Bill Simmons was suspended for letting his 1, 010, 999 Twitter followers know how he feels about about certain WEEI talk show hosts, but he's still able to talk about his book tour. Rob King, WWL.com's courageous editor, offers explanation.
We have internal guidelines designed to inform how we discuss the topic of sports media. These guidelines are important us, because they help maintain the credibility with which ESPN operates.
No one knows the guidelines better than Bill Simmons, and he customarily works within these standards. He also understands, as does everyone else at ESPN, that we regard these guidelines as being equally important when participating in social media.
While it's unfortunate — and sometimes painful — that not everyone outside of ESPN chooses to play by such rules, we choose to hold ourselves to higher standards. Regardless of the provocation, Bill's communication regarding WEEI fell short of those standards. So we've taken appropriate measures.
This shows ESPN employees that, even though the social media policy is still in its teething stage, this sets some clear guidelines that you cannot lash out at WEEI (an ESPN affiliate) even when provoked. This is also the same type of punishment parents give their teenage daughters for mouthing off at the dinner table.
Simmons has a much longer leash about stuff like this than many other Bristol employees who Tweet so that's why it's somewhat surprising that they enforced this meaningless little suspension upon him during the tail end of his book tour. He's banned for two weeks from Tweeting about...what exactly? The NBA? Fantasy football?
Anyway, apparently he's only allowed to Twitter about his book tour from here on out and the only stop left is his rescheduled Vegas one in early December. This is great news for the ESPN Zone in Las Vegas who will get tons of publicity as a result of this.
Bill Simmons Portland Book Tour [Oregon Live]
PHOTO: By The Beard Of Zeus