Yesterday I dismissed the notion that the A-Rod stuff would have a negative impact on the Yankee brand, as it were. I still believe that, but that doesn’t mean that there won’t be some repercussions in fanland. I am far too old and lame to understand how social networks actually work, but THT’s own Bryan Tsao — whose day job is to design sports-related apps for you young hipsters to plug into the Facebook and the Prodigy and the GEOS and whatnot — has noticed something interesting:
Well, it just so happens that here at Watercooler, we have a New York Yankees fan community across the major social networks that allow users to express their fandom. And here is a table with the total number of users with our application installed, along with the number of new users added per day for the past two weeks [table delted here because I keep messing up the formatting, but click through to see it]
So while users have continued to add the app, the number of new users from this past weekend represent a 20% drop from the number of new users from a week before, despite 71% of Yankees fans in our app saying that they accept A-Rod’s apology for using steroids. Of course, there could be structural factors causing a decrease in the rate of new fans. However, while a check of MLB-wide stats also shows in a decline in the rate of new fans, the fall in rate is only 5.5% across all baseball apps in our social networks.
I’m not sure what’s better: democracy or statistical analysis.