Date of Award

2011

Degree Name

Journalism

College

W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communication

Type of Degree

M.A.J.

Document Type

Thesis

First Advisor

Chris Swindell

Second Advisor

Charles G. Bailey

Third Advisor

Robert Rabe

Abstract

The purpose of this research is to determine how much and what type of Web presence/content effectively draws listeners and viewers to the major sportscasts a station presents. Ad revenue, viewership/listenership and audience fragmentation all are conundrums in today's fluctuating media landscape. Combine those issues with the present economic crisis and the vast majority of media companies must rethink the way they do business. This research seeks to lay groundwork as to what new strategies effectively draw listeners/viewers back to the traditional media of radio and television while expanding upon the relatively new online media offerings. Furthermore, this research is meant to serve as a guideline for efforts to integrate radio and television web-based components where they relate to sports. Focus groups were used to elicit responses from 14 individuals regarding what they preferred in online and over-the-air sports content, and how they utilized both venues in conjunction with one another. The results from this purposive sample of Marshall fans show that online offerings do affect viewing habits at a national stage; however, this habit is far less evident for the subjects' favorite teams, to which they are so in tune that they so fervently seek out information that it matters not from where that information comes, be it a newspaper, radio, television or Facebook status.

Subject

Sports - In mass media

Subject

Sports - Information resources

Subject

Sports - Internet marketing