Dell Employees Arrested Over Incredibly Stupid Marketing Stunt

from the faux-hostage-taking-is-not-a-good-idea dept

In the long list of really bad marketing ideas, I'd have to say that "pretending to take an entire office hostage to celebrate the release of a new product" may be somewhere near the top. However, that's what two Dell marketing employees thought to do -- and since they were the only two who knew about the plan (which involved one of them dressed up as a "biker with a black mask" carrying "mysterious metal objects" and then ordering the entire office to "go to the lobby"), employees, naturally, got upset. Some called the police, who responded to what certainly could appear to be a hostage situation. Thankfully, no one got hurt, but the two guys were arrested, and now face misdemeanor charges. I'm reminded of the story a few years ago in Boston where glowing signs of Adult Swim characters were misinterpreted as bombs, shutting down much of the city of Boston. In that case, however, there was a massive overreaction, where the mayor wanted to ban all "guerrilla marketing." Of course, there was a pretty big difference in that situation: the marketers in that case didn't think they were placing something that looked like "bombs." They were just placing funky LED signs.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    The eejit (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 6:06am

    "Please ensure that brain is switched on and allowed time to warm up before opening a mouth, using a pen or executing an idea."

    That's rule one of life.

     

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  2.  
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    John Doe, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:08am

    Lucky nobody was packing heat...

    They are very lucky that nobody had a concealed weapon or they might have gotten themselves shot.

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:34am

    Re:

    My brain gave me a boot error. Must be getting old =)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:35am

    Re: Lucky nobody was packing heat...

    Or that there weren't any recently fired Walmart security types there....

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:39am

    It doesn't matter - you are talking about it here, so their campaign is working.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:46am

    Re: Lucky nobody was packing heat...

    Wouldn't most sane offices forbid weapons within their premises?

     

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  7.  
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    Ima Fish (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:46am

    Re:

    "you are talking about it here, so their campaign is working"

    Talking about what? If we have no idea what they were marketing, their attempt at marketing failed.

     

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  8.  
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    DH's Love Child (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:46am

    Re:

    Yeah, I think their brains experienced BSOD. Must be running Windows ME.

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    Pixelation, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:49am

    You would think that at some point in the creation of the idea or the start of the execution of it that these guys would have thought, "Hmmm, I wonder if this is such a good idea".

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:52am

    Re: Re: Lucky nobody was packing heat...

    No, but the insane ones would.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
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    Berenerd (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 7:55am

    Re:

    Saw a shirt last weekend.."I cannot brain today, I have the dumb..."
    Seems to fit here..

     

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  12.  
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    NullOp, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 8:06am

    Hostages

    Jumping to conclusions is the most activity some people get!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
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    John Doe, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 8:07am

    Re: Re: Lucky nobody was packing heat...

    Or there were no handbag swinging old ladies.

     

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  14.  
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    John Doe, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 8:08am

    Re: Re: Lucky nobody was packing heat...

    Yes, because we all know that banning things prevents them entirely. That is why you have never hear of shootings in schools which are "gun free" zones.

     

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  15.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 8:08am

    Re: Hostages

    "Jumping to conclusions is the most activity some people get!"

    That gives me a great idea for an invention. See, it's called a jump to conclusions mat....

    What? Waddya mean it's already been invented....

     

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  16.  
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    mrtraver (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 8:28am

    Re: Re: Hostages

    That is the worst I idea I have ever heard, Tom.
    Terible, terrible this idea.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 8:34am

    Re: Lucky nobody was packing heat...

    I'm a little surprised that no one had a gun considering it's Texas. Most of the people I work with have their concealed carry license and would have had no problem wounding the two of them.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 8:52am

    Maybe these were the jobs Dell should have outsourced.

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 9:00am

    Re:

    no we are talking about how stupid two people were, not how stupid their marketing party was.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 9:37am

    Ban all marketing sounds like a fucking WONDERFUL idea.

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 9:39am

    Re: Re: Lucky nobody was packing heat...

    Wouldn't most sane offices forbid weapons within their premises?

    Why would they do that? Generally it's a matter of preference by the director/other talking heads, but there really isn't any statistic to make it a negative concept. In my office I don't have any such rules in place simply because statistically it's actually a lower risk to not have the rules in place.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
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    Marcus Carab (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 9:42am

    Re:

    ...as long as you are okay with paying way more for every product that relies on advertising income...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
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    The eejit (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 9:45am

    Re: Re:

    Eh, there's a tradeoff for everything. Still, I'll miss adverts like the one in Australia for the Knob-Expander 3000.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
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    Marcus Carab (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 10:15am

    Re: Re: Re:

    well, fine, as long as you are also prepared to miss (or pay through the nose for) broadcast television, radio, news, sports leagues, public transit and nearly all free web services including Google :P

     

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  25.  
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    Jay (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 10:34am

    Re:

    I thought rule Number one was Cardio...

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 11:12am

    Re: Re:

    It doesn't matter, I am sure that plenty of people who read this post will look for more information, and of course, will remember that it is DELL involved in it.

    Good or bad, as long as they spell you name right, it is working.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
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    The eejit (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 12:22pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Maybe. Google could probably adapt, and I'd be far more willing to cut the cable.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  28.  
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    TheRemains (profile), Feb 18th, 2011 @ 12:32pm

    that's the dumbest thing i've ever heard

    And I'll tell you why right after I finish building this new Dell gaming machine

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2011 @ 5:15am

    Re:

    The campaign to make everyone talk about what assholes they are whilst being completely 100% ignorant of what the product is?

    You're right, it's going down a treat!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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