NYPD Twitter Campaign Catastrophically Backfires Within Minutes

Apr 22, 2014 at 5:16 PM ET

The New York Police Department on Tuesday launched a social media campaign aimed at drumming up some feel-good images of everyday people striking a friendly pose with the city’s finest. But they got a lot more than they bargained for.

Unfortunately, the campaign monumentally backfired. Within minutes, citizens seized on the #myNYPD hashtag and hijacked the thread, resulting in pretty much the kind of worst-case nightmare scenario that keeps public affairs officials up at night. And now the floodgates have opened:

It’s what some might call a teachable moment in social media marketing.