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State HS Associations demanding more coverage of girl's sports

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by mrudi19, Jul 22, 2010.

  1. mrudi19

    mrudi19 Member

    Hey guys,
    Not sure if this is true or not, but I've heard the ADs down here in New Mexico are saying they're receiving heavy pressure from the NMAA, the governing body of high school athletics in New Mexico, to tell the media to cover more girls sports. I'm not sure if this is just a rumor because no AD has told me that.
    Has anyone else in NM or around the country had any encounter with someone telling them to cover more girls sports?
    I'm one of two sports writers on my newspaper's staff and I think we do a pretty good job of keeping a good balance between the two genders. We covered every home girls event last season, but still received some complaints that we're not covering enough of the girls because we weren't at a softball scrimmage. That's right a scrimmage. My buddy at the radio station is getting it too. The one here town who covers the main high school only has one sports guy, and usually the boys and girls basketball teams are playing at the same time. One is home, while the other on the road and he said he can't sell advertising for the girls sports. An athletic association can request more coverage, but they can't actually demand it or can they?
  2. COPrimeaux

    COPrimeaux New Member

    Well if it's a privately-owned news paper, I wouldn't think so. I mean, that's freedom of the press. So I would think no, they can't outright demand it.

    But I'm sure it'd be really easy to put pressure on them, but refusing access to those media outlets.

    But I don't know, that's just what common sense tells me.
  3. rpmmutant

    rpmmutant Member

    They can request more coverage. They can't demand it. You have a sports editor or a managing editor who has the last say on content and story coverage.
    Ask the NMAA to prove that boys get more coverage than girls and they might back off. Or you can provide the evidence. It might take some time, but pick a week of newspapers and see how many stories were written on each sport.
    But this is as ridiculous as a group of parents wanting more cross country coverage during football season.
  4. expendable

    expendable Well-Known Member

    Other than refusing access to any paper that doesn't comply (which they would not do), I don't see how they could do anything but request.
  5. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    I would say you would be delighted to sell and ad to them where they could run all the stories they want.
  6. Mystery Meat II

    Mystery Meat II Well-Known Member

    Which girl?
  7. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    The commissioner's daughter.
  8. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    When they start kicking in on my stringer budget, then they can help me make coverage decisions.
  9. CR19

    CR19 Member

    Just call up the athletic association, and demand them to send in results for every girl's game/match to make up in coverage. You probably won't hear any complaints after that.
  10. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    Are there any publicly-owned newspapers then that we should be aware of? The association can demand anything they want as well. So can I. Getting what they want is another issue.
  11. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    Just tell them to start girls football leagues.

    I had parents complain about the boys/girls balance. I'd point out to them in the fall that I had an equal number of teams to cover for both genders, except for football. That usually piped them down.
  12. Mark2010

    Mark2010 Active Member

    Darn it, don't give anyone any ideas, Baron. We barely have the staff to cover the boys football teams.

    Seriously, no, they can't force you to cover anything. If you want to do all football, all the time and readers and management are down with that, so be it.

    Honestly, in the many places I've been girls sports get far more equitable treatment at the high school level than the collegiate or professional levels. NCAA women's hoops or softball? WNBA vs. NBA? No comparison in terms of coverage. But the high schools girls usually get as good of coverage as the boys, assuming the teams are respectful.

    This is actually a HUGE change from when I started 20-some years ago, when the girls teams didn't crack the section front unless it was the state tournament. So you might want to explain to these ADs how far girls' sports have come.
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