With all the comparisons to the Exxon Valdez spill of 1989, there’s at least one arena where BP appears to be head and shoulders above its oil-spill predecessor — suffering public mockery.
They can thank the age of social media.
There’s the fake Twitter account, BPGlobalPR, posing as the public relations mouthpiece for an arrogant powerhouse. Today it tweeted its 184,466 followers: “Attention lazy fishermen! If you won’t clean our mess, we’re taking your money. Fair is fair.” They also produced this fake press conference.
YouTube, not around in 1989, is brimming with satirical videos targeting BP. There’s BP spills coffee, now at more than 9 million views. Spoof ads are also hot contenders for “viral” status: Oil is natural and the slickly produced BP Bringing People Together are two of the more popular.
Are Americans being too hard on the company? The spill in the Gulf of Mexico has so far cost the company $3 billion in clean-up costs. On a daily basis, BP repeats its commitment to taking full responsibility and will pay for all legitimate claims.