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Sports and Social Media


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Lecture for T101 Media Life, Summer 2011.

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Sports and Social Media

  1. 1. SPORTS ANDSOCIAL MEDIANicky Lewis T101 Media Life / Summer 2011
  2. 2. A Quick Introduction…
  3. 3. Sports and Social Media: A Perfect Match  Immediate  Accessible  Fosters Fan Culture
  4. 4. Fantasy Sports  Began as a relatively unknown niche hobby in the early 1980s  Enter the Internet: it has seen remarkable growth since the mid-1990s
  5. 5. Some Basic Rules  All leagues are composed of multiple teams, with each team managed by a player  Each league has a commissioner, or one manager who oversees all activity that occurs within the league  The season begins with a draft, either live or automatic  Points are assigned to drafted players in accordance with performances during actual games  The cumulative points determine the winning managers of the fantasy game, who compete head to head against one another  League winners are determined at the end of the season based on the best winning record or point total
  6. 6. Some Basic Stats (FSTA, 2009)  27 million users in the U.S., or 6% of the population  22% of American males, 18-49 with internet access, participate in the activity  Economic Impact: $800 million within and $3 billion across the sports industry
  7. 7. User Interfaces  Various websites host free fantasy leagues online  Other websites host fantasy leagues for a fee, often offering additional features and programs  Many offer features such as message boards and access to player information and statistics
  8. 8. Media Impact  Fantasy involves more than just participation online  Outcomes of fantasy games rely on results of live sporting events that take place in the physical world  Users can access these results through a variety of media platforms
  9. 9. Media Impact cont.  From the recommended readings:   ‪We continuously engage in social media   We use various media platforms simultaneously   Fantasy sports are a form of social networking   Does it pose a risk for addiction?
  10. 10. Media Impact cont.  Dwyer (2010) and Comeau (2009) found increased general media consumption as a result of participation in fantasy football   58% of fantasy users reported watching more sports on television since they started participating in fantasy sports (FSTA, 2009)
  11. 11. What’s Behind It All?  The social and economical impact of fantasy sports has been well-documented in the mainstream media  BUT… the motivations for participation in this activity and the level at which individuals participate is largely unknown  Uncovering these motivations may reveal what kind of people participate in this activity   These results could hold implications for professional sports leagues, media networks, advertisers, and consumers
  12. 12. Current Project: Trait Differences inFantasy Football Participation  Research Questions   For what meaningful purposes do fantasy football participants depend on the activity?   In what ways do fantasy football participants identify and interact within social groups created by the activity?   What are the relationships between the individual traits of fantasy sports participants and their motivations for participation in the activity?
  13. 13. Individual Traits and Motivations  Traits   Extraversion   Competitiveness   Machiavellianism   Sensation-Seeking   Impulsiveness  Motivations   Social   Competitive   Identification   Financial Gain
  14. 14. End Goal?  To predict the level of participation in the activity based on the interaction between an individual’s personality traits and motivations for use
  15. 15. Method  Conducted a survey of 457 subjects, 177 of whom have participated in fantasy football  Included IUB Telecom students and members of a variety of popular fantasy football forums  Questions pertained to their opinions, habits, and level of participation in fantasy football  General media use, social activities, and past sports participation were also addressed  Questions were posed related to their fantasy activities and motivations for participating  A series of personality scales were implemented to measure trait differences
  16. 16. Preliminary Data Analysis  Fantasy football participants rank higher in competitiveness, Machiavellianism, sensation- seeking, and impulsiveness, as compared to non- fantasy football participants  Fantasy football participants rank lower in extraversion than non-fantasy football participants   Do fantasy football players view the activity as an alternative to face-to-face social interaction?
  17. 17. In Conclusion…  Just where exactly are fantasy sports headed?
  18. 18. Links to Recommended Readings  Social media survey finds use in bed, on waking 2010/03/18/BURK1CHVVA.DTL#ixzz1ObMoYTdv  Americans Using TV and Internet Together 35% More Than A Year Ago screen-report-q409/  Fantasy Sports: Social Networking or Time Wasting networking-time-wasting/  Fantasy Sports: Another Internet Addiction? sports-another-internet-addiction/Page1.html