Earlier this week, Manchester United became the latest sports club to forbid its players to use social-networking sites.Telegraph.co.uk reports the organization issued a statement after commandeering the Twitter and Facebook accounts of several players. According to the team Web site:
[No] Manchester United players maintain personal profiles on social networking websites. Fans encountering any web pages purporting to be written by United players should treat them with extreme skepticism.
Responding to the policy via e-mail, Lewis Global Public Relations digital director Eb Adeyeri said:
Social media sites are not the enemy; they are a medium for clubs to better engage with their supporters, wherever they may be. A better policy would be to encourage players to make use of sites like Twitter but draw up a series of robust usage guidelines-so, for example, players can't talk about internal matters or team selection...
"Robust usage guidelines" are exactly what the National Football League, the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League have adopted. Players (and in some cases anyone involved in the production of a game) are prohibited from using social networking 30 minutes before and after games, practices, meetings and media-access periods