Come on England, by Helen Donohoe

We all know that England play Germany in the Euro 2009 final later today (BBC2 / BBC sport online and BBC Five Live extra , 5pm kick off )

The media coverage of this tournament started off as almost non-existent but over the last week it has been excellent.  This is a fantastic opportunity to remind the media that we want to see, hear and watch coverage of women’s sport at all times and not just in these exceptional circumstances.

Here are some actions you can take today

1. Click through the web links about tonight’s game – do it as many times as you can.  The stats on number of hits will be analysed and do make a difference

Go here BBC coverage
Go here for The Times
Go here for The Guardian

2. Watch/listen to the game and at half time use as much electricity as you can. Surges (even small increases) in electricity use at intervals during broadcasts are used as indicators of number of viewers/listeners.

3. Email or text your support for the coverage

For example – thank you for your coverage of the England women’s team – it’s been great being able to watch it with my daughter / it’s been great to be able to see both England teams doing so well

BBC feedback page is here
Text Five Live on 85058

And finally if any of you watched the England men on ITV last night and were just as incensed as me at their jurassically dated commentary then you might want to email them too. I just sent this:

Dear ITV

I’ve been meaning to email you for some time with regard to your football coverage.

I am a life long Arsenal season ticket holder, I travel home and away to watch them and I have watched England on a number of occasions. I am also a woman.  Could you please brief your commentators that women follow and (as the BBC will be showing later) play football. Women have always watched and played football but I find it particularly astonishing that in 2009 I have to listen to Clive Tyldesley talking about 20,000 Englishmen travelling to South Africa. It’s outdated and factually incorrect. I’ve also had to explain to my daughter why Andy Townsend in a recent interview suggested that only if Coleen had a boy would Wayne Rooney need to worry about his offspring’s football affiliation.

If you want your football coverage to look half decent and relevant you might want a more sophisticated approach to your audience.

Best regards

Helen Donohoe


4 responses to “Come on England, by Helen Donohoe

  1. I think it’s amazing it’s getting the coverage it is. Five years ago it wouldn’t have, so change is definitely happening.

    I’m going to do all of the above today. Let’s see if we can’t speed this change up a little.

  2. Definitely up for 1 and 2! Having just signed up for 10:10 can’t increase my footprint anymore but will wait to half time before I let anyone put kettle on!

    Did you see article in todays Guardian about womens football in 1920′ s ?

    Am currently recovering from football injury myself – 2 broken metartarsals would you believe!

    Love Jackie

  3. My husband is going home early with my two sons to watch the game. I’m very very impressed. And my sons, seem to be oblivious to the fact that women playing football on telly is anything unusual. Let’s hope that continues.

  4. nice article. keep up the good work.

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