#iaintait does not have 1,000 Google Wave Invites to give away

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Dear World,

I am @iaintait on Twitter. And I do not have 1,000 Google Wave Invites to give away.

I don’t even have a Google Wave invite for myself.

Since yesterday afternoon I’ve had thousands of people from all around the world re-tweeting #iaintait and sending me @iaintait messages asking for one of my supposed 1,000 Google Wave invites.

It’s kind of rendered Twitter unusable for me right now. Certainly if anyone tried to have a conversation with me using @iaintait there’s no way I can find it.

So, how did this start?

Yesterday morning @ihavenomouth tweeted this:

Twitter / Alex Light: #iaintait he can't blow hi ...

I don’t know if he meant to turn me into a hashtag or not. So I replied:

Twitter / Iain Tait: @ihavenomouth you f&@king ...

Which of course, in retrospect, to a bunch of people I know was like a red-rag to a bull:

Twitter / Alex Light: @iaintait #iaintait you're ...

There was basically a bunch of pisstaking going on, so I replied:

Twitter / Iain Tait: @igorclark @ihavenomouth @ ...

Then a couple of hours later. Mark ‘bloody’ Earls (@herdmeister) posts this:

Twitter / Mark Earls: RT @eskimon RT @iaintait 1 ...

And that my friends, is how it all started…

At its peak yesterday I was told there was a mention of #iaintait every 10 seconds on Twitter. And not only is it the hashtag that’s being sent around, people are now responding to @iaintait which makes Twitter kind of unusable right now. I’m guessing it’ll die down over time. But I thought that when I went to bed and it looks like we’re ramping up for the day:

201Ciaintait201D trends in Twitter with Trendistic

Some conclusions:

  • Stupidity is alive and well.
  • Chain letters / emails / tweets still seem to suck people in
  • Google Wave invites are hot shit
  • It is IMPOSSIBLE to put the genie back in the bottle
  • It’s strange feeling ‘viral’ in that way
  • @herdmeister owes me a beer (or 1,000 wave invites)

20 thoughts on “#iaintait does not have 1,000 Google Wave Invites to give away”

  1. Iain, I was one of the sucked in. I think the conclusion I’d add to your list is “@herdmeister is a hypocrite when he counsels brands to practice authenticity in social media.”

    One of the key points of a social media policy in an organization is to inspire the individual tweeting or posting on behalf of the company to think for a second about how their tweet aligns with the brand and social strategy. If only @herdmeister had taken that second… then I’d feel better as a client if I was paying his consulting fee for social media counsel.

    And when you say “Stupidity is alive and well,” I assume you are referring to @herdmeister, and not those who figured, hey, the guy is a serious social player, I doubt he’d be tweeting a scam, I’ll RT this. That is what you meant, right?

  2. As the unfortunate fool who unwittingly RTed a previous tweet which Mark then RTed too, I’d like to apologise for my part in this episode. I hope no harm was done…

    However, it’s fascinating to see the implications of such a small act. We’ve had people warning for some time how quickly misinformation travels on twitter. I only thought to check your stream after I’d retweeted someone else’s twitterings, and as soon as I realised you didn’t post that tweet I deleted it from my stream (literally a matter of seconds later).

    But by that time it was too late; Mark had already fallen for the same stunt as I had (I’m sorry to Mark too for getting him entangled in this), and it all caught fire.

    It’s easy to see how this could be put to good use – e.g. getting news out in an emergency – but the #iaintait episode highlights how dangerous this hyper-connectivity and instant dissemination could be.

    Anyway, hope the whole thing had some useful side-effects and a load of new people found your blog as a result. Cheers, and sorry again.

  3. My earlier comment may be a touch hasty, @eskimon, and in fact I’d not mind if you were to delete it. I’m not really sure which of @iaintait’s friends started the “prank” since it appear there was a manufactured RT in there somwhere, and in fact don’t really care. I’m not a social media forensics specialist. It’s likely that one of the group @iaintait’s friends really started it, which seems clear as the lot of you were using Twitter for some pretty silly and totally public back and forth yesterday.

    In a comments dialogue with @herdmeister this morning, I tried to make that point that it seems that with most of the lot involved being marketers, presumably attempting during at least some of their working hours to help clients operate with authenticity in social media, this kind of pranking actually reflects poorly on the reputation of the marketer, and not on those who treat it as likely authentic based on the reputation of the RTer. That’s all. Moving on – have a great Friday.

  4. @ heyrobertdavis, I’m not sure it’s fair to blame herdmesiter. He simply RTed my RT, and while it’s easy to say in hindsight that we should all have checked Iain’s tweet stream first, the reality was that the offer was exciting, simple, and above all, limited to the first 1000 RTers. Yes, it’s embarrassing for us, and it’s a major pain for Iain, but it’s also a great lesson and demonstration of what twitter can do. Let’s take the interesting bits out and use them to our advantage.

  5. Dude. Sorry for contributing to a joke getting out of hand.

    And yes, of course, beers at my cost, but that fella Robert is bit strong with his name calling, isn’t he? A joke however poor is a joke.

  6. [Large corporate boardroom filled with suited executives]

    Exec #1: Item six on the agenda: “The Meaning of Life” Now uh, Harry, you’ve had some thoughts on this.

    Exec #2: Yeah, I’ve had a team working on this over the past few weeks, and what we’ve come up with can be reduced to two fundamental concepts. One: People aren’t wearing enough hats. Two: Matter is energy. In the universe there are many energy fields which we cannot normally perceive. Some energies have a spiritual source which act upon a person’s soul. However, this “soul” does not exist ab initio as orthodox Christianity teaches; it has to be brought into existence by a process of guided self-observation. However, this is rarely achieved owing to man’s unique ability to be distracted from spiritual matters by everyday trivia.

    Exec #3: What was that about hats again?

    Exec #2: Oh, Uh… people aren’t wearing enough.

    Exec #1: Is this true?

    Exec #4: Certainly. Hat sales have increased but not pari passu, as our research…

    Exec #3: [Interrupting] “Not wearing enough”? enough for what purpose?

    Exec #5: Can I just ask, with reference to your second point, when you say souls don’t develop because people become distracted…
    [looking out window]

    Exec #5: Has anyone noticed that building there before?

  7. I’d just like to add that yes, I did mean to tag you but I didn’t understand that was anything unusual. Let the historical record stand. Regards, Alex.

  8. Hi Jonathan, I just realised you’re the perfect scapegoat:

    Hey everyone! “Jonathan from Spotify stole all my Google Wave invites”. ;-)

    (Sorry couldn’t resist).

  9. Okay, so if you don’t have 1,000 invites left, how many? 600? 300? Maybe only a few dozen after you have given so many out? I DEMAND MY INVITE #IAINTAIT

  10. Well one good side of it I would imagine is the fact that irrespective of how annoying it was you would have picked up a ton of new followers in the process :)

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