Sportress of Blogitude

Steve Smith quitting social media game, says, ‘I’ll kill you on Twitter, so I had to stop’

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith usually doesn’t mince his words, is occasionally brash and sometimes doesn’t know when to stop.

In the trash-talking game, Smith has few rivals among his peers. The guy can bring it.

This is what makes him such a compelling presence on Twitter and why he presumably enjoyed engaging in it.

It’s also why Twitter and other social media can be a treacherous place for the brash, outspoken and often-controversial wideout.

The latter proved to be more of a possible detriment than the former was enjoyable, which is why Smith announced on Thursday that he intends to quit the Twitter game, at least as it relates to a more personal presence on social media.

“I’m done with it. I think technology can help you and it can hurt you,” Smith is quoted as saying in the Ravens locker room Thursday by the team’s official site.

His last tweet was Oct. 6, in which he suggested his followers to transition to his foundation’s official Twitter account, where he intends to maintain a social media presence in order to market and publicize his charitable endeavors, albeit it will not feature the unfiltered musing, interactions and whatnot.

“I just think at the end of the day, what’s on my Twitter feed and what’s going on in the world, I don’t think they should be on the same level.”

In other words, it is unlikely he will engage followers in the same manner he did with his own personal account, but Smith still wants folks to pay attention to other aspects of his social media presence.

Since then, Smith’s personal account has been silent. He said he initially joined Twitter to counteract all the pseudo-Steve Smith accounts on the social media site but learned to enjoy it.

Smith acknowledged that Twitter is fraught with individuals who can talk a good game while taking potshots at others in relative anonymity.

“Internet courage is like a cover-2 corner,” Smith said. “You got a safety over the top and you feel better about yourself. You got that one-on-one coverage, you back off a little bit. That’s how I look at Twitter.”

As noted in the report, Smith enjoyed engaging in trash talk with fans and foes on Twitter, and sometimes even used it in more positive ways, such as when he would share his thoughts, beliefs and philosophies with others, as well as using it as a conduit to make peace with a teammate after a practice scuffle on one occasion.

He also expressed his thoughts on domestic violence, in a very Steve Smith-ian way.

But in the end, in Smith’s eyes, he was too good at it, to adept at bringing shame to other people’s game. And that’s why he had to put the kibosh on his Twitter activities, mostly because he believes some of his antics weren’t setting a positive example for his children.

“I’ll kill you on Twitter, so I had to stop,” he said. “Somebody will say something inappropriate to me, and my wife said I wasn’t being a very good example for my kids.”

Fair enough. And while it will be disappointing to not check out Smith’s feed from time to time to see what he’s up to, it’s perfectly understandable. Social media is fraught with as many risks as there are possible rewards for the professional athlete. It’s surprising that more of them don’t give up the social media game simply to avoid the potential of possibly getting themselves in some kind of public relations jam or otherwise, something that has occurred far too frequently to far too many athletes.