Too Much Authenticity Is Not What the People Want


On the Redner Group's Web site is the text of a tweet: "Again, I want everyone to know that I was acting on my own. 2K had nothing to do with this. I am so very sorry for what I said."

It's a small-print mea culpa for a Twitter post that cost the PR agency its client, 2K Games. Redner Group, reacting on June 14 to negative reviews of the 2K game "Duke Nukem Forever," tweeted that "too many went too far with their reviews...we r reviewing who gets games next time."

Cue the proverbial media firestorm.

The next day 2K issued its own tweets: "2K Games does not endorse or condone the comments made by @TheRednerGroup and confirm they no longer represent our products...We maintain a mutually respectful relationship with the press and will continue to do so. We don't condone @TheRednerGroup's actions at all."

It's a commonly held belief now that PR pros need to approach social media differently than the old one-way delivery of information and content. The emphasis should be on engagement and speed and authenticity of voice. Well, the offending tweet from the Redner Group certainly engaged with audiences, was probably written very quickly and has the ring of total honesty. It came straight from an angry heart.

As we've said here, it's just too easy to let yourself go on Twitter and Facebook. Pure, naked honesty and "authenticity" does not play too well in a business setting, and Twitter is as much of a business setting as a corporate boardroom.


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