Fox News tries to launch #OverIt2014 – guess how this went?

All together now: Stop using hashtags like this.  Stop it now.  I’m looking at you, Fox News.

On New Year’s Eve, the conservative media outlet tweeted this:

And, naturally, the internet was happy to respond:

The entire hashtag is replete with responses like this, and the story managed to put Fox News into the news, and not in a good way.

In taking a quick look at some of my old blog posts, there are numerous occasions where someone with serious negative sentiment tried to use a hashtag to start a conversation or solicit input, only to have it backfire disastrously.  This, clearly, is one of those times.  I’ll say it again: If you have serious negative feelings towards your brand, you have to be aware that something like this may happen when you invite open participation in a hashtag, and at the very least, you have to not be surprised when it happens.  That’s not to say that hashtag solicitation can’t be used – it can be – but you have to be prepared to acknowledge or respond to negative criticism.  If you aren’t willing to face reality in that regard, then don’t use a hashtag in this manner.

So, thanks to Fox News for giving us the first social media fail of the New Year!

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