This study examined how fans displayed social support for American cyclist Floyd Landis via their comments posted to his website floydlandis.com. The examination spanned the course of 7 months in which Landis battled doping allegations. The fan comments were posted in response to consistent updates provided on floydlandis.com as part of the Landis defense campaign. A thematic analysis using constant comparative methodology of 831 fan postings revealed five themes related to social support: (a) empathy and sympathy, (b) confirmation, (c) testimony, (d) sharing a common enemy, and (e) offerings. In addition, the analysis displays how the qualitative nature of social support evolved and shifted over time.
|Journal||Journal of Communication Studies|
|State||Published - 2009|