NewsTrack 3: ESPN and Imagery

Sports reporting requires dynamic action shots to effectively cover athletic events, but emotional still photos and videos can also add to the quality of a reporter’s story, or in ESPN’s case, the way a company brands itself.

In this week’s NewsTrack post, I analyze how ESPN’s use of photography, videography, and other image-based media matches with their mission to be “The Worldwide Leader in Sports”.

ESPN is typically associated with the talking-heads on shows like SportsCenter, or live coverage and replays of events like on “Monday Night Football.” Their websites and social media accounts also display colorful, less serious images (below), editorial shoots (above) as well as graphs, fan interactives, and grabs from athletes’ social media accounts.

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This balance of traditional and experimental media presents sports journalism as a multifaceted, entertaining venture, rather than something restricted by a particular demographic, a conclusion repeated in my previous NewsTrack posts. Sports is sometimes seen as serious, and only appealing to men, but ESPN’s coverage shows that it can be both serious and calculated, but also silly and fun — and silliness is not exclusionary at all.


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