Andy Wendt – Fun Technology

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The NFL & Social Media

The NFL & Social Media

If you’re hoping to get Eli Manning’s thoughts in 140 characters or less this fall, you’ll have to wait until until he has given them to the media first.  The NFL has made some decisions about social media, who can use it, how, when and where. 

Players, coaches, and operations personnel can use Twitter, Facebook, etc., but no closer to kick-off than 90 minutes and only once they’ve given their traditional media interviews after the games.  Updates during the games by any individual or any representative of the individual are strictly prohibited.  

Game officials and officiating department personnel are banned from using the applications at all times.   The ban is considered an extension of the league’s rule that prohibits play-by-play descriptions of games in progress.  

The decision comes after San Diego Chargers cornerback Antonio Cromartie tweeted negatively about food service at the Chargers’ training camp.  He was fined $2,500.  Several teams, including the Broncos, Patriots, Bills, Colts, Saints, and Lions, have already set up team restrictions on the practice field, this summer.  The Miami Dolphins went all out, restricting players, reporters, and even fans attending training camp. 

On the other hand, the NFL has taken great advantage of sites such as Twitter, using it to connect with fans and make announcements; the NFL security department even assists in removing fake website set up in the names of various players.   Saints cornerback Malcolm Jenkins used Twitter to announce that he had signed with the team.  The Cincinnati Bengals used Twitter to announce the signing of Andre Smith.   NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell even tweeted live from the draft in April.

In a statement, the NFL acknowledged the positive impact social media has had on the league but also insisted they were trying to keep it in its appropriate form, “The growth of social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook has created important new ways for the NFL and clubs to communicate and connect with fans.  The NFL has been at the forefront of the use of new media and will continue to emphasize innovative and appropriate use of these new forms of communication.”

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October 19, 2009 Posted by | Social Media | , , , , | Leave a comment

Smart Phones: Not Just For Grown-ups

In the continuing effort to entertain babies and children, parents are now turning to their cell phones.  But not in the way you might think.  Parents have always handed their phones to their children when the need for a quick distraction arises and a number of cell phone toys have been made, as well.  But new applications being made for smart phones are taking children’s interest in the phone beyond the shiny screen and buttons. 

Whether you’re looking to calm a crying baby, play an educational game, or just keep your children entertained for a few minutes, there are apps available to cover it all.   Need to get your baby to sleep in a noisy (or silent) place? Try Apple’s White Noise Lite.  The app makes just enough noise to drown out everything else, allowing your baby (and maybe even you) to sleep in even the least opportune of places.  If you are driving down the road and your baby is screaming because she dropped her rattle, there is no need to worry – just hand her your iPhone.  The Baby Rattle Bab Bab app’s sound and appearance are pleasing to your baby and function just as a rattle does.

Your smart phone can come in handy when you’re dealing with an older child, as
well.  Jenny Reeves of San Antonio tells Fox News that she allows her sons to flip through pictures of themselves and their dogs when she needs a quick way to pass the time and her older son – age 3 1/2 – is learning how to email his grandparents.  And it’s not all fun and games.  Parents are using apps as everything from baby monitors to health trackers.

There are numerous other types of apps for children of all ages including trivia questions, movie clips, and number and letter games.  These are great for long plane and car trips, or sitting in a restaurant, awaiting an order. Alex Bloom, the president and CEO of Handango.com (a website that sells over 140,000 apps for various phones) claims that several hundred of those apps are directed at parents with young children.  

As with anything, there is a debate as to whether or not allowing your child to play with or depend on a cell phone is a good idea.  Some argue that $300 is a lot to pay for rattle while others insist that the idea of allowing your child to play with the phone advances their technological know-how and improves and enhances abilities such as spelling and grammar.

May 29, 2009 Posted by | Reviews | , , , | Leave a comment