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Blair Browning and Jimmy Sanderson

Twitter has become a popular topic in sport communication research. Little research to date, however, has examined Twitter from the perspective of student-athletes. This research explored how student-athletes at an NCAA Division I university used Twitter and reacted to critical tweets from fans. Semistructured interviews with 20 student-athletes were conducted. Analysis revealed that student-athletes used Twitter in 3 primary ways: keeping in contact, communicating with followers, and accessing information. With respect to critical tweets, student-athletes reported various perceptions about them and diverse strategies for responding to them. The results suggest that Twitter is a beneficial communicative tool for student-athletes but also presents challenges, given the ease with which fans attack them via this social-media platform. Accordingly, athletic departments must be proactive in helping student-athletes use Twitter strategically, particularly in responding to detractors.

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Maurice Vergeer and Leon Mulder

). Social media and sports: Driving fan engagement with football clubs on Facebook . Journal of Strategic Marketing, 26 ( 1 ), 37 – 55 . doi:10.1080/0965254X.2017.1359655 10.1080/0965254X.2017.1359655 Van Deursen , A. , & Van Dijk , J. ( 2011 ). Internet skills and the digital divide . New Media

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Daniel Maderer, Petros Parganas and Christos Anagnostopoulos

.4.422 Witkemper , C. , Lim , C.H. , & Waldburger , A. ( 2012 ). Social media and sports marketing: Examining the motivations and constraints of Twitter users . Sport Marketing Quaterly, 21 ( 3 ), 170 – 183 . Woratschek , H. , Horbel , C. , & Popp , B. ( 2014 ). The sport value framework—A new

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Brendan O’Hallarn, Stephen L. Shapiro, Marion E. Hambrick, D.E. Wittkower, Lynn Ridinger and Craig A. Morehead

-011-9243-z White , D. ( 2016 , April 20 ). ESPN fires Curt Schilling over controversial comments . Time . Retrieved from http://time.com/4302735/curt-schilling-espn-fire-transgender/ Witkemper , C. , Lim , C.H. , & Waldburger , A. ( 2012 ). Social media and sports marketing: Examining the

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Mathieu Winand, Matthew Belot, Sebastian Merten and Dimitrios Kolyperas

.2013.055194 Witkemper , C. , Hoon Lim , C. , & Waldburger , A. ( 2012 ). Social media and sports marketing: Examining the motivations and constraints of Twitter users . Sport Marketing Quarterly, 21 ( 3 ), 170 – 18 . Yin , R. ( 2003 ). Case study research: Design and methods . Thousand