Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

Designed for Spreadability Pt.2

Posted by lillieeastham on April 10, 2017

The examples of the fake ad campaigns were really interesting. I think it was a year or two ago when Jimmy Fallon did something similar to this. A video went viral of a girl who had such a disastrous twerking incident that she ended up catching on fire. Later, Jimmy Fallon revealed that the clip had been manufactured by his show in an experiment to see if it would go viral.


This is interesting because it seems like they created a viral video with an ease that most ad companies could only dream of. This also might partially have to do with the fact that the video was created purely with the intention of entertainment, and wasn’t meant to sell a product. Although, it might have increased viewership for Fallon’s show.


Also, there was no backlash for Fallon’s video like there was for the videos mentioned in the text. I think this also had to do with the fact that audiences felt that Fallon’s intentions were more pure than someone who created a much more elaborate fake video in order to jumpstart a business. That begs the question, is it a violation of the consumer’s trust to put out a fake viral video, or just creative marketing?


As long as the deception doesn’t go on for too long I think this kind of promotion is ultimately harmless, albeit a little annoying. In the Witcherly incident, no one was harmed and even the shows that hosted the actress to discuss the fake incident gained publicity. The situation wasn’t serious and if a consumer was inspired by the video alone to purchase that specific coat, that’s almost a case of being overly gullible.


One Response to “Designed for Spreadability Pt.2”

  1. emilyjones232 said

    I like how you brought in the Jimmy Fallon example. It really shows the power of a viral video.

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