NBA Rookie Fined for Positive Tweet

NBA Rookie Brandon Jennings was recently fined $7,500 by the league office according to a recent post by J.E. Skeets at Yahoo. From the image you can see that the Bucks Rookie was excited about his teams recent win that got his team to a .500 winning percentage with the end of the Tweet stating “Way to Play Hard Guys.” Jennings was fined for the timing of his post, rather than what he Tweeted.

The NBA’s social media policy states that players cannot tweet during game time, defined as beginning 45 minutes before the game starts and ending after players have finished talking to the media after the game.

Jennings was a bit befuddled: “I understand I got fined, but 7500? For being happy over a win, you would of thought I said something bad. I mean it was a big win for us.”

As the NBA is a form of entertainment my guess is that if ratings  and attendance continue to drop, don’t be surprised if they loosen this policy a bit to allow the fan base to have a more intimate relationship with the players in the hopes of building a loyal following for its product (games).  We saw this earlier in the year with the Ladies Golf Tour (LPGA) – where the commissioner was encouraging golfers to tweet during the event.  Male golf Stewart Cink (@stewartcink) has over one million followers as a result of tweets like “Yeah much tougher hole. One of golf’s best tee shots, but not my favorite green.” Speaking of green, ultimately that is what will probably shape most sports leagues social media policies – what drives the most revenue; especially during these tough times.

By Erik Qualman

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9 responses to “NBA Rookie Fined for Positive Tweet

  1. they should have fined him for the bad grammar 🙂

  2. I consider the social media agreements and documents that were shoved at us (from our employers- be it sports or any other industry) one of those things that hit us in the face before we OR the employers even knew what all this was or would turn into. As in, someone around one of the big rectangle tables said “hurry up and draft rules, we’ll update as necessary. GO GO GO!”
    It’s unfortunately obvious that in order to kaibash the bad, you have to stomp down the good too, so as to have an equal playing field. (Pun NOT intended.)
    So…Yes, Brandon Jennings, you just contributed to team morale, franchise growth and fan appeal/loyalty…but unfortunately, because the rules are about as outdated as having to have a follow-up “No texting while driving, too” CA law (seriously…why don’t people plan ahead?) he will have to…how do they say…oh yes…”Take it.”

    I’d worry more about his representation of the organization he works for, since he still hasn’t learned the difference between “where/We’re” and “good/well.”

  3. hey this is a real nice post and i also like your blog layout, have bookmarked your site and looking for more updates.

  4. Interesting post Eric, timing is critical here, because media-rights mean advertising revenue.

    If the NBA exists to generate mass media advertising revenue for media channels, surely the case to make is that by social media can work as a feeder for mass media audiences – and therefore enhanced exposure to ads…

    Or we could try to make advertising work in social media, through social commerce…

    • Paul:

      Thanks for the comment – I agree with you. Once one sports league shows success with social media others will follow. We may look back and say, I can’t believe we were limiting this…

      Think about how NASCAR allows people to subscribe to hear the chatter that goes between the crew and driver.

  5. This is sad. Since the incorporation of social media is ongoing, I hope the NBA will evolve to accept and even encourage Tweets like this. Hard rules must be carefully tailored to achieve certain goals. If the NBA wants more involved fans, they will have to massage this one to allow players to express this kind of excitement. If you can’t use Twitter to spread good news, what can you use it for??!

    • Donna:

      Great point! Just like businesses are learning that don’t control everything anymore, major sports leagues will learn this too.

      Thanks for the input!

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