Faculty Research at Morehead State University


Perceptions Concerning Obstacles, Stereotypes and Discrimination Faced by Female Sports Reporters and Other Female Sports Professionals

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Female athletes and sports professionals (i.e., coaches and broadcasters) are often victims of stereotyping in the sports industry. Despite the enactment of Title IX, concerns over inequality in lack of airtime for women sports, excessive sexism, discrimination, and disrespect toward female athletes and sports professionals continues to rise. This study contained two components that addressed perceived obstacles, stereotypes and discrimination faced by female sports reporters and various trends of studies related to gender inequality. The results of the metaanalysis indicated that inappropriate representation of female professionals’ and athletes’ image and persona is the most relevant and emergent issue today. The perceptions of 157 survey respondents from a university in the Appalachian Region supported the findings of past studies, which indicated stereotypical portrayals of female reporters. Respondents also showed their preferences toward men’s sports, and had more respect and faith in male sports journalists. Recommendations (i.e., using education as a means to counter negative stereotypes) and suggestions are given to raise the awareness for gender inequality and empower future female sports reporters.