Pop culture essays, criticism, fistfights

The Twitter Report: Athletes Get The Hook-up

If Jordan were 25 years younger, he'd be all over Twitter.

Previously in this feature, I've approached Twitter as a new way to communicate, start fights, and follow hot moms. Now, I turn my attention to one of Twitter's most fascinating achievements - the microblogging solution's ability to facilitate the random hook-ups for athletes and celebrities.

Take any famous person (typically a guy, and especially an athlete) and look through the people that he follows. Outside the accounts of the few peers that he respects, you're left with a pretty homogenous group: hot chicks. And not just hot chicks, super hot chicks. And these guys don’t follow too many people, which makes it so obvious it’s almost unbelievable.

Twitter is a great facilitator for this sort of thing (this sort of thing = random hook-ups) for a few reasons. For one, it’s not as personal as Facebook. These guys don’t have to worry about sharing personal information or navigating complex privacy settings. Also, mutually following someone unlocks the ability to send direct messages; 140 characters that can only be seen by the two people involved and are delivered through both email and text message. Just… you know, to make sure.

In order to demonstrate this, I selected a few athletes from the Twitter list of people in sports and went through the last 20 people each followed. The results are pretty remarkable.

@mchalmers15

The Miami Heat guard and KU grad’s profile reads: “yo wats poppin, its ya boy mario chalmers anything u wanna know bout me ask me.” So my question is: of the 124 people you decided to follow what, exactly, drew you to M!$$ Ju!cy’s timeline?

@rudygay22

Pro basketball player Rudy Gay follows a lot of other basketball players, but that’s not where he really does his networking… nahmean?!!!

@shaun_white

I wanted to make a point and show that professional basketball players aren’t the only reckless philanderers on Twitter, but the only babes that Shaun White follows are Paula Dean and Padma Lakshmi. A stand up guy, that Flying Carrot.

@Mark_Sanchez

Marky Mark is a relatively light user on Twitter and the people he follows are pretty boring for a piece like this: Bear Grylls, Chris Mortensen, Lidia Monroe - whoa, DJ! Erra, erra! Spin that one back! Atta boy, Mark. Knew you wouldn’t disappoint.

@ochocinco

Chad follows about 1,604 people on Twitter. The first on his list is @MissEnjoli and, based on a quick glance through the rest, I’m estimating that Chad is very, shall we say… “focused"... with his use of Twitter. The man deserves some props though, knowing he was headed to Barcelona, Eight-Five made it a point to start following women in Spain.

I keep finding more and more versatility in Twitter. Keep in mind that this was started as a way to communicate with the world using "short, timely messages." But take a look at how much Twitter has evolved. Last week, it was announced that the U.S. Government has subpoenaed Twitter to turn over direct messages from WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in order to investigate possible charges of espionage. So there is that end of the spectrum. And then there is this - athletes using Twitter to get introduced to random chicks from around the world. And Paula Dean.

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4 Responses »

  1. I think this deserves a reference to the one and only Bill Simmons, from his October mailbag -

    "Q: You know how on someone's Twitter page you can see 50 people they are following? I know when I click on an athlete's Twitter, I will almost definitely find the following: (1) 10 guys he plays with; (2) 10 guys he plays against; (3) Shaq; (4) T.O.; (5) Ocho; 6) the ESPN reporter in his sport; (7) Kevin Hart; (8) Kim Kardashian; (9) 23 skanks; and (10) Obama.
    -- Kevin, Stow

    "SG: My favorite mailbag e-mail of 2010. I would love to see someone with a ton of time on his hands research the followers for every professional athlete on Twitter and break down those precise percentages. Is the skank-per-follower ratio 33 percent? Higher? Lower? Did you ever think something would surpass cell phones as the single most important invention for athletes to arrange discreet hookups? And what do they say when their girlfriends ask, "I just looked through your followers on Twitter -- how come 43 of the 158 were hoochie mamas?" Wait, am I breaking the Guy Code by bringing this up? Forget I mentioned this! Please disperse! Nothing to see here! Please disperse!!!!!!!!!!"

  2. And they're all missing out, because I bet not a single one of them follows the legendary Dan Billy.

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