Socially Acceptable?

The Elite League have today announced their new social media policy which comes into effect from the start of the season. The rule is that from the beginning of the new season players, club officials & on ice officials will not be allowed to use any social media platform (Twitter, Facebook etc) for two hours before face-off of a game and for one hour after that game has finished. The official Elite League accounts and official club accounts are not subject to the new restrictions. (Full Elite League press release here:

Perhaps the most telling part of the whole press release is a quote from league spokesman & Sheffield Steelers owner Tony Smith who said “Social media is playing a more important role in our lives and it is vital that everyone connected with the Elite League understands they are responsible for what is written on their accounts. We do not wish for players, staff and officials to stop using social media, but we want to make clear what is and what is not acceptable.”

Sadly, the press release does not make clear what is regarded acceptable or not acceptable and I have yet to find anywhere that states what is.

For those of you reading this who are on Twitter, you may be aware of new Cardiff signing Devin Didiomete who has been far from shy using his Twitter account since his signing was announced by the Devils. He has already had spats with several Coventry Blaze fans, Adam Keefe of the Giants, Mike Danton of the Blaze and most recently Steelers mouthpiece David Simms. While I personally find his comments quite funny, some could be deemed as unacceptable, especially what he has directed at some Coventry fans, calling them ‘Mutants’. He also got involved with another Blaze fan and made some disparaging remarks about his girlfriend. While I accept that if you dish it out you have to be able to take it back, I feel that he crossed the line with those comments. Will he get disciplined for it? I doubt it as the policy doesn’t appear to stretch to Social Media use outside of game days. Should it? Yes, in my opinion. If the league are going to bring in a rule then it has to cover all Social Media use at all time, just as it is in other sports. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to see players totally censored, there’s nothing at all wrong with a bit of banter between players, officials and Simmsey, just don’t cross the line, and if you do, you will get charged. Surely that makes more sense?

I do think this new policy is a step in the right direction by the Elite League, as there were many times last season, especially straight after games, where some questionable comments were made, especially concerning officiating. At least the new rule allows a bit of a cooling off period after games for players, coaches and officials to gather their thoughts and act sensibly. However, what is not clear is what, if any, disciplinary procedures are in place outside of game days. Elite League, it’s over to you.


6 Responses to “Socially Acceptable?”

  1. 1 StuartTacey August 6, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    All about control as per usual. Why is it in all areas of life, management want more and more control over what people can do. Sad, very sad.

  2. 2 Pete Walch August 6, 2012 at 5:24 pm

    Could an offensive post on facebook or twitter be regarded as libelous?
    When does banter become libel?

    • 3 Onlyme August 6, 2012 at 7:14 pm

      It’s hilarious what devins been saying , almost worth going to a blaze game when he visits …

      Quite a few blaze fans get offensive on fb and twitter so quite happy they get it back from a player

    • 4 Bob August 6, 2012 at 9:35 pm

      Libel and slander involve the communication of false information (defamation) about a person, a group, or an entity such as a corporation. Libel is any defamation that can be seen, such as a writing, printing, effigy, movie, or statue. Slander is any defamation that is spoken and heard.

  3. 5 Rod August 6, 2012 at 9:24 pm

    Personally, they either let everyone get on with it or try and outlaw it, the trouble is as most of the players are foreign they all use social media to keep in touch with friends family and fans, i cant really see how they can police it in all honesty.

  4. 6 tosh August 7, 2012 at 9:01 am

    Does not stop us fans from saying how it is though ann i am sure we will say what our players are thinking

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