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What goes on Twitter doesn't stay on Twitter

Posted: March 24, 2013 - 12:07am  |  Updated: March 24, 2013 - 1:25am

Another year and another case of a high school team in trouble for illegal activity.

In a case of deja’ vu, it was exactly one year ago that The News-Times published a story about four Lakeside baseball players being expelled for drinking on the bus on the way back from a game.

That pales in comparison to 18 players from the Greenbrier boys soccer team suspended for 10 days, pending a hearing, for smoking “spice” and drinking in hotel rooms at Jekyll Island while on a school-sponsored team trip.

After hearing the rumors of the activity, I nosed around Twitter and was able to piece together who might be involved and their reactions, as well as the reactions of those around them.

While they learn a hard lesson about actions having consequences, they will learn an even bigger one: What they post on social media doesn’t necessarily stay in the cozy confines of their inner circle. And those “supporting” them aren’t helping.

Talk of snitches – and using an anti-semitic slur to refer to a person believed to have blown the whistle – doesn’t play well.

Some of the tweets blaming the ”snitch”:

“S/O to the person that through the whole varsity under the bus.... Screw you.”

“You hate 17 of us, now over 1,000 hate you #brotherhood”

“whoever did this, i hope you are miserable for a long long time. theres no way any of us will ever forgive you. family is family”

What they may not realize yet is they were the ones who told on themselves. Tweets from Jekyll Island about what was going on came to the attention of an administrator. The school safety officer started investigating, and students then were brought in for questioning.

Columbia County School Superintendent Charles Nagle was adamant that any action taken or threats against anyone for informing on the group will be dealt with quickly and harshly.

“We need to make it very clear that if there is any retribution, anyone, they’re through at school,” said Nagle emphatically. “That’s taking a step beyond the bully. That’s a real threat and we will contact the sheriff’s department and the sheriff’s department can act. This will be in their jurisdiction.”

The incident likely will derail what was a promising season for the Wolfpack, who are the No. 2 team in Class AAAAA with a 7-0-2 record and who needed just one win in their last two region games to clinch first in the sub-region. The anticipated matchup with the No. 1 and 12-0 McIntosh squad Saturday was likely a train wreck. The incident will give the remaining seven varsity players and those JV players brought up to finish the season a chance to show what they are made of.

Maybe that’s something they should tweet about.

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