One of our course programme leaders has been talking to us about how important a role social media plays in the modern sports media industry.

Colm Griffith, our BA (Hons) Multimedia Sports Journalism programme leader at the Etihad Campus, says it is vital that students wanting to work in sports media nowadays learn social media skills.

Colm said: “Social media has become a vital tool in the modern sports media industry. 

The arrival of new technology has forced dramatic changes, and traditional media has had to adapt quickly to the new challenges faced by the rise of platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

“An era of loyal audiences, strict deadlines and exclusivity is being overtaken by instant, on-demand content and a free-for-all in terms of publishing and audience engagement.

Traditional media maintains a traditional audience – the new challenge is how to engage with – and maintain – a younger audience. 

A clear theme in the 2022 Reuters Institute Digital Report is the changing habits of younger groups, specifically those under 30, which media organisations often struggle to reach and who naturally favour the social sphere. 

Mobile phones have become the go-to device for all the latest developments, and it is crucial that sports media providers and sports organisations embrace to technology to build and maintain their audience.

“This new audience has exacting expectations so prospective sports journalists and content creators need to have the necessary skills to fulfil that demand.

“The days of a specialist sports writer are rapidly fading, paving the way for the multi-skilled all-rounder to step up and deliver in this new and demanding environment. 

Social media has given rise to new sources of sports journalism, with bloggers and social media influencers often shaping the conversation around the latest news and trends. 

Employment opportunities abound for young people in this new social and digital era, but only if they are prepared to develop their creative ability.

“Publishing live has never been so easy, but that brings with it its own dangers. A careless tweet, for example, can prove costly if legal boundaries are crossed as many an athlete or prominent figure has found, so as well as a sound technical grounding, a full understanding of media law is also vital.

“A good technical grounding is also no replacement for the ability to tell and sell a good story.

“No amount of bells and whistles is going to make a non-story any more relevant – the story always comes first, then the polish which new technology brings can be added.

Other sports media-related undergraduate degrees on offer at UCFB include BA (Hons) Sports Business and Sports Broadcasting, and BA (Hons) Football Business and Media.

To find out more about our undergraduate degrees, click here.