The Onion's Pitch-Perfect Parody of Social Media 'Gurus'

More

"Using your brains to think of an idea and your skills to implement it? That's the old model."

The Onion is not the first to take a dim view of social-media marketing, but it is the funniest.

In the latest installment of the satirical newspaper's TED-esque 'Onion Talks' series, a speaker describes one of his company's recent coups:

Let me show you another example: Our firm was hired to expand SpeedStick deodorant's Twitter footprint. But they already had a Twitter feed -- and we of course had no original ideas. So we hired a separate company to create thousands of fake Twitter accounts designed only to follow SpeedStick. We were able to increase the number of accounts following SpeedStick from 300 to 900,000 in less than a week. And the best part is, all of these accounts were robots -- so we didn't have to tweet anything, because nobody was reading it.

The inevitable conclusion?

Ideally, real human users will leave social networking altogether, and all that will be left will be thousands of robots, talking to each other, who we can then advertise to.

For The Onion's earlier take on visionary entrepreneurs, see here.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Rebecca J. Rosen is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where she oversees the Business Channel. She was previously an associate editor at The Wilson Quarterly.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

The Ghost Trains of America

Can a band of locomotive experts save vintage railcars from ruin?


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Why Did I Study Physics?

Using hand-drawn cartoons to explain an academic passion

Video

What If Emoji Lived Among Us?

A whimsical ad imagines what life would be like if emoji were real.

Video

Living Alone on a Sailboat

"If you think I'm a dirtbag, then you don't understand the lifestyle."

Video

How Is Social Media Changing Journalism?

How new platforms are transforming radio, TV, print, and digital

Video

The Place Where Silent Movies Sing

How an antique, wind-powered pipe organ brings films to life

Feature

The Future of Iced Coffee

Are artisan businesses like Blue Bottle doomed to fail when they go mainstream?

Writers

Up
Down

More in Technology

Just In