Why Kobe Bryant Won't be the Next Social Media Disaster
A recent article in the Wall Street Journal explains how Kobe Bryant is using Facebook as a public "diary" to share a behind-the-scenes look at his adventures in the London Olympics. It also sheds light on why Kobe will likely never end up with an Anthony Weiner-type mess on his hands.
It is interesting to note that Kobe does not use Twitter or Instragram. He only uses Facebook and has almost 14 million fans with almost 600,000 "People Talking About This" - a key metric in measuring page activity.
According to the article, Bryant is the only member of the men’s U.S. Olympic basketball team that does not use Twitter. I’m betting that's a very strategic decision, designed to prevent errant tweets which can cause global embarrassment as we have seen on many occasions in recent years.
To the public, Kobe is sharing a behind-the-scenes look at his life. People LOVE to be voyeurs into other people's lives - especially celebrities. It looks as though Kobe is posting directly; however, there is a critical editing step mentioned in the article. This is the key - the secret sauce - which will likely keep Kobe out of the social media outhouse.
The article specifically explains Kobe's Facebook posting practice. Rather than post directly himself, Kobe sends his pictures and comments to an editor in the US who then checks his facts and spelling. Then this editor posts for Kobe, thus keeping the real Kobe voice. Efficient. Brilliant. Safe.
Although the article didn't specifically mention it, I'll bet Kobe's editors are charged with making sure that nothing controversial or damaging slips through.
We have seen so many people get into trouble with social media. They post something in anger, they try to be funny (think of the Greek Olympic athlete recently barred from competing for her “racial” tweet), or they simply show that they didn't pay much attention in 8th grade English class. Then, you have the Charlie Sheens of the world who have public meltdowns that cost him dearly and embarrassed him in front of the world.Continued on the next page