As someone who was (seriously) credited with having a “dry sense of humor” on his kindergarten report card, I appreciate the way Twitter allows for a dry, droll sense of tone to be expressed in 140 characters or less. NBA team-approved Twitter accounts don’t usually take advantage of that format, preferring to mix in game updates with promotional fare, usually straying away from any sort of tweeted content that could be confused with, y’know, an actual person writing things.
The Brooklyn Nets’ public relations Twitter account, though, was different. It was never a verified account, unlike most of the official team designations, but it was far funnier than most. So funny that, and this is coming from the guy that grew up watching Dick Cavett make jokes-behind-the-jokes while sitting cross-legged, I didn’t even get that the account was a put on half the time. Sadly, according to various outlets (starting with Devin Kharpertian at The Brooklyn Game), the account has been put on hold as the Nets reconfigure their social media game.
Which is a damned shame. Because of tweets like these:
That's the 11th time Reggie Evans has lost his headband this season (career high) — Nets PR Dept. (@Nets_PR) January 31, 2013
The #Nets are undefeated after Brook Lopez gets a haircut
— Nets PR Dept. (@Nets_PR) February 14, 2013
And, after a nice run to start 2013, they busted out a nice dad-joke I can get behind:
The Nets are undefeated this year — Nets PR Dept. (@Nets_PR) January 3, 2013
Devin pointed out that the Nets actually addressed the change during the Sloan Sports Media Conference earlier this month, in an ironically-titled discussion.
This change was announced at the Sloan Sports Media Conference by Jayne Bussman-Wise, Digital Director of the Brooklyn Nets & Barclays Center, in a panel called "Staying Relevant: Social Media Analytics." They are now in the process of figuring out how they want to utilize the account, if at all.
The Nets declined to comment on the change.
Apparently utilizing an account properly means “making it look like every PR account on Twitter,” ripe for jokey-types to send off “hey @BedBathBeyond i left my toddler named crystal there on thursday is she still their ?? thx”-jokes that we all fall prey to from time to time.
I’m charged with covering 29 NBA teams (plus the Bobcats) and yet I only follow a few NBA team Twitter accounts. For someone that has to stay on top of every move this league churns out, that’s saying quite a bit. Most of these accounts are dull and repetitive, and they’re usually tweeting out the sort of stuff that us sportswriters get in the printouts handed to us at press row during each game. The pieces of paper we usually skim – “Atlanta is 32-19 when Jeff Teague double-knots his left sneaker” – before shoving them beneath our laptops.
Most NBA factoids – FACT – are boring. The Nets’ PR account was actually interesting. It was so funny and dry and on point that I didn’t even get that it was having a go at us with its submissions. If you make a dry joke that I don’t get, and I’m too stuffy to understand the quip? Then you earn my unending respect. The Nets’ PR feed, as recently run, made me look like a prat.
Luckily, as Kharpertian noted, the mind behind the feed lives on with his personal account. Calder Hynes is still tweeting away about his Nets, offering observations like these:
If the #Nets and Pistons meet in the playoffs, Brooklyn will have home court (3-0 this season)
— Calder Hynes (@calder_h) March 19, 2013
At the very least, give this man a follow, as he works his way through a long Nets season that hasn’t been nearly as interesting as a massive payroll, new arena, cool borough and goofball owner should assure.