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#pounditSaturday, December 5, 2020

Michael Jordan does not think he could have survived Twitter era

Michael Jordan

Today’s athletes play in a very different media environment than their predecessors did. The proliferation of social media means that star athletes are under the microscope at all times in a way that even the most famous athletes of previous eras weren’t.

Michael Jordan, for one, has taken notice. And he thinks that things would have been a lot harder for him had he played in the social media era.

“Tiger [Woods] played at his peak somewhere toward the end of my career. Then, what changed from that time-frame to now is social media — Twitter and all those types of things. And that has invaded the personalities and personal time of individuals,” Jordan told Cigar Aficionado, via Alex Kennedy of Basketball News. “It’s to the point where some people have been able to utilize it to their financial gain and things of that nature.

“But for someone like myself — and this is what Tiger deals with — I don’t know if I could’ve survived in this Twitter [era], where you don’t have the privacy that you’d want and what seems to be very innocent can always be misinterpreted.”

Jordan is a notoriously private figure. In ESPN’s “The Last Dance” documentary, he discussed how his immense fame deprived him of privacy, and part of the reason for his retirement was to get out of the spotlight. Late in his career, he could hardly go anywhere, and was essentially holed up in his room all the time. That all happened despite living in a world without social media.

Jordan’s position is understandable. If something like this happened in today’s world, it would be all over the internet.

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