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Fighting VisibilitySports Media and Female Athletes in the UFC$
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Jennifer McClearen

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780252043734

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2021

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252043734.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 25 June 2022

Visibility and Difference in the UFC

Visibility and Difference in the UFC

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction Visibility and Difference in the UFC
Source:
(p.iii) Fighting Visibility
Author(s):

Jennifer McClearen

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5622/illinois/9780252043734.003.0001

The introduction considers the increased visibility of female athletes in MMA--a phenomenon enabled by a 21st century media context that increasingly seeks out representations of difference, including gendered, racial, and sexual difference, on a variety of media platforms. Sports media brands are now beginning to align with other media entities to promote diverse representations as a method of increasing viewership, which makes branded difference a lucrative branding and marketing strategy. This chapter cautions, however, that the increased visibility of difference in the UFC ignores a labor model that allows the brand to profit on its diverse athletes who fight for low pay and few benefits as independent contractors in a gig economy.

Keywords:   UFC, MMA, Visibility, Branding, female athletes, labor, independent contractors, gig economy, branded difference

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