This study examines the Twitter network discussing the inclusion of Laurel Hubbard, the first out trans woman Olympian, during the 2020 Tokyo Games. By analyzing the Twitter reactions, top opinion leaders, and the modularity of the network, this study uncovers that (a) the majority of the top 10 most-liked tweets and the top influential social actors hold a negative attitude toward Laurel Hubbard’s participation in the women’s category; (b) compared to traditional news agencies, social media influencers and newly launched digital media agencies play a more important role in facilitating the flow of information in this network; and (c) the observed Twitter network is highly clustered, indicating that individuals tend to interact with people more frequently within their segregated subgroup, whereas information diffusion across clusters is more restricted. This research contributes to the understanding of how Twitter users perceive the inclusion of trans athletes at international sporting events by empirically exploring the Twitter network of Laurel Hubbard, the first out trans female athlete in Olympic history.
|Journal||Communication and Sport|
|State||Accepted/In press - 2022|
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2022.
- network analysis
- transgender athletes
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Sciences (miscellaneous)