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Women, Sport,
and Film - 2003


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Women Athletes in 2010

Melissa Tidwell

Women, Sport and Film
Spring, 2003

Women Athletes in 2010

Thirty-seven years have passed since the original Title IX passed in 1973, and seven more since it was reinstated in 2003. The law Title IX made it illegal to discriminate against anyone's race or gender in athletics. All athletes were to be paid equally and be accepted equally in college sports. In it's lifetime, Title IX has been responsible for the success of an innumerable sum of young women wishing to make their way in the world of athletic achievement. Title IX, however, did not only affect women in sports, but women everywhere, of all races. Women suddenly became equal in a way that their protests of inequality were viable and legal. They began to become more successful in other realms, like business administration and industry. The achievements women made after Title XI was passed were incredible. However, when the law came up for debate thirty years after its inception, not everyone agreed that the law should be reinstated. Yet, women held out and won their equality again! At the time, only 5% of the media was focused on women's sports and when women did appear in magazines, they were either half naked or displayed in a womanly role at home. Meanwhile, their male counterparts were usually shown on their sport fields or in action.

It was around this time in September 2003, that a group of women staged a massive protest outside the Augusta National Golf Course in Augusta, Georgia. The club was specifically an all male club, who had refused repeatedly to allow women to play golf on the course. This protest became the first in a series of attacks on the media and all-male sporting clubs around the nation that eventually brought together the group of women known as AMAMSA (American Women Against Male Sports Association).

In 2004, when Hillary Clinton was elected into office, she made her support of AMAMSA clear and when her term began in 2005 she made the plight of women in sports one of her primary concerns. After months of appealing to congress, President Clinton had all-male sports clubs banned and extended Title IX to the media, forcing them to devote an equal amount of time to women and men in sports. President Clinton faced much criticism of her brave efforts, but eventually won over the nation with her charisma and charm. She frequently spent her vacations in Augusta, Georgia playing golf with both her male and female friends.

After their successes, AMAMSA decided to begin their own media outlet. They created a new sports channel and magazine called PLAY. The first couple of years (2005-2006) were rough, but soon PLAY caught on and became rivals with ESPN.

The rise in the stock market that occurred directly after President Bush left office was extremely beneficial to the new company. PLAY had a lot of appeal because of its format based on equality. It featured an equal number of male and female announcers and showed an equal amount of male and female sports. Unfortunately, ESPN could not keep up with the massive changes that occurred in American society after the updated Title IX and lost in the stock market. Eventually they went bankrupt. Fortunately, PLAY had become so successful by that time they were able to buy an additional channel and hire many of the employees who lost their jobs in the ESPN tragedy.

Women in sports have achieved so much since the inception of Title IX, especially since its reinstatement in 2003. The fever has spread to all area of culture in which we are now seeing less beauty magazines and a decrease in cosmetic purchases by women. We are seeing that 50% of the CEO's in American businesses are women and more women joining the work force in general. This piece has been a brief look at the affect of Title IX on women and sports in the year 2010.

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