Twitter’s Next Branding Trend: Getting Hacked

25 Feb Twitter’s Next Branding Trend: Getting Hacked

Big brands love memes – from Gangnam Style to the Harlem Shake, big business loves it some repurposed consumer behavior.  But with MTV’s recent stunt on Twitter, we’re swiftly moving from the world of corporate shilling into some bizarre social dystopia.

It all started on February 18, when sometimes-hacktivist group Anonymous pried @BurgerKing out of corporate hands and began laying waste to the company’s carefully crafted Twitter landscape.  Beyond changing the handle’s background to a McDonald’s image and announcing the sale of the brand to the King in Yellow and Red, Anonymous also began advertising the sale of prescription drugs and bath salts via the handle.

All told, it was a relative benign hack-and-grab, although disastrous to Burger King’s social interests (benign in the sense that no state records were leaked…for once).  But soon after the hack, the crazy started flowing, as other brands, most notably MTV, decided hacking was the new “it” and they just had to get on board!  After all, it’s what the kids are doing!

Forbes reported that MTV’s stunt, which involved changing the avatar to BET’s logo, was actually a publicity push for a new show called “What the Hack.”  Oh the hilarity – hopefully it takes script-jacking to the heights of sexiness not seen since “Hackers” debuted.

For the record, it appears as though the Burger King hijacking (along with Jeep’s Twitter handle) were legitimate attacks.  That is, they are unless the next Whopper is going to be laced with psychedelics and Jeep’s going to start pushing out trail-rated Caddies.

So what do you think?  Is “fake hacking” going to be a thing or did MTV kill the trend before we even started hating it?

–John Terrill

John Terrill
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