I’m an avid sports fan, particularly when it comes to the NFL. Like most other fans, I frequent both watching and browsing ESPN. Recently, I stumbled upon an interesting offshoot of ESPN.com—ESPN W. Yes, tucked away at the far right of the browsing bar of ESPN.com is the link to ESPN Women.
I was immediately intrigued. After all, there are regular women sports writers on both ESPN and other sites. However, I’ve come to realize that there are some real positive aspects to ESPN W; aspects that make me wish the site was more publicized.
The mission of ESPN W:
Connects female fans to the sports they love and follow. We aim to provide an engaging environment where women are an integral part of the sports conversation — where you can share your perspective on men’s and women’s sports. We aim to be your primary destination for women’s sports. And we aim to offer you behind-the-scenes access to female athletes across the globe, with guidance from the pros to help you find motivation and support for all your athletic goals.
Admirable goals indeed. In fact, I was particularly interested in the permanent Title IX section, which links page viewers to a series of ESPN clips which explain the significance of Title IX. This series does a good job of showing increasing equality in women’s sports.
In addition, ESPN W grants women’s sports coverage that they do not otherwise receive. The site covers a variety of women’s NCAA news and happenings in typical up to the minute ESPN fashion. Finally, ESPN W has a commentary section in which the female writing staff tackles not only women’s sports, but also general sporting news. In this way, sports fans can get a different take on stories than the typically male sports writer perspective.
When I found ESPN W, I admit that I accidently missed clicking on the “Fantasy Sports and Games” section and was directed there instead. Nevertheless, I’m really happy I had a chance to see this site because I think that there is real merit there. It’s pretty easy to argue that women’s sports are generally not covered very well. ESPN W is valuable because of this coverage. However, I also think that the other aspects of the site are really cool. The Title IX series makes the topic very real and accessible to audiences. I also think that the viewpoints of female sports writers is great in a very homogenized male community. This is especially valuable in a time in which more and more women are becoming major sports fans and fantasy sports players. If major sports leagues wish to continue their expansion into the female demographic, female viewpoints of sports coverage seems only natural.
Has anyone else seen ESPN W covered before? What does the Shout Out! Community think of this?