Today, social media has become another popular option used to enhance the sports experience for fans and journalists.
In the Internet era, fans are able to find out more information about sports faster than ever before. Social networks give fans the ability to get scores or highlights of games just seconds after the action happened. According to an article by Matt Rudnitsky of Abrams Research, a digital agency composed of social media experts, a survey of sports fans released showed that 40 percent of sports fans have become bigger fans since using social media to follow their favorite teams.
Social media has also enabled fans to connect more personally with their favorite teams or players. Whether it is liking a page on Facebook or following a status on Twitter, social networking sites are where breaking sports stories first appear to fans and even sports journalists. An article by Damon Kiesow of the Poynter Institute, questioned who will break sports news and how it will affect sports journalist’s way of gathering information for a story.
With all of this instantaneous information posted on social networking sites, sports journalists and sports networks have formed specific guidelines to what is appropriate to post and when to do it. In August of 2011, ESPN updated its social media policy for its commentators, analysts, anchors, writers, and reporters to abide by. Although social media brings many advantages to sports fan, sports journalists have to adjust to some changes in workflow. Mike Cristaldi, director of public relations for the Minnesota Timberwolves, commented in this video how social media connects both fans and sports journalists together.
(Uploaded by Albert Maruggi, Courtesy of YouTube)
It is becoming clearer every day that social media is changing the way sports are reported and how teams use it to attract more fans.