Equality in Sports Coverage

            Earlier this month a project by a graduate from the Journalism New Media program, and her team, was nominated for an Emerge Media Awards.

Devyn Mackenzie was the project leader on Fair Play: Women in Sport, creating a website to support, educate and raise awareness for sex equality and fairness in professional sports.

Devyn started the project after experiencing a constant unsettling feeling as a woman in sport by having issues breaking through “the glass ceiling” of success against her male counterparts. This began her reflection on discriminations for things other than biological sex – race, religion and much more.

“As a team we wanted to highlight those underlying forces of oppression that really makes the frustration of female athletes more than just one dimensional.” Devyn Mackenzie says.

The creation of the web page and stories within quickly became a passion project for Devyn and her team, “I remember one class at the very beginning [our supervisor] kind of laughed at us because I think it looked like we were ready to try and solve every gender-based issue in sports with the number of topics we had written out.”

Fair Play: Women in Sport highlights the stories, statistics and lived experiences of unrealistic societal expectations, empowerment techniques, sexualization and more that are put on females in any sports league.

During the final stages of this project, the Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns took affect and the team was forced into remote working and collaboration. However, the finishing of this project was “bittersweet” for those involved.

“We had been working day in and day out on it and which was extremely exciting but also exhausting. When I handed it in, I remember thinking “what now.” … I would have loved to present this project in person to my classmates because I was so, so proud of it, but that is not the way that the covid cookie crumbles.” Devyn recalls of the final moments before her teams website went live.

The nomination for the Emerge Media Award means a lot to Devyn and her team. With missing out on sharing it with peers in their college classroom, the recognition on a national level drives the experience home.