03 June 2009 733 Views

How To Ruin A Viral (Part 2): Mess Up

by Dan Koelsch

MNU Spreads Lies

District 9 has a very versatile viral campaign encompassing two opposing forces, four websites, and the social networking world. Despite all this, many have complained about the viral not living up to its potential. Sure, all the pieces are in place, but Sony isn’t playing the game correctly. For instance, they went over 6 months without updating ANY of their viral sites. They set up this vast viral world and then abandon it for half a year. Maybe it was the economy, maybe they thought they started too soon, who knows. What matters is, people weren’t happy.

Even when they start their viral campaign back up, Sony can’t win. Sony created a Twitter account on May 11th for the site mnuspreadslies.com. Seems reasonable enough, except that the name for the account holder was ‘Christopher’. The main alien behind the site was named George, so at first I, like many, though Christopher was another staff member (aka an alien) for the site. But as the weeks followed and Christopher tweeted more, it became clear that he was claiming to write blog posts on the site that had George as the author. Then Sony suddenly changed the author on all the posts to Christopher, likely as a way to cover their tracks, but they forgot something…to change the actual posts. Within many of the posts, the author would sign off as George, and that name is still there.


The obvious explanation is that Sony has just f*cked up and is poor at covering their tracks. However, there are still questions. Why did Sony change the name? Are they really that careless? One, albeit far-off, explanation is that this is actually part of the viral. Somehow, Multi-National United has planted this “Christopher” to replace George, as a spy or something. It could even be a Marcus Wright (Terminator Salvation) scenario. This seems highly unlikely, as there hasn’t even been a whiff of a hint that this is the case. Just seems like reaching to stay oblivious to the obvious truth: Sony messed up.


District 9 releases August 14th. See our District 9 page for more details.



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