In two recent blog posts, Rugby journalist Dan Retief, author of The Springboks and the Holy Grail, looks into the PR disasters resulting from Springbok captains and other famous sportspersons taking to twitter to share their thoughts. One of Retief’s own tweets, based on another article he wrote, earned him a rap over the knuckles from Springbok captain John Smith, because Retief questioned whether or not the Springboks have the same level of desire to win as they had in 2007:
Jack Dorsey, the founder of Twitter, apparently defined the truncated cell phone social medium as “a short burst of inconsequential information” and likened it to the ‘chirps from birds.”
Innocuous statements in less than 140 characters but as a newsman I have long been aware of the snares that await the unwary “tweeter.”
Recently for instance Stefan Terblanche was slapped with a hefty fine by Sanzar after breaking their code of conduct on Twitter during the Super Rugby campaign.
The windswept links of Sandwich are far removed from the craggy heights and green pastures of New Zealand – as far apart I suppose as Darren Clarke and John Smit.
Okay, you could say they share a body shape but you can hardly compare the sedate activities of a golf professional with those of a professional rugby player so you may well ask where this column is heading?
For once I’ll get there quickly. It goes to an answer I have given to a question I have been asked each time at the conclusion of speeches I have made recently with my book and the forthcoming World Cup as the subject.
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Ronnie Apteker, author of Funny Business: The Secrets of an Accidental Entrepreneur, keeps the funny tweets rolling in. It probably helps that he is spending a lot of time these days with comedians Riaad Moosa and Joey Rasdien on the set of Material: The Movie, of which he is the producer. We bring you a selection of the best one-liners from his Twitter account:
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Yesterday morning, cricketer Herschelle Gibbs delighted his nearly 20 000 followers on Twitter by announcing that he would be giving away quite a lot of his sporting memorabilia – which some consider to be priceless – tweet by tweet.
Why was he doing this? Gibbs, who is always very much “to the point” when he speaks, had the answer at his fingertips:
The sportsman’s missing out on the upcoming Cricket World Cup, so he’s happy to give away items from what he considers to be moments of lesser significance in the sporting arena to his fans – including a gift that might be considered the biggest piece of one-day memorabilia of all:
TimesLIVE has more:
Gibbs, who mutually terminated his contract with Cricket SA last year, after making revelations about the local game in his autobiography To The Point, promised his more than 19000 followers gifts if they gave him correct answers to questions he had tweeted.
He tweeted yesterday: “OK morn(ing) peeps, just as a small thank u from me, my 20000th follower will receive my last Proteas shirt I will prob(ably) ever wear, Oakleys (sunglasses) and a cap.”
But when people already following him complained that it was unfair, he thought of another way to give away his belongings. He said if he could he would give all his followers a shirt, “but there will be one lucky person… unfort(unately) there’s only one Oprah, folks”.
…and so does Gibbs:
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With the release, yesterday, of Herschelle Gibbs’ tell-all autobiography, The the Point, the cricketer has – quite understandably – been at the centre of a media storm. Here we present the best of the post-release coverage, starting with a competition to WIN a copy of the book:
Next, a fresh excerpt from the book?
The Proteas were to tour the West Indies for the first time in 2001. Although the Proteas had played a few ODIs and one Test in the West Indies in 1992, this was the first full-blown South African cricket tour to the islands. You could say that it was a fairly big deal.
Shaun Pollock was the Proteas captain, and when we got to Antigua for the fourth Test, we were leading the series 1-0, with two to play. By the fourth day of the Test, it was already clear that we were going to win the match and, therefore, the series. We just needed a few wickets on the last day, and that would be it – we would have beaten the West Indies in their own backyard.
So, sitting in the changing room at the end of that fourth day, enjoying a few beers with the guys, I suggested that perhaps it might be fun – not to mention highly appropriate – for us to celebrate the sheer momentousness of the occasion by partaking of the local herb.
Gibbs sat down for an interview with Zoopy TV; catch his thoughts about releasing the book and looking back on his international career:
The reaction from Gibbs’ fellow cricketers and the public at large has swung wildly between condemnation and support. Here are some tweets that have got everyone talking:
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