Earlier this week the internet at large was introduced to the site EmmaYourNext.com. The site, thought to be a brain child of the man-trolls that live on 4chan, promised 48 million visitors that a new batch of naked photos were coming and this time they would victimize Emma Watson. Having just spoken at the UN on the subject of gender equality it made sense to most people that 4chan users, well known for their hatred of women and feminists, would attack Emma next.
But wait, 4chan didn’t want credit for the website. Which is strange because these guys LOVE to take credit for their work. But this time most of the anonymous posters on the baddest place on the interwebs were claiming innocence.
And then today, not so shockingly, Buzzfeed and The Verge announced that the whole campaign had be a joke, a viral marketing campaign from Rantic Marketing. Yep, us marketers we love to shut down websites and encourage censorship, that’s a real life thing. As you can tell from my tone I don’t believe for a second that a marketing agency is responsible for this little hoax.
Rantic Marketing started tweeting on September 17, 2014 which strikes me as just a little odd given that they are meant to be a social/digital/viral marketing agency. Wouldn’t a marketing agency purporting to be the best in viral marketing have a handle on their twitter before September of this year? That’s a rhetorical question, they would. But there are other things about their twitter account that strike me as odd, it’s rife with spelling and grammatical errors, which would be a terrible way to gain marketing contracts… if that was what Rancic was after. No one is going to trust an agency that can’t even figure out elementary school level grammar. The account has 220K followers but is only following 68 accounts which strikes me as more than a little weird and points to the purchase of followers.
So you have a strange twitter account that claims to be owned by a marketing agency. A marketing agency that appears to have no phone number and a website purely dedicated to shutting down 4chan; rather than showcasing their work which we can only assume is incredibly impressive as they’ve figured out the recipe for viral marketing. That’s one powerful recipe, yo. How can I get my hands on that?
The website includes a letter that is intended to be sent to President Obama. That same letter includes similar grammatical and spelling errors to twitter handle of the ‘Marketing Agency’ and claims that the internet NEEDS to be censored. Now, if you’ve ever spent 5 minutes talking to a 4chan troll or an MRA douchebag you probably know that they LOVE free speech; they don’t totally understand what the concept means but they love it. If you ever correct them or tell them that their hate speech is insulting, rude, racist, sexist… etc, etc. They will accuse you of censorship and hating free speech, because in their eyes they can say whatever they want without consequence. This seemingly insane request for internet censorship is what they think feminists want. For the record 4chan, it’s not. And it’s at this moment that I’m really starting to believe that the same people behind the iPhone Wave and waterproof iPhone scams are trying to convince us that anyone who doesn’t agree with 4chan users is DEMANDING internet censorship.
So it’s all a hoax. Rantic is connected with faux news site Fox Weekly and both are seemingly connected with SocialVEVO the same website that tricked everyone into thinking that NASA had HUGE news in September of 2013; if you remember in September of 2013 there was a government shut down and therefore no news from the folks at NASA. So what do multiple hoaxes and fake websites have in common with 4chan? 4chan almost always figures out the hoax before anyone else does. Could that be, perhaps, because 4chan is behind it all? They love hoaxes and are tired of the angry feminists trying to steal their 1st amendment rights. I think it’s possible. More than possible I think it’s likely.
I didn’t microwave an iPhone and I won’t be emailing the president either but I wonder if 4chan will ever stop fucking with people for their own sick twisted pleasure. They almost certainly won’t but I do wonder.