Adoption of Innovations in Digital Sports Journalism: The Use of Twitter by German Sports Journalists

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungBegutachtung


Based on the fact that Twitter penetration in Germany is comparatively low this study analyzes the adoption of Twitter by German sports journalists. It questions how far influences on adoption that were proven to be important in the well-established diffusion of innovation theory can help to explain the Twitter usage among sports journalists. As influences for circumstances of adoption, the type of innovation decision and communication channels are identified. In addition, perceived attributes of Twitter concerning relative advantages, compatibility with norms and values and complexity are specified. A representative online survey with members of the German Association for Sports Journalists reveals that many sports journalists are reluctant concerning Twitter usage. Three Twitter user types were identified: Non-users, Occasional Information Seekers, and Regular Active Users. These user types differed clearly in terms of the circumstances of adoption: management decisions and the adoption by near peers favor the usage of Twitter. Further, compatibility and complexity are influential. For relative advantages, surprisingly, results are less distinct. Overall, this study shows that the diffusion of innovation theory is a helpful approach to explain Twitter usage in German sports journalism and advocates its application for the adoption of other digital innovations in sports journalism.
ZeitschriftCommunication & Sport
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 2020

Fachgebiete und Schlagwörter

  • Twitter
  • adoption
  • diffusion
  • digital journalism
  • innovation
  • sports journalism