London 2012 Olympics: Day Three – As a species, we just aren’t ready for Twitter

Lend me your ears (in only 140 characters)

So it took a few days but it seems the world has imploded and the Olympics has been dragged into the shitstorm of everyday life and ‘social’ media. From the off, I have to say I love using social media but I rarely enjoy actually having it. I use it to promote this blog (‘Like me’ on Facebook!) and I use Twitter to broadcast my thoughts to the world – even if they are very mundane. But it seems that if you gather a group of 16-30 year olds in a place of high energy and drama and spectacle not only will there be a lot of sex, but there will also be alot of stupidity.

The first total moron award goes to a footballer (who else?) in the form of Swiss, Michel Morgenella who was sent home after tweeting a racist comment after their loss to South Korea. I have no idea what he tweeted and it really isn’t important what he said but that he said it. So for being a bit of a twat it was hometime for him.

Zoe Smith: when she isn’t lifting 19 stone above her head

The next entry is a group one and it goes to good portion of the male population who en masse tweeted Zoe Smith to say that she was too manly and that women’s weightlifting was for ugly chicks. Now what qualifies any of them to comment that I don’t have a clue but I think they should pop over to Google or look directly right. Have you seen Zoe Smith? She is beautiful! Especially for a sport that demands that you pile on the pounds in muscle tone so looking trim and dainty (as Twitter and all media demands a woman should) is incredibly tough but she still looked very graceful yesterday as she lifted the equivalent of two of me above her head – all at the age of 18. Scary.

Next on the moron awards list would have to be our old friends NBC. Not content with fating the US swim team to fail in the relay and incurring the rath of Mummy Phelps or for cutting a 7th July memorial from the Opening Ceremony or even for failing to know who Tim Berners-Lee was (they even failed to find any facts about Madagascar, except for the shoddy films). Now they decided to go ‘1984’ on a British journalist and have Twitter pull his account after he tweeted some abusive messages about their performance on Friday night. The Indpendant’s Guy Adams posted several furious tweets in the same vain as this blog has posted saying they should be ashamed of their commentators, their broadcast and themselves. He even launched an attack on the NBC CEO. It was this NBC say that meant he deserved to lose his account. Really? This was? I think we can do better/worse, take a look at the gold medal winner of the moron awards…

Our final contestant is a late entry and a relative unknown. This doesn’t make him any less of a douche-hat though. Rileyy_69 (note the double ‘y’, some poor soul with only a single y has been getting a lot of heat) decided that after Tom Daley and Pete Waterfield fluffed their final dive to drop from a potential Gold medal to fourth he shouldtell them that they had done badly. Instead of acknowledging that they lost by a very narrow margin and that the final dive was shoddy yes, but they had been exemplary up till then, he decided to tell Tom, through Twitter, that he had let his dead father down. Ah, can you feel the love?

Now I’ll come to the heartless comment in a second. But it is events like this, and the student arrested in March for his racist tweets about Muamba that show that as a public, we are not ready for Twitter. It has become the global equivalent of the toilet wall. When a person doesn’t like a company or another human being they decide that tweeting 140 characters of abuse is the reasonable way to get things done. Also, when did this country stop trying the soft approach first? When did we decided to shoot first and ask questions later like our Yankee cousins? I have been let down by companies before and I have tweeted them complaining but they have always been along the lines of “the service was poor, get your act together”, not “u bunch of pricks, i h8 u all, fuck of and diie!”. Start soft, then ramp it up to Valkyrie if you need to. Remember that poor girl Rebecca Black? True, she was a poor singer but because Twitter allows the user to send a message with no visible face for us to see receiving the comments, she was subjected to a barrage of abuse ranging from the “you are shit, stop singing” to the “kill yourself now”. Lovely people. Anyway, back to Rileyy_69.

This little 17 year old boy (boy is the right word) is a tool. I think that is fair to say. His profile has a picture of him lifting his shirt up so we can see his ‘rock-hard abs’ – more ‘pasty white, scrawny chicken flesh’. His bio has a ‘quote’ from a pornstar saying how wonderful he is and that we should be nice to him (she in turn got a lot of abuse despite being an innocent bystander) and he has a link to the ‘pornhub’ site, so all in all a real gem. It started with tired old jokes about Tom being gay, then moved to calling him shit and then ended with Rileyy_69 saying that Tom Daley’s father, who died earlier this year of cancer, would be ashamed of his performance. Ignoring the fact that this child has never done anything that his parents would be proud of, particularly at an Olympic Games and on a world stage, it was a desperately stupid and pointless thing to say.

Cue bedlam as Twitter explodes into a sea of retweets and messages and the little shit begins defending himself. “I’m sorry, I’ll apologise to Tom” was the first. Sky News then picked up the story and ran it, so his apology ended pretty quickly, “Tom, WTF, why are you giving me hate bruv”. Forgetting that Tom Daley was busy being an Olympian and had obviously yet to check his Twitter the gobshite assumed that he was being blanked and the abuse and death threats began again and soon the police came knocking to end the story. All in all an unsavoury experience for everyone really.

There was also some sport today. Britain got a surrogate gold in the form of Lithuania’s 15 year-old Ruta Meilutyte who went one better than the singer Adele and set the pool alight in the 100m breaststroke. It was a phenomenal swim and she thoroughly deserved it, bursting into tears on the podium as we all would, holding up only the fourth Gold that Lithuania has won since it’s independence 22 years ago and only its 26th ever. She look very sweet and child-like on the podium, an angelic face that you could believe have never had a bad thought cross it and a vision of uncorrupted brilliance. Let’s hope she never gets Twitter..

Check out the current medal table below. If you want to get involved with the discussion please feel free to leave a comment or to find me on Facebook (TheOnlyMoxey) or Twitter (@theonlymoxey). Just don’t point out this last sentence is ironic after the rest of the post

  Gold Silver Bronze Total
China 9 4 4 17
USA 5 7 3 15
Japan 1 4 6 11
France 3 1 3 7
South Korea 2 2 2 6
Italy 1 3 1 5
Russia 2 0 2 4
Australia 1 2 1 4
Romania 1 2 0 3
Brazil 1 1 1 3
Ukraine 1 0 2 3
Great Britain 0 1 2 3
Kazakhstan 2 0 0 2
Netherlands 1 1 0 2
North Korea 1 0 1 2
Colombia 0 2 0 2
Hungary 0 1 1 2
Poland 0 1 1 2
South Africa 1 0 0 1
Georgia 1 0 0 1
Lithuania 1 0 0 1
Chinese Taipei 0 1 0 1
Thailand 0 1 0 1
Mexico 0 1 0 1
Germany 0 1 0 1
Cuba 0 1 0 1
Norway 0 0 1 1
Serbia 0 0 1 1
Uzbekistan 0 0 1 1
Canada 0 0 1 1
Slovenia 0 0 1 1
Azerbaijan 0 0 1 1
Andorra 0 0 1 1
Mongolia 0 0 1 1
India 0 0 1 1

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