ITF gender equality report: Coverage of men's tennis more on sport, coverage on women more on life off court

International Tennis Federation yesterday announced the results of a global research project examining sports gender equality across the media and social media.

Conducted and delivered by Ipsos MORI, the research explored how the representation of male and female athletes varies, identifying key differences by market and media type, as well as any differences in consumer searches between male and female players.

The report found that the conversation and coverage of men's tennis is more focused on the sport, with a strong combative narrative and a sense of history, elite competition and achievement.  

Meanwhile, the conversation around women's tennis is less intense and relatively more focused on life off court, from health and age to family.

Key findings:

  • Women's tennis content is twice as likely to reference a player's age.
  • Men's tennis content is twice as likely to refer to 'battle' terminology.
  • Men's content is 70% more likely to mention a player's physical prowess.
  • G.O.A.T was mentioned 50% more in men's tennis content than women's tennis.
  • There were 40% more references to 'making history' in men's tennis content.
  • Women's content is 30% more likely to refer to players' family.
  • 'Career' is mentioned nearly 50% more in women's coverage than men's coverage.

ITF President David Haggerty said: "The results reveal that despite similar public appetite across both men's and women's tennis, there is a distinct difference in the narrative surrounding them. It's important to acknowledge that this difference is not necessarily always negative, but we must avoid a situation where a different focus arises as a result of conscious or unconscious bias, as ultimately that can diminish the sporting achievements of female athletes."


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