Johnson, "Everything New is Old Again: Sport Television, Innovation, and Tradition for a Multi-Platform Era"

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Please post your discussion questions on Johnson's "Everything New is Old Again: Sport Television, Innovation, and Tradition for a Multi-Platform Era" below, using the following to guide your reading:

1. What does Johnson mean by "post-network"? Why does sports media present a paradox within the "post-network era"?
2. What does Johnson argue is unique about sports in the context of a shifting media environment? Do you agree? Could one make similar arguments about other categories of media content?
3. What does Johnson mean when she calls (following Robert McChesney), "ideologically safe"?
4. What makes sports programming "hybrid"? Why is this significant, for Johnson?
5. At the end of her essay, Johnson writes, "Arguably, sport and network television are particularly symbiotic US cultural institutions. They appear uniquely apolitical and are simultaneously our most visible indicators of whom and what are most valued within contemporary US culture (as seen in sponsor dollars, 'ideal' target audiences, scheduling practices and the featured sports themselves)" (Johnson 133-134). What does she mean? What are some examples of the seemingly apolitical nature of sport programming and the ways in which it has important political consequences when thinking about inequalities?

5 Comments

I thought the introduction to this article was really interesting. Johnson began by discussing the attraction of sports to both the producer and consumer. She stated that the 'old-entertainment' appeal of sports television has allowed for network stability because viewers constantly tune in. Additionally, there is always a demand for sports television on behalf of the consumer. Additionally, Johnson introduced the idea of "water-cooler talk" or "highlights" as part of the appeal of sports television. As I read this, I began to think about how prevalent this 'highlight' coverage is becoming outside of the realm of sports. Our news coverage has began to operate in this 'sound bite' manner by offering 1:30 coverage on each topic. We are quickly fed pieces of information and then they move onto the next topic. Additionally, we now have highlight recaps of television shows through highlight reels like 'Daytime in No Time.' Do you feel that these ideas transcended from the realm of sports? Why are we so interested in receiving highlights rather than in depth news coverage?

The term "water-cooler talk" is so new to me,and the way Johnson used the term for sports in quite interesting. My question is that is the NFL along enough for generating ads. revenue for sports programming?

This article really atttributes the success of the networks to their sports coverage. Is that the same internationally? Are the most successful networks the ones that cover sports or is that an American societal norm?

I found the article very intersting. The part that was new for me was when relating sport channels and how they are unpredictable to other television shows. I have never thought about sports in the way, I am an avid football watcher and this weekend was the first Viking vs, Packer game of the season and while reading this article it was very relevent to what I was doing. It made me think more about why bdubs was packed full of people and why so many are intersted in this game, when they could be doing something else or watching something else, The unknown out come of the games i feel is the main reason that so many are interested in it. My question is why do we find television like this so intersting, when there is a chance of losing, why do you put the stress on our selfs, when we could go watch a show like jeresy shore and just laugh and have a good time?

I think this article is very interesting in that it describes how sports and network television correlate. The theory that it is so gravitating because we do not know the outcome is something I have always felt. I believe an NFL game is the best example of drama. My question is when will sports be more covered on cable television.

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This page contains a single entry by zimme313 published on December 1, 2012 11:38 PM.

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