Sportsnet’s Hockey Central Twitter account gets hacked, sends out porn links for four days before anyone notices

Editorial Note:  We have received a note from Sportsnet telling us that the account was hacked and the tweets have been deleted. You'll have to resort to finding porn links on your own now. They've issued an apology on Twitter. You can find a full list of the tweets here.

The sports media world has been connected to the porn world in a lot of odd ways over the years, from Florida Times-Union writer Vito Stellino accidentally tweeting a porn link instead of a link to a newspaper piece to Bill Plaschke's discussion of his porn-viewing habits on a sports radio show to Miami radio host Dan Sileo tweeting he wanted to see Erin Andrews in porn to the ongoing coverage of Taylor Stevens at hockey games. Tuesday might have seen one of the weirdest ones yet, though. Apparently Rogers Sportsnet's HockeyCentral Twitter feed (which has over 15,000 followers!) has been tweeting nothing but suggestive, spammy sex invitations since Saturday…and no one noticed until they sent a particularly graphic one to Sporting News hockey writer Jesse Spector, who promptly pointed it out to the world. It's obvious the account's been hacked (an actually valid excuse for once!), but what's stunning is how no one at Sportsnet appears to be paying any attention to it. 41 minutes after that tweet to Spector, the tweet still existed, as did the four days of archived spam messages. Here's a compilation of some of the best (full Storify feed of all the messages available here):

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Twitter accounts get hacked frequently, of course, but the deception usually doesn't last long. Once someone lets you know your account's been compromised, it's easy enough to log in and change your password (or in more extreme cases, to contact Twitter technical support). What's staggering here is that no one from Sportsnet appears to have looked at this account for days. (Also, did none of the various users being tweeted at mention it to the web until Spector? This seems like the kind of thing that would blow up.)

Now, the account's usual tweets seem to be retweets from other sources (one, from Sportsnet Pacific, even found its way in amidst the porn tweets Saturday), including NHL players, Sportsnet types and other media, so it's quite conceivable that there's no one actually manning the @SNHockeyCentral feed regularly and it just works on an algorithm. This may be a case in point as to how that isn't the greatest way for a sports media business to do Twitter, though, especially if no one in your organization's going to actually monitor it. Regardless, Sportsnet's given us all a chuckle…and they've certainly expanded the uses of the always-popular #hockeyporn hashtag.

Andrew Bucholtz

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz is a staff writer for Awful Announcing. He also covers the CFL and other sports for Yahoo! Canada.

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