Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Twitter and professional sport

Twitter and celebrities go hand in hand. Just about anyone who's anyone (including me - @Statto1927) has a Twitter account, tweeting their every move.

Professional sportsmen and women are no exception, and people like me are genuinely interested in hearing things direct from the horses mouth that we might otherwise not get to see or hear.

However, as with all things, there's a fine line which is crossed occasionally, sometimes with catastrophic results. Philip Hughes the Australian cricket opener was reprimanded and banned from tweeting after he announced that he was dropped from the side before it was officially announced.

I follw James Anderson (@JimmyAnderson9), Graham Swann (@Swannyg66), and Tim Bresnan (@timbresnan) amongst some others whose banter is often amusing, sometimes very close to the knuckle, and sometimes just dull.

However, today, one of England cricket's greatest celebrities Kevin Pietersen (@kevinpp24) announced via Twitter that he had been dropped from the England T20 side. Bad enough if he'd done it before any official announcement, but he also used a rather bold expletive to reinforce his unhappiness about it. He also revealed that he was moving to Surrey - perhaps less of a surprise but again prior to any announcement.

The repercussions of this are likely to be that all England cricketers will be banned from using Twitter. That's a shame, but probably predictable if people can't be more professional about how they use the service.

I wouldn't dream of putting myself in the same arean as KP an others (although I have scored a few tons in my time) and anything I tweet is personal or a personal view about things that I think are relevant, interesting or that I have a general opinion on. However, I would not for example tweet about anything specifically to do with my employment or employer (other than I might be having a bad day for example). If I did so, I'd expect to get a quick march down to the bosses office to explain my actions and unprofessional behaviour at best, and a request to pick up my P45 on my way out at worst.

In a black week for cricket with the allegations of spot betting and corrupt Pakistani cricketers, this is the last thing England cricket needed.

KP might be a brilliant cricketer (though sadly out of touch and thus the reason why he was dropped), but a little more thought about what he was doing when he tweeted that wouldn't have gone amiss. On the other hand, if he's free this weekend, mabe he could come and bolster our Tour sqaud for our annual sojourn to Torquay!

No comments: