Crass Microsoft Tweet Encourages Followers to Buy Amy Winehouse Music
The folks who run a Microsoft Xbox Twitter account are missing a sensitivity chip. Mashable (via CNN) reports that a tweet was posted yesterday, encouraging the account's followers to pay tribute to the late Amy Winehouse by purchasing her last album, 2007's 'Back to Black,' via its Zune service.
Ouch. That certainly comes across as tacky and crass (not to mention at a very insensitive and inopportune time), asking followers to make a purchase on the back of the singer's passing. It certainly appeared as though Microsoft was trying to capitalize on the singer's death.
The first tweet read as follows: "Remember Amy Winehouse by downloading the ground-breaking ‘Back to Black’ over at Zune."
There was considerable backlash about the tweet, with people retweeting the post and labeling it "crass" and suggesting that Microsoft had suffered an epic social media fail.
Two follow up tweets were posted as make goods. The first apology tweet read: "Apologies to everyone if our earlier Amy Winehouse 'download' tweet seemed purely commercially motivated. Far from the case, we assure you." The second apology tweet read: "With Amy W's passing, the world has lost a huge talent. Our thoughts are with Amy's family and friends at this very sad time."
But don't come down so hard on Microsoft. Apple even posted an image of the beehived singer on the front page of its iTunes store with a banner that read "Remembering Amy Winehouse."
'Back to Black' has since soared to become the No.1 selling album in the iTunes store.
But we're not going to suggest that one caused the other. Anytime a pop star dies, sales of their music tend to increase. If Microsoft or Apple didn't post some sort of tribute or obituary, they could have been criticized for not celebrating the singer's work. However, posting a link to purchase and making a call to action tweet might be pushing it a bit. Winehouse is a cultural hot topic, so it's common sense that people will seek out her music and speak about her online.
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