As I type this I am watching Rolland-Garros (the French Open tennis tournament) live on television. Play started at 11 am Paris time and, unlike the plight of the sports fan of yesteryear, I could watch it live in the comfort of my home in Ontario, Canada. If I did not want to get up early (starting time in Paris translated to 5 am where I live) I could program my DVR to record it. If, as happened this weekend, the vagaries of of American broadcast television leads to the tennis coverage ending before the end of the exciting match I was watching, it takes me less than 30 seconds to locate an internet feed of that match.
There is much discussion (on the internet, in print publications and on television) of the impact that the internet has had on politics, book publishing and the film industry but comparatively little discussion of the impact it has had on sports.
So, in what ways do you think the development of the internet has changed the relationship between professional sports and sports fans? In what ways do you think the development of the internet has fundamentally changed what it is to be the fan of a sport or the nature of particular sports?
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