Another day, another brand apologizing for saying something naughty on Twitter.
Best Buy is facing the business end of the Internet after an insensitive tweet was sent out referencing a cold case murder that is the subject of the popular podcast “Serial.”
“We have everything you need. Unless you need a payphone,” Best Buy tweeted on Thursday afternoon, along with the hashtag #Serial.
Just in case you don’t listen to “Serial” regularly, it details an ongoing investigation regarding the case of Adnan Syed, who was convicted of murdering his ex-girlfriend 15 years ago.
His victim, Hae-Min Lee, was only 15-years-old.
The payphone is a crucial element in the case. According to podcast host Sarah Koenig, Syed had allegedly used a payphone at a Best Buy in Baltimore, Maryland to call his friend for a ride mere minutes after killing his ex-girlfriend. Koenig is skeptical about whether the call was ever made, or if the payphone even exists, and fans of her podcast have since visited the Baltimore Best Buy to find out for themselves.
So in response to all of that, Best Buy put a foot forward in jest, probably hoping to take advantage of their nascent viral fame but not realizing that the Internet is highly allergic to anything that turns a serious issue into a branding opportunity.
Here’s what they wrote:
After an outpouring of criticism from Twitter users, Best Buy sheepishly deleted the tweet and issued an apology:
We deeply apologize for our earlier tweet about Serial. It lacked good judgment and doesn’t reflect the values of our company. We are sorry.
— Best Buy (@BestBuy) December 11, 2014
Let this serve as yet another warning to brands like Best Buy that sometimes going viral organically doesn’t necessarily mean you should try to make hay out of it.[Image: Wikimedia Commons]