In the first week of September, anonymous 4chan users found a new way to make the Internet that much creepier, by leaking hundreds of private photographs showing famous females in various states of undress. They did the same thing this past weekend, and threatened that even more would be coming, including nude pictures of Harry Potter star/Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson. A website was even set up, Emma Watson You Are Next, with a clock counting down to 12 a.m. on September 24th.
Say, that’s today. Let’s swallow our pride and check it out.
That’s…unexpected, because as it turns out, the whole thing was a marketing hoax.
“None of these women deserve this,” the page states. “Join us as we shutdown 4chan and prevent more pictures from being leaked.” Alongside its call to keep private pictures private, the site boasts about its social success. The organizer says emmayouarenext.com reached 48 million visitors, 7 million Facebook shares and likes, and 3 million Twitter mentions. (Via)
The stunt was organized by Rantic, a “social media marketing enterprise that has participated in some of the most viral campaigns and music videos.” Their goal is to not only shut down 4chan, but to prove that the leaked nudes are a “clear indication that the internet NEEDS to be censored.” But apparently threatening to use a stranger’s personal property as a marketing gimmick is OK? As the Verge notes, Rantic doesn’t care about “issues of privacy and gender equality,” because if they did, they would have linked to Watson’s HeForShe campaign; they care about their #brand.