Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

from Jack Shafer:

If I unfollowed you, it’s because you tweeted about the World Cup

WC Tweet

At the rate I'm going, the number of people I follow on Twitter will have dropped from 640 to zero on July 13, after the last World Cup match concludes.

I've never been sentimental about Twitter, randomly unfollowing gassy and predictable feeds when flooded by their abundant and stupefying tweets, or pruning my list to make room for new voices. I can only assume that other Twitter devotees similarly budget their accounts, otherwise how could one keep up with the traffic?

Last month, soccer enthusiasts simplified the editing of my follow list by tweeting expansively about the World Cup. They published pre-game tweets. They live-tweeted matches. They offered post-game tweets. They tweeted about soccer fashion, about the officials' bad calls, about the stadiums, other fans, the weather, other tweets, and more. If you're a heavy Twitter user, you know what I'm talking about.

As a soccer agnostic, with no hatred for or interest in the game, these many tweets hold a negative value for me. So, on June 12, when Brazil took on Croatia in the first match, and fans filled Twitter with the written equivalent of a vuvuzela orchestra, I tweeted my minor rebellion: "If I unfollowed you, it's because you tweeted about the World Cup. Nothing personal."

Ryder Cup shows sportsmanship at its best

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GOLF-ENGLAND/If golf is an island of civilisation in a world of sport awash with cheating then the Ryder Cup is the coconut-laden palm tree on top.

Golf’s core values are honesty, self-regulation, absolute and unquestioning observance of even the most archaic rules and its great gift to the world – etiquette.

from Olympics Notebook: Vancouver 2010:

Sweden’s Queen of the Slopes revels in lack of attention

OLYMPICS/All the pre-Olympic attention in women’s Alpine Skiing has been on American Lindsey Vonn, her form, her posing on the cover of Sports Illustrated, her shin injury, her cheesetherapy, her husband/coach/spokesman Thomas and her ever so hip social networking ability (yes, she tweets her facebook updates). It’s almost as though seven-times world champion Anja Paerson wasn’t here…..

Which suits the 28-year-old Swede just fine. The true Queen of the Slopes, the most successful active women’s skier on the circuit, Paerson doesn’t mind the lack of attention.

from Olympics Notebook: Vancouver 2010:

Lindsey gets down with her digital Vonn-tourage

FILM-BUZZ/Lindsey Vonn has re-connected with her huge online following -- which I, for one, am determined to call her Digital Vonn-tourage -- and put a brief dalliance with old media behind her.

Vonn, the 25-year-old Alpine skiing world champion and Face of the Games, turned to a major U.S. TV network and a traditional IOC press conference to break the news on Wednesday that she had a badly bruised shin that might keep her out of the Olympics.

Dangers of joining the sporting Twitterati

New Zealand All Blacks coach Graham Henry played the part of the befuddled old fogey bemused by modern life and confused by new technology with a certain wry amusement towards the end of his team’s European tour late last year.

Neemia Tialata and Cory Janes revealed on Twitter they had been left out of the team to play England 24 hours before Henry formally announced the side.

Technology and the modern sports fan

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NBA/“What are you doing?” This simple question is the basic premise of Twitter, the growing social media website that has transformed how many fans get their daily dose of sports news.

In addition to the newsfeeds provided by established brands (@ReutersSport is a good one!) there are feeds directly from the major sports offices (@MLB,@NFL, @NBA). Then there are the athletes themselves, providing everything from perspective on current events to personalized fan interaction.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

Twitter might not be harmless fun for players

The days when the details of transfer negotiations were closely guarded secrets could be coming to an end with the advent of the 'Twitter transfer'.

On Wednesday, U.S. national team striker Jozy Altidore all but announced a move to English Premier League Hull City on the micro-blogging site, keeping his fans updated while Hull remained silent.

Crash suggests Armstrong has bigger problems

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On Monday morning, I told one of my colleagues: “Today (on Tour of Castilla y Leon) should be cool. Decisive stage is Tuesday with the time trial.”

It looks like I was wrong.

Around 4.15pm, my telephone went mad, I received dozens of updates on Twitter. What almost never happened, had just happened badly: LA had crashed and broken his collarbone.

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