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Women's football coverage

Just submitted this complaint to the BBC, thoughts?

"I am writing to complain about the disproportionate focus on women's football on the BBC website. The recent Manchester derby in women's football had an attendance of 3,797, the highest profile matches are therefore approximately as popular as League Two men's football and should be given the appropriate level of coverage. It is the BBC's job to report the facts, not to promote a particular sport. It has often recently been the case where all of the top stories on the BBC football page are coverage of women's football matches, often on days where much larger League One clubs (in terms of attendance) have played at the same time and fall further down the page. It is clear this change has been implemented recently and I would encourage whoever has come in and made this decision to promote women's football at the expense of lower league men's football to consider what the BBC is for and how popular men's football is in this country."

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Comments

  • Good satire attempt tbf

  • It's a tough call, as while it might attract lower crowds today the BBC is duty bound to reflect it's audience which is (I imagine) roughly 50% women. Also, if it gets greater media attention then who's to say attendances won't increase to perhaps Championship type levels?
    Personally I don't have a problem with positive bias towards women's football - what I do have a problem with is the BBC and much of the media ignoring the lower leagues in preference to focusing almost exclusively on the Premier League.
    Didn't we see a mainstream journalist have to retract a statement only last weekend, where he claimed it was a "football free weekend" just because there were no Premier League matches - totally oblivious to the fact that football (men's & women's) continued at every other level of the pyramid from WWFC to the Rye?

  • Yes, must admit I don't mind the women's football getting more coverage on the telly and that, but do get annoyed that even when there is no international game, websites and papers have numerous and often quite dull articles about whether or not this player will play or what southgate will do and then at the bottom of the page there might be a few one paragraph match reports on some L1 or L2 matches that WERE being played!

  • I have absolutely no problem at all with the BBC giving live commentary to a high profile woman’s game Saturday afternoon.

    I do have a problem (and I think moaned about it on the match day thread) with them basically forgetting that there were other football matches going on at the same time.

    Normally on a Saturday afternoon (I think) they give score updates from most football league games but last Saturday they didn’t mention any of the games until about 1600, when they gave the HT scores. Despite there being no live sport (apart from 2 mins horse racing) in the preceding 30 odd minutes.

    Happy for them to cover womens football but it would be nice of them not to forget that there is mens football going on at the same time. (And yes I saw the irony as I wrote it)

  • This is worse than the 'taking the knee is too divisive' parody thread.

    At least I assumed it was a joke.

  • "Bloody women, coming over 'ere, taking our football"

  • edited October 14

    50% of the UK's population is female. If you surveyed them all, I reckon quite a lot of them would like to see female sport given more attention. Not to mention I'm sure a lot of more forward thinking men would also agree.

    So your argument that its just the BBC's job to 'report the facts' and thus maintain the status quo by only running men's football prominently because it is already popular is bullshit.

    The BBC's job is to provide services their license payers want to see, not just get stuck in a feedback loop running things which have been popular for decades.

  • Women's football is surely the fastest-growing sport in the world, so it should get the kind of coverage it's belatedly beginning to get.

    And lower league football deserves better coverage too. Doesn't have to be an either/or situation.

    The Guardian used to do a reasonable L1/L2 round-up but seem to have ditched it lately, which is a poor show.

  • Women's football was banned in England from 1921 to 1971, hence it still has a hell of a lot of catching up to do through absolutely no fault of its own; it should be getting as much coverage/exposure/promotion as possible.

  • Women's football is over-represented in general, but as other have pointed out, that's not really a problem. The current iteration of the WSL seems to be the best opportunity yet for women's football to survive as a pro game in England. Whether professional women's football can survive on it's own merit yet remains to be seen.

    As a personal aside, i enjoyed coaching both girls and boys high school 'soccer,' teams but they are (at least at that level) fundamentally different sports. I enjoyed coaching the girls' teams more, and not just because i won a state championship.

  • I have no issue with the coverage although I have no interest in it or mens Premier league football. Agree about the lower league's being basically ignored, it feels like the bbc over compensates for diversity due the fact they employed many a shady character over the past 30years.....

  • I have no interest whatsoever in womens football as I find it very bland. However, womens cricket is another matter and will always watch it if it is on the TV.

  • People of either sex interested enough in football to listen on the radio to a game involving teams they don't follow are a pretty small constituency anyway. I happen to agree with the bulk of your analysis but am not particularly bothered. I have a developing antipathy to the BBC website and its choice of subjects for report, not confined to sports. Equally, I don't think that the fact that women's football was not well-supported by the media many years ago means it should be over-supported now if that is at the expense of other, more widely-followed, events. Whenever I watch a game of women's football - not all that often - I tend to enjoy it.

  • Can't believe you're all taking this thread seriously. Obvious wind up.

  • @mooneyman said:
    I have no interest whatsoever in womens football as I find it very bland. However, womens cricket is another matter and will always watch it if it is on the TV.

    I'm exactly the same, can't watch women's football but love women's cricket and would happily watch it on TV or live

  • The best way to handle this would be to have those moving/rotating stories in one spot for each league. That way every option is presented on the front page, and a story from any level and either gender could catch one's eye at any time. Of course they could have the obligatory static headlines when Messi's cat gets stuck up a tree or Ronaldo changes his hairstyle, but you could see stories from all areas of the game at a glance and have quick access to them. This would improve visibility both for the women's game and also the lower leagues.

    An example is JJ's hattrick. To find out about it, you basically already had to be a fan of a L1 club, and go to the actual L1 page, which requires not one but two navigational clicks away from the main football page. Thus, it becomes a tree falling in a forest for most fans. However, if 'L1 Left-back scores rare set-piece hattrick' was part of a rolling rotation of L1 stories accessible from the main page, it may well have caught the eye of many average punters.

    Similarly, someone who does not normally pay attention to the women's game when it is covering the ladies' PL sides, might suddenly have their interest piqued when they see 'Wycombe player Alicia Povey unexpectedly nominated for both Ballon D'Or and major broadcasting award', and check out the story.

  • A few spotty teenagers getting their knickers in a twist...

    Delighted the BBC are covering women's football, it just shouldn't make up ~40% of the leading stories on the BBC site and sit above League One in the results list when the following is so low. ~50% of the population may be women, but I would wager the majority of women watch men's football rather than women's, that's a daft argument. And it's the FA and WSL's job to promote women's football, not the BBC's.

  • Used to get really good wind ups back in the day, some real geniuses at work

    This is just a bit sad

  • It would be more convincing if it threw in a few "mainstream media"s, "I pay my licence fee"s and a bit more gammonfroth. As it stands though, too obviously a wind up.

  • edited October 14

    Kind of reminds me of this

  • So we've got a "cambridge blue" writing wind-ups, and an "Oxford blue" getting exceptionally shirty.

    I guess the thread worked a treat then!

  • edited October 14

    @floyd said:
    Women's football is over-represented in general, but as other have pointed out, that's not really a problem. The current iteration of the WSL seems to be the best opportunity yet for women's football to survive as a pro game in England. Whether professional women's football can survive on it's own merit yet remains to be seen.

    As a personal aside, i enjoyed coaching both girls and boys high school 'soccer,' teams but they are (at least at that level) fundamentally different sports. I enjoyed coaching the girls' teams more, and not just because i won a state championship.

    Presume you meant "under" represented!?

  • A few spotty teenagers getting their knickers in a twist...

    Is that a quote from Lawrie Sanchez’s programme notes?

  • There was a time when the BBC covered football, rugby (union and league), cricket, hockey, athletics, swimming, table tennis, squash, badminton netball, rowing, cross country and a bunch of other stuff on a pretty consistent basis - winter sports (primarily but not exclusively skiing/skating) during the season too. The amount of sport they cover has dropped massively over the last 30 years for both sexes.

  • @Malone said:

    @floyd said:
    Women's football is over-represented in general, but as other have pointed out, that's not really a problem. The current iteration of the WSL seems to be the best opportunity yet for women's football to survive as a pro game in England. Whether professional women's football can survive on it's own merit yet remains to be seen.

    As a personal aside, i enjoyed coaching both girls and boys high school 'soccer,' teams but they are (at least at that level) fundamentally different sports. I enjoyed coaching the girls' teams more, and not just because i won a state championship.

    Presume you meant "under" represented!?

    No. Given the attendance at games the amount of coverage it receives is disproportionate. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, perhaps it’s the boost that women’s football needs, perhaps in a few years women’s pro football will be sustainable on merit. I hope so.

  • In the Sky Sports results tonight in the β€œFA Womens League Cup” the teams are Durham Women, Man Utd Women, Sheffield Utd Women and Sunderland Ladies.

    If it were the League Cup should they list the teams as Durham Men, Man Utd Men, Sheffield Utd Men and Sunderland Gents?

    Y O Y do they need to state that Women teams play in a competition open solely to women?

  • edited October 14

    Just in case this post isn’t also a wind up, those are the names of the teams.

  • edited October 14

    Personally I’m more bothered by the fact that clubs like Wycombe Wanderers have a ladies team and then basically give sod all investment based on the thread on this group about women’s football. Looks from the outside good for the club to have a ladies team though doesn’t it.

  • Having watched Panorama about what the taliban are doing to Afghan womens rights and freedoms I’d like to interrupt their broadcasting and make womens football all they could watch

  • @username123 said:
    Personally I’m more bothered by the fact that clubs like Wycombe Wanderers have a ladies team and then basically give sod all investment based on the thread on this group about women’s football. Looks from the outside good for the club to have a ladies team though doesn’t it.

    Wycombe Wanderers happens to run a women's team (and a youth team, yes?). So what is the exact correct amount of funding for those that would exempt them from this doubtless well-informed criticism of yours?

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