WAG Why Does Shawn Johnson Lie So Much In Her Speeches?

GYMNASTICS
Parents... Coaches... Judges... Gymnasts...
DON'T LURK... Join The Discussion!

Members See FEWER Ads!
Join for FREE!
Status
Not open for further replies.
Nov 13, 2017
145
28
I'm a huge fan of Shawn's gymnastics and totally respect her for that, but she has a bizarre habit of straight up lying in speeches and interviews. Some things she has said:
-She made it to World Championships in 2011 and "did pretty well"
-She was guaranteed a spot on the 2012 Olympic team, but withdrew to give someone else a chance because her "heart wasn't in it"
-She was Team Captain of the 08 Olympic Team
-She competed in 5 events at the 08 Olympics and was predicted to win 5 gold medals.

Well the statement that she went to the 2011 Worlds is blatantly false. As far as being guaranteed a spot for the 2012 Olympics, I'm not sure who would promise her that or why. She was injured and very unprepared, and rumor is that Nastia was promised a spot if she could make it through a bar routine at trials, and I'm not sure I even believe that one. If so, I doubt they would risk the team gold even further by putting two unprepared, shaky members on the team. As far as the 5 gold medals prediction, that was Simone not Shawn LOL.

Idk why she lies about things, it's really strange. Her accomplishments are spectacular and speak for themselves without the need for embellishing and exaggerating the facts. Maybe she's trying not to appear like she led on her sponsors during her comeback?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Seeker

duyetanh

Proud Parent
Feb 21, 2015
4,113
Yes, citing sources would help here.
While we have no hate, my dd lost a lot of respect for her after an appearance last year. She filled in for a signing when Aly couldnt come, and it was very obvious to the parents and children around us at the event that she wasnt psyched to be there. She was 'forced friendly' (my dd's own words), and wouldnt even answer my child when she said how excited she was to meet her...she just pulled her to her for the photo, released her, and then looked to see who was next. The people behind us in line actually talked to us about it afterwards, as they experienced it themselves. I get she has done many of these, and it can get old...and that she was asked to fill in, and it might have been a bit of a sting to be second fiddle, so to speak....but you werent even allowed to meet her unless you paid for a photo of her to be signed, so it wasnt like the line was 5 miles long. I am sure she is a very nice person, but to give you an idea of the impression she made on my dd, she gave away her photo to a disabled rec little girl at her gym because she was not impressed with her behavior. :(
 
Nov 13, 2017
145
28
I haven’t heard her say any of these things. Do you have links?

I've never heard Shawn lie about anything related to her gymnastics career. Actually she's been pretty open about shortcomings or whatever. Cite your sources.

Why the Shawn hate, GymFan96?

You are going to have to cite very specific sources that can be checked for anyone to believe you.

I don't hate Shawn I think she's a great gymnast and has shown tremendous sportsmanship and maturity throughout her career. But I think it's kind of insulting to the girls who DID make the 2011/2012 Worlds and Olympics to say she was there when she wasn't, and then to imply that one of the London girls only had a spot because she gave hers up.

5:09 this interview she says after she tore her knee she "made it back, made it all the way to World Championships, and did pretty well."



This video 4:15 she says she was supposed to come home with 5 Gold medals. 5:08 she says "I could only win 5, I only competed in 5 events." 5:16 she says "I was the team captain." 30:03 she says "I was already guaranteed a spot on the Olympic Team" referring to London. 30:40 she says "In 2012 I saw the passion in the girls I'm competing against and they were getting ready to give me a spot and take it away from one of them, and I can't do that." Who's spot were they going to take away in favor of SHAWN?? Not Gabby or Jordyn who were expected to make the All-Around. Not Aly who medaled on beam and bars. Not McKayla who was supposed to be a lock for vault gold. So Kyla, who had an Amanar and fantastic bars, neither of which Shawn had at the time?

 

Muddlethru

Proud Parent
Mar 16, 2011
3,536
Hard to believe she would lie about things that could easily be verified. Perhaps, you misheard/misread or even misinterpreted some of her statements. While she did not compete in the 2011 Worlds, Johnson was named a non-traveling alternate to the 2011 USA Women's World Championships Team. Later that year, in October 2011 Johnson was named to the 2011 Pan American Games Team. She won a gold medal in the team competition and also a silver medal for her performance on the uneven bars. I would consider she did "pretty well" considering she tore her ACL just the year before. Additionally, doing "pretty well" is subjective.

==============

The OP's video came in as I was concluding my post. But I got to watch it. So my conclusion after just a cursory review of the above videos is that Johnson was really not lying or at least it is hard to tell if she intentionally was lying or misleading people. When you are speaking in an interview or in any kind of public speaking, nerves can get the best of you. I know I've had prepared speeches in classes in college and even when I teach dance and all that preparation goes out the window. My sentences start to run into each other, I end up skipping words and losing important transitions from one thought to the other. Heck, when I have a speech prepare for my kids, I forget things. Those things you perceive as lie, if that was her intention, was not the main purpose of the speech or interview anyway. I don't think it was meant to elevate even further but was really a way to inspire others. Let me just say, if you try to find fault, you will find it. I would just take the interview as it is. That is my take.
 
Nov 13, 2017
145
28
The OP's video came in as I was concluding my post. But I got to watch it. So my conclusion after just a cursory review of the above videos is that Johnson was really not lying or at least it is hard to tell if she intentionally was lying or misleading people. When you are speaking in an interview or in any kind of public speaking, nerves can get the best of you. I know I've had prepared speeches in classes in college and even when I teach dance and all that preparation goes out the window. My sentences start to run into each other, I end up skipping words and losing important transitions from one thought to the other. Heck, when I have a speech prepare for my kids, I forget things. Those things you perceive as lie, if that was her intention, was not the main purpose of the speech or interview anyway. I don't think it was meant to elevate even further but was really a way to inspire others. Let me just say, if you try to find fault, you will find it. I would just take the interview as it is. That is my take.

So you believe the selection committee told Shawn she had a guaranteed spot on the 2012 Olympic team? And they were planning to take away someone else's spot in favor of her? That doesn't sound like something you would say in a speech by mistake. And okay when she said she "made it all the way to World Championships" I took that to mean she made the actual team but perhaps she didn't intend it that way. And why do you think she claimed to be team captain? Again I'm not hating on Shawn just saying I was kind of perplexed by all these comments she made.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jenny and jenjean70

gymgal

Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Aug 22, 2008
4,688
I do not think she was trying to mislead or lie. I just think she is like most average people who are trying to tell a story and stumble through it. She tends to ramble and not set up her answers/speeches well. In doing that, it is easy to misunderstand what she is trying to say.

I just went through those videos and she is talking about what everyone else (media, fans, etc) was saying about her. She was listing what she was reading about herself - youngest, best, team leader, team captain, going to win 50 gold medals. She says she could only win 5 golds because she could only compete in 5 events. I don't think she competed in all 4 individual but she did compete in all four events in the team comp and the individual AA so 9 years later, in an interview where she is rambling, that may be fuzzy for her. In general, though, she is talking about the media hype before the Olympics.

She says she was "sort of" guaranteed a spot in 2012. I don't doubt that at some point the powers that be told her that - whether that was in 2012 or before, we don't know. The team would have wanted a veteran on the team that the fans and media liked. Obviously she would not have gotten that spot if she wasn't ready for it though.

In the first video, it is a little more fuzzy. I do not have the type of brain that recalls facts like when gymnasts went to different competitions, who has won the world series for the last 20 years, etc. I am amazed by people who can retain those facts! So, I would have taken it as "I went to Worlds and did OK" but now knowing that she was an alternate, it is more clear that what she is saying is that she fought to get back to competition after a serious injury and she made the World team (albeit an alternate). The "did pretty well" part is relating to how well she fought to come back from the injury but because of the way she talks, the meaning was not conveyed correctly.
 

gymdog

Coach
Jul 5, 2007
5,120
Honestly I think you're reading too much into things she said in the midst of long interviews and speaking and just misspoke or was trying to say things in a way that was relatable to people who weren't closely following either her post-'08 career or gymnastics in between the Olympic cycles. It is difficult for them sometimes to give these interviews and have strangely worded questions or try to say things that are understandable and keep the conversation moving. Most people are fans of gymnastics at the Olympics but don't follow gymnastics in between the Olympics.

Shawn doesn't have a habit that I see of intentionally misrepresenting her gymnastics career on any of her social media platforms. She does have a very active "PR" career right now (which I think is great).

And I don't really take the comment in context about '12 to say she was taking a certain person's spot, but in an alternate universe where Shawn was in 2008 shape she likely would have made the team. However, I really don't think she even meant it that way but more like she just realized she already had her chance and wasn't as hungry for it as the girls who were chasing it for the the first time.

Not sure why she said "kind of guaranteed" (which is exactly what she said "kind of"). That's really the only area I have a question about, but in the context of that comment she is saying she was constantly getting endorsement deal requests ahead of trials. I think what she was trying to say is there was a sense she was "guaranteed" a spot and she wasn't sure she could live up to it because she wasn't the same as she was before the '08 trials. That then runs into the comment above where I don't think she means a particular person.
 
  • Like
Reactions: l.c.o and jenjean70
Nov 13, 2017
145
28
She says she could only win 5 golds because she could only compete in 5 events. I don't think she competed in all 4 individual but she did compete in all four events in the team comp and the individual AA so 9 years later, in an interview where she is rambling, that may be fuzzy for her.

Lol she knows darn well she never had a shot at bar or vault finals. She didn't even have 2 vaults. Like I said before I'm not hating Shawn, she had a great attitude in the Olympics.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jenny and txgymfan

wandrewsjr

Coach
Proud Parent
Sep 4, 2009
2,492
I get it GymFan96. Shawn was never going to win 5 gold medals(she didn't have 2 vaults and wasn't going to win a gold on UB unless 8 of the best bar workers in the world ALL screwed up, so that could never be "expected"). And she didn't "make it all the way back to worlds in 2011 and do pretty well". She was named none traveling alternate and then competed at Pan Ams with the B team. And there is no way she doesn't remember that is exactly how it went down.

And if she was talking to a group of fellow elite gymnasts and coaches, I don't think she would describe things the same way. But she was talking to civilians, not peers. So as others have said I think she was just telling her story in a way she felt would be more relatable, understood and sellable. I would probably call it convenient exaggeration, not lies.
 
  • Like
Reactions: GymFan96 and kecks

Pineapple_Lump

Coach
Judge
Jan 31, 2008
1,187
Shawn is trying to remain relevant. I am not sure that Shawn or her partner have actual jobs other than capitalizing of YouTube and appearances. Personally from her YouTube she comes off as a spoiled brat in several circumstances (overseas and tours come to mind). To back GymFan96 up, Shawn and partner have made many claims there that are false on their own channel which I assume they edit themselves. I actually try not to watch because I don't want to give them clicks. The whole miscarriage thing... that is sad, but the fact that you had time and foresight to set the camera up to film yourself crying makes me believe you are coping well enough to see the opportunity to profit from it.
 

txgymfan

Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Fan
Sep 4, 2008
3,561
Houston
I like Shawn, I was a big fan in '08. I even watch most of her YouTube videos. However, she does lie. We all exaggerate but most of us are not being video taped about facts that can be checked.

You can call it an exaggeration but when she says she was expected to win 5 golds and it wasn't possible to win vault it's a lie. When she says she was captain of the Olympic team and really it was Alicia it's a lie. She says in a video she competed at the Olympics in fron of 50,000 people, except the stadium seats less than 20,000 its a lie. She promotes an image of herself that is exaggerated in social media and that's how she makes a very good living. I admire her tenacity. To be relevant in an Olympic sport 8 years after your medal takes savvy. I'm sure she is pleasant most of the time but we are all "off" some days and the smiles for the fans are sometimes totally real and sometimes forced.


My rec gymnast used to say she " had her backwalk over" . I asked her to show me and reminded her she "had a back bend kick over" . It's not the same thing.


I will continue follow Shawn, I like her, but she is now a professional celebrity and I don't take anything she says as absolute truth.
 

Quadqueen

Proud Parent
May 14, 2011
4,329
Yes, citing sources would help here.
While we have no hate, my dd lost a lot of respect for her after an appearance last year. She filled in for a signing when Aly couldnt come, and it was very obvious to the parents and children around us at the event that she wasnt psyched to be there. She was 'forced friendly' (my dd's own words), and wouldnt even answer my child when she said how excited she was to meet her...she just pulled her to her for the photo, released her, and then looked to see who was next. The people behind us in line actually talked to us about it afterwards, as they experienced it themselves. I get she has done many of these, and it can get old...and that she was asked to fill in, and it might have been a bit of a sting to be second fiddle, so to speak....but you werent even allowed to meet her unless you paid for a photo of her to be signed, so it wasnt like the line was 5 miles long. I am sure she is a very nice person, but to give you an idea of the impression she made on my dd, she gave away her photo to a disabled rec little girl at her gym because she was not impressed with her behavior. :(

The same thing happened to us at a meet and greet with Aly Raisman....she totally didn't want to be there and didn't talk to the kids or look at them after we waited in an hour long line. Happened a few years ago. I guess they can all be "not in the mood" after doing millions of those things..
 

duyetanh

Proud Parent
Feb 21, 2015
4,113
The same thing happened to us at a meet and greet with Aly Raisman....she totally didn't want to be there and didn't talk to the kids or look at them after we waited in an hour long line. Happened a few years ago. I guess they can all be "not in the mood" after doing millions of those things..
I get it....but i still think it kind of sucks. And geez, Aly is relevant right now...greatly surprised to hear this...:(
 

duyetanh

Proud Parent
Feb 21, 2015
4,113
Shawn is trying to remain relevant. I am not sure that Shawn or her partner have actual jobs other than capitalizing of YouTube and appearances. Personally from her YouTube she comes off as a spoiled brat in several circumstances (overseas and tours come to mind). To back GymFan96 up, Shawn and partner have made many claims there that are false on their own channel which I assume they edit themselves. I actually try not to watch because I don't want to give them clicks. The whole miscarriage thing... that is sad, but the fact that you had time and foresight to set the camera up to film yourself crying makes me believe you are coping well enough to see the opportunity to profit from it.
Whoa. Hold on a minute. She is you tubing about her miscarriage?!?!?!?!
O.M.G.
I am speechless.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gymcoach1

duyetanh

Proud Parent
Feb 21, 2015
4,113
Shawn is trying to remain relevant. I am not sure that Shawn or her partner have actual jobs other than capitalizing of YouTube and appearances.
Ok....i dont watch vlogs or anything, but if this is indeed the case, it might be a good idea to be friendlier in person...that is crazy. Hopefully they have other jobs. I never even thought of that!
 

txgymfan

Staff member
Gold Membership
Coach
Fan
Sep 4, 2008
3,561
Houston
Yes, Shawn and her husband earn their living off YouTube, her appearances, speeches and investing in businesses. He has been trying out for NFL teams for about two years and seems to be almost good enough. He did get his MBA from Vanderbilt.

During a recent video she taped herself checking a pregnancy test and preparing to tell him she was pregnant. He taped himself anticipating her announcement. She lost the baby the day after she told him and she was taped herself sick, cramping, at the doctors and telling her mom while she was driving home from the appointment. ( Literally, driving, taping and telling her mom). The video went viral and she was on GMA, clips were on The Today Show and People. She said she wants others to know they are not alone but it was a little much and they do profit from clicks.
 
  • Like
Reactions: SMH
Status
Not open for further replies.