A Level Playing Field? How a Governing Body Promotes Its Men's and Women's National Teams through Social Media

Doehler, Steph (2023). A Level Playing Field? How a Governing Body Promotes Its Men's and Women's National Teams through Social Media. In: International Conference on Sport & Society, 7-8 Jun 2023, Las Vegas, Nevada.

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Abstract

This study examines and compares the coverage of both the England men’s and women’s national soccer teams by their governing body, The Football Association (FA), immediately before, during, and immediately following their respective 2020 and 2022 European Championships. Content analysis of two of the FA’s official Twitter accounts demonstrate some positive shifts in the general representation of the women’s soccer team. However, concerns remain regarding the FA’s social media strategy whereby they promote the women’s team through a discrete profile rather than their general Twitter account, which has a much larger following. This paper argues that social media provides governing bodies with an opportunity to effectively promote their women’s teams and, as such, they hold significant responsibility to achieve this should they wish to see more equitable promotion of women athletes in the wider media.

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