Thursday, December 13, 2012

As if the strong relationship between sports and social media needed any more validation, consider this: seven of the 10 most popular places for Facebook users to check in to during 2012 were sports venues  Major League Baseball stadiums to be precise.

According to official stats provided by Facebook, San Francisco's AT&T park was the third-most popular check-in location this year, trailing only Times Square and Disneyland. Yankee Stadium, Rangers Ballpark, Fenway Park and Dodger Stadium came in fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh, respectively. Universal Studios was eighth, then Wrigley Field and Angel Stadium rounded out the top 10.

There are also probably more practical reasons. You're liklier to attend multiple home games of the same team than see a bunch of concerts at the same venue in one year, and baseball stadiums often double as concert venues. That also helps explain baseball's dominance among sports; with a 162-game schedule, there are just so many chances to check in.

But sports were a major topic of conversation on Facebook this year as well as a popular inspiration for location check-ins. Tim Tebow, Eli and Peyton Manning and Jeremy Lin all ranked among the social network's 10 most-mentioned public figures (at fourth, tied for fifth, and eighth, respectively). Super Bowl XLVI was the second most popular event on Facebook, and the 2012 Olympics came in fifth in that category.