Greenpeace Fans Ambush VW’s Facebook Wall

Auto brand asks for New Year's resolutions, gets an earful

Social media is funny. You ask an innocent question, and you get a load of abuse in return. Volkswagen U.K. is learning that this week, as its fairly innocuous New Year's greeting to fans was ambushed by Greenpeace. "We hope you had a fantastic New Year. Do you have any resolutions and what would you like to see us do more of this year?" the auto brand wrote on Tuesday. For the rest of that day, the replies were mostly benign—stuff about products and features that fans would like to see. But on Wednesday morning, Greenpeace U.K. posted its own note to Facebook, urging its fans to ambush the VW post. "Hello friends!" Greenpeace wrote. "Volkswagen are asking on their Facebook page 'what would you like to see us do more of this year?' Well, Volkswagen U.K., we'd like you to stop threatening our planet by lobbying against climate laws. That would make a nice 2012. Click on their link and add your message." Sure enough, hundreds did—and the VW post has since become a mucky string of insults. VW hasn't responded, and probably won't have to. This is a different situation than the ChapStick and Lowe's scandals, where the criticisms were much more pointed and specific to particular moves by those brands—not part of an ongoing critique (see the video below) over broad corporate policy. The moral of the story? Perhaps don't ask what you can do better if you're already a target of environmental groups. Anyway, it's unpleasant for VW—and is drowning out some pretty good suggestions for other resolutions the brand should make for 2012. For example: "Some more great adverts!" Via Work That Matters.