In the New York Times, Noah Cohan considers basketball fandom.
"Digital media technology enabled fans to self-publish, prompting a flourishing of sportswriting untethered to the traditional narratives favored by journalists who thought in column inches. The N.B.A. was comparatively a competitive vacuum, and they filled it with their own projected stories.
“Though fan considerations of sports and their narrative ramifications for personal identity long predated the web, the internet both amplified them and fostered their critical potential,” Noah Cohan, a lecturer in American cultural studies at Washington University in St. Louis, wrote in his doctoral dissertation focused on evolving sports fandom.
Cohan cited Bill Simmons, now the chief executive of the sports and culture website The Ringer, as having honed a fan-perspective style that greatly influenced sportswriting. But for him, the defining site was FreeDarko."