The cost of social media blunders
Friends don't let teammates tweet
Maybe it's the warrior ego, the obnoxious fans, a few too many crushing tackles or the NASCAR pileups. Whatever the reason, some sports stars just shouldn't play and tweet.
Major league football, basketball and hockey have banned all players from using social media before and during the game. Some of the clampdown stems from legitimate concerns that tweets from a game in progress might affect the outcome and/or aid sports gaming interests. Even with the bans, the leagues reserve the right to fine any player whose verbal or digital outbursts step over the line.
And the leagues have exercised their right to fine:
- Minnesota Vikings quarterback Brett Favre, $50,000 for "sexting."
- Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Chad Ochocinco, $25,000 for two tweets.
- NBA stars Amare Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler, $7,500 per tweet.
- NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin, reportedly $50,000 for a tweet rant.
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban was also fined $25,000 for protesting a referee's call on his Twitter account.
But the all-time most expensive sports tweet? That would go to Larry Johnson, former Kansas City Chiefs running back, who was suspended one game, at a cost of $213,000, for gay slurs he directed at a Twitter heckler.