Thursday, July 31, 2008

Divisions and Committee Status

To update you on what's going on with sports divisions at the NCA (National Communication Association) and BEA (Broadcast Education Association):

Andy Billings of Clemson says things are "stagnant" in terms of creating a new NCA division on Communication and Sport. More than 100 sports scholars signed a petition to create the division, but according to Andy, "The NCA is currently dealing with concerns about the conference becoming too large and unmanageable and they see the increased number of divisions in recent years as potentially a corollary concern. NCA is now undergoing a process to determine a new way to establish divisions and, until they have cemented this process, they will not allow any divisional status requests to move forward."

Those interested in helping with this process should contact Kelby Halone at West Virginia University (

The news is a little brighter for the sports division within BEA. The division will be active at the BEA conference in the spring and is actively soliciting ideas for panels and presentations. Please note the August 15th deadline! The following is an update from division chair Mike Bruce at Oklahoma Baptist--

In May, I outlined a list of goals that would serve as the focus of our new division's executive committee. Now is a good time to update you on our progress on a number of those issues.

A draft of the division bylaws has been completed and is under review by the executive committee of the division. Once revisions are complete, the draft bylaws will be circulated to division members for review.

Steve Hill has been working to develop a web presence for the division. The BEA office is developing new division webpage templates, and our web-page is on hold until those templates are designed.

We are working with the festival committee to determine our involvement in the 2009 BEA Festival of Media Arts. We also are making plans for the 2009 convention. The deadline for program proposals (August 15th) is rapidly approaching.

To help connect prospective panelists and panels, BEA has instituted a new online "bulletin board" for "panelists seeking a panel" and "panels seeking panelists." You can view or submit to the bulletin board under the BEA 2009 link on the BEA website. We're looking forward to a great inaugural year in the sports division. Thanks for your participation.

The August 15th dead-line for BEA 2009 pro-gram proposals is quickly approaching. Program proposals of the following types will be accepted by the convention program chair:

•Invited panel/paper sessions: These are the standard convention format sessions with a moderator, 3-5 presenters and, if possible, a respondent (and sponsored by Interest Divisions).

•Invited plenary sessions: These panel or speaker sessions should be of broad interest to all convention attendees and would be scheduled in stand alone times. Of particular interest are plenary sessions related to the broad topic of ethics and how it cuts across various strands of broad-cast education, technology, production, news, and other relevant areas.

• Showcases highlight student work in which faculty have been involved. They should "show" more than "tell" and require preparation of audio-visual material be-fore the convention; these sessions are sponsored by interest divisions.)

• Technical demonstrations of hardware or soft-ware. Manufacturers or vendors of equipment and software bring in the latest communication technology to demonstrate. Often, faculty who have worked with the technology are included to talk about their experiences with the equipment/software in the classroom or lab.

• Workshops involving intensive training and professional development.

• Alternative innovative ideas for meaningful sessions, such as off-site tours or technical training.

The forms for submitting panel proposals can be found at this link.

There are also links for finding panels that are looking for panelists and panelists with topics looking for a panel.

We’ll give short profiles of your division leaders in the next edition of the newsletter. Here’s contact information for each member of the leadership team; it may also be found on the division’s official BEA web page, soon to be updated.

Mike Bruce, Chair
Oklahoma Baptist University
OBU Box 61240
500 W. University
Shawnee, OK 74804-2590
Office: (405) 878-2351
Fax: (405) 878-2287

Rick Sykes, Vice Chair
Central Michigan University
School of Broadcast & Cine-matic Arts
181 Moore Hall
Mount Pleasant, MI 48859
Office: (989) 774-3894

Steve Hill, Web Manager & Newsletter Editor
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Division of Communication
CAC 329, 1101 Reserve St.
Stevens Point, WI 54481
Office: (715) 346-3887

Rob Bellamy, Paper Competi-tion Co-Chair
Duquesne University
Department of Journalism and Multimedia Arts
600 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15282
Office: Ph: (412) 606-5045

Wayne Hepler, Paper Compe-tition Co-Chair
Harford Community College
Visual, Applied and Perform-ing Arts
401 Thomas Run Road
Bel Air, MD 21015
Office: Ph: (410) 836-4358

Tommy Booras, Festival Vol-unteer
Western Kentucky University
School of Journalism & Broad-casting
1906 College Heights Blvd., #11070
Bowling Green, KY 42101-1070
Office: (270) 745-6497
Fax: (270) 745-5835

Marc Krein, Festival Volunteer
Oklahoma State University
School of Journalism & Broad-casting
206 Paul Miller Building
Stillwater, OK 74078-4053
Office: (405) 744 - 6804

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Special Issue of EJC

The Electronic Journal of Communication is publishing a special edition dedicated to "new directions in communication and sport." Editor Jeff Kassing of Arizona State says the purpose of the special issue is to "do some reflection on where we've been and where we could/should head with regard to particular research agenda or understudied areas." The complete call is listed below, along with Jeff's contact information. Please be advised the deadline for paper submission is September 1.
The past few years have seen the proliferation of communication and sport research within the discipline evidenced by numerous publications, conferences, and special journal issues. Following in that tradition The Electronic Journal of Communication announces a special issue focusing on New Directions in Communication and Sport in 2009 (Volume 19). The intention of this special issue is to assess where communication and sport research currently exists, and to forecast the areas of research that will merit additional and future attention from communication scholars. Thus, the special issue will be comprised of essays that review particular topics or issues pertaining to communication and sport which remain underexplored (e.g., doping in sport, collegiate recruiting practices, use of web blogs by fans and athletes). Authors are invited to submit essays that present a thoughtful review and critique of appropriate literature in the area of interest coupled with a thorough treatment of possible future directions in terms of communication theory and research. Potential contributors should raise issues that traverse the traditional disciplinary boundaries of interpersonal, health, organizational, intercultural, mediated, technological, political, and rhetorical communication.

To facilitate blind review all documents must strike any identifying aspects. Authors must mask references to their own works within the text. The title page should be submitted as a separate word document, and should include:
(a) the title of the paper;
(b) name, position, institutional affiliation, address, telephone and fax numbers, and email address for all authors;
(c) any acknowledgments about the history of the manuscript (e.g., whether it has been presented at a conference or is derived from a thesis or dissertation);
(d) a list of key words for indexing;
(e) and an approximate word count.

On the first page of the manuscript authors should provide the title of the paper and an abstract of up to 200 words. Manuscripts should not exceed 5000 words. Submissions must conform to the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (5th edition).

Submissions must be received via email by September 1st, 2008. If electronic submission poses a hardship, please contact the editor (Jeff Kassing) by email ( or by phone (602-543-6631) to arrange an alternative submission format. If necessary contact the editor for more information about the special issue or this call.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Mosley Wins Privacy Suit

The English High Court concluded that News of the World, a well-known tabloid newspaper, violated the privacy rights of Max Mosley when it published lurid accounts of an apparent sado-masochistic orgy and that the event had a Nazi theme (click here for background). Grounded in what would be "false light" and "embarrassing private facts" privacy theory (if the case was decided under U.S. law), the court concluded that not only were Mosley's sexual interests private, but that it was untrue that the occurrence had a "Nazi theme" or "adoption of any of its attitudes" as was claimed by the newspaper.

"There was bondage, beating and domination, which seem to be typical of S&M behavior," Judge David Eady noted. The News of the World faces a legal bill of almost 1 million pounds (about $2 million) which includes damages of $120,000 and the legal fees to Mosley's attorneys (which are awarded under "loser pays" standard of English law). However, the court rejected Mosley's claim for punitive damages.

I am looking for copy of the ruling and after I read it, then I could comment on its precedential value. However, the damages are high by English standards and that fact could give the British tabloids some pause before going after lurid stories about the sexual activities of public figures.

ESPNU Update

In regards to the most recent post on from Acie Wyatt and ESPNU, Acie requests that all those interested in the Campus Connection feature use the following email--

ESPNU is trying to expand its presence on college campuses across the country and is looking for student reporters to contribute to ESPN, ESPNU, ESPN2 and

Monday, July 21, 2008

ESPNU on Campus

ESPNU is trying to expand its presence on college campuses across the country and is looking for student reporters to contribute to ESPN, ESPNU, ESPN2 and Producer Acie Wyatt says the network is also looking for "small vignettes about the school. Whether that is a certain tradition about the school, a little known fact about the school and even a profile on a heralded or unheralded member of the athletic community of your school, we are open to any and all ideas."

For those schools, students or instructors interested you can contact Wyatt below. I understand you can also get a sample DVD of what ESPN has done in this area.

Acie Wyatt
11001 Rushmore Dr.
Charlotte, NC 28277

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Help needed: Teaching the Olympics

The following comes from Paul MacArthur at Utica College. If you can help, contact him directly.

I am teaching a course on The Olympics this fall. If anyone is teaching/has taught a course on The Olympics, I would be interested in seeing your syllabus and assignments. I have a tentative syllabus already, but I would like to get as many different ideas as I can before I finalize it.

Thanks in advance!-

Paul J. MacArthur
Assistant Professor of Public Relations
Sports Communication
Utica College
1600 Burrstone Road
Utica, NY 13502-4892
(315) 792-3348

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Call for Papers: IRSS

The following comes from Thomas Carter at the University of Brighton in England. It's a call for papers for a special issue of the International Review for the Sociology of Sport.


Interrogating Athletic Urbanism:
The politics of sport spectacles in the economy of appearances

Guest Editor
Thomas F. Carter
University of Brighton

The use of sport to promote a sense of community within a sweeping urban environment as well to project specific imagery of a city in a competitive global environment tends to follow discursive strategies based on consumerism and modernism. These strategies are consumerist to the extent that a city becomes a playground for certain constituencies to associate their leisure with high-profile sporting experiences. Equally, they are modernist in that participation in sport symbolically demonstrates the city’s modern qualities and characteristics thereby providing proof that the city in question is a fully civilized, cosmopolitan environment. Sport, then, reflects civic leaders’ efforts to harness perceived social, political, and economic capital of sport for the benefit of the city, as they widely imagine it.

The production of city image-making fuels transnational corporate investment and it is this ‘economy of appearances’ that forms the place-making competition between cities. The self-conscious construction processes of dramatic performance create the conditions in which capital accumulation becomes a performance; a spectacle that demonstrates and asserts a city’s financial viability and status. Essentially the drama of spectacular accumulation makes the city a commodity, bought and sold, torn down, speculated upon, and fought over, in which ‘that which appears is good, that which is good appears’.[1] Cities have to be seen to be dynamic, progressive, modern –in a word “global”– before actually becoming so. Consequently, the dramatization of cities’ potential as viable places becomes crucial and it is this dramatization through spectacle that informs the economy of appearances. Whatever the imagery used, these discursive constructs rely on the idea that the city in question is a sporting city: a city that demonstrates its vitality, energy, civilization, and modernity through its sporting capacity.

Articles for this special issue of IRSS should address the politics of civic image-making through sporting spectacle: looking at how sport is harnessed for the construction of modernity in a global context. These papers should look at how selected cities - including ones not normally associated with the ideas of globalization - assert a place in a broader global order while at the same time keeping a localized context and significance through the use of sport.

Expressions of interest; queries and/or submissions should be maid via Submissions will be subject to the standard and rigorous style conventions and refereeing procedures of IRSS. For further details of submissions conventions see the IRSS home page.

[1] Debord, Guy (1995) The society of the spectacle. New York: Zone Books.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Another New Face

Human Kinetics has launched the Journal of Intercollegiate Sport, which lists as its mission "to stimulate and disseminate both theoretical and practical research on sport in higher education. This academic journal is supported by start-up funding from the NCAA in an effort to foster cross-disciplinary research on intercollegiate sport and promote the integration of athletics with the educational missions of colleges and universities."

It will be interesting to see how this journal co-exists with the Journal of Issues in Intercollegiate Athletics, which also launched this year. I'm not sure there is necessarily a need for two journals in this area, but that's not the point. The point is that sports scholarship is booming across a wide front and that's good news. The addition of these journals legitimizes sport as an important area of study. Human Kinetics alone has a stable of two dozen journals devoted exclusively to some facet of sports.

It's a great trend for everyone in sports research and JSM wishes the best of luck to all the new journals.