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12 great Olympics-related Twitter accounts

Heather Kelly, CNN
Weightlifter Holley Mangold (right, in photo at left), U.S. gymnasts and track star Dawn Harper, retweeted by Sanya Richards.
Weightlifter Holley Mangold (right, in photo at left), U.S. gymnasts and track star Dawn Harper, retweeted by Sanya Richards.
  • Delayed broadcasts have made Twitter the go-to place for real-time Olympic commentary
  • Athletes are protesting rules, journalists are live-tweeting and everyone is posting grainy photos
  • US Olympic Team is hashtag-happy, tweeting and RTing photos and videos

(CNN) -- The breakout star of this summer's Olympic games so far has been ... Twitter.

The social network has become the go-to place for real-time news, snarky commentary and controversy from athletes, journalists, sports fans and celebrities alike.

Here are 12 prolific and entertaining Twitter accounts to follow so you don't have to miss a score -- or spat.

Sanya Richards (@SanyaRichiRoss): The outrage over International Olympic Committee's Rule 40, which bars athletes from promoting their sponsors during the Games, has caused some competitors to protest on social media. U.S. track-and-field athlete Sanya Richards is leading the way.

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Sample tweet: Now headed to one of my fave sponsors BP for my appearance ;-) think I can tweet about them #Rule40 so confusing :-/

Lolo Jones (@lolojones) -- American hurdler Lolo Jones is a riot without a filter. That makes for the best kind of Twitter account.

Sample tweet: Italy's in next building. Could hear shouts of joy from open windows when they won... Either that or their espresso machine finally got fixed

The Empty Seat (@olympicseat): The Olympics isn't all joy, drama and excitement. One important group is suffering from a touch of sadness and ennui: the venues' empty seats. This Twitter feed captures the pain and longing of an unfulfilled destiny.

Sample tweet: My mother wanted me to embark on a more stable career path, become an ikea chair for example. But I felt I was destined for greater things.

Hope Solo (@hopesolo): This outspoken U.S. soccer goalie has made headlines for her Twitter smackdowns of former player-turned NBC commentator Brandi Chastain.

Sample tweet: Lay off commentating about defending and gking until you get more educated @brandichastain the game has changed from a decade ago.

Steve Wilson (@stevewilsonap) -- Follow veteran Olympics journalist Wilson to keep up on behind-the-scenes stories about the politics of the Olympics Committee.

Sample tweet: LOCOG confirmed that Japanese team in opening ceremony left stadium after doing lap in athletes march. Was their request. #london2012

Samuel L. Jackson (@SamuelLJackson): Yes, that Samuel L. Jackson. The actor is tweeting up a storm for the Olympics, and it's pretty much exactly as great as you'd imagine it to be.

Sample tweet: Hey y'all, more Water Polo dopeness! US vs Hungary, HOTTNESS in a shoot out!!

NBC Delayed (@nbcdelayed): Twitter has been filled with equal amounts excitement about the Olympics and outrage at NBC's delayed, chatty broadcasts. This feed is a running dig at the network.

Sample tweet: BREAKING: Roman Emperor Theodosius bans Olympic Games, NBC delay to catch up shortly. #394AD

Mark Cavendish (@MarkCavendish): He's already competed in his scheduled event, Saturday's Olympic road race. Now colorful professional cyclist Cavendish is helping cover track cycling for the BBC.

Sample tweet: Gutted. After 250km, less than a minute to 20guys. My guys were INCREDIBLE & there was nothing more we could do. Victims of our own success.

Matthew Mitcham (@matthew_mitcham): Olympic diver Mitcham already won gold in 2008. This year he's multitasking, managing to live-tweet while competing in diving events and answering questions followers have about the sport.

Sample tweet: FINAL ROUND: @loudywiggins @rachel_bugg back 2.5 with 1.5 twist pike: execution 6.5-8.5, synchro 8.5, dive 77.76, total 323.55. WELL DONE!!!

Holley Mangold (@holleymangold): This media-savvy (and surprisingly funny) U.S. team weightlifter has been posting tons of great observations and photos about her time in London.

Sample tweet: Just throwing it out there that it was a privilege to be among the long list of people @ConanOBrien  has made fun of :) #lovehisshow

US Olympic Team (@USOlympic) -- A hashtag-happy, enthusiastic cheerleading feed of news, scores, RTs, photos and videos about the U.S. team.

Sample tweet: Move over #MagnificentSeven, hello #FabFive! The women's @USAGym team has just won its second-ever Olympic team gold; first since 1996!

space™ hijackers™ (@spacehijackers): Calling themselves the "Official Protesters of the London 2012 Olympic Games," the Space Hijackers are tweeting to and about groups protesting the Olympics.

Sample tweet: LOCOG wld like to remind Londoners that complaint slips for #emptyseats will be available at the end of each javelin on the athletics field.

Search for more: If you're looking for a specific sport, team, event or athlete, start typing in the search bar of the Olympic Hub tool: