A mole sends along the following email, which was spammed out to ESPN talent on Monday:
————— Forwarded message —————
From: Talent Office [TalentOffice@espn.com]
Date: Mon, Feb 27, 2012 at 6:22 PM
Subject: Social Networking Update
To: Talent Office [TalentOffice@espn.com]
Cc: "Wildhack, John" [John.Wildhack@espn.com], "Anderson, Steve M." [Steve.M.Anderson@espn.com], "Orlando, Laurie" [Laurie.Orlando@espn.com], "Gross, Mark I." [Mark.I.Gross@espn.com], "Drake, Jed" [Jed.Drake@espn.com], "Keegan, Marcia" [Marcia.Keegan@espn.com], "King, Robert" [Robert.King@espn.com], "Millman, Chad C." [Chad.C.Millman@espn.com], "Davenport, Morris" [Morris.Davenport@espn.com]
It seems every week we read something more in the media about social engagement gone bad, whether on Twitter or Facebook or some other form of social media. I have attached for your information an article which ran in the New York Times last week, exposing the perils of tweeting and how a bad decision can impact your career. I have also attached the most updated social media guidelines, which are important for you to review and keep handy.
In short, it's in everyone's best interest to be smart about how to participate in social media circles. Twitter is truly another stream of media and, when used wisely, is a wonderful tool for you personally and for our company. That said, it is not your personal playground. It is not a place to incite arguments, render threats, divulge company information or opine endlessly. Think twice before you re-tweet, for the information you are forwarding may not be factual at all, yet your name and credibility will be attached to that information. As you would on television, radio or in print, act responsibly, respectfully and professionally.
Thank you for your time and please, pay serious attention to this.
Please consider the environment before printing this e-mail.
Going unmentioned is the brow-mopping and relief in Bristol that controversies over childish Twitter fights over attribution and jokes about Jeremy Lin's tiny Asian penis are for once the problems of other giant media conglomerates. Welcome to the internet, where it's largely unfair but more unquestioned that if your company is big and respected enough, the actions of the employee become the fault of the employer.
Update: It's suggested that this memo was in response to Ric Bucher's ill-advised "sweet and sour" reference to J.R. Smith, recently returned from China. Back in 2009, ESPN declared that ESPN personalities' Twitter accounts were not to be used for non-ESPN matters. An edict that was leaked, as it turns out, by Ric Bucher on Twitter.