Media bias in sports
Media bias in sports is due to several factors, including the promotional value in creating mythical figures and the liberal bias that permeates the media.
Bias in the arena of sports has a long history going back over a century. Will Irwin did a study of newspapers in 1911 titled The American Newspaper, where he made the following observation:
On the other extreme, the yellow journals a few years ago, put some of their best cartoonists and cleverest writers into the sporting department. This created an artificial demand for "sporting stuff" far beyond the natural appetite of even an English-speaking people. That demand became so insistent that the other newspapers of all shades of opinion were forced to meet it; and now no newspaper is so conservative and intellectual as not to have a sporting page.
The media can profit more from promoting a mediocre player on a successful team than by promoting a phenomenal player on an unsuccessful team. Also, the media will promote their favorite personalities. For example, George Brett ranks as number five in the highest percentage of votes to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, despite how many other players had far better careers.
In liberal New York City, the media ran negative stories against conservative Tim Tebow despite how the New York Jets were performing terribly without even allowing him to play. One could conclude that liberals preferred to lose rather than allow Tim Tebow an opportunity to lead them to victory.
The media over-promote pitchers, compared with those who play every day, perhaps because it is a bigger news story to write about a pitcher than a less visible catcher or outfielder. Even though pitchers rarely win the most valuable player award (e.g., only twice in 50 years in the National League), four of the top eleven vote-getters for the Baseball Hall of Fame were pitchers, even though none of them is typically considered to be the greatest pitcher ever.
- The American Newspaper, 1 - The Power of the Press. Collier's page 2 (1911).
- Jim Bunning