New styles and methods of spreading messages and ideas are constantly evolving. Greenpeace has now raised the bar for the social media movement with its new Detox campaign. The campaign aims to spread the word about toxic chemicals in product lines such as Nike and Adidas, among others. It is Greenpeace’s hope that one day toxic chemicals can be removed from all product lines in an effort to make things a little greener.
It has long been known that Twitter allows the average person (or in this case average organization) to get involved with large corporations who otherwise don’t pay attention to the average Joe. Greenpeace has utilized this ability to its advantage to send a message by “taking-over” the twitter page of corporations such as Nike and Adidas to spread their message. One might ask, how is it possible to take over another’s Twitter page?
Greenpeace has, rather cleverly, devised a way to use the Twitter avatar to spell out the name of their campaign, which in this case is Detox. This particular campaign is run by a total of five people, who each post a message on the page of a large corporation. Because each person has chosen a letter of the word as their avatar, they post in a certain order to spell out the word. The person who has taken the letter X posts first, followed by E and so on. It is important to synchronize, as if one person’s timing is off, another posting might squeeze in and your whole campaign is botched in a matter of seconds. Once all members have posted, their avatars spell out the word “Detox.”
Some corporations and perhaps Twitter itself, may perceive this as a threat. After all it could be construed as taking over and spamming users, which in many cases is looked down upon in the realm of the internet. People (or corporations) can be finicky when it comes to their personal profiles, as it is their own personal and private space in a very open and public place.
If this technique is used in the future, organizations must use the power wisely. Things tend to get blown out of proportion on the web, and it should be the goal of all corporations and organizations to tread lightly. The internet is not a forgiving place, and many organizations and corporations have fallen prey to innovative campaigns which didn’t pan out. Whether or not this idea becomes mainstream, it is another example of how a little bit of ingenuity can go a long way. Social media is changing; the question is can we keep up?