viral user-generated meme content goes mashup
The Chron gets on board with the whole viral-meme-user-generated-content thing. At least in their articles.
The SoaP meme began, as most great things do these days, with an individual blog entry. Screenwriter Josh Friedman recounted his adventures with doctoring a script for a movie about — why not? — snakes. Snakes on a plane. Snakes on a plane with Samuel Jackson. Could it get better? It could not, reasoned SoaP fanatic Brian Finklestein, a law student at Georgetown University who started SnakesonaBlog.com last year as part of his quest to be invited to the movie’s world premiere. His blog has since morphed into SoaP central, gathering news, rumors and the latest spasms of SoaP-inspired creativity.
While appreciating his efforts, New Line has kept its corporate hands to itself. ‘They’re excited about what’s going on online, but they realize if they get involved directly, the organic, spontaneous feel will be gone,’ Finklestein says. ‘A lot of what’s fun about this is that people are doing everything on their own. If the studio became involved, it would lose whatever charm and cache it has. I’ve gotten phone calls from marketers asking what they can do to make this work for them. The answer is that there’s not much you can do — except not sue your audience. The music industry can learn from this.’
Very well put. For a more in-depth exploration of this type of approach, check out Rob Walker’s classic article about Alex Wipperfurth and the letting-things-be-what-they-are marketing for Pabst Blue Ribbon. Walker, by the way, who writes the Consumed column for the NYT magazine, now has a blog.
By the way, User-Generated Content is now referred to as UGC (or so I read in Media magazine), and Snakes on a Plane is now referred to as SoaP. How cool(?) is that!