Dottie Pepper quits Twitter after on-air flub due to "trolls" and "idiots"

Dottie Pepper

Dottie Pepper quits Twitter after on-air flub due to "trolls" and "idiots"

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Dottie Pepper quits Twitter after on-air flub due to "trolls" and "idiots"

Dottie Pepper isn’t suffering the trolls any longer.

The CBS golf analyst quit Twitter this week in light of harassment she received after an on-air flub during the Zurich Classic of New Orleans.

Pepper was interviewing the lead team of Scott Brown and Kevin Kisner during a delay in Sunday’s final round at TPC Louisiana when she put herself in hot water. When discussing the pressure of winning a PGA Tour event, Pepper mistakenly asked Brown about what it’s like going for his first Tour title … despite the fact that Brown does have a Tour win (the 2013 Puerto Rico Open).

Brown handled that quite well, but if you watch the full interview, Pepper didn’t truly apologize when Brown corrected her mistake, instead following up by qualifying that Brown hasn’t won a “full-field, regular event” on the PGA Tour.

Listen, we’re not here to go after Pepper. She’s considered one of the best in the golf broadcasting business, and even the elite are entitled to mistakes.

Still, this is far from her finest moment. To make that mistake is pretty rough, and the follow-up seemed pretty condescending and not even really accurate. There were 132 players in the 2013 Puerto Rico Open, and while that’s not the 156 you see in some PGA Tour events, that’s still a full field.

What Pepper probably meant to say was “opposite field,” but even then she’s just simply disrespecting Brown for where he got his win.

Anyway, Pepper got an avalanche of heat on Twitter for this mistake, to the point that the 51-year-old shuttered her Twitter account. Pepper confirmed in an email to SB Nation that the criticism she had been receiving was the reason behind her departure from Twitter.

“Tired of the idiots,” Pepper told SB Nation. “(My account) is suspended by my own doing; can stay in that status for a year.”

This is a delicate subject. Did Pepper make an egregious on-air mistake? Yes. Was she less than tactful in following up on that mistake? For sure. Is part of working in sports media being able to handle criticism? More than ever nowadays.

But often on Twitter, criticism quickly becomes harassment and verbal abuse. We don’t know the true extent of what Pepper faced, but we’re guessing some of the vitriol she got from commenters was incredibly vicious and way over the line.

On that assumption, Pepper taking a leave from Twitter is entirely justified. Hopefully she does return to the platform at some point, because a strong voice like Pepper’s is valued in golf.

But we’ll understand if she doesn’t. Yes, Pepper made some bad errors last Sunday, but if this drastic measure is the necessary response, maybe some fans need to look in the mirror.

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