Tuesday, May 24, 2011

100 Lessons That Digital Media Strategists Can Learn From Harold Camping's Rapture

"No Kidding", by BaubCat

If I was a new media guru, I'd be listing the lessons we can learn from Harold Camping and his campaign to convince the world that it was ending.

If I was a marketing maven, I'd be calling him a bit of a genius. I'd say he demonstrates the power of one man with one idea to convince many people it's a good one. I'd probably use the word "viral" somewhere.

If I was a change agent rockstar, I'd applaud his willingness to stick with that idea, even after it demonstrably proved inconsistent with reality several times. He even made millions of dollars doing it.

A social media douchebag would be preaching the successes of Camping's failure.

But see, people who want to spread their idea can do better than that. First of all, they can have an idea that doesn't kill people and isn't batshit insane. More importantly, there are better ways to draw attention than appealing to the worst aspects of human motivation. Getting publicity for doomsday predictions is no better than for whipping out your tits. Of course people are going to notice; people are built to chase sex and avoid death.

Not all publicity is good publicity. Gaining a following for taking the easy route to promoting a bad idea isn't good publicity; it's kinda evil publicity. So can we all stop falling for this sleazy stunt and ignore the douchebag next time?


c said...

What do you have against the whipping out of tits?

Anonymous said...

And so I declare Saturday, May 28th, to be Hugs and Cookies Day! Help me raise money for the billboards!

Angela Schneider said...

Isn't it embarrassing that we, as a society, have embraced this nutbar and given him so much attention?

The whole lot of us are batshit crazy.

Tatiana said...

I gotta say though, if someone wants to give 'me' their life savings for rapture, I won't say no. Really. Did you see the website dedicated to post rapture pet care? Started as a joke, but I wonder how they made out.

Hey Lady! said...

There are hundreds of people making wacky predictions, why did the world give validity to this dude?

And honestly it's really sad, not only did he convince many people, he literally thought he was telling the truth. i don't believe he set out to fool the masses, he thought he was helping them. It's sort of tragic that he was THAT deluded.