I read an article posted by Kirsten Korosec titled, “PR Gaffe of the Month: When Fake Twitter Accounts Fail” on CommPro.Biz that I felt compelled to post. The gist of the article was about an oil lobby in Canada who was outed for setting up more than 14 FAKE Twitter accounts…yep..FAKE twitter accounts. The idea was to have regular men and women provide “unabashed support for the controversial Canada oil sands pipeline proposed by TransCanda.” According to Kristen’s article, “The Rainforest Action Network believes the office of a former Nebraska senator working for the American Petroleum Institute set up the fake Twitter accounts.”
This is just one of those moments when a true public relations professional has to wonder how desperate is the person that green lighted this idea? My second question…didn’t anyone think it was wrong..or that perhaps they were going to get outed? This is a real PR quandary…PR that needs PR.
Mom’s on the playground may be tweeting right now @API FAKE FOR LIFE!
Let’s go over some basic fundamentals:
- You can’t fake out the real public
- Think before you Tweet
- Take the high road…it may take you a little longer to get there, but you learn so much on the way, and your end game almost always has far better results.
- Don’t FAKE IT! I thought I’d just reiterate that for you.
Here is yet another interesting gaffe that could have very short-term repercussions or very long-term repercussions based on how their audience responds.