Sports | June 1, 2018 10:50 am

ESPN Cautions Employees about Getting Political on Social Media

Following the 'Roseanne' controversy, the network specifically warned three of its outspoken hosts.

Ex-ESPN Reporter and Original "SportsCenter" Anchor Lou Palmer Dead at 83
The ESPN logo. (Mike Windle/Getty)
Getty Images for ESPN

In the wake of ABC canceling Roseanne after the sitcom’s star compared ex-Barack Obama aide Valerie Jarrett to an ape in a tweet, ESPN is cautioning employees about their social media use.

Disney, which owns both ABC and ESPN, does not want another controversy on its hands, so it asked the network to warn specific broadcasters, including Jemele Hill, Keith Olbermann and Kenny Mayne, about what they write on social media.

“While ESPN’s upper management on Thursday was mainly focused on getting the message to its most outspoken personalities, some managers also sent the word to broadcasters and writers who have never been embroiled in any social-media controversies pertaining to politics or race,” according to the New York Post.

The move makes sense as Hill has been a political lightning rod over the last year and was already suspended for two weeks by ESPN for tweeting about the NFL’s national anthem saga.

As the controversy stirred earlier this week, Hill, ostensibly before being warned, tweeted this:

Olbermann, who is just beginning a larger role at ESPN, is a very outspoken Trump critic and has previously worked at political news outlets including MSNBC and CNN, so he is a prime candidate for wading into partisan commentary.