Over the last few years, and particularly since the advent of Covid, it has been almost impossible to avoid the constant torrent of Media coverage concerning abuses of Social Media within sport, primarily football.
There have been many articles covering the racial abuse that has become prevalent within the game, indeed several pieces by our own writers have highlighted this problem.
It’s naive in the extreme, although very convenient, to lay all the blame at the door of Tech giants, even if their apparent lack of concern and action does make them an obvious target.
So, Social Media is bad! Simple perception, and easily grasped, particularly as a top line knee jerk reaction. But over the last few weeks the other side of the coin has had a bit of a shine.
The much heralded European Super League got an almighty battering across Social Media, and indeed it served as a rallying point for a lot of the concerted action that was taken against the money grasping clubs.
Another example of how the power of Twitter can be harnessed to positive effect was seen last week during the latest installment of the circus that is Tottenham Hotspur. Without delving too deeply into the thought processes behind even considering Gennaro Ivan Gattuso as Coach -that is another thing entirely- it was heartening to see Twitter utilised to good effect to stop the potential appointment in its tracks.
The hashtag #NoToGattuso soon picked up significant momentum within the Spurs fanbase as previous comments regarding ‘women in football, same-sex marriage and racism’ surfaced and were then highlighted across Social Media. Rapidly trending, the weight of disapproval seemed to push Tottenham into a rapid retreat from making a very dubious appointment that would have gone against inclusivity in a number of ways.
Would this have happened without the power and access of Social Media? In all honesty, probably not.
So, Social Media is good!
It’s not that simple is it, but perhaps these examples serve to remind us that most things have two sides to the story…