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Alex From Target - Maybe A Hoax

Target Conspired?

Yesterday, we told you about Alex From Target, the most recent handsome plaything to step into the lair of the internet fangirl and be flaunted temporarily for all to see. Overnight, Alex shot to hundreds of thousands of Twitter followers, 'impromptu' meetings with A-list celebrities, potential spots in ad campaigns and even more Twitter followers. And let's be honest, he isn't even that good looking, is he? Guys?

(I think he's the one on the right.)

It all seemed like a fairly cut and dry internet news story: thousands get weirdly hooked one person/object in an instant. These people, mostly girls between the ages of thirteen and thirteen, share imagery and messages of devotion about this person until they fall asleep. They then wake up, realise that the person they were so obsessed with last night was totally boring, and move onto the next big thing. Rinse, repeat, retweet (I'm definitely going to use that line again at some point, so be prepared).

Why does this happen? Because, teenagers. Remember? They see a popular internet celeb (the worst sort of celebrity) share a picture and it instantly becomes the best thing since sliced bread. No questions asked.

So why am I coming back to this article today? I'm clearly incredibly bitter about the whole 'internet conveyor belt' thing we've got going on, so why am I putting myself through the agony of writing any more about it? It's because things may have just got slightly interesting, as a Los Angeles marketing company called Breakr have claimed to have orchestrated the whole thing. Everyone else in the story, however, denies even ever hearing of them.

This morning, a spokesperson from Breakr made the announcement that the whole thing was their idea. They claim to be experts in ‘connecting fans to their fandom’, and referred to it as a 'social experiment'. In a LinkedIn post about his company’s role, Breakr CEO Dil-Domine Jacobe Leonares wrote the following:
“Yesterday, we had fun on Twitter with the hashtag #AlexFromTarget which ended up to be one of the most amazing social media experiments ever. We wanted to see how powerful the fangirl demographic was.”
But is it actually fake? At the moment, nobody really knows. While Breakr are adamant than they were the ones who made Alex blow up, it seems that every single other person involved in the story disagrees with their testament.

Firstly, the British girl who tweeted the initial Alex picture after seeing it on Tumblr, Abbie, vehemently denied ever even hearing of Breakr. As a bonus, she went on to make a swear-filled tweet saying that the whole Alex thing had more than worn out its welcome. I'm with you there, Abbie.

Next, the two girls who took the initial Alex snaps weighed in to deny Breakr's involvement. In an interview with the Daily Dot, Reiff, one of the girls, said the following, "I have never heard of Breakr but a few of my friends are sending me links to the post but I don't really know what it is."

So it looks like just as the story was becoming interesting, everyone had to go and turn it back into just another viral internet story. Breakr, it seems, were nothing more than a marketing start-up who wanted to cash in on the day's hot topic. In a sense, their evil plan worked, as their name is now all over the internet. When you're shamelessly commandeering a bandwagon, what more can you ask for? 

Incidentally, did I ever mention that this blog was responsible for making Kony famous? We also wrote the lyrics to Gangnam Style and directed this video. This internet marketing malarkey is easy.

Emile is a postgrad from the University of Saint Mark and Saint John. He’s hoping to break into journalism or publishing, and won’t stop blogging until he’s managed it! Follow him @EmileAtSMF.

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Alex From Target - Maybe A Hoax Reviewed by Anonymous on Thursday, November 06, 2014 Rating: 5
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