Overcoming the Gender Pay Gap in Women’s Sports

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Have you ever wondered why you don’t watch women’s sports?  Sure, you have probably seen a dozen football games, or Major League Baseball but you have probably never turned into a Women’s basketball game. Herein lies the problem, you probably never watched a female sporting event because you have most likely never found one while you are channel surfing looking for something to watch.  With just a 4% chance that a broadcasted sports event will be for a female sports team the odds are extremely low that you have ever just casually come across one on the channel guide.

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The Gender Pay Gap In Women's Sports

This is a major problem and it highlights a major change that needs to be made. Recently, female athletics have been making headlines due to the major disparity that has been found between them and their male equivalent.  It seems that many people are astonished at the complete divide in both pay and coverage. On average, a women athlete only makes 63% of what her male counterpart would in her position.  This means that male athletes make 37% more for doing the same job that a female would.  This percentage makes a big difference when we are talking about the kinds of six figure salaries that we award to our sports players.

With lack of representation on broadcasted television, women also miss out on one of the most lucrative aspects of the sports industry: sponsorships.  Because of these women do not receive the pay boost that is usually associated with branded deals. Businesses also lose out on a valuable demographic.  Research shows that the demographic for women’s sports have a higher retention rate of brands and are more likely to purchase a specific product that they see advertised alongside a female athlete.

According to Eric Mitchell, CEO of LifeFlip Media:

"The fact that it’s 2021 and the WNBA and NCAA women’s sports are treated like some sort of rec league specialty sport like the national corn hole league is is beyond disgusting, it’s time to stand up and bring true equality to sports."

Businesses that choose to forego partnerships with female athletes make a huge mistake.  By basing their decision off of assumption they choose to remain ignorant to the real issues. Those businesses that choose to partner with women athletes gain a valuable customer base and help solve the divide in athletics. Businesses aren’t the only ones with a decision to make.  Consumers of sports media also have to choose if they want to contribute to a system that is truly broken.  Female athletes are clearly misrepresented and our choice either contributes to misrepresentation or helps fight the oppressive environment that we have created with our blind ignorance of the situation.

Women's Sports

Infographic source: Lines.com