in sports..................................................24.Television broadcasting of sports...................................................................................3 A.Television coverage on sports.................................................................................3B.Sports reporters/ journalists..................................................................................55.Television commercials of sports....................................................................................6 A.Messages.................................................................................................................6B.Appearance/ images of figures...............................................................................86.Conclusion.....................................................................................................................10Reference...............................................................................................................................101  1.INTRODUCTION This purpose of this term paper is to discover the relationship between mass media andgender issues and to analyze how gender issues are being shaped. There are variouskinds of mass media in definition but this paper will put the focus on television and todiscover the relationship between these two elements. In terms of television, there aretwo main focuses, which are television broadcasting and commercials. They will beelucidated one by one in the following content. 2.BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON GENDER ISSUES The main issue of gender is the problem of gender inequalities. Gender inequalities referto people are discriminated due to his/ her gender. There are gender discrimination indifferent aspects, such as political, economic and social. In the general understanding ofgender inequalities, female is usually the gender that being discriminated on, especiallyin work and family. In fact, women are usually treated as the biased or sexinessrepresentation. In US, there was serious gender inequalities on women. They had low social status anddid not have proper right on political affairs or in family. Female were regarded as theproperties of men and needed to follow their orders. However, there was a changing pointon the gender problem in US, which was the launch of Title IX   (Department of Justice,2014). Title IX refers to the title number 9 of the United States Education Amendments.It came in effect in June, 1972. This title suggests that no person in the US shall, on thebasis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected todiscrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financialassistance. It was then further apply to different perspectives including sports. Itinfluenced on the development of sports, especially for women athletes. According to theNational Coalition for Women and Girls in Education, the number of girls participating inhigh school athletics increased from 7% in 1971 to 41% in 2001. It marked theimprovement of gender inequalities. Yet, the problem is still continuing in nowadayssociety. 2  3.RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN TELEVISION AND GENDER IN SPORTS Due to the rapid development on technology, life is getting more and more convenient, forreceiving, sharing and exchanging information. Mass media become an essential elementin our lives and being part of our daily lives through television, the Internet, radio andmovies, etc. We expose ourselves to the mass communications most of the time. Thelonger we connect with the mass media, the higher chance for media to influence on ourbeliefs and attitudes towards one thing. Television acts as an important role in shapinggender issues through mass communication due to the large existence and coverage ofaudience. There are different kinds of television programs broadcasting every day fortwenty-four-seven, including dramas, as well as sports and advertisement. The lengthand degree of sports broadcasting of different genders need to be observed so as to spotthe way that television influence the perspective of gender in sports. Rowe D. has stated that there are tens of millions of US boys watch televised sportsprograms, with their accompanying commercial advertisement (Rowe D., 2004, p. 240).There are gender issues that being discussed are mainly in the perspective of sports.Sports programs and sports-relating advertisements are the main focuses and they willbe discussed in depth. When talking about the gender issues in sports, the first thingcome up in mind is the stereotype of sports. There are some sports are regarding as the‘male sports’ and ‘female sports’. The former one will probably be football, basketball andwrestling while the later one will likely to be ice-skating and gymnastic. It cannot bedenied that the mass media has contributed to the sports stereotype through televisionbroadcasting and commercials with 3  4.TELEVISION BROADCASTING OF SPORTS  A.TELEVISION COVERAGE ON SPORTS There are lots of sports programs being broadcasted on television, for example basketballand football. However, a phenomenon can be observed that the media coverage on men’ssports games is largely overwhelming that on women’s sports games. The pie chart andtable below show the television coverage on sports of different genders, for commercial,non-commercial and also combined. It is obvious to see that even the Title IX haslaunched and gender discrimination towards women is less than before in sports, male isstill the dominating gender in the television broadcasting, with over half of the televisioncoverage. For women’s sports, the statistic was even less than the mixed sports. The dataalso presents a reality that less coverage on women’s sports may lead to limited chancefor audience to know more about female athletes, such as their ability and strength, butnot only put the focus on women’s appearance and body. Figure 1: (NSW Sport and Recreation, 2013)http://www.dsr.nsw.gov.au/assets/pubs/industry/info_mediawomen.pdf  Female sports games usually have more broadcasting when it comes to worldwide games,for example Olympics or National Leagues. Take Hong Kong as an example, when theOlympics is held, there will be rearrangement of other TV programs so as to make wayfor sports game broadcasting and there will be higher exposure of female sports games.4
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