The social media aftermath of Michael Sam being drafted

Here we are on Monday, two days after openly gay defensive end Michael Sam was drafted in the seventh round of the NFL draft by the St. Louis Rams. Some players jumped on Twitter to vent, which led to my post on Sunday about how many still have no clue about the power of social media.

Then former Ole Miss basketball player Marshall Henderson struck this morning. Henderson is very outspoken and his diatribe about Sam held true to his persona. After Sam was drafted, he kissed his boyfriend and it was shown on ESPN’s draft coverage. That scene has been the lightning rod for much of the criticism coming since Saturday, including Henderson’s. But Henderson took things to another level… then tried to backtrack and explain himself. Based on his twitter mentions, not many people are buying it.

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NFL draft proves some are still clueless about the power of social media

Leave it to the NFL draft to bring out the worst in some current and retired NFL players. Memo to you all: In case you haven’t figured it out, when something noteworthy or historic happens — like the St. Louis Rams drafting the NFL’s first openly gay player — the media is looking for a reaction. We know you’re going to react. If you react in a negative way, it WILL blow up in a bad way and reputations will be tarnished.

Let’s begin with former NFL running back Derrick Ward. After seeing defensive end Michael Sam kiss his boyfriend on ESPN following Sam’s selection by the Rams, Ward ran to the Twitter machine and threw darts.

Ward’s Twitter mentions went crazy.

Ward later backtracked and said even if Sam would have kissed a woman, he would have said the same thing — but it was too late. Google “Derrick Ward” now and he’s forever associated with his instant, negative response to Sam’s kiss. When you’re a retired player, you can’t count on many new stories coming out to bump those search results down.

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Now we move on to Miami Dolphins safety Don Jones.

When he heard Sam had been drafted by the Rams, the second-year player tweeted “OMG” and “horrible.” The tweets were quickly deleted, but, again, it didn’t matter. He also locked down his account and “protected” his tweets. Again, too late. The damage had been done.

Now Jones’ and his team are taking heat and his general manager is being forced to speak about the issue, distracting from the Dolphins’ draft.

“I was disappointed in those comments,” Dolphins general manager Dennis Hickey said. “That’s not what we stand for as an organization. The draft weekend is the culmination for so many players of their lifetime achievement of their dream to achieve their goal. For Michael Sam, for all the other players, it’s such a great celebration as they begin their future. We’re going to sit down with Don Jones and address (the tweet) appropriately.”

It’s unfortunate that anyone has to address anything, but social media lessons are painful and the medium’s power gets stronger every day.

Update: The Miami Dolphins announced Sunday night defensive back Don Jones was fined and excused from team activities until he undergoes sensitivity training.

>> Click here to read about Scott’s Social Media Boot Camp

Cringeworthy headline of the day

This gem comes to us from the Evansville Courier & Press. Oops.

PayPal executive fired after Twitter rant during Jazz Fest

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Rakesh “Rocky” Agrawal, PayPal’s Director of Strategy, was fired after calling out co-workers on Twitter, including PayPal’s VP of Global Communications who he called a “useless middle manager,” among other choice words. 

After having “the best night of his life” at Jazz Fest last weekend, Agrawal went off the rails.

This tweet from PayPal quickly followed.

Then there’s this from the President of PayPal. He’s not happy.

“Since his tasteless tweets first became public, Rocky has posted positive remarks about myself and other PayPal leaders. Thanks but no thanks, Rocky. When you attack and insult my team, you attack, and insult me and the rest of PayPal.”

Here’s the rest of the statement.

Another career up in flames because of social media carelessness.

Social Media Boot Camp at Brother Martin High School

I recently spoke to the senior class at Brother Martin High School about the benefits and pitfalls of social media. It’s an important subject I enjoy speaking about, and as the students wrap up their high school careers and set their sights on college, I think it’s critical for them to realize how easily a 140 character tweet, Facebook post or Instragram picture can haunt them, literally, forever.

When it comes to social media, you never know what’s going to stick. I use numerous real-life examples (including one that involves me) that are certainly attention-getting.

I enjoyed the talk and the students were attentive, receptive and responsive. For anyone interested, I can customize my presentation for any size group.

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Scott’s social media boot camp

social_mediaSpeaking about the benefits and pitfalls of social media in life, family and career is something I’m very passionate about. Too many good careers and reputations have been torched because of an ill-advised Facebook post or tweet.

CEOs, student-athletes, professional athletes, teachers, broadcasters, Public Relations executives and other professionals have all screwed up. Social media stupidity is far-reaching and does not discriminate.

I’ve won several social media awards and am active on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram daily. Plus, I actually work in the media… unlike a lot of the people who claim to be social media experts. I like to say I have a lot of experience practicing what I preach.

My social media presentations can be customized for any group, large or small — high school, college or pro athletes, high school seniors, college undergrads, recent college graduates, professionals and more.

I believe that no matter what stage of life we’re in, we never stop learning about social media. It’s constantly evolving and we should always be getting better at it.

My presentations typically last 60-90 minutes and cover social media platforms, statistics, branding, responsibility, stupidity and more. The real-life examples I use are informative, entertaining and, often, gasp inducing. Timing of the presentations can be adjusted and, as noted earlier, they are fully customizable.

Here is some feedback shared on Twitter from the last presentation I did for the Senior class at Brother Martin High School:

  • “I loved your talk today and I got to be in your selfie which is pretty cool!!!”
  • “Great having @ScottWalker6 come talk to our class today. Thanks for coming!”
  • “Thank You to @ScottWalker6 for giving us an amazing presentation today.”
  • “Enjoyed listening to @ScottWalker6 talk to Brother Martin senior class today about social media!”

Contact me for more information. Fill out the form below or shoot me an email.

Twitter duel: Saints block Seattle TV station

It looks like Seattle’s KIRO 7 Eyewitness News tried to follow the Saints on twitter. No such luck.

What’s next? E-newsletter hacking? I like the build-up to this game… and find the “block” pretty funny.

Monday Night’s Suit: Based on Your Tweets, You Hated it

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Last night I tweeted that there hadn’t been this much talk about my wardrobe since I did a live shot with my zipper down in 1995. Viewers had a field day with this ensemble which, in hindsight, could have looked better. My kids hated it. My wife hated it. One viewer tweeted that it was “the worst shirt/tie combination in the history of haberdashery.”

Here’s video from the end of the newscast.

And here are viewer tweets:

https://twitter.com/charelno5/status/341761486064074752

Twitter Analyzed: The Farther Away We Are, The Happier We Are

Some brainy people at the University of Vermont studied “37 million tweets from 180,000 individuals in 2011 that also gave their location. They then characterized the movement associated with each individual.”

The study basically concluded that the farther we are from our average tweeting location, the happier we are.

The researchers say tweets authored thousands of kilometers from from an individual’s expected location are more likely to contain the words “beach,” “great,” “restaurant” and so on and less likely to contain negative words such as “no,” “don’t,” “hate” and the suchlike. However, when people are closer to their average location, they are more likely to laugh using words like “hahaha.”

Read more HERE.

Saints Fans Love to Tweet

Saints fans stand out when it comes to tweeting.

Engineers from Rice University and Motorola Mobility are monitoring each NFL team this season in the Twitterverse.

The results? The Dallas Cowboys are the top-tweeted team during games, followed by the Philadelphia Eagles, Detroit Lions and New Orleans Saints.

Saints fans tweet about nine times per second during games.

Stay Connected During a Disaster

Now is a good time to pass along a tip that may be helpful if a hurricane or other disaster affects you.

You know your cell phone service will disappear for a while, so texting will be your best bet to stay connected. Text messages use significantly less data than a phone call.

Here’s something you may not know about: If you use twitter, you can post, follow, unfollow, receive notifications, retweet and direct message. It’s a simple process to go through and only took me about 30 seconds to set up my phone. You can have as much or as little access as you’d like. Better to do it now and be ready than try to figure it out when all of a sudden you don’t have internet access on your device. But be careful — if you’re on a limited texting plan you could eat those up pretty quickly.

Here’s how to do it:

When you’re logged into twitter on your computer, go here, then click the mobile tab and you’re on your way.

Simple.

Video: Social Media’s Impact on the Bin Laden Story

Monday night on WDSU News at 10, I talked with Paul Brandus (@WestWingReport on twitter) via Skype about the death of Osama bin Laden and the impact of social media on a fast-developing story with worldwide interest.

The WDSU Team on Twitter

Twitter_256x256Here’s an updated list of the WDSU gang on Twitter, not including me.

WDSU News: @WDSU
WDSU News at 4: @WDSU4PM
News Anchor Camille Whitworth: @CamilleWhit6
News Anchor Norman Robinson: @NormanRobinson1
News Anchor Melanie Hebert: @MelanieHebert
Reporter Siemny Chhuon: @Siemny
Reporter Travers Mackel: @TraversMackel
Chief Meteorologist Margaret Orr: @MargaretOrr
Meteorologist Jay Galle: @JayGalle
Meteorologist Patrick Crawford: @MeteorologistPC
Sports Anchor Fletcher Mackel: @FletcherMackel
Sports Anchor Keli Fulton: @KeliFulton
Web Editor Kayla Castille: @KaylaC

Live Coverage: Jazz Half Marathon

Saturday morning is my earliest wake-up call since leaving the morning shift at WESH in Orlando 14 months ago. The WDSU crew working the Second Annual Jazz Half Marathon and Relay has a 4:30 a.m. call. It’s early, but the cause is a great one. The goal is to raise funds for Children’s Hospital, promote health and fitness and have a good time. We plan to do just that.

WDSU is broadcasting the event live from 6-10 a.m. from various locations along the race course. Morning news anchor Melanie Hebert and I will be live from the balcony of Ernst Cafe on S. Peters.

The Half Marathon is a standard, 13.1 mile course stretching from the New Orleans Convention Center to Audubon Park and back. The race will start on Convention Center Blvd. at Girod St. and finish on S. Peters St. at Girod St.

Come see us at Ernst Cafe. I’ll post updates here and on Twitter throughout the morning. The race will also be streamed live at WDSU.com.

 

Video: 45 Days of Ties in 34 Seconds

So the run is over. I went 45 days without wearing the same time on the air twice.

When I started doing a daily #tietweet on twitter just for fun, a former co-worker told me I couldn’t post repeats. I took that as a challenge and decided 45 days would be the magic number. I’d like to thank my ties for understanding…especially the ones I usually wear often.

Here’s a recap of the no-repeat tie tweets.

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