Punking Online Commenters Is A Great Idea. Of Course, Heineken Is Nice About It

Online trolling is an unfortunate byproduct of web 2.0. At their best, these commenters create lively debate by presenting alternative points of view. But far more typically, their writings consists of left wing-right wing political name-calling where both sides shout and neither listen. Or the character-slagging mud slinging of AgencySpy. Or even the ‘I’m-smarter-than-you’ nitpicking from the country’s most-famous astrophysicist (I’m calling out you, Neil deGrasse Tyson–not everyone goes to the movies to watch a documentary).

In the latest longform installment of their popular “Departure Roulette” series, Heineken looks up those who have commented or tweeted about their program, albeit in a truly fun and engaging way. They find a few people who boasted how they’d jump at the chance to participate and offer them a chance to do just that. Right away. In front of a camera crew. Suddenly, hyperbole gets real and it makes for good, squirmy fun.

This viral video has done very well, earning 5.7 million views over the past two weeks. The notion of dropping everything and leaping into an exotic adventure has an undeniable appeal and the immediacy lends tremendous drama to the idea. This is a shareworthy clip that really engages the imagination. And that’s a rare and powerful thing. Nicely done.

By Dennis Ryan, CCO, Olson