Disharmony: less twitter, more squawk

Cod Almighty | Article

by Chris Fisher

29 January 2017

Watching the Stevenage game was bad enough. Being on social media afterwards only made it worse

Having looked forward to Stevenage for weeks - with the bonus of a cheap train ticket offer and having the day off - Twitter featured heavily during the week's build up. Our Supporters Liaison Officer pointed out that there were a few hundred tickets left of an allocation of nearly 1,400 and within 48 hours they had sold out.

Come Saturday morning, fellow Mariners tweet their progress, post what they are drinking or congratulate the wonderful Kristine Green on fulfilling her challenging role as our SLO by overcoming the incompetence of stewards who probably went on the same training day as those at Braintree.

Onto the game. A disjointed and flat performance; new players in a newish system. I heard the brilliant shout of "Come on Town, this has got 0-0 written all over it" with 10 minutes to go and 2-0 down, terrace humour that lightened the mood briefly in a subdued atmosphere. A third of the crowd sat strangely passively and disengaged.

But we all knew what was coming on that most powerful social media platform. Acrimony, blame, personal attacks, doubt and reaction to public announcements from a squad going through the process of change in the transfer window. The Notorious B.I.G. was reserved for a change and hurtfully called out McKeown for his comments on Radio Humberside minutes before, about his future. It didn't feel good. Harmony seems to be in short supply all round.

I was subject to passive aggression for challenging a comment made about Omar. I should know better than tweet as beer and football don't mix following a defeat. Omar's head must be spinning these last few weeks with all the attention and the prospect of a potential move that could see him and his family secure for life. Nobody deserves abuse irrespective of poor performance or perceived attitude. That said, it will never change.

Rigorous debate is the cornerstone of free society but there is an ill wind blowing in the western world. The President of the United States uses twitter to spread his message rather than the 'mainsteam media' or official press releases, knowing it's power to deliver to the individual. Twitter allows that individual to share their opinion and it's an opinion that they demand be heard and be entitled to. Whether it's agreeable, '-ist' or inflammatory seems no longer to matter. The danger then is that we block opinion we don't like and reinforce our own by following what we want to hear.

But enough of that. This is about Grimsby Town. A tweet I did like was this from last night: 

That's the game at our level. Chasing a play off place while last season's conference champions face a relegation battle? Be careful what you wish for.

Whoever moves on, then I wish them the very best. If Craig Disley and Jimmy Mack go, then thanks for everything. It will be hard to accept and the man paid to make that decision will be agonising I'm sure. They will always be a big part of the history of this 138 year old club, as is every fan who has walked though a turnstile and travelled across the land and who professes to love the club, irrespective of how they choose to declare it. Twitter can unite as well as divide. Make that choice.


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