Twitter have recently teamed up with Sky Sports to bring Premier League highlights to its users. This really got me thinking, just how has social media influenced football and the fan experience?
Twitter is ranked only the 3rd most popular social networking site according to ebizMBA for January 2017, but this number can only continue to rise. As fans, if we cannot attend or watch the game for any reason, we still want to feel like we are included – like we’re there. This introduction will now give fans another platform to get involved with their team, instead of having to wait till 10:30pm for Match of the Day.
As an Arsenal fan currently living in Manchester, getting to games for me is clearly very difficult. Student budget + Arsenal prices = Not very many games for me! But thats where social media becomes the place to be. I expect the team news to be announced via their twitter, I check their page for goals, updates – I don’t even look to Sky Sports anymore. They post behind the scenes videos, photos – this is now an expectation for fans. Manchester United have a higher following than the population of France, so they must post what fans want to see or the criticism they receive will be pretty high!
Twitter polls have become increasingly popular. Many football clubs use this as a platform for their fans to be able to choose their man of the match. However, this doesn’t mean that just supporters of that team can vote, its public, so answers and results should probably be taken with a pinch of salt.
We as fans no longer have to wait for the newspaper the next day to see transfer news as the Sky Sports app updates all throughout the day. Is this lazy? Or just very, very clever.
Football on social media is now not a luxury or an entertainment factor, it is now a news beacon, an expectation. How long will it be till traditional journalism is washed out, and will we all just become armchair fans?