Asante Samuel, Trent Cole Twitter Accounts Are Fake

In the latest case of Internet impostors pretending to be players via phony Twitter accounts, someone has been passing themselves off as Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Asante Samuel and defensive end Trent Cole.
The fake Samuel predicted a Super Bowl championship next season and wrote about playing street football in San Francisco. The fake Cole confidently wrote about how he’s conducting the “the Sack Express.”
However, the fake Tweets were picked up by philly.com Sunday and became the second-most popular article on the site over the past few days.
Eagles director of football media services Derek Boyko pointed out to us via an e-mail today that the posts purported to be from the two players are in fact, “bogus,” adding that the team has contacted Samuel and Cole. As it turns out, neither player even has a Twitter account.
“I’m sure this will continue to be a growing problem in our league and the entire entertainment business,” wrote Boyko, adding that reporters should feel free to contact the team if there’s a question about whether an Eagles player is actually posting on Twitter or other social networking sites like Facebook.
Last night, I posted an item about Dallas Cowboys linebacker DeMarcus Ware where he indicated that a long-term contract extension was close to happening.
I had been following Ware’s feed for a few weeks ever since it was added to the list of pro athletes that were believed to be legitimate by Sportsin140.com, which has been doing a great job of pinning down which Twitter accounts are real.
The Twitter account seemed legit, mirroring quotations from the real Ware during recent interviews.
In this case, though, Ware’s Twitter account was just as fake as the ones from Peyton Manning and Eli Manning.
The Dallas Morning News also ran an item about Ware’s contract talks based on the Twitter account. Later, Ware texted Todd Archer of the Dallas Morning News to point out that it wasn’t him on Twitter.
Besides the vast potential for reporting errors through following unconfirmed Twitter accounts, there’s a potential legal side to the situation.
Twitter has an impersonation policy, and all of the above listed cases are violations of the terms of service.
That policy states that: “You must not abuse, harass, threaten, impersonate or intimidate other Twitter users,” adding that accounts that attempt to confuse or mislead will be permanently suspended. 
Under the rules, parody impersonations are allowed if it’s clear that it’s a parody and not a concerted attempt to imitate the real person.
Prior to the NFL Draft, Charles Robinson of Yahoo! Sports wrote about how NFL team were using phony Facebook accounts to befriend players in an effort to learn more information about their character and personality.
However, it’s a potential violation of federal law governing social networking sites.
As Mike Florio pointed out last month, a Missouri woman was hit with criminal charges by Los Angeles prosecutors after creating a fake MySpace profile that she used to harrass a local girl who committed suicide after being repeatedly taunted.
The bottom line is that everyone needs to be more responsible and wary about social networking sites, including the media.

30 responses to “Asante Samuel, Trent Cole Twitter Accounts Are Fake

  1. “As Mike Florio pointed out last month, a Missouri woman was hit with criminal charges by Los Angeles prosecutors after creating a fake MySpace profile that she used to harrass a local girl who committed suicide after being repeatedly taunted.”
    ————————————————————————————————–
    The big difference is that no one really takes twitter serious, unless of course you are Florio, or 13 and under.

  2. You mean Twitter shouldn’t be considered a legitimate source of newsworthy information? Get outta here!

  3. In other news, officials have confirmed that Freddie Mitchell’s blog is all too tragically legit.

  4. wouldnt it be funny if two of the fake accounts conducted by nfl teams met up and asked each other very intrusive questions

  5. The giveaway was the fact that “Cole” misstated his position. He listed “himself” as a DT, and he’s a DE.

  6. The NFL needs to come up with their own system similar to that for the players and coaches. One that ONLY players and coaches can have accounts on.
    That way when something is posted, the world will know that it’s authentic.

  7. The dead giveaway was that “Cole” identified himself as a defensive tackle in his post. He’s a DE. The dummy doesn’t know what position he plays.

  8. You guys are clowns for reporting on twitter accounts. You make yourselves look any more incompetent?

  9. Holy Crap everything online is not true! I’m starting to wonder if Terry Bradshaw is even dead

  10. “Last night, I posted an item about Dallas Cowboys linebacker DeMarcus Ware where he indicated that a long-term contract extension was close to happening.
    I had been following Ware’s feed for a few weeks……In this case, though, Ware’s Twitter account was just as fake as the ones from Peyton Manning and Eli Manning.”
    Hm, perhaps you should try actually contacting Ware if you want to get feedback on Ware’s contract instead of believing whatever you read on the internet. Good example of how anybody can post something on the net and only the foolish of fools believe it without verifying its authenticity.
    Well done, Florio, well done.

  11. Jay Cutler’s twitter account is ridiculously fake and I am STILL sorely disappointed.

  12. Twitter was actually invented a couple of hundred years ago. They called it a manure spreader.

  13. “The Sack Express”? Sounds like something Cole would say… if he was nine years old.

  14. Man… “Trent Cole” responded to me on Twitter and I thought it was real. It’s still his last tweet too. : (

  15. THANK YOU Aaron for debunking the ridiculous Twitter news!!! Maybe others will now pause to question the information they’re asking for by signing up for these bogus twitter posts. It’s so obvious that one is either being used as a pawn in diseminating information or being made a fool of when following a ‘celebrity’ twitter account and passing on the so-called news they read of. Hopefully Florio will follow your wisdom when considering what to do with Twitter news he requests to receive.

  16. Florio, in what some would consider my less than stellar attempt at law school at least I’ve learned two words: due diligence.
    But I did hear twitter runs the mind of Al Davis.

  17. better yet, everyone could treat twitter as the social networking site it is, and NOT a news-release site. it’s basically myspace for those with A.D.D.

  18. I could hear Asante now…’Twitter? What the _____ is Twitter?’
    seriously, he is right next to me.

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