Social media mistakes in sports can have a huge impact on athletes and teams following, reputation and popularity.
If used in the right way, social media can bring the fans closer to the action. It can also make celebrity athletes appear personable and relatable. If used in the wrong way, it can have a devastating effect on an athlete’s career and the entire team’s image and reputation.
Living in the day of tweet and delete and the same old excuse of “I got hacked”, we have compiled the worst social media mistakes in recent memory.
Top 10 Social Media Mistakes in Sports
The Top 10 Social Media Mistakes in Sports list includes some extremely vulgar language and unacceptable offensive behaviour. Some of the posts may have been forgotten, so we have provided this list to look back on some of the biggest brain fades in sports history.
FYI if you’d rather listen to a fiery debate about the good, the bad and the ugly of social media and sports, you’ll definitely want to listen to our most recent Open Talks podcast episode.
10. Nick D’Arcy and Kendrick Monk
Just by looking at the faces these two are making sums up this tweet. They look like they are trying too hard to look tough and seem to be unaware that the tweet will land them in trouble.
The pair was sent home from the Australian swimming team soon after the tweet. And thankfully didn’t make any major headlines since this mistake in judgment.
Very poor choice of words and incredibly insensitive by Adidas. It’s not technically a social media post, but considering this email was sent to every participant who completed the Marathon, we are including it on the list.
It is unclear if they had any idea what they were posting, but the PR team should have picked this one up.
8. D’Angelo Russel
To film a teammate and ask him about his extramarital affairs when you know what the answer will be is just stupid. To allow this video to be posted and have “no clue” how it got out shows the immaturity of a 19 year old millionaire. Great way to break up a marriage and the locker room which needed all the help it could get.
The Lakers never trusted Russell to run the team after this post. And he was recently traded to the worst team in the league. Nick Young and Iggy Azalea broke up because of this and the rest is history.
7. Stephanie Rice
I understand that you can get excited about your home country winning a rugby match, but I don’t think it justifies a homophobic insult to the opposition. Stephanie Rice lost endorsements and a lot of her pride after this post.
6. Mike Wallace
The Baltimore Ravens wide receiver thought he would take it in his own hands when Jason Collins announced he was the first openly gay male athlete in the U.S. In an historic week for American sports, Wallace showed the ignorant attitude that has stopped gay athletes from coming out publicly. He decided to tweet out his lack of understanding of the outrage. Ignorance at its finest.
5. San Francisco Giants
It’s not clear how the Giants made this mistake unknowingly. Writing that letter three times in a row in a tweet is obviously offensive. And to think they didn’t see that before making that tweet is barely believable. To think that the Giants may have used this as a marketing tactic is just disgusting.
4. Cricket Australia
A very poor attempt at humour and a clear racial taunt at the opposition. Who knows what was going through their mind when they posted this. But to think this is acceptable behaviour towards an opposition player is concerning.
The tweet and delete method was used here as expected, and an apology was issued to sweep it under the rug. These things aren’t forgotten, stay classy cricket Australia.
3. Paul George
The newly acquired Oklahoma City player has always been open with his opinions. One opinion took it too far, when he decided to defend women beater Ray Rice.
His understanding of violence against women seems to be ignorant and way off point. He should choose the people he is defending more carefully and show some compassion for a female who has just been viciously assaulted.
2. Carmelo Anthony
The NBA might need to tighten up its stance on violence against women, as Carmelo Anthony decided to offer his followers money to assault a female.
It was a horrible look for Anthony. And to make matters worse, he seemed to get off extremely lightly. To condone violence against women is disgraceful in itself, but to make a public offer is just senseless.
1. Paraskevi Papachristou
This athlete never made it to the big stage because of this tweet she made just before her first Olympics in 2012. It was made worse simply for the fact that she acknowledged it was her take on humour and denied it was offensive.
How can you make a mistake like this and not understand the offence you have caused? It can only be ignorance and stupidity, and the career of Paraskevi Papachristou has never recovered. Let’s hope she can recover her understanding of racism.
Open Talks episode 6 – Social Media Mistakes in Sports
If you’d rather listen to a fiery debate about the crazy stuff that athletes get up to on social media, make sure to listen to our most recent Open Talks podcast episode.