Jenny McCarthy’s #JennyAsks Hashtag Hijacked

The dangers of social media self-promotion

Twitter hashtag hijackings have become a common form of both protest and entertainment for the Internet crowd. McDonalds has run awry of this several times recently, most notably with its #McDStories campaign that drew out thousands of extremely creative, and often stomach-turning, tweets tweaking the company, as also happened to Quantas airlines, Walgreens, and many more.

Now, you can add actress/model/TV host Jenny McCarthy to join the list, after she faced the wrath of Twitter users. Here’s her (seemingly benign) post that kicked it all off:

Seems pretty harmless, right? That is, until you consider the fact that McCarthy has been an extremely vocal anti-vaccination activist, a position that has those on the other side of the debate heated up (a debate we’re not going to touch with a ten-foot pole, in case you were wondering). Within 24 hours, pro-vaccination posters had completely and utterly hijacked the #JennyAsks hashtag, with tweets like these summing up the type of sentiment expressed by most:



Here’s the deal – before starting any hashtag campaign, it’s smart social media crisis management to consider how it could be used against you, and exactly how much impact a hijacking could have. While negative sentiment may circulate either way, creating a way for your detractors to connect and focus their energy, and attracting many more who are simply game to jump in on the latest trollfest for fun, is often a #badidea.

The BCM Blogging Team

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