The NCAA has a documented history of ridiculous and petty rules, one of the most notable was that until recent years, student athletes were not allowed to be provided with cream cheese for their bagels with team breakfasts.
This updated educated column from the NCAA shows another bizarre rule that has been updated for recent technological advances:
“Question: May a coach take a photo and use software (e.g., Instagram, Photoshop, Camera Awesome, Camera+,) to enhance the content of the photo (e.g., changed color of photo to sepia tones or add content to the photograph), and send it to a prospective student-athlete as an attachment it to an email or direct social media message?
Answer: No, a photograph that has been altered or staged for a recruiting purpose cannot be sent to a prospective student-athlete.”
If you want to read the whole question and answer column on the NCAA website, click here. I can understand photoshop, perhaps photoshopping a player striking a Heisman pose or running a play in the school’s stadium could help recruiting, but Instagram?
Instagram is a social media platform for photo sharing, which enables users to apply a digital filter and share the photographs with other Instagram users.
Making this an NCAA rule seems completely ridiculous, and yet, I’m not surprised even a little bit that the NCAA would do something like this. It seems as though it is in their pedigree to do things that don’t make any sense.
UPDATE: It appears as though the NCAA wants to make a few clarifications and now they are saying that, “There is no NCAA ban of Instagram. Schools just can’t alter the content of photos – and to be clear, we do not consider Instagram’s filters as content alteration – and then email them directly to recruits.” At least they decided to step up and make things a little more clear.
— NCAA (@NCAA) October 11, 2012