The ethical dilemma is the scenario when you are faced with two choices. But the problem is that none of them solves the problem ethically. Ethical problems or dilemmas are considered the complex and troublesome issues which require a solution considering the moral values. (Aitamaa, Leino-Kilipi, Puukka, & Suhonen, 2010). These problems can either be unfamiliar and new. However, they are maybe recurring routine day-to-day matters. When finding solutions to these ethical dilemmas, we are supposed to make decisions depending on the feelings and beliefs regarding what are wrong or right fundamentally (Aitamaa et al., 2010) the common ethical dilemmas in sports are the use of drugs the first case of the use of drugs was reported in 1960. Ever since this problem has not been fully resolved. These drugs known as the power enhancing drugs include steroids, growth hormones and many types of supplements. Many players have to face serious consequences for using these drugs. Lance Armstrong lost his Olympic medal, and tour de France title and Biogenesis an American football player was banned for 20 years when these two were tested positive in a doping test. Barry Bonds and Roger Clemons were thrown out from the Baseball Hall of Fame as they were used steroids. Another dilemma is that of discrimination. The discrimination can be on the basis of race and gender. The responsibility of cultivating such discrimination mainly lies on the supporters, commentators and in some cases on the athletes. It requires a lot of social development among the community. Gambling and corruption are also getting out of control in college, regional, national and international levels. The world of sports is not that simple as it looks, rather it is much complicated.
The athletes and their trainers and managers are bonds to make many tough decisions every day about the fitness and coaching and the various sports events in which they have to participate. The face many temptations to make money and quick approaches to become the top ranked place where moral and ethics collide with the shortcuts to instant success and achievement. But, sports ethics demand that you maintain good character whatever are the circumstances. Unethical attitude portrayed at the space of coaching is deteriorating the public repute and image of sports and coaching. (DeSensi, 2003)
The ethical dilemmas and unethical actions are increasing in the world of sports. There arises a strong need to develop a system to control such issues. This system should include the rules and principles for guiding the behavior of the athletes, managers, and coaches.
Athletes can be positive role models as they have achieved exceptional fame and glory through their hard work. They can be a source of inspiration for everyone. The achievements of these people are always presented to motivate other people to achieve similar success and goals in life.
Certainly, positive examples behave as role models while inspiring one via illustrating the desired self, ideal, highlighting probable achievements for which one strive for, and portraying the way for achieving them. (Lockwood & Kunda, 1997, 1999);
Sometimes the people also get attracted by negative role models. Goals may require the form of demanding the desirable results or ignoring the undesirable consequences. (e.g., Carver & Scheier, 1998; Elliot & Harackiewicz, 1996; Higgins, 1997).The inspiration towards the positive and negative role models depend upon the type of roles people are pursuing.
It is a fact that whether athletes win or lose. They exhibit fair play or not they are role models for others. They get support. Power and admiration from the public. This is the reason that they are treated as celebrities even when they are off the sports field. This fact lays the additional responsibility of the role model on their shoulders. This sometimes results in losing their privacy. A person can have more than one role model. A role model is considered as the player who is exceptional both on and off the field. To be included in this catalog one has to have a clear record. The activities, manners, and conduct of these athletes which are in fact the role models have a direct impact on the behaviors of youth. The values of the coaches influence the athletes which in turn influence. When you are a celebrity, you are always under the curious eyes of the media, and you will always find people wanting to know more and more about you. Even your personal life becomes public. This viewpoint has resulted in transforming some athletes into role models to increase the participation of youth in sports and to lure people to buy different products. Athletes are also projected as a symbol of health to deliver health related messages to the people.
They are the persons that are looked upon by the people. They can help the youth to make decisions about life. They help them boost their self-esteem and avoid the use of drugs and performance enhancing medicines. Athletes have a distinct way of influencing the community but we should not focus on their scandals, and they game only moreover we should also focus on the good aspects of their life Athletes are distinctive, not only as a player for the sport they are playing but also as a product that can easily be marketed. If you look at the history of Olympics Victorious athletes were named as heroes, and because of them, their home towns got famous, such as Milo of Kroton and Diagoros of Rhodes ( Crane 1996). The game of Olympics and many other sports competition continue to produce exceptional athletes. These athletes can be the most suitable contestants as the role model in the media.
Athletes have the optimistic uniqueness and the character. These qualities are not very helpful and encouraging for the youngsters but also among the constructive characteristics that the companies are usually looking to advertise their products. When companies choose an athlete in addition to these factors, several other things are taken into consideration. Because the effect of coupling an athlete with a comm0dity can be very beneficial for its promotion and can be damaging as well. Philip Knight, the founder of nice, was among the first who realized the use of athletes in the publicity of products. The benefit obtained from such a coupling is not easily quantifiable. But it is agreed by all the marketing companies that such a union of an athlete and a product can be helpful to positively boost the item many times. Such a combination cannot prove very supporting in increasing the revenue or the sales of the company but improves the stock market position of the company. “A famous face in the advertisement can help built a recognizable image for a company and its products and has been known to boost the viewer’s recall.”( Sasseen 1994). “, if “Indeed, if there is ‘fit’ between the athlete and the product, a celebrity endorser’s stamp of approval can bring added value to a brand’s equity as well as celebrate an emotional bond.” (Bradley). (Zeigler, 1984).
Competition is on the rise in every sphere of life; businesses are not exceptions. Marketing of products is changing. “Sport is too much a game to be a business and too much business to be a game” (Hums, Barr, & Gullion, 1999). It has become essential for the companies to pay attention to what their customers want and provide them the required facts and knowledge. The new style demands tools like sports marketing. This is a straight and a short way to have access to the hearts of the people. It is the source of obsession and enthusiasm that people can’t easily deny. Balboa, a well-known brand has signed Rafael Nadal. A precious union of a star with their company. (Brecke, 1997). Such a combination can do miracles, but you should know the art of presenting such a legend.
The relationship has monetary worth for both the parties’-e the athlete and the company. Moreover, it adds strength, influence, and control to the athlete and the brand. The athletes can prove very significant to promote the sports related brands as they can understand the requirements and priorities of athletes in a better way. It has been found through researches that people are more likely to recognize a brand and its message when they receive it through social media or athlete. One way is to employ the athlete directly as a spokesperson. In such a case it is essential that the message is reliable and matches with the athlete’s social image. Otherwise, it can prove to be very damaging. Rather the enhancing. Another crucial factor is the suitability of athlete with the product and the advertising campaign, it done properly can be very boastful, if inappropriate can undermine the whole operation. The athlete plays the role of opinion leaders. They have the great impact on the buying decisions of their admirers. Their supporters are more likely to buy a product advertised and recalled through such a campaign.
Over the years, the practice of combining and presenting a product and athlete has remained very common. Through this experience, many companies got boost enhanced. While other companies realized that there are possibilities of problems that can arise from such a union. It proves very costly, and only well-established companies can afford it. Moreover, the image of an athlete changes with the passage of time. An athlete can be at the top of his career, and after some time his performance starts declining. To book an athlete who is at the top is not only very expensive but such a linkage can be very difficult to for a company to carry for a very long time. “The cost of maintaining a sponsor relationship with a star athlete could become overly expensive, or the spokesperson who is used fairly often can become overexposed,” (Swenson, 1987).
Although the athletes are treated as heroes by the people, they still don’t take their support for a product blindly. “Changing consumer attitudes towards athletes have motivated some marketers to use more realistic advertisements featuring anti-heroes who tell the truth,” (Jensen, 1993a). Due to the various threats concerned, the trend of presentation of these heroes in advertising is declining, but it doesn’t mean that it will become extinct. This discussion brings us to the conclusion that athletes should be promoted as role models for media.
- DeSensi, J. and Rosenberg, D. (2003). Ethics and morality in sport management. Morgantown, WV: Fitness Information Technology.
- Zeigler, E. F. (1984). Ethics and Morality in Sport and Physical Education an Experiential Approach.
- McIntosh, P. C. (1979). Fair play: Ethics in sport and education.
- Boxill, J. (2008). Sports ethics: An anthology.
- Volkwein, K. A. (1995). Ethics and top-level sport-a paradox?. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 30(3-4), 311-320.