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The following takes place via e-mail. What you are about to see is a dramatic reenactment of a group of caffeine-depraved flacks talking about the MTV Video Music Awards.
CT: OK, so who is writing the Kanye West publicity stunt piece?
Cog: I was leaving it to the group to see if we’d even dignify it with a post. If I was TS’s flack, given how it could’ve spun, it would take a lot of convincing (and absinthe) to get me to go along.
TJ: There could be something said for a post on the latest public outbursts in general: Kanye, Serena Williams, that dude during Obama’s speech, I dunno, was he a senator or something? They all have sort of the same anatomy of a PR nightmare.
Jes: Boo Kanye. That upset me so much. Taylor is the sweetest girl EVER.
CT: Wait, what happened with Obama?
Everyone else: Oh, Chris. . . .
Jes: And, TJ, it’s almost impossible to make that kind of thing go away thanks to social media: videos all over YouTube, the blogs going crazy, etc.
Marie: What I want to know is why would anyone get so upset over a music video? I mean, are there even music videos anymore?
Keith: I started to write something last night about a conspiracy behind all of this. Then I was going to write a post about how the advent of social media seems to have drummed up a new new and much more lowly scene of publicity stunts, with MTV already heavily flaunting its kind of weird Twitter graphic (“We’ve had over 150,000 tweets, and the show hasn’t even started!”) Seriously, with all that in mind, and the timing of everything, me thinks at least somebody with MTV and Kanye’s party was involved with this. Maybe not Taylor, I will give her the benefit of the doubt, but definitely someone knew this was going to happen. My whole point is that while most of us now acknowledge that social media has tremendous upsides, we can’t forget that like any medium, it does have its negatives, especially if abused by those who want to use it only for their own good, which it appears Kanye and MTV have now done. In that regard, by using social media to enhance brands and create more transparent and compelling engagements online, we can also do a lot of harm if we begin to abuse and/or don’t understand the full ramifications of the mediums/platforms/networks that we are using.
Damn, I think I just wrote up like half of a post on this . . . oops!
Cog: Yeah, you sort of did.