Courtesy of David Amerland
If you are a successful online movie streaming service with a DVD rental wing, are facing incredible pressures from competition and changing technologies and need to increase your prices and differentiate your service then it’s only natural that you will be using social media marketing with every breath, right?
Well, erm…maybe not.
This is a lesson Netflix simply forgot to take into account. When it decided to change its name to Qwikster and put its prices up not only did it lay itself open to just about every joke you can imagine concerning the company’s literacy but it also, it seems, forgot to trademark the name and did not check to see if the Twitter handle was available.
The result of the oversight is nothing less than disastrous. Qwister, is a handle already owned by a Twitter user who has a joint-smoking Elmo (the Sesame Street character) as his avatar.
The account belongs to a student by the name of Jason Castillo, whose Tweets around recreational drugs, sex, games and music have a surreal, hypnotic quality all of their own and are a world apart from the mundane concerns surrounding the renting of DVDs or the streaming of movies.