Fake account causes misunderstanding

Updated: April 30, 2010, 11:45 PM ET
Associated Press

CINCINNATI -- Chad Ochocinco was insulted when the Cincinnati Bengals' newest receiver didn't respond to his congratulatory tweet on draft day.

Turns out there was no reason to be upset. The Twitter account set up for Jordan Shipley wasn't his.

The receiver from Texas was drafted by the Bengals in the third round last week, prompting Ochocinco to tweet congratulations to what appeared to be Shipley's Twitter account. It used his name and featured longhorn cattle as the background.

The problem: Shipley doesn't use Twitter.

"Somebody had a fake Twitter account," Shipley said Friday, after his first minicamp practice with the Bengals. "It's not me. That is the dangerous thing nowadays because people can get on those deals and make up fake accounts and act like they're you and get you in trouble."

In this case, it resulted in a terse exchange.

Ochocinco was in Cincinnati with "Dancing With the Stars" partner Sheryl Burke last week. He saw that Shipley had become a teammate and tweeted the "jordan-shipley" page, promising to take him to a favorite fast-food restaurant and a jewelry shop when they were both in town.

Ochocinco has more than 860,000 followers on Twitter. When he didn't get a response from what he thought was Shipley's account, he sent a terse tweet -- that all his followers could see -- telling Shipley he was really upset with him and "tweet me back now, draft is over, we are supposed to bond now." Eventually, someone from the page played along and tweeted back an apology, saying it was a busy night.

Shipley knew nothing about it.

"I got a phone call the other day from my agents asking if I had a Twitter account," he said. "I said no. And they said somebody had a fake one."

Shipley said his agents contacted Twitter to have the page removed. It had been taken down on Friday.

"It is a little scary that people can get on there and say what they want to, and people don't know that it's not you," Shipley said. "They can make it look just like it was mine."

A Twitter spokeswoman noted by e-mail that it has a policy prohibiting users from impersonating someone else. Anyone who does so can have their account permanently suspended. Violations can be reported to Twitter online.

Shipley hasn't had the chance to sit down with Ochocinco, who is back in Los Angeles -- his Argentine tango got high enough marks to keep him dancing for at least one more week. Shipley is friends with Bengals receiver Quan Cosby, another former Longhorn, and has heard a lot about Ochocinco.

"I'm looking forward to meeting Chad and learning from him," Shipley said.

The Bengals drafted three players who can catch the ball and potentially take some pressure off Ochocinco, who routinely saw double and triple coverage last season. They took tight end Jermaine Gresham from Oklahoma in the first round and wide receiver Dezmon Briscoe from Kansas in the sixth.

Briscoe has been an Ochocinco fan since 2003, when the brash receiver -- known then as Chad Johnson -- guaranteed a victory over 9-0 Kansas City. The Bengals won 24-19, and the receiver became a rising media star.

"That was the first time I noticed him," Briscoe said Friday, during a break at rookie minicamp. "I just saw it in the media and I liked the confidence he had going into the game, and they went out and proved it."

Briscoe watched one of the early "Dancing With the Stars" episodes to keep up on Ochocinco's offseason exploits. He was a little surprised by the receiver's performance.

"I thought he was a little stiffer than when he was on the field," Briscoe said. "I thought he was a little stiff in the hips on 'Dancing With the Stars.' I think it was nervousness."

Ochocinco has gotten better marks as the series has gone along.


Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press