Pittsburgh Steelers second-year safety Terrell Edmunds probably learned a very valuable lesson this week when it comes to how he uses his social media accounts and an even more valuable lesson when it comes to optics.
In case you missed the latest Steelers mini drama surrounding Edmunds, the Steelers 2018 first-round draft pick, he “liked” the ‘two face’ tweet from Oakland Raiders wide receiver Antonio Brown that seemingly was directed at quarterback Ben Roethlisberger following a one-on-one interview he had conducted with Bob Pompeani of KDKA-TV. Edmunds liking of that Brown tweet quickly created a stir on the social media platform and was treated by many Steelers fans as him agreeing with what the Steelers former wide receiver was insinuating.
While Edmunds tried to tweet out a few explanations for why he did like Brown’s tweet later that same day, I guess the furthered negative response he got caused him to decide it was a good idea to just delete all tweets related to the topic. After Thursday’s OTA practice, Edmunds was asked about his recent so-called Twitter faux pas by the media and he then tried to explain his side of the story.
I didnt see what was going on, I didnt see the whole picture of everything until people started tagging me in it, Edmunds reportedly said, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. I didnt mean anything by it. I would never put down anyone on my team or anyone I previously played with. People just took it out of proportion.
As the story supposedly goes, Edmunds was so upset by the immediate negative push back that he received on Twitter after liking Brown’s tweet that he decided to discuss his problem with Steelers guard Ramon Foster.
He was probably going crazy, Foster said. I know there was nothing behind hit. He took it on like, Thats not me. I believe him until he proves me otherwise.
Foster then reportedly then made sure to tell Roethlisberger that that Edmunds meant nothing malicious by liking Brown’s ‘two face’ tweet.
Ben was cool, Foster said. It was hitting the like button, that was all.
Edmunds, however, reportedly did also make it clear on Thursday that he is still friends with Brown, even though the Steelers wide receiver is still seemingly at odds with Roethlisberger. He indicated that he still works out with some with Brown as well. We saw evidence of that a few months ago when the young safety, along with several other young Steelers players, were shown in a video training with Brown on a beach in Miami just prior to the wide receiver being traded to the Oakland Raiders.
Immediately after the Edmunds’ liking of Brown’s ‘two face’ tweet started to circulate heavily on Twitter, I tweeted out essentially that I really didn’t see what all the fuss was about. After all, while the optics of Edmunds’ liking of Brown’s sub-tweet at Roethlisberger certainly wasn’t great, for all anyone knew at the time it was just the young safety attempting to bookmark the message while not really understanding the reason why it was sent in the first place. I can’t believe I’m typing this, but just look at Edmunds’ ‘like’ history on Twitter. If you do, you’ll see he’s liked a ton of the tweets in the past from his current teammates, former teammates and others.
Personally, I like tweets all the time as a method of either bookmarking them or indeed liking them. I use Tweetdeck and there is no bookmark function in that particular platform like there is in some of the Twitter apps floating around. Heck, someone had to tell me this past week that such a bookmarking function does indeed exist in some of the Twitter apps as I was totally unaware of that. I’m even on Twitter 20 hours a day, 7 days a week.
To close out this post, it’s sad that we’ve now reached a point in society where everything we like, bookmark or retweet on social media platforms is so heavily scrutinized. That’s unfortunately where we’re now at, however, and it’s not going to change. Consider it now being much easier to be hung by the tongue, or in today’s social media world, hung by the finger.
Here’s to Edmunds being much more careful with his fingers on social media in the near future and in the meantime, cut the young Steelers player a little bit of slack on this one. I think he just blindly liked a tweet from a friend of his is all that happened.