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Home » Engagement, News

Paperchase Twitter storm just won’t blow over

Submitted by on February 12, 2010 – 11:18 am12 Comments

Paperchase’s scramble to diffuse yesterday’s roiling Twitter storm and cap serious damage to its brand shows the risks of business snubbing people with “friends in high places” – make that Twitter followers in high places.

Allegations of plagiarism on the part of an artist called Hidden Eloise exploded into a public relations nightmare for the U.K. high street stationary chain. It was forced to respond with a statement of clarification on its site, and to hastily build a Twitter feed to present its case.

Less than 24 hours old,  Paperchase’s Twitter feed now has a meager 90 followers. Meanwhile, the Paperchase did-they-or-didn’t-they? Tweets continue to stream through at a rate of a few hundred per hour.

It’s pretty clear Paperchase is losing the credibility war on Twitter this morning, and much of the reason for that is it simply cannot deflect away the heavy volume of doubtful Tweets it still faces. Yes, over 100 Twitter users have pointed to Paperchase’s belated Twitter clarification of what happened, but that’s simply no match for the barrage of negative Tweets streaming in.

Paperchase is learning a hard lesson: brands ignore Twitter at their peril. Paperchase is engaging with this community only now, just as a crisis arises. And it shows. They snatched up an awkward handle: @frompaperchase. Why? Because @paperchaseUK was already taken, set up ostensibly by the Tech PR Allan Edwards who describes, “In contact with Paperchase, attempting to encourage a Twitter presence and response.”

They are aware of you now.


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