The Million-Dollar Question

Why aren’t more women paying attention to women’s sports?

In the current issue of Curve Magazine, there’s a letter to the editor that reads:


It’s a crime that women’s sport doesn’t get more coverage, recognition, or financial reward in this country. Thank you for your celebratory piece on the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team.


I wrote that piece on the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team. And I’m happy to say that the coverage of women’s sports has increased exponentially over the past 10 years. Female-centered sports sites such as espnW and have worked tirelessly to increase their audience and expand coverage. Yet, with all the media outlets we have available to us in today’s instant information age, I still wonder why the majority of sports fans aren’t paying attention to women’s sports. 


From high school standouts to college stars to professional athletes setting records—we see sports coverage from every corner of the male sports universe, down to bowling and poker. For every female sports site that exists, there are twice as many, maybe even three times as many, male sports sites. The argument has long been that female athletes don’t get the same coverage as male athletes, or female sports don’t get the same recognition as men’s sports, or men don’t care about women’s sports. While some of this is true, I’m going to play devil’s advocate here and throw another reason into in the fire—one that some of you may not agree with but that is so simplistic it’s easy to understand why it’s been overlooked:


We need more women to care about women’s sports.


My overall goal as a sportswriter for Curve is to get our readers interested in what’s going on in the female sports world, and to talk about sports-related issues that reach beyond the boundaries of sexuality. For female-centered sports sites, I believe this is the crux of the matter. How do you increase the appreciation and interest in female sports among other females?


We want more coverage and we want more interest, yet we are asking men for help. We want them to pay more attention, watch more, visit more female sports sites, comment positively and share articles, and care about female athletes when we are the ones who should be doing all of that and more. Consider this—if more women cared about female sports, there would be more demand for coverage and a lot more media outlets would be forced to fill that need. Could you imagine what the WNBA would look like if every single woman in the country were a fan? The league would be able to stand on its own two legs—a separate entity from the NBA in its own deserving right. Now that would be a sight to see.


In the end, ladies, it’s on us to help increase the coverage and viewership of women’s sports. So, Instead of asking how we can get more men interested in women’s sports, lets put our heads together and figure out how we can get more women interested in women’s sports. 


That’s the million-dollar question.