Monday, November 19, 2012

The Dangers of Derby Facebooking

Oh boy, Facebook!  Facebook is the best way to connect to a lot of people.  My own "friends" list is really stocked with mostly derby folk, and I love being able to talk to derby peeps from all over the world!  Unfortunately, Facebook can be a double edged sword and what you post on there can be read by your friends, your friends' friends and their nauseum. Sometimes we aren't making the right judgements when it comes to what we post. I think people forget just how close knit the derby community really is, so in the best interest of stopping TEAM BUTTHURT from forming, please try to avoid the footfalls of posting offensive crap on Facebook.

1.  Don't be a passive aggressive poster.  We've all posted vague posts on Facebook.  It's sort of like taunting a bull from behind the protective wall, but trust me, there is always someone on your team or league, or the team you just played that is going to take your passive aggressive post personally.  Even if you WANT certain people to take your vague posts to heart, I guarantee that at least three other people you didn't intend to will as well.  If you have a problem with someone, and you aren't brave enough to confront them directly, then just don't post it. 

2.  Don't make fun of another team you are going to play or have played.  It's just better to focus on your own team's accomplishments.  Don't even bother with enumerating their defects or how you stomped them, or whatever it is you want to write about how much you hated playing them.  Remember, even though the personnel of the team may switch out, but reputations rarely do. Leagues have long and bitter memories of how they are treated, so be careful of what you post about them. 

3.  Don't post injury pictures.  Now hold on Q, I've seen you post them.  True, but most of my family is not on my Elektra Q-tion page, and it can be rather shocking for "civilians" to witness some of the spectacular bruises and other various injuries we accumulate on a regular basis.  My mother still doesn't know how badly some of my bruises and injuries have been.  Neither of my parents have no clue that I've broken my nose, cracked my sternum and badly sprained my ankle, and I would like to keep it that way.  I'm also pretty careful about how I post on other people's pages if they have a derby injury.  I never know who might be monitoring a teammate's page, so asking things like "How are you feeling, lady?" is better than saying "Oh my God!  That was the craziest derby injury I've ever seen!" 

4.  Don't post stuff about the WFTDA that hasn't been released to the public.  Hey, if you're not on a WFTDA league, then you really don't have to worry about this one, but those of us who are should remember, WE HAVE SIGNED A CONFIDENTIALITY AGREEMENT.  Don't be stupid and post something about the rules changes that hasn't been announced!

5.  Don't post inappropriate pictures of teammates while they're wearing the uniform.  Ok.  This one is tricky, but if you have those special pics of your teammates at an afterparty doing something that would be slightly or more than slightly embarrassing to the league, then DON'T POST IT!  Now, you  can't stop people from posting their own embarrassing pictures, but you don't have to add to the situation!
Ok, this isn't's just funny.

6.  Don't post crappy things about your teammates.  Just don't.  If you don't like what someone is doing, then please have a grown up conversation with them.  Don't air your league's dirty laundry out on Facebook.  Remember, your heartfelt drama becomes someone else's soap opera entertainment when you post about it on Facebook.

7. Don't post nasty things about volunteers.  Yes, refs are volunteers.  Stop being a douche and posting about how they piss you off.  They aren't there to make you look awesome; they're there to keep you safe.

I could keep writing more "don'ts" in this  blog, but I'm hoping that you can see the many pitfalls of bad Facebook etiquette.  We're all human, and everyone is going to make a misstep every once in awhile.  Just try to keep the mistakes to a minimum!


  1. I love how you always seem to pick a topic that is directly related to something my league is currently experiencing. We just had a skater jump ship because she wasn't happy with her amount of play time, and she went on a big tirade on her Facebook page about it. We had to make sure not to retaliate on our end - no matter how tempting it was!

  2. Oh my gosh, vaguebooking. It is pretty much guaranteed that the "target" of your post won't figure out it is them. And on the off chance they do, what on earth would that accomplish? And meanwhile you have made at least one of your more sensitive cohorts think you are mad at them AND annoyed countless scores. Just don't do it!

  3. Great article...

    I have one more to add. If a team mate gets injured during training, don't post on their facebook page to ask if they're OK unless they've already posted about their injury. Even though this would be done with the absolute best intention, that skater may still be having treatment for their injury, and may not have had time to tell their loved ones first.

    So it makes sense to wait (or PM them to check they're OK)

    1. This is a great comment. And something I think we've all seen a lot of ;/

  4. This also applies to talking badly of sponsors who are giving your league money. I'm totally not saying that you shouldn't be able to complain about sponsors when the service they are providing has been executed poorly, but maybe there is a better way to give that feedback to the sponsor in a way that they can acutally use it to improve their service and relationship with your league, instead of trashing them in public. Everyone has a bad day, or has a bad employee who can make an experience poor for us, especially in the case of bar/restaurant sponsors, but it's important to remember that everyone has a bad day here and there and that they'd rather know that you had a bad experience in a way that they can fix it instead of in public. That's a good way to kiss your sponsorship cred good bye; enough sponsors getting burned by this and you won't have any in short order.

  5. Facebook is so detrimental at times, for sure. Our potential and current sponsors are on Facebook and they do not need to see our dirty laundry. Sometimes we act like a bunch of thirteen year old girls going through puberty but that does not need to be aired on Facebook.
    Also our wonderful volunteers come from and are on Facebook. Who wants to help out a league who has negative things to say about each other in such an out there way like on Facebook?!
    I certainly have my days, but my Facebook is a place to build people up and be positive!