No, not really, unfortunately the impossibly talented Mr David Robert Jones (a.k.a. David Bowie) is in fact deceased and the Internet is very much alive. Well, it’s probably a good that the Internet is alive since we need the ability to communicate in order to keep everything running. We rely on the Internet for just about everything from research and organisation to unrequited social justice and daily entertainment.
The problem is that with reliance on the Internet, comes dependency. And since we’re dependent on the Internet, unless we already know better, we can’t tell when we’re being lied to. Take a look at this article about the Death of David Bowie.
For years now the world has been plagued by Celebrity Death hoaxes. Similar to the recent hoax regarding David Bowie, which regrettably and prophetically came true a week later, other celebrities such as Betty White and the legendary James Earl Jones were also the subjects of hoaxes. The problem is that we don’t have another source it’s not as though we can call Betty White on the phone and make sure she’s still ticking over. Therefore when we see something the choice is either wait for an affirmation or believe the current message and of course not all reports are hoaxes.
Even more intriguing is that the hoax world doesn’t just extend to celebrities, even locally we hear of stories that don’t quite add up; here’s a perfect example of a completely fake person, Kamogelo Peterson.
Fool me once, shame on me. Fool me twice…
So this leads me to my point for this article, which is simply that the human race by and large, especially on the Internet, is more sceptical than ever. If something sounds unreal then chances are that it isn’t real. From weight loss miracle pills, videos billionaires want deleted and the get rich quick at home schemes it is no wonder that we’ve become cynical. That’s not to say that we don’t still fall for the occasional satire or hoax, but for the most part, people are starting to understand that the Internet is peer moderated.
The fact is that we as marketers need to understand how people react to everything. We need to understand and know their emotions, their needs and especially their Internet history! So when planning out your next marketing campaign remember that people are sceptical so make sure to back it all up!