Analysis shows lack of women’s sports coverage in media
On March 14, Michael Messner, an expert in the sociology of sports at the USC College of Letters, Arts and Sciences, spoke to Ms. Magazine about the lack of coverage of womenâs sports in the media.
He has been collecting research on the prevalence of womenâs sports in the media, and comparing the coverage to past years. He found that during the three to five minute sports-news segments of LAâs three TV networks in 1989, only 5 percent was devoted to womenâs sports, and that rate held through 1993. It spiked to 9 percent in 1999, but dipped to 6.3 percent in 2004 and slumped to nearly 1.5 percent in 2009.
Messner concluded that compared to the huge growth of womenâs sports teams, especially in college, in the past decade, womenâs sports coverage is woefully disproportionate. According to Messnerâs 2010 survey, 99.1 percent of colleges have a womenâs basketball team. Furthermore the USC womenâs basketball team is a consistent leader in the Pac-10 conference.
Alex Luizzi, a junior majoring in psychology, said he simply watches menâs sports because it is more prominent on TV.
âThe only reason I watch menâs sports more often is because itâs publicized more often and itâs usually whatâs on,â said Alex Luizzi, a Junior in Psychology. âYou never see womenâs sports on the top headlines.â