The SJA represents sports journalists across Britain. The SJA is the only British sports journalism body affiliated to the Association Internationale de la Press Sportive (AIPS) and AIPS Europe and is Britain’s voice in international sports journalism affairs.
Who is it for?
Membership is open to full-time professional journalists based in Great Britain, a significant proportion of whose work is in sport.
The SJA is an essential service for all sports journalists – writers, sub-editors, photographers, presenters, producers, cameramen and editors – working in national and regional press, magazines, radio and television.
We ask all applicants to sign up online and pay your initial membership fee, and set up your annual subscription.
And we encourage all members to complete their profile, so that you can be included in the members’ area on the website.
What does it do?
The Association represents the British sports media on the British Olympic Association’s press advisory committee and offers advice to members covering other major events. The SJA also acts as a consultant to organisers of major events who need guidance on media requirements.
In addition we organise two major awards functions each year – the British Sports Awards sponsored by The National Lottery in December and the British Sports Journalism Awards in February or March. The journalism awards are widely regarded as the ‘Oscars’ of the industry.
We are also the exclusive gate-keepers of the coveted AIPS card. AIPS, the international federation of national sports journalists’ associations worldwide, is recognised by many prestigious organisations including FIFA, Uefa and the IAAF. Members who intend to work in France, in particular, are recommended to apply for an AIPS card.
Do you qualify – full?
All applications for full membership of the SJA must be proposed and seconded by current SJA members, and accompanied by three examples of your work, professionally published within the past three months (with byline or credit clearly shown and publication name and date). Broadcasters may submit three digital audio or video clips by email to email@example.com
In the case of those sports journalists whose work does not usually appear in a “bylined” format (sub-editors, photo editors, producers etc), then we will accept a signed covering note from a current sports editor or relevant department head who commissions or oversees your work.
If you are unable to find a proposer for your application, we cannot guarantee that your application will be accepted, but you may still apply with supporting documentation as outlined above to demonstrate that you qualify for SJA membership as a professional sports journalist, based in Great Britain.
Associate membership is available to those in allied or related work, such as public relations or working as sports press officers, sports professionals, or to students undertaking degree courses in journalism or working on college publications, but not yet in full-time employment. Again, to be successful, applicants need to be UK-based.
Associate members qualify for discounted tickets for SJA sports lunches and other member offers. Members’ guest rates for tickets for the SJA’s annual Sports Awards and Sports Journalism Awards events – a significant discount on the prices charged to non-members – are also available to associate members.
Associate members have their profile published in the SJA Yearbook, and they receive a free copy of the Yearbook, as well as receiving regular SJA email bulletins, with details of the Association’s activities, including early notification of our events.
SJA associate members may attend, but they have no voting rights, at the Association’s annual meeting. Nor may associate members vote for the Sportsman, Sportswoman or Team of the Year. Associate members do not qualify for AIPS membership, and nor do they receive the SJA Press Card.
It is understood that it may not be possible for applicants for associate membership to complete the application form with a proposer or seconder. In that case, applicants should obtain a covering letter from their sports editor, employer or university lecturer.