Sports, Technology, and Public Figures being Stupid
Technology is a great gift to the world and aids us all in a multitude of ways.
As we have wrote on this blog, it is also a negative. At times.
Let’s take a look at what transpired this past week with two prominent NFL coaches. Urban Meyer and John Gruden were both victims of their own stupidity (that’s being nice). It looks like it just might cost them their jobs… at the very least.
Gruden made public earlier today that he was resigning after emails leaked and the New York Times churned out an article detailing many homophobic and misogynistic emails sent out by the Las Vegas Raiders coach.
Gonna go out on a limb here and state that he probably would have been fired if he did not resign.
Across the country in Jacksonville, Urban Meyer is under fire for being photographed and videoed at a bar in Ohio drinking and openly flirting with a multitude of women. He is married and preaches his faith routinely to the public.
What do these two situations have in common? Neither individual was cognizant of the ramifications of technology.
Gruden saying and writing those things is absolutely uncalled for and an entirely separate issue.
But to be the leader of an organization and openly put those words into writing via email? Beyond dumb. How could he not know what was coming? There are these things called screenshots these days.
Meyer is an idiot, too. He is one of the most popular figures in the state of Ohio, having coached at Ohio State for many years. He thinks that he is going to stroll into a bar to binge drink and schmooze women and not be filmed? Yikes!
These situations are beyond unfortunate any way you analyze them. It isn’t uncommon to hear of players getting caught through some form of technology being a dummy. But coaches? They should know better.
This brings the question to the table: what are these organizations, and others inside and outside of sports, doing?
As I alluded to above, situations like these happen routinely nowadays with our smartphones in our pockets.
It amazes me how often public figures still make the same mistake. Perhaps it is time for PR departments to invest more time and incentive into preventing it.
It seems obvious, but apparently not. Do big organizations need to hire a social media coach for players and coaches? Do they need counseling on how not to be a technological dumbass? Is the PR department too fearful of these high-level stars to tell them to their face that there is absolutely zero tolerance for being stupid in public or tweeting something controversial?
Perhaps these situations need to be outlined in their lucrative contracts in an attempt to lessen them. Once again, this reaches far beyond sports. It isn’t 1985 anymore.
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