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February 17, 2010 / Brandon Raper

Chad “Medios-sociales” Ochocinco

Chad Javon Johnson, recently known as Chad Ochocinco, is known for being a dynamic wide receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals, a theatrical character, and fine-inducing football player.  What you may not see or realize underneath all the fun and games is the legitimate creation of a community and involvement under his name.

Websites like Facebook and Twitter create communities through personal involvement online and create buzz through interaction of said members.  Chad Ochocinco on the other hand, is creating a World.  If you could rate the amount of interaction and buzz established through one person he’d be at the top of the list.  I dare you to find someone else who could have eyes fixated on the TV screen waiting for not only a miraculous one handed touchdown grab, but also the next step to insuring there is new water-cooler talk.  (Do water coolers exist still?)

Let’s take a look at the timeline of events Chad Ochocinco has performed to become in my mind, the hottest social media personality on the planet.

  1. First off, Chad (we’re on a first name basis right?) led the Oregon State Beavers in a Fiesta Bowl win over Notre Dame, not exactly a small task.
  2. In 2001, Chad was drafted in the 2nd round and saw a brief stint of action in his rookie year.  Already he’s got the buzz of a 2nd round draft pick for a professional football team in the United States, quite a boost to reputation.
  3. 2003, breaks the franchise record for receiving yards in a year at 1,355.  Soon after, he broke his own record in 2005 with 1,432.  All the residents of Cincinnati were well aware of this character growing to be a force in the NFL.
  4. Made the pro bowl 5 straight seasons from 2003-2007.  Now he’s even starting to recruit fans through the rest of the NFL’s players.  How could you possibly think you would slow him down as a defensive back?  You couldn’t.
  5. Here’s where it gets interesting. He’s got plenty of NFL reputation as being an amazing receiver, but let’s look past the facts.  2006 got the Mohawk look on lock-down with an ever changing mentality.  Let’s not forget Chad led a revolution in bringing back the Mohawk.
  6. 2007, he busts out the future “H.O.F.” jacket. Has anyone ever proclaimed themselves as hall of fame worthy this early in their career?
  7. Ochocinco was labeled as a cancer on the show Mike and Mike on ESPN, starting a long and dramatic collision between the media, Chad, and his coach Marvin Lewis.  Following this was a “secretive” statement that Chad would sit out the entire next football season, although finally reversed in the off-season.

As we look through all these events, we’ve only surpassed 6-7 years.  It’s amazing how fast he went from the most explosive receiver in the NFL to a cancer.  What’s even more amazing is what happened to bring him back to the lime light and how fast that occurred.  The population forgets fast, so let’s see why…

  1. October 2006, tape across his jersey’s back replaces his name Johnson with “Ochocinco”.  A long fiasco about legality and name changing pursued.
  2. June 2007, he races a horse for charity.  A horse?!  Sheesh.
  3. July 2009, he proclaims he’s going to be tweeting during the middle of games.  One of the only athletes to do so, and one of the initial users of twitter. (Already showing his technology prowess)
  4. Ochocinco replaces the Bengals place kicker in a pre-season game, kicking an extra point that ended up winning the game for them, and looked like a genuine kicker.
  5. Just recently Chad has released an iphone application, has a segment on Sports Soup, and has a live video stream on Ustream.

There’s countless amounts of events I could write about that show the interaction and community behind Chad Ochocinco.  Most business’s don’t even have their own iphone application, charity events, or live video streams.  He embraces technology, his fans, and even the general public.  For people who think he’s only a football player, you’re completely ignorant.  Chad is a living social media legend and hasn’t finished yet.  Once Chad is finally done tearing up DB’s with his checklist and is inducted into the Hall Of Fame he should quickly make a difference in sports casting and social media alike.

Sure he makes a lot of money and a good amount of people don’t think football players deserve it, but this man has a full time job with football, keeping in shape, a family to take care of, and is still a muse for the social media establishment.  My hats off to you Chad, you could be the driving force for importance in networking and technology.

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