I like to think of Twitter as my internet stomping grounds a place where I like to pass along NBA-related content and I expect my followers to trust my information without a shadow of a doubt. Many of the insightful individuals I follow on twitter hold much of the same standards: to provide the most accurate information delivered in real time. With that being said, not all twitter accounts are created equal and specifically in that are those dreaded parody accounts.
When I first burst on the twitter scene, parody accounts were mainly those that were a spoof of the original person. Some examples are Bill Walton’s counter part @NotBillWalton, Walt Frazier’s other half @NotWaltFrazier, or John Madden @FauxJohnMadden. The premise behind these parody accounts is is that they act as a caricature of the person they are indeed parodying.
It’s humor. It’s not misguided information. They aren’t attempting to bamboozle readers into thinking they are the actual person, they are providing a few — or many – laughs.
Through my eyes, these parody accounts are comedic, and it’s blatantly clear that the jokes/information they do provide is for shits and giggles. Also, on a person with a decreased learning capacity or — perhaps — someone who smokes a pound of green a day would believe these accounts.
However, there are some recent parody accounts that are as annoying as Dwight Howard’s indecisiveness.
Yeah, it’s THAT annoying.
If you have followed the NBA Draft rumors before the 2012 Draft commenced, or since the start of free agency this off-season you may know the parody accounts I am speaking of.
The fake Stephen A. Smith account ( @stephenasmifh) which — if my hazy memory serves me correct — was one of the first of this kind in which he reported Kevin Garnett had retired and Celtics fans were literally crying all over twitter. Their first mistake?? They didn’t check the BLOODY spelling of his name (the ‘f’ instead of the ‘t’) and needless to say looked like fools in the end.
You would assume #BasketballTwitter would have learned from this, used this trolling success as a learning experience, but *sigh* it did no such thing.
Same account, YES! THE SAME FREAKING ACCOUNT, would fool people into believing a fake deal in which D-Will signed with the Mavs and another one in which LeBron tore his ACL during a Team USA workout.
There was also a fake Chris Broussard account (@Chris Brousard) which may not be so different from the real Chris Broussard account (notice one less ‘s’) in which he tweeted Rajon Rondo was traded to the Kings. Yet, again, Celtics fans were in hysterics.
Then, our beloved Adrian Wojnarowski even had a parody account (@WojYahoooNBA) and notice the extra ‘o’ (how clever, PFFFTTT) and tweeted a Ray Allen to Miami rumor before it happened. While it may not seem like a big deal, a Miami television station reported the faux report on……That’s correct, a REAL television station received their information from a fake twitter account.
While I could mention the numerous other rumors these, plus a few others tweeted out, I’ll save your eyes.
However, it remains that there are credible sources on twitter and some of those have that verified check mark nestling beside their handle, but twitter is a place where EVERYONE wants to be the first blogger, the first reporter, the first friend to report revealing NBA news and this is where the problem sits.
Individuals don’t take the time to double-check when they read something as enormous as KG is retiring, or Dwight is traded to the Lakers, or even if Melo was traded to Phoenix (that one really made me laugh, though) because they desire that bit of attention.
You have to ask yourself which is more important: a few RT’s or being respected on #BasketBallTwitter?
This brings me to another point, the people behind these fake reporting accounts; many of these people also operate other fake accounts (Fake Chris Berman is behind the ‘Smifh” account) want some attention. Most of the time their regular accounts are just boring, writhing-in-pain boring drivel. They, I believe, get their kicks from ‘fooling people’ but in the end even those that are fooled are laughing at them.
At the end of the day, these are the bad parody accounts. Too many NBA fans believe what they see on twitter, and I — for one — take great pride in being accurate with NBA news and don’t like seeing fans worked up over a fake account (unless it’s a Lakers fan…or a Knicks fan….. or a Celtics fan…. well you get the point).
Parodies should be comedic — hence the word parody — and not someone you want to report as SPAM as much as possible.
Then again, I report twodels for SPAM…so take that for what it’s worth.
But then, what do I know….I’m just a female among a bunch of testicles on #BasketballTwitter.