Woody Harrelson recently got on Reddit to engage in one of those famous “AMA” ask me anything threads. Well, that’s what it seemed like. In the past, people like Neil DeGrasse Tyson and Louis CK have had lots of success with their AMAs, focusing on being completely honest and engaging the community’s tough questions. However, success on Reddit depends on that honesty.
When Woody Harrelson got on Reddit this past Friday, honesty was the last thing on his mind, apparently. Every answer he gave to the community was about his upcoming movie, Rampart, and it quickly became obvious that it wasn’t Woody, it was a PR person. This is a cautionary tale for the marketing department and social media managers out there — don’t lie to Reddit.
On February 3rd, a post with verification appeared on Twitter’s AMA subreddit indicating that he would be answering questions.
Hi Reddit, it’s Woody here. I’m in New York today doing interviews for my new film RAMPART, which opens in theaters on February 10th. I’ll be checking in from 3-4EST today and will get to as many of your questions as I can, so start asking now! Be back soon.
Things started earnestly, with the post getting 30,000 upvotes and rocketing to the front page. People were stoked to “meet” the actor and ask him various questions about his large body of great films, from Zombieland to Natural Born Killers, but instead they got small PR worded answers, and over the course of an hour, despite thousands of questions about his connection with Bill Murray and the state of film today, he answered only four. The Reddit hive mind quickly became aware that this was a sham, and started using the thread as a place to vent about Woody and this waste of time. There were calls to boycott RAMPART and a lot of people threatening to “pirate the film” and “seed the f*** out of it”, referring to putting it on BitTorrent. Ouch.
They even started a meme lampooning the terrible answers given by “Woody” that only related to the film. This was worse than asking Sarah Palin about which newspapers she read.
The funny thing is that this is a great opportunity for Woody Harrelson to prove that he actually is the awesome guy that everyone thinks he is — he should get himself right back on Reddit and spend 3 hours fielding every question. Everyone knows a PR person can make a mistake, but it takes some cajones to actually get out there and fix it.
Do you think Woody will be back on Reddit?