Slog tipper Joe sent this story along: Seems Guy Adams is a British sportswriter who repeatedly mocked NBC's terrible Olympics coverage on Twitter. This is not unique; NBC has taken a lot of hits for showing time-delayed events and covering over all their events with pedantic commentary from their usual cast of idiotic "news"-casters. Adams writes about what happened next over at The Independent:
At around 2pm, I began posting a series of messages complaining about the company’s hugely-cynical policy. One of them suggested that frustrated viewers voice their complaints to Mr Gary Zenkel, the President of NBC Olympics.
“The man responsible for NBC pretending the Olympics haven't started yet is Gary Zenkel,” read the Tweet. “Tell him what u think!” It then contained Mr Zenkel’s work email address.
A few dozen people “re-Tweeted” the update over the ensuing hours. Several of them used the “hashtag” #NBCFail, which, thanks to the broadcaster’s comically inept coverage of the London games, has since been a trending topic on the microblogging site.
Sounds fair to me. I don't really care much about the Olympics (although I'm considering doing a live-Slog of the dressage competitions on Thursday, in order to memorialize Rafalca Romney's big moment) but the way NBC has covered the event so far—trimming out memorials because they believe Americans wouldn't be interested, running events well after the whole world knows who wins—sounds truly awful. And what happened next seems like a major overcompensation:
Shortly after filing that article, I attempted to check my Twitter account. When I logged on, I was presented with a message saying it had been “suspended.” If I had any questions, I was asked to click on a link and fill in an online form.
This morning, I heard back from Twitter. In what was apparently an automated email, I was told that: “Your twitter account has been suspended for posting an individual's private information such as private email address.” It then contained a copy of my Tweet regarding Mr Zenkel.
Zenkel's e-mail address is hardly private. It was his corporate e-mail address and it was featured on several websites. Anyone with Google could have found it. Twitter and NBC have partnered for the purpose of covering the Olympics, and this Adams/Zenkel affair looks especially bad when considering that partnership. Twitter only works if it's an open platform for communication, and this move looks like Twitter is protecting a corporate partner from unflattering commentary. The future of the company is at stake here: Are they going to side with big media or with the people who make Twitter such an indispensable resource?