This Weeks Article
By Ryan Henry, March 7th, 2011
I am hilarious on Twitter. I know this because not one, but two of my tweets have been re-tweeted. You can find us @athletesangle. No big deal.
I think the first re-tweet was legit and based on merit. The second was during a Twitter training session and so probably shouldn’t count. I joined Twitter as a way to foist my hilarity onto others. Although I like to pat myself on the back and laugh hysterically at any low hanging fruit that I manage to pluck, it seems on most occasions I am outwitted or beaten to the punch.
Twitter has become my Super Bowl party. A group of friends, acquaintances and strangers that all gather around the proverbial water cooler and really stick it to Fergie, Glenn Beck or Jason Garrett (see above mentioned re-tweet). I am fascinated by this group collective that manages to squeeze out absolute gems. Although originally I thought I would win a GoldenTwit award for most amusing and quickest on the draw, I have since realized that if you don’t dig deep, your comment will be quickly labelled vanilla, or far worse, end up a carbon copy.
Once faced with this realization, I didn’t give up on sweet, sweet Twitter comedic fame. Now I, like the NBA, should have contracted and focused on improving my craft. Not buying it? Me neither. Actually, I’ve been learning that Twitter, like old people and moisturizing lotion, can be useful. While pushing my account like an addictive drug, I was asked why anyone would want to be on Twitter if they are on Facebook. I wasn’t sure how to answer at the time, just like when I was asked: Are you a medium or large? Now I know. Large! Almost always large.
Twitter allows you to keep your finger on the pulse of the sporting community. Every beat reporter out there fights their way to be the first to post breaking news and you can be the beneficiary. It takes significant time to write and submit an article, but only seconds to break a huge story in 140 characters or less. What this means is that I can be a shallow sports fan and still catch important news while saving time for Simpsons re-runs, without investing all the time of reading through each two-bit journalists attempt at being relevant. Yes, I realize the irony, but you’re already reading so I’ve won this round. The world of sporting media can be collapsed down into short sentences that really work with, and not against, my short attention span.
Your favorite athletes are now mixing it up in the Twitter fray. Mouthpieces like @ochocinco, @blakegriffin and @kingjames are now using this medium to express feelings at both ends of the spectrum, share personal experiences and build brand hype. Getting information from the horse’s mouth is the only way to go. The spelling may be atrocious. The contribution to the decline of journalistic integrity is appalling. The pedestal that you put your favorite celebrity on may be swiftly kicked out from beneath them when you realize your goldfish makes better contributions. It may be scary at times, but in the end I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it’s worth it.
A good friend once told me that Twitter is like having your favorite person texting you 50 times a day. The beauty being that if they annoy you, you can click a button and never hear from them again.
Catch Athletes Angle every Monday at 2 p.m. on UMFM.