08.05.09

August 4 ’09 : The Day The ESPN Twittering Stopped (And Then Started Again)

Posted in Free Expression, Sports Journalism, Sports TV, The Internet at 10:40 pm by

“As social-media sites continue to mature” wrote ESPN.com’s Ryan Corazza, “the clamps are going to tighten on what athletes are allowed to do with it.” Funnily enough, Corazza chose not to mention his own company’s short-lived ban on social networking. In the space of less than 24 hours, contradictory memos were issued, first stating “personal websites and blogs that contain sports content are not permitted”, and after the resulting firestorm of ridicule, a second missive stating, “ESPN understands that employees may maintain or contribute to personal blogs, message boards, conversation pages and other forms of social media (such as Facebook and Twitter) outside of their job function and may periodically post information about their job or ESPN’s activities on these outlets. If an employee posts ESPN or job-related information, they are required to exercise good judgment, abide by ESPN policy, and take the following into consideration.”

Translation? The WWL would prefer their employees leave the story swiping breaking to the network’s existing or future platforms. Personal Tweeting (ie. if Adam Duritz and Tom Brady are both drowning and @sportsguy33 can only save one, who will he pick?) is permissible, just so long as no one does anything to embarrass the company (or gives the impression they’ve saved the good shit for their own blog). Sort of like most large companies, then.

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