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40 Years After Title IX, the Playing Field Still Isn't Level

The Women's Professional Soccer league "permanently suspended" operations, showing just how much further women's sports have to go.


This should be a happy month for female athletes and their supporters. A slew of events will celebrate the 40th anniversary of Title IX, the landmark legislation that banned gender discrimination in education (including sports). Some might have been too busy planning festivities to notice a quiet business decision that makes clear just how much further women's sports have to go.

On May 18, the Women's Professional Soccer league "permanently suspended" operations, becoming the second pro soccer league for women to go belly-up in the past 10 years. The decision came less than a year after the American women's team drew huge ratings—and a silver medal—in the World Cup, and just two months before the same team is scheduled to kick off in the Olympics, most likely to similar excitement. But as much as fans love watching women play soccer in those marquee events, they never turned out in large enough numbers to make a regular league viable (attendance at WPS games dropped after World Cup mania).

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Sold Out: Are Pro Sports Owners Obligated to Keep the Team in Town?

Oakland residents supported a losing team to support their city. The owners didn't seem to care.


An artist's rendering of the Warriors' proposed new arena on a San Francisco pier

Last night I watched my hometown baseball team, the Oakland Athletics, get shut out by their most hated rival in front of a crowd of barely 11,000 people while simultaneously reading news reports about Oakland's basketball team, the Golden State Warriors, moving across the Bay to San Francisco. I'm not sure I've ever felt so personally betrayed by sports.

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Why Does Major League Baseball Keep Killing Fans' Memes?

Liberally doling out cease-and-desist letters is most certainly not a good business or public relations decision.


Everett Steele is an Atlanta Braves fan. He goes to games, he wears Braves apparel, he tweets about the team to his 16,000-plus Twitter followers. He's a big enough fan that when he started noticing people misspelling the team's name as "Barves" online, he spent time and money making it a meme.

Steele started making Barves jokes on Twitter, and others quickly joined in. So he and his wife, who jointly run a social media marketing firm, began printing t-shirts featuring the joke team name and selling them on the internet. Being a fan and a community-minded guy, he decided to donate all proceeds to the Atlanta Braves Foundation, which supports nonprofits around the Atlanta metro area.

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How Title IX Eliminated Coaching Jobs for Women—And How to Solve the Problem

Once men started wanting jobs coaching women, men started getting a disproportionate number of those jobs.

University of Tennessee women's basketball coach Pat Summit, the winningest college basketball coach in history

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