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Tiger Woods Roars Back

April 12, 2010
By James L. Hirsen, J.D., Ph.D.
contributor to

Tiger Woods has arguably been the subject of the most intense media coverage of any sports celebrity.

After admitting infidelity and publicly apologizing, Tiger has launched an astonishing public opinion turnaround, which basically rivals that of Kobe Bryant.

Woods had the chance to display the extraordinary gift with which he was blessed, his virtuosity at the game of golf, at the Masters this past week.

Viewer curiosity was certainly a major part of the Augusta attraction. The audience watching Woods navigate the course for the first time since the scandal broke was the largest in the history of the tournament.

According to Nielsen, almost 5 million people watched the opening round on ESPN. That's a whopping 47 percent increase over last year.

Meanwhile CBS Sports experienced a record audience for its live stream of the tournament. Over 56,000 unique visitors surfed to the CBS Internet streams the first day, an increase of 133 percent over the previous year.

The social media indicate an improvement in public perceptions of Woods, according to Zeta Interactive, a company that monitors message boards, blogs, and social media posts.

The data indicated that the first day of the Masters golf tournament significantly helped Tiger’s online reputation. The day before the Masters, his online reputation was 51 percent positive and 49 percent negative.

However, the day after the Masters appearance, the positive figure shot up to 69 percent and the negative number fell to 31 percent.

Hopefully Tiger’s trust and integrity numbers within his own family will fare as well.

On another Woods note, Jim Carrey is in Twitter trouble for some Tiger related tweets. Carrey just split up with Jenny McCarthy after coupling together for five years.

Maybe the actor is practicing for a new movie role, but Carrey has taken to Twitter to give advice to none other than Woods’ wife, Elin.

The “Liar, Liar” star tweeted, “No wife is blind enough to miss that much infidelity. Elin had 2 b a willing participant on the ride [for] whatever reason.”

He added fuel to the fire by writing, “No woman just stays at home with the kids anymore.” Carrey wrote that “Tiger was wrong and Elin was ignoring the obvious.”

After Carrey's comments made his followers get unhinged, he tweeted, “I want 2 make it CLEAR that I do not condone infidelity at all, but 2 some degree the responsibility 4 it is shared by both people.”

The comic actor started a virtual social media firestorm. He tried to soften his statements with another tweet.

“My people called and said I might have to tame my tweets a little. So here goes . . . I'm going to make a sandwich now. Peanut butter. (sigh),” Carrey posted.

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