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Tuesday, 10 January 2012
Eight Tweeters Tweeting
My latest article from Bristol City's matchday programme, Red Alert: Millwall, Jan 3rd
(Slightly belatedly) At this time of year it seems every publication does some sort of
review of the year that was.To ensure
‘On the Social’ isn’t left out, here is the unofficial review of Twitter and football in 2011.
What happened in 2011?
tweets and more tweets:An explosion in
users, particularly those who regularly tweet and an ever-increasing number of
journalists, players and officials from across the footballing community.I would hazard a guess that the vast majority
of football clubs – if not all – now have an official account, whilst many also
have key personnel such as their press officers, media managers and commercial
managers tweeting officially.
Giggs was outed as a love-rat:This is
probably the story more than any other that raised public awareness of how you
can find things out on Twitter that you can’t always via mainstream media.Whilst Fleet Street and broadcasters were
restricted to talking about ‘an unnamed footballer’, Twitter users could be 99%
confident they knew who the mystery man was by the sheer volume of tweets on
3)Deserters:For every 100 new users there are countless
others, particularly famous ones who join but quickly disappear from view.Man Utd’s Darron Gibson was enticed to join
by his Old Trafford team-mates but inside just two hours received such a
horrendous amount of abuse (much of it from United fans) that he quickly
quit.Former City loanee Stephen Caulker
also made a brief appearance but soon disappeared for reasons unknown, whilst
Gary Neville sadly decided that a Sky punditry career didn’t fit with an open
Twitter account and his often amusing brotherly bickering arguments with Phil
I won’t go into this too much as two previous articles have already covered it
but unfortunately it seems that reported on-field incidents have resulted in
some deciding they can racially abuse footballers via their computer.Sadly this is not occurring in small numbers.
popular event:The overall Twitter
record for most tweets per second was amazingly broken twice in the same day by
two separate football events, and not necessarily the ones you’d expect.Whilst the Champions League final between
Barcelona and Man Utd trailed behind New Year’s Eve and the Royal Wedding as
events of note, on July 17th Brazil’s exit from the Copa America
peaked at 7,166 tweets per second worldwide.This was surprisingly trumped just hours later by a moment few would
guess could cause just a stir – the end of the Women’s World Cup.For the record, the Royal Wedding peaked at
just over 6,000, whilst US troops finding and killing Osama Bin Laden managed
just 5,200 tweets per second.
tweeted about:Whereas the event above
focuses on a single point in time, over the whole year it’s perhaps
unsurprising to find Wayne Rooney top of the list.The most famous English footballer is
naturally going to be a popular topic, especially when that player is on
Twitter, has had hair implants, gets sent off and banned from much of Euro 2012
and has a mildly amusing row with X Factor flop Frankie Cocozza.
Second in the list was Fernando Torres, with his poor form for
Chelsea a weekly source of gold dust for some of the wittier members of the online
community.The next three are far more
random, with ‘Howard Webb’ leading ‘Wembley Stadium’ and ‘Colo Colo’ (a Chilean
side) to complete the top 5.I’d love to
explain why, but can't. Frankly that’s just Twitter!
small stories become big news:The
ability of Twitter to transform what would previously have been a small, local
story, something that perhaps would merit a single paragraph in the daily
national papers into more of a feature has been notable.Billy Sharp’s celebration after scoring just days
after the death of his son, Sir Chris Hoy receiving insults from Tottenham fans
who mistook him for referee Chris Foy and Sam Bender, a Colchester player who
was on loan at Accrington Stanley and playing in a Johnstone’s Paint Trophy tie
when he was knocked unconscious and had to be given a drip whilst still on the
pitch are three such stories and there are undoubtedly many many more.
finally a more local angle:For City
fans it has been a year in which news about the club has been trending in the
UK on a handful of occasions.Keith
Millen trended nationally once the news broke that he was leaving the club, as
did Dave Jones and Billy Davies almost instantly as rumours began to surface of
who might be appointed his replacement.David
James’ appearance on Football Focus caused a plethora of users to remark whilst
more recently our 2-0 win against league leaders Southampton caused ‘Bristol
City’ to be in the top 3 trends of the evening, above all the Premier League
sides and much to the disgruntlement of many of the Twitter users from the
other side of our city!