It’s safe to assume that using Chris Benoit’s likeness as part of a social media campaign is not a good idea. Well, that happened this week (albeit, inadvertently) when Walkers Crisps potato chips launched a marketing campaign with the hashtag #WalkersWave.
As part of the campaign, people on social media were asked to send in selfies with the #WalkersWave hashtag included. Users that sent in their selfies would then be incorporated into a video with retired football/current sports broadcaster Gary Lineker.
That plan backfired because pranksters decided to send in photos of serial killers. One of the murders featured was Chris Benoit. I am assuming that these videos were automated or whoever was behind posting the tweets on the Walkers Wave Twitter account had no clue who Chris Benoit was. In addition to Chris Benoit, there were videos with Austrian serial rapist and murderer Josef Fritzel, Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe, and Soviet leader Joseph Stalin among others.
The tweets were later pulled but the damage was already done. The company has since apologized and they have decided to end the campaign. The now-deleted video can be seen below:
— Alex Rhodes (@AlRhodes92) May 25, 2017
— Craig Denholm (@CraigDenholm) May 25, 2017
We recognise people were offended by irresponsible & offensive posts & we apologise. We are equally upset & have shut the activity down.
— Walkers Crisps (@walkers_crisps) May 25, 2017
A rep for the company issued the following statement: “We recognise people were offended by irresponsible & offensive posts & we apologise. We are equally upset & have shut the activity down.”