Truth & Rumors: Tiger Twitter-fest, Golf Channel experiment

Maybe Tiger Woods read those Q Scores earlier this week about being one of America's six most-hated athletes and decided to work on his image. He answered a few questions from fans Wednesday on Twitter, holding a 30-minute session on Nike Golf's page, according to Sean Martin of golfweek.com:

It was an unprecedented use of social media for the world No. 1. Many athletes use sites such as Twitter and Facebook to give fans a behind-the-scenes look at their lives.
Most of the questions during Woods’ Wednesday ‘Twitterview’ focused on equipment. The answers weren’t incredibly detailed, but that had as much to do with Twitter’s 140-character limit as Woods’ propensity to disclose little.
Here are some highlights:
• TW: I don’t practice as much as I use to but I am often thinking about it. RT @CraigVogt: @nikegolf TW - How much do you practice?
• TW: Yes about 10 years ago, a 4-iron, I shot a 76. RT @mattybo24: @nikegolf Tiger, Have you ever played an entire round with only 1 club?
• TW: As of right now, no. RT @waggleroom: @nikegolf Tiger, Any changes to your equipment in response to working with Sean Foley?
• TW: I know we are going to try as hard as we can to retain the cup. RT @rodeoclown693: @nikegolf how do u think the Ryder cup team will fare
Other stuff we'd still like to know: Tiger, have you ever mowed a lawn?... Do you know how to change a tire?... What's the capital of Vermont?... Do you drink coffee? If so, how do you take it?
Guess those pressing questions will have to wait until next time. Sounds of Silence Silence is golden. Or is it? Remember that NFL experiment in which a game was televised with no commentators and graphics were used to keep viewers informed on the proceedings? (Wonder if some TV exec was trying to figure out an excuse to get rid of some high-paid lame commentators?)

That experiment was interesting, but a failure. The telecast was every bit as entertaining as a dial tone.

So good luck to Golf Channel, which is going to take a similar innovative step this weekend. During Saturday's telecast of the Nationwide Tour event in Boise (please keep reading despite the phrase "Nationwide Tour" in this sentence), Golf Channel is going to take some unusual steps.

For starters, talking heads Jerry Foltz and Curt Byrum will limit their comments on air but will interact with viewers "via social media channels such as Twitter," according to a network release.

Kay Cockerill and Stephanie Sparks, the on-course reporters who usually follow a specific pairing, will instead park at "interview stations" on the 13th and 15th holes and chat with players.

Meanwhile, Phil Parkin will hang around the practice area, describe what the players are working on and turn them into lessons for viewers. Of course, he'll have to talk to do that.

It's worth noting that this is an otherwise dark week in golf. The PGA Tour, LPGA Tour and Champions Tour have no domestic events this week. The only golf on the air this weekend will be the Nationwide event. Saturday's experiment may be worth watching.

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