Recently, I went all into an intense investigation on whether or not greenlife.com and its accompanying Twitter account, @GreenLife52, were indeed Mike Green.
Turns out it is, indeed, real. It’s been verified by the Greener himself and that verification has been put out by Dan Steinberg from WaPo and a few other local journalists and bloggers.
After that, I was pretty much fine which players were real and which players were fake in regards to Twitter. However, it’s recently come to light that there are some questions about Twitter’s verification process.
Or so I thought.
When I first started following them, neither was verified just yet. After all, their accounts were pretty new, and they hadn’t tweeted much. Then, they got verified, so I figured it was the real deal. Didn’t think anything else of it.
Last night, the NHL Twitter world, specifically the CBJ portion of it, was discussing @NikitaFilatov’s account. From @BlueJacketsBuzz via @hockeychronicle, I saw a tweet that said, “@NikitaFilatov is a FAKE! Just talked to Filatov and he asked me “What is Twitter?” Said he is going to check it out.” Now, to be frank, I’m not a fan of those over at Hockey Buzz, and I usually don’t pay much attention to any of the stuff they put out there. After taking that into consideration, the first thing I thought was that I shouldn’t believe what this guy says just yet. Someone else has to tell me it’s fake to believe it. The second thing was, “Is @commie22 a fake, too?” You see, Commodore had replied to something Filatov said, which, after the “Filatov is fake” tweet, most of us took as either their both fakes or their both real; someone’s lying. A real guy couldn’t be confused about his own teammate’s Twitter account. Either Eric Smith is spreading stupid rumors, or it really is a fake Filatov account.
A little later, I saw another tweet from @lucybrown9 that has a website listing athletes on Twitter. I went to the site to check it out, and at the time, Commodore and Filatov weren’t on the list. If they weren’t on that list, they couldn’t be real. Could they?
I decided to truly find out if this @NikitaFilatov account was legit or bogus. So for that, of course, I went to Mr. @dchesnokov, source for all things Russian hockey. He was the one source (seeing as I don’t know the PR person in Columbus) that I just knew would get the actual answer; if he didn’t know, he could find out. I simply asked him, “Do you know Nikita Filatov or is there any way you could find out if his Twitter account is real or fake?” He replied back saying that he’d ask. Minutes, yes minutes, later, Dmitry tweeted, “For those who asked: @NikitaFilatov is a fake account. Nikita just told me himself.” Moments later, “Nikita did ask for a link to the account to “at least see what the guy is writing.” I forwarded the link to him.” The folks at Hockey Buzz were actually right. After knowing that Filatov wanted to know what the fake was writing, it goes to show just how image conscious NHLers are. Most people, or possible just those who are Caps fans or live in the metro area, remember the Tarik El-Bashir article about Karl Alzner, Jeff Schultz, Brooks Laich, Alexander Semin, and Jose Theodore having parody Twitter accounts. Even though those accounts state that they are parodies and the fake Filatov’s doesn’t, it still gets players nervous about what other people are conveying to their fans.
Going back to Commie’s Twitter account, he posted this message only a few hours ago:
But, as I said before, Mike had @ replied to “Filatov.” You would think he’d know that this kid really wasn’t who he said he was. We also now know that we can’t trust the twitter-athletes.com site because now they have BOTH @commie22 and @NikitaFilatov.
All of this confusion led to one big question, “How do Twitter accounts get verified?” Are the people called? PR for the team? Agents? What exactly is Twitter doing to try to keep fakes (not including parodies) off of the site? Obviously, whatever it is, isn’t working its wonders. Alex Ovechkin‘s Twitter account (@ovi8) has yet to be verified, but we all know it’s real from the TEB article and from the Caps PR Nate Ewell acknowleding it. Mike Green‘s account has been verified. And then, some how, “Nikita Filatov’s” account slipped through the cracks and was verified.
If your team’s organization isn’t like our’s, or another club who’s quite tech saavy and Internet friendly, then you’ll probably have a much harder time weeding out the fakes from the genuines. Twitter needs a better verification method than what it currently has, or all of us fans are going to have to root around and try to find reliable sources that can tell us which accounts are good or not. But that probably won’t happen for a while.
Here’s a list of NHL Twitter accounts; Real, Parody, Not sure, and Flat out fakes.
PARODIES (I’m pretty sure there are more than this. I’ll add more later.)
- Anything here that’s NOT @ovi8
- Any account here that has a picture of Mike Green OTHER THAN @GreenLife52
UPDATE: Mike Commodore’s account IS real. From Puck-rakers, “The only Blue Jacket with a verified account is Mike Commodore, Jackets spokesman Ryan Holtmann said.” The fake Filatov has admitted it’s a fake (something we’ve already figured out) :