Chipotle Admits Hacking Its Own Twitter Account in Anniversary Stunt

Sunday's 'little problem' was self-inflicted

It might have gone down as one of the least interesting Twitter hacks of all time, except it was fake. Which makes it … interesting?

Chipotle has admitted to Mashable that the brand was behind a series of what looked like rogue tweets last weekend. On Sunday, @ChipotleTweets began posting odd messages like "Find avocado store in Arvada, Colorado" and, "Hi sweetie, can you please pick up some lime, salt, and onions? twitter." Shortly after, "Joe" from the Chipotle team posted a message that seemed to confirm a hack: "Sorry all. We had a little problem with our account. But everything is back on track now!"

While brand hacks seem to be a dime a dozen these days, this one was apparently invented for publicity. The tweets were meant to obliquely tie into Chipotle's "Adventurito" promotion, a series of 20 puzzles in 20 days celebrating its 20th anniversary. Sunday's puzzle was about the ingredients that go into guacamole. "We thought that people would pay attention, that it would cut through people's attention and make them talk, and it did that," company spokesman Chris Arnold told Mashable on Wednesday.

Earlier this year, MTV and BET (both owned by Viacom) did something similar when they pretended to be victims of hacks similar to those befalling brands like Burger King and Jeep. Some social media and PR pundits are already bemoaning the loss of reliability that a brand can suffer by lying to its fans. But come on. If you're disappointed by the ethical integrity of a burrito-hustling Twitter feed, you have no one but yourself to blame.