Language Used In Female Sports Reporting A “Minefield”: AFL’s Jemma Wong

Language Used In Female Sports Reporting A “Minefield”: AFL’s Jemma Wong
SHARE
THIS



There has been much debate around the topic of women’s sport, and how both sport and the incredible female athletes playing them need to be championed. But one particular notion is the language used to report on sport, and ensuring that women are fairly represented in sporting commentary.

This was a sticky situation broached at M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment’s breakfast panel yesterday, in partnership with The Guardian, and something AFL National Women’s League brand marketing manager Jemma Wong, called a “minefield”.

“The language used to commentate and report on sport is a minefield, but if it comes from a place of good intent that’s ok,” she said.

Jemma Wong

Jemma Wong

Taking the lead in the 2017 coverage of the AFL National Women’s League, Wong said they’ve been very careful with the language used in promoting and talking about it, and want to get rid of the language barriers when reporting on female sport.

“If you look at the language used to describe men in sport, you’ll see words like ‘win’, ‘achieve’, ‘succeed’,” Wong said. “Whereas if you look at the language used to describe women’s sport, you’ll see words like ‘strive’, ‘participate’, ‘compete’.

“We need to smash this language barrier because it implies that women try, but men achieve.”

Wong said the AFL National Women’s League was looking exclusively at the values they want to promote, with keywords like ‘confidence’ and ‘authenticity’ forming the foundations.

“We want to look at how we can tackle women in sport differently, rather than always looking through a specific lens.

“It’s about crafting clever stories as much as it’s about driving eyeballs, and I don’t think one can exist without the other.”

“I agree,” chimed in Southern Star & Matilda athlete Ellyse Perry. “I’ve been called a batsman before, and I probably have called myself that before as well. But I don’t see it as coming from a place of negative intent.”

For Perry, she thinks a major issue lies in how commentators report on the notion of female athletes, rather than the sport itself.

“Rather than talking about female sport in terms of outcomes, success, or strategy, it’s often about the gender equality conversation.

Ellyse Perry

Ellyse Perry

“Gender and sport reflects society a lot, but it needs to be about women having their own identity within a sport rather than just being a female,” she added, citing that she only became aware of her own gender in sport when she grew up in the media, and never even considered it as a young sports star.

“The media skews its focus towards female participation in the sport, versus men’s sport which is all about the results.”

According to M&C Saatchi S&E MD Jamie Gilbert-Smith, brands are pivotal in the positive promotion and championing of women’s sport.

“Brands are defined by the role they play in people’s lives,” he said. “If brand stands for something, their ability to resonate with an audience is so much greater.

“There is an opportunity for brands to create impact through the things people love, and play an important role in people’s lives.

“The Olympics have started this conversation and we don’t want to wait another four years to keep it going.”

 

Please login with linkedin to comment

Advertising Standards Bureau ellyse perry jemma wong Qantas women's sport

Latest News

Verizon Media Academy Ends For 2021 With Youth Charity Pitch-Off
  • Advertising
  • Media

Verizon Media Academy Ends For 2021 With Youth Charity Pitch-Off

Verizon Media’s talent program has come to an end for the third year, closing with a hybrid pitch-off event for Musicians Making A Difference (MMAD). The Verizon Media Academy class of 2021, made up of 44 emerging leaders from across Australia and New Zealand media, advertising and marketing industry, were given just one hour to […]

Industry’s Gamers Unite For UnLtd’s Virtual Rocket League Comp
  • Advertising
  • Marketing
  • Media

Industry’s Gamers Unite For UnLtd’s Virtual Rocket League Comp

Social purpose organisation UnLtd’s Big Games competition has raised a combined $85,000 for children and young people at risk. Running over five weeks, the competition involved 32 teams from across the advertising, marketing and media industries battling it out virtually for a chance to qualify for the Rocket League final. The tournament culminated in a […]

Sam Worthington And Phoebe Tonkin To Star In New Stan Original Film ‘Transfusion’
  • Media

Sam Worthington And Phoebe Tonkin To Star In New Stan Original Film ‘Transfusion’

Stan has announced that the Stan Original Film Transfusion commenced filming in Sydney earlier this week and will premiere on Stan in 2022. Transfusion is a taut, muscular thriller starring Sam Worthington (Avatar) as Ryan Logan, a former Special Forces operative, who is battling to cope with life after the loss of his wife and is thrust […]

COVID-19 Saw Stock Imagery Return To Harmful Gender Stereotypes
  • Advertising
  • Marketing

COVID-19 Saw Stock Imagery Return To Harmful Gender Stereotypes

According to a decade of data collected by iStock, Australian brands turned to imagery depicting outdated gender stereotypes during the pandemic. Tracking the keyword ‘women’, iStock by Getty Images found that in 2020, ANZ brands and businesses reverted to gender stereotypes. Images of mothers home-schooling were used at almost twice the rate of images of […]

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Maddison Connaughton Ends Time As Editor Of The Saturday Paper
  • Media

Maddison Connaughton Ends Time As Editor Of The Saturday Paper

Schwartz Media is congratulating Maddison Connaughton on her three years as editor of The Saturday Paper. Connaughton has decided to finish up her editorship this month. “It’s been an honour to edit the paper,” Connaughton said. “The Saturday Paper is one of the brightest voices in Australian media and I have been happy to see […]

Teenage boy wearing headphones works at desk in his bedroom
  • Media

New Research Names Olivia Rodrigo And BTS The Most Popular Study Music

Research from EdBbirdie using Spotify data has identified the most popular songs to study to. After analysing thousands of studying and homework playlists on Spotify, American singer Olivia Rodrigo’s ‘drivers license’ came out as top song to study to. It featured on 48 study playlists, while other top songs included ‘Ophelia’ by The Lumineers, ‘Falling’ […]

Happy woman drinking tea and waving to someone while having video call over desktop PC in the evening at home.
  • Marketing
  • Opinion

Building A Successful Remote Marketing Team

Dayna Stewart is the Business Director – Digital Marketing, Media & Creative Services at The Nudge Group. Here, she discusses the challenges that come with building a successful marketing team when working remotely. Before COVID-19 changed the way businesses work, most marketing teams spent their days together in a meeting room collaborating on the next […]

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Australia’s The Kid LAROI Joins Billie Eilish, Dua Lipa, Olivia Rodrigo And More In iHeartRadio Festival Line-Up
  • Media

Australia’s The Kid LAROI Joins Billie Eilish, Dua Lipa, Olivia Rodrigo And More In iHeartRadio Festival Line-Up

The line-up for the 2021 iHeartRadio Music Festival has been announced as the legendary event returns live in Las Vegas in September. This year, the epic two-day lineup for the iHeartRadio Music Festival main stage will feature performances by Billie Eilish, Cheap Trick, Coldplay, Dua Lipa, Florida Georgia Line, Journey, Khalid, Lil Baby, Maroon 5, Nelly, […]

Shop! ANZ Calls On Industry To Participate In ANZ Shopper And Retail Marketing Industry Survey
  • Marketing

Shop! ANZ Calls On Industry To Participate In ANZ Shopper And Retail Marketing Industry Survey

Shop! ANZ is calling on shopper and retail marketing professionals from all retail related disciplines to participate in the first ANZ Shopper and Retail Marketing Industry Survey in four years. This important research provides a guide of where the retail marketing industry in Australia and New Zealand has come from and what is anticipated to […]