Rassie Erasmus, the director of rugby for South African Rugby, has explained why he has become active on social media platforms.
Erasmus has recently been vocal on social media, particularly Twitter, with his recent tweets highlighting refereeing discrepancies leading to a two-match ban by World Rugby.
Erasmus was not the first to face backlash for his social media posts, with his infamous video from the 2021 British & Irish Lions series also being leaked across popular social platforms.
Erasmus was suspended from all rugby-related activities for two months in November of last year. He also served a match-day suspension until September 30, 2022.
Erasmus hosted a “Lekka chat” on the Vimeo platform on Wednesday evening, where he explained his social media stance.
He stated that one of the pillars of the Springboks’ “Stronger Together” campaign, which began with his Bok tenure in 2018, was recognising the power of social media.
“I was always anti-social media; I used to think it was the enemy,” Erasmus said on Wednesday. “But I quickly realised that allowing media access to the team is critical so that fans can gain a better understanding of how we operate. There is a need to inform and provide insight to fans. As a result, I realised the significance of media.
“I didn’t want to be a part of social media because it is becoming increasingly complex. However, you cannot prevent family and friends from viewing what is on those platforms. As a result, I realised the power of social media. For example, when it comes to team announcements, there are so many comments that [inevitably] find their way to the coach or player targeted. So, we must be in sync with social media and what is being said in order to avoid competing with public sentiment.
“So I joined social media and began to enjoy the interaction with fans, which helped me understand what was being said. It also made me feel much closer to my supporters, and sometimes you post things in a personal way that can irritate people, but that’s life. However, I discovered that some people enjoy seeing a human side to you.”