Agents Begin Task Of Cleaning Up Old, Offensive Social Media Posts
Sports agents in recent weeks have "undertaken emergency Twitter work, carefully excavating, scrutinizing and, if need be, deleting youthful indiscretions and ignorance" from their clients, according to Rick Maese of the WASHINGTON POST. Agents across multiple sports said that recent headlines have "prompted athletes to delve into their Twitter histories, searching for anything offensive or controversial that might have been sitting forgotten and unnoticed." A source said that one NBA team even "reached out to representatives of all of its players" this week, "urging them to 'do a deep dive' through social media histories." Brewers P Josh Hader, Braves P Sean Newcomb and Nationals SS Trea Turner were all in the news recently after they "used offensive language in posts made during their teen years." Wasserman Senior VP/Baseball Nick Chanock said that the revelations of the past two weeks have "sparked 'a lot of dialogue' within the agency and among its clients." But Maese notes scrolling through "thousands of old tweets could be tedious and cumbersome." A source from a prominent agency said, "It's not a five-minute process, and Twitter makes it hard for you to do. I think there's some misconceptions out there. That's not to excuse any offensive tweet, but the process is not as easy as people think." A source said, "Our job is to help these guys and advise them. The responsibility is theirs, but we're here as a resource for them. In the end, it's the player, it's his timeline, it's his responsibility" (WASHINGTON POST, 8/3).
STRIKING OUT? Following Yankees P Sonny Gray this week defending an old tweet with racial language in it, SPORTSNET.ca's Donnovan Bennett wrote the four "very similar incidents occurring in just over a month" show MLB "has a major problem on its hands." The "challenges now lie in how, if at all, MLB can prevent future similar incidents from occurring" and whether the punishment handed out to date will "serve as an appropriate deterrent for such behavior going forward." So far, there has "been no 'discipline' beyond some sensitivity training and club issued apologies." This has been an "opportunity lost for MLB to demonstrate how serious they are about becoming a more inclusive game" (SPORTSNET.ca, 8/2).