The media role in the build up to big games and that of social media has increased hugely in recent years. And not in a good way either. The vitriol spewed on social media platforms allied to the irresponsible comment of many journalists and pundits who are simply seeking to increase their own profile has grown with each passing year. Like a lot of similar areas there is a race to the bottom here. The cheaper, the more irresponsible, the nastier, the better.
A lot of the online comment comes from people who would appear to have no real connection with the GAA. A lot of the comment goes against the very ethos of the organisation.
There is a real danger in the growth of this kind of thing. There is animosity around games and fans that was never there in the past. Yes social media is well capable of generating nastiness and spite but when we have a large proportion of the media aiding and abetting and pouring petrol on it then it is a concern. It has changed the atmosphere among supporters in recent years IMO. And it's easy for anyone and everyone to get drawn into it. And to believe - and even want to believe some of the crap written. A lot of the banter is going out of the game and is being replaced by something altogether more sinister and threatening. If we keep heading down that path will it end up like matches across the water? Is that so inconceivable?
I know that if any Mayo club rang any Dublin club this morning and said they were bringing a bus load of players up to the game and asked for a friendly they would be entertained if at all possible. No matter whether it was man, woman or child. No matter what the code. And they would be treated regally. We need to get back to that kind of thing instead of being led by a small band of idiots, mostly faceless, who have no regard for what the GAA represents.