I’m not the bloodthirsty type and I certainly couldn’t sit down to watch the Aussie horror, Wolf Creek, in its entirety.
Yet I am a fan of the AMC series The Walking Dead, charting life in a world overrun by zombies. Sure there’s plenty of flesh-eating and screaming and foolish running and gratuitous stomping of heads with heavy boots. But somehow the zombie genre is not only spine-tingling but life-affirming and plain ridiculous fun. The added drama of The Walking Dead, with a fantastic cast including Andrew Lincoln and Norman Reedus has firmly propelled it into my favourite shows list (Reedus has one of the most colourful Twitter/Instagram accounts I’ve come across).
That’s a partial background to my reaction when I discovered a ‘zombie hoarde’ had started to follow me on Twitter last week. My numbers had leapt by around 600 followers overnight.
To be honest, I didn’t even notice their zombie avatars initially! I was too focused on their short bios and their lack of Twitter history. Clearly they were spambots. I tweeted, asking others if they’d experienced a jump, too.
I finally focused on their avatars and that made me laugh, especially alongside their short bios. They were all zombies! (I know, I’m quick on the uptake). I’ve had a few spambots follow me (see my post about Spambina) but I hadn’t seen anything like this, which actually piqued my interest and made me smile.
One of the ‘zombies’ tweeted me to say it was not a spam account – that also let me know that this was something different to the usual slimy spambot. They were interacting – in fact ‘he’ took umbrage. That account has been suspended (I suspect they all have) yet you can see my original question on Twitter still (see below):
It now appears this may indeed be a publicity stunt for The Walking Dead. Asher Wolf has written a fascinating account of her views of this, see it on The Guardian website. Related parties have not provided comment yet.
I’m by no means the earliest adopter of Twitter, but it has been my favourite platform since 2009 and I’ve had a remarkably good experience there. Negative, nasty interactions have been few (and even saying that is making me extremely paranoid because I know what I’m encouraging now) #touchwood
It will be interesting to see what Twitter makes of this, if a statement is released. Was the zombie hoard a violation of its spam policy? Was this aggressive following, for example?
Did the zombie hoard follow you? Do you think this was a sound stunt, or nasty and illegal?
UPDATE: Seems this isn’t the only medium for zombie hoards. MTA troubled by Walking Dead subway grate video