07 August 2015

Sports and the Media: Football's Allure

Guest article by Thomas Martin and Andrew Simmons

We all know that Sports have become a business and we all know that one of the products they are selling is entertainment. There is of course entertainment within each individual sporting event; however, the media has increasingly elevated the entertainment factor for both the diehard fan and the casual fan. Football is arguably one of the most entertaining sports to watch on television because it is action packed and if you are watching any football game on television, whether it’s your favorite team, your team’s rival or maybe you are not a fan of any team all, it doesn’t matter because you will inevitably be entertained. Throughout every broadcasted football game there is intense commentary from the broadcasters; they are debating over plays, debating over flags, whether the referees and even the coaches made a right call, they are discussing players and statistics. The list goes on but no matter what is being talked about or debated, for the most part the sportscasters are lively and increase the entertainment value of the game.

It is not only television media that sports utilize or through which the entertainment of sports is elevated and kept alive, even after a game. For example my favorite football team, The New York Jets is not just media partners with television outlets such as WCBS-TV and SNY, as well as the radio station ESPN New York 98.7, 1 but you can also find them of course on their own website (Newyorkjets.com), as well as Facebook and Twitter. All of these media outlets help to create one of the products the Jets and all sports teams are selling, entertainment. These media outlets provide fans with stats, player biographies, and message boards to keep fans talking about the Jets. All of these outlets also give minute to minute updates 24 hours a day regarding transactions, injury updates, and other player/team news. Keeping the fan current with the team and entertained, even outside of game time. On the Jets website you can watch live press conferences that you aren’t able to see on television, interviews with players/coaches and you can even listen to the game live, in case you are not in the local viewing area. 1

Football and baseball are the two most watched spots in America. Baseball is America’s past time, and a big part of American culture. Baseball rose to popularity Because of the industrial revolution the changes that the industrial revolution brought about made it possible for baseball to become America’s favorite sport. Today that is no longer the case. Football has taken over as the most watched sport in America, and has been for the past thirty years. Social change brought about the rise of baseball and in today’s society Football fits what American culture is looking for.

In today’s society people are accustomed to receive information and entertainment immediately. We live in a time where we don’t like to wait or waste time. Football fits what people have come expect in terms of entertainment. Football has the high level of excitement fans are looking for with each play usually involving large amount of physical contact between teams. Football is a contact sport and each big hit gets people exited along with first downs, touchdowns, field goals, turnovers and interceptions. People who only watch the highlights of a game the next day are going to see big plays that grab their attention. We live in a technological era, example people will live tweet a football because each play provides a high level of excitement. Footballs short season makes it easy for fans to follow most if not all of their teams’ games.

Increased entertainment means more fans, but another reason football is so popular and has so many fans could be due to the concept of utility. Fans spend so much time watching football because we get satisfaction from watching it. Many people get more satisfaction from watching football than they do compared to watching baseball, not just because of the entertainment factor but also because of the concept of diminishing marginal utility; I get to watch my favorite football team (The Jets) play on television once per week, whereas my favorite baseball team (The Red Sox) play an average of 6 games per week. There is more buildup of anticipation for me to watch my favorite football team play than there is my favorite baseball team.

1. http://www.newyorkjets.com/index.html

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