Monday, October 22, 2018

20x20 vision for Irish women in sport #20x20

So research has discovered less than 20% of sports media is given over to women's sports - I do think any woman involved in sport could have told them that without the cost of the study. But the proof has shoved a group of Irish sports organisations and sports media into creating a new campaign with the aim of hitting that 20%.

It’s positive that sports media are involved from the start, not just sports women yelling into the void which can often happen. The campaign aims for the end of 2020 are: 

• 20% increase in media coverage of women in sport
• 20% increase in female participation at all levels of sport
• 20% increase in attendance at women’s games and events

Will it work? From where I stand, any increase in coverage would be great so even if they don’t hit that rather ambitious target, they can take a win of sorts.  The existence of this campaign and others (see below) makes editors, producers, journalists think about chasing women in sport stories. Every story or photo or video clip or tweet is a move in the right direction.

When I started fighting in muaythai in the 1990s, the only other women fighters I knew of were the women I was fighting! It's a shame that so little has changed, but not a reason to stop trying.

Lauren Twomey Dublin Camogie

I wasn't too surprised to see the girls in this 20x20 video unable to name a woman doing their sport, but it's sad. So I’m definitely open to the hope something could change, and that we should all do our bit to make that change.

The official partners are RTE Sport, Off The Ball on Newstalk Radio, Sports Joe, , Nielson and Along Came a Spider.

They’ve got National Sporting Bodies, Local Sports Partnerships and bodies like the NI Sports Forum taking part. The Federation of Irish Sport discuss the coverage research here.

And interestingly as well as targeting media and organisations, they’re asking fans to get involved - in a similar way to the #SupportHerSport campaign. If you go to see a women’s match or fight or race, then put it on social media and tell the world that you are a part of the #20x20 campaign.

Let’s see how it all plays out. Hopefully the increased awareness will show girls they can do sport, and as the saying goes that strong really is the new pretty.

I'll be updating on Twitter @realgirlsport what I see.

You can find all the social media channels for the campaign on


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