Being more up to date on sports news than someone else is one key feature that makes one fan more dedicated than the next. ESPN, Bleacher Report and other media news resources are, and have been for many years the prime places to check when it comes to finding the most recent news. However, in recent times, the evolution of Facebook and Twitter have given athletes opportunities and freedom to give you, the fans, the most up to date and real news you could ever ask for. I mean how much better can it get than receiving news about your favorite squad from your favorite player? You are now immersed in your favorite athletes life like never before, now knowing what’s on his mind, what his likes and dislikes are, and simply knowing who the man is. However, to all of these upsides of having a twitter accout, there are some very big downsides.
Let’s take the case of recent twitter man Johnny Manziel. Johnny Football was recently kicked out of a University of Texas fraternity party, and from watching the video posted online by a Texas student, it wasn’t a very nice way to say goodbye. A Texas student soon after sent a rather mean tweet to Mr. Manzeil about his talents being fraudulent. Johnny Football apparently took offense and tweeted a picture back to him of his Heisman Trophy indicating his talents were quite the opposite of what the Texas student had proposed.
I can’t imagine that Manziel’s public image benefited from this interaction, although some people did think it was funny. There was a feeling of overconfidence portrayed by Manziel, and I’m sure many of his fans and definitely A&M’s athletic program didn’t view this positively. This was a minor case of twitter abuse, but imagine how far twitter interactions could go if twitter got into the wrong person’s hands. Imagine what universities will have to deal with due to the ignorance and stupidity of an athlete who doesn’t react well to a comment. Or who just doesn’t have the best judgement.
Social media definitely has its positives, but there could be some very large negatives that could hurt a universities reputation, and universities may have to acknowledge this and set some limitations before it’s too late.