Athletes Using Social Media

http://www.annarbor.com/news/as-twitter-incidents-multiply-michigan-athletes-sign-social-media-contract-and-try-to-avoid-controve/

This article looks into the positives and negatives of athletes in college sports that have a twitter or Facebook account. There are so many blow outs that come from a tweet or Facebook post that can seriously hurt an athletes reputation and even standing within their school. Multiple players have been suspended or even had their scholarships revoked due to bad social media presence. Being an athlete you have to know that what you put out there will be seen due to the nature of social networking, and if it violates a team or school policy further action will be pursued. 

Playing on the RIT hockey team every player is encouraged to have twitter and tweet to promote the games. However, there have been more than  a few times where tweets have been requested or demanded to be taken down because of the content. It’s a dangerous slope for some athletes to speak what’s really on their mind, and sometimes their emotions get the best of them. The article gives an example of a recruit losing his scholarship to Michigan based on a sexually motivated tweet. Not so much for college hockey, but basketball and football players throughout the country receive an enormous amount of attention during their school years. ESPN daily has segments highlighting tweets that make the news in good and bad ways. Everyone will see what an athlete puts on their social media platforms, but should it be up to the athlete or the governing body to decide which content in appropriate?

5 thoughts on “Athletes Using Social Media

  1. This topic I think should really be discussed. I think it has been an issue since Twitter has been around and people aren’t really coming to a consensus on how to address it. I think its sort of similar to Facebook, where maybe alternate profiles must be made where it is known to be you but not directly linked for any professional business where curation is needed. It is unfair for restrictions to be put on athletes freedom of speech and limiting their expressive thoughts and opinions no matter what.

    Twitter, like Facebook is a platform that is checked by professionals and it would be in the best interest of the athlete to keep this in mind. Although not the best solution, it is unfair and hard to do, but I think the best solution is to create alternate profiles to keep from holding back what you want to say but also to keep the balance of professionalism and personal profiles stable.

  2. I think this same thing can be used to describe how celebrities, politicians, and other public figures use social platforms as well. Pretty much anyone who has some influence over a lot of people has to very careful with what they put out there for everyone to see. Is it fair? Not really, and it is restricting freedom of speech and right to express opinions.

    The other side to the argument is that college athletes are representing their school not only on the court, field, or ice, but also outside of the game as well. Schools are often judged by how their students and athletes act and behave. So it is important to consider how what you’re saying will affect people before you put it out there. So I agree with the first comment, it’s probably best to have a personal account where you can say anything, and then a little more reserved public one.

  3. Good topic choice! It actually plays off my post really well! Athletes are being encouraged to use social media, however, there is a fine line that tends to get crossed sometimes. It is great getting to see and feel like you are actually connecting or keeping up with your favorite athlete, but how far is too far when it comes to them giving out their personal views. This is one of the major downfalls of social media. Athletes must remember that not all fans or followers share their same views and putting them out there could cause great issues.

  4. Very interesting topic, with having Twitter for a while, I’m following some athletes, mainly car race drivers eventho they are not exactly considered as being athletes ha. it is very cool when you are able to connect with your favorite athletes and be able to communicate with them, it allows you to develop connection and network with the people that you have been wanting to connect with. Athletes are usually known to be shown in public and they are always watched or so such as people always knowing where they are or what they are doing. Athletes got to be careful on what they tweet or such because it can hurt their reputation and they would lose followers or so. Privacy is some kind of issue with people nowadays because the social media brings them out to public now. Athletes and social media do mix and do not mix at times such as when they need privacy, people can always try to connect with them and they would feel like they are not left alone. Great post!

  5. I think this is important to realize. Athletes using Twitter is truely a controversial topic. A lot of female sports teams actually deactivate their Twitter accounts during season. The entire UConn women’s team is asked to do it at the beginning of the season (Oct 15th). If they do not then all of their coaches are allowed access to see what is being posted. Geno Auriemma (their coach) does actively use his Twitter; however, take Brie Stewart from CNS who is a freshman now, her last Tweet was at the beginning of the season and announced, “see you in april #roadtoeight”. Athletes are always in the public eye.
    We talk about it every year at our all athletes meeting at RIT. If there is a party and it gets busted and they take names, the headlines will not read 20 Students Busted for (insert party term). The headline will read 8 Athletes Arrested at Party and then will go on to name them in the article while the other students will not be named. It is sad but true, in most things athletes are held to a higher standard because they are expected to perform and be a role model. Good Post!

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