The impact of digital communications on consumer perceptions of sport celebrity transgressions

Sassenberg, Anne-Marie and Summers, Jane and Johnson Morgan, Melissa and Hassan, Rumman (2018) The impact of digital communications on consumer perceptions of sport celebrity transgressions. Journal of Global Sport Management, 3 (2). pp. 189-207. ISSN 2470-4067


Whilst the use of sport celebrities in marketing strategies is growing in popularity it is not without risk. The increasing reliance on scandal by the news media to capture audience attention, has accelerated the interest in sport-celebrity transgressions. This research adopts an netnographic method to analyze over seven thousand comments from online forums about sport celebrity transgressions. We found that consumers were more likely to express negative comments in relation to transgressions that violated moral, ethical and/or legal norms and that this in turn was most likely to effect the perceived role model ability of a sport celebrity. We provide evidence that the communication behavior of sport fans in a digital communication medium extends the life of a transgression in the public domain. Finally, we noted sport fans exhibited higher levels of engagement and willingness to participate in debate in these mediums than observed in other types of online communities.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Restricted access to published version in accordance with copyright policy of publisher.
Faculty / Department / School: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Management and Enterprise
Date Deposited: 14 May 2018 03:01
Last Modified: 16 May 2018 01:00
Uncontrolled Keywords: digital communication, sport celebrity transgressions, role model ability, sport expertise, netnographic method
Fields of Research : 15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services > 1505 Marketing > 150501 Consumer-Oriented Productor Service Development
15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services > 1505 Marketing > 150502 Marketing Communications
Socio-Economic Objective: B Economic Development > 90 Commercial Services and Tourism > 9099 Other Commercial Services and Tourism > 909902 Recreational Services
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1080/24704067.2018.1457968

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