Posts Tagged ‘kobe bryant


Blog In-Depth: Athletes expressing political views?

Buzz Manager™ analyzed blog discussion surrounding opinions on athletes publicly expressing their political views.

The Buzz ranked 4 out of 10, a topic of a medium level of interest among sports bloggers.

–     Bloggers in the Positive category praised athletes expressing their political views, feeling athletes have as much a right to an opinion as every other voter and should feel free to express it. Many enjoyed hearing athletes’ take on the historical significance of Barack Obama being elected. Others said that athletes’ opinions can raise awareness among others and serve as a catalyst for conversation. Among athletes receiving praise were Kobe Bryant and LeBron James.

–     Bloggers in the Negative category disliked athletes expressing their unhappiness with the proposed Obama tax plan that would raise their taxes. Many felt this reflected negatively on the athletes given that they are paid such high salaries to begin with. Some felt that athletes should not express their political views in general, seeing it as an abuse of their celebrity status. Others felt negatively about those athletes that supported political views different from their own, saying it made it harder for them to be a fan of that athlete.

–     Bloggers in the Neutral category tended to either post quotes or videos of athletes and their political reactions, without any commentary. Some noticed the conflicting feelings some athletes may have faced in this election, due to the relative quickness with which a professional athlete’s socioeconomic class changes. Many come from low or middle income families and may still identify with those feelings, as opposed to their feelings about protecting their high salaries.

blog-hound-pie-chart-11-7-08Celebrating Barack Obama’s victory is something that can be done on one’s own time, and probably shouldn’t be something that is planned on the company’s dime. I’m not sure why anyone would feel that it’s ok for athletes to make these sorts of political statements when they are “at work,” but I’m sure if anyone in a normal job were to celebrate election results at work in a way that could potentially damage the company, it would result in punitive action. Is there a reason that athletes feel the need to abuse the public stage to express political views? I’m certainly not suggesting they be censored, but I do believe a certain amount of discretion should be considered, and I’m not sure that I see that in sports today. It doesn’t matter who the athlete is supporting. Whether it’s Marshall celebrating Obama’s victory, or Brady Quinn stumping for John McCain, there’s no reason for it. It’s not only an abuse of their celebrity status, it’s also a testament to the ignorance of the American voter.” – Fan IQ

Here are my Top 10 Reasons as to why we need MORE political expression from athtletes and more politically charged questions from the media in Sports. Freedom of speech and political participation are kind of important concepts. … When is the last time you didn’t cheer when your least favorite player hit a home run or scored a touchdown for your favorite team? And when was the last time a winning team didn’t seem to develop wonderful team chemistry? Besides, expressing your political views is not inconsistent with basic civility. … There is also nothing wrong with an athlete simply saying they have no opinion or that they don’t wish to share their opinion. That’s their right too and nobody would dispute that. Thus, it is silly to suggest that athletes would be unfairly “exposed” or made to look bad if the issues of politics came up. Athletes, like all citizens, have complete control over their level of involvement. …  Athletes don’t need to be “experts”to express political views any more than you or I do. This is the United States of America. We all get to speak. Some of the most ignorant people in the country are political talk show hosts. What exactly is their “qualification”? What credential does an athlete need? The same one you or I need. None.” – The Daily Sports Herald Blog


Rays’ domination of the Red Sox most popular topic

Over the past 24 hours, the Tampa Bay Rays rose to the top spot in the Top 5 after a big win over the Red Sox to take a 3-1 lead in the ALCS. The indefinite suspension of Dallas Cowboys CB Adam Jones was also highly discussed among bloggers. Rumors are spreading through the blog world that Greek basketball club Olympiacos is preparing to make an offer to Kobe Bryant, though there are conflicting reports about the contract’s value, ranging from $60-83 million. Some bloggers are suspicious of the reliability of the rumor’s source, but generated enough discussion to push into the Top 5. The NLCS continued to be a popular topic as the Phillies are one win away from the World Series. Rounding out the Top 5 was news that Barack Obama’s presidential campaign would feature ads in the popular football video game Madden ’09 in the form of stadium signage and billboards.

‘Redeem Team’ silences critics, critics of gymnastic age controversy getting louder

Over the weekend the most popular Olympic topic was the U.S. men’s basketball team’s Gold Medal win over Spain. Commentary on the gymnastics age controversy also increased with many wondering why the IOC waited so long to investigate. Michael Phelps continued to be a popular topic, especially with news of a rumored romance with Australian swimmer Stephanie Rice. News that Cuban taekwondo athlete Angel Valodia Matos may be banned for life from the sport was also a popular topic. Matos kicked a referee in the face following a match in which he was disqualified for exceeding the allowed injury time. MSNBC commentator Tiki Barber sparked discussion several days after accidentally saying an expletive when attempting to say “medal count” during in Olympics broadcast.


Kobe and LeBron are fans, Michael Phelps adding Frosted Flakes to his 12,000 calorie intake

Over the past 24 hours, men’s basketball remained the most popular Olympic topic, with discussion centering on the U.S. vs Australia quarterfinal game that the U.S. won 116-85. Bloggers are continuing to take note of star U.S. team members’ appearances at other events, the latest being Kobe Bryant and LeBron James’ attendance at a women’s beach volleyball match featuring the U.S. vs Brazil.

Michael Phelps took the second spot, with conversation now shifting from his swimming perfomances to the Sports Illustrated cover reminiscent of Mark Spitz’s 1972 post-Olympics photo, rumors about the various women that may be interested in Phelps, and Phelps’ endorsements for Kellogg’s cereal.

Bloggers reacted with amusement to comments from International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) vice president Claude Bergeret suggesting that female table tennis players should dress more in skirts and shirts that show their curves (as opposed to wearing the same shirts the men wear) to attract more interest to the sport.

Discussion of NBC’s coverage re-entered the Top 5 with complaints about the time delays and finding out the results of competitions from other media outlets before they actually aired on television. Also receiving negative commentary were MSNBC’s Olympic Update commentators Tiki Barber and Jenna Wolfe.

Rounding out the Top 5 Topics was Alicia Sacramone. Bloggers noticed mainstream media’s apparently surprised reaction to Sacramone’s internet popularity evidenced by her at one time being ranked No. 4 on Google’s Hot Trends list and being the second-most searched Olympic athlete behind Michael Phelps.


Olympics take over the Top 5

During the Olympics, the Top 5 will be looking at the most popular Olympics-related topics (that means a break from Brett Favre unless he takes up water polo or something). Over the weekend, men’s basketball was the most popular Olympic topic with discussion of the U.S. men’s team’s win over China. Swimming was also highly discussed, particularly the quest of Michael Phelps to win gold in all eight events in which he is competing. Friday  night’s opening ceremony broadcast was also a popular topic. A visit from President George W. Bush sparked increased discussion of women’s beach volleyball, especially American duo Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh. The apparently random attack on Todd and Barbara Bachman, parents-in-law of U.S. men’s volleyball coach Hugh McCutcheon, finished out the Top 5 with many expressing condolences for the family.

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