By now you may have heard about Shell’s Arctic Ready social media campaign. What you may not have heard is that this campaign was a spoof. This sham website was designed by Greenpeace and the Yes Men to draw attention to Shell’s dangerous drilling in the north.
Staged like a grease fire that was difficult to control, the spoof included a user-generated ad generator, Twitter, and YouTube accounts. Social media followers watched as the alleged Shell social media team scrambled to provide solutions and fix the so-called social media situation.
While premeditated images of icebergs alongside captions like, “Why go solar when you can go polar?” continue to float around the Internet it is important to remember to be critical of what you see on the Internet. Here are some tips to raise your Internet awareness:
- Not a Verified Twitter Account. The @ShellIsPrepared Twitter account is not verified. This means the account is not flagged with the blue circle and white checkmark.
- One Sided. When viewing the gallery of submitted images and captions, you will quickly notice they are all one-sided, which should be a red flag indicating the website is disingenuous.
- Facebook. The link to their corporate Facebook account does not work. This small tip off is an obvious indication.
- Website Language. On the main page of the Arctic Ready website there are images and captions that do not fit with the brand image that Shell is seeking to develop. A polar bear holding the head of another polar bear in its mouth, as well as the caption “Recently in our excitement to begin drilling we had a lapse and slipped our anchor…”
If you continue to read through the working sections (may say “temporary site maintenance”) of the website, you will notice the obvious sarcastic diction used throughout.
Moral of the blog post: Not everything on the internet is true. Do your homework before drawing conclusions!