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Social Media Douchebag (a.k.a New Media Douchebag) is a media stereotype and a derogatory label used to describe someone who ostensibly engages in social networking and other fashionable online activities for self-promotion. The term may also be used to refer to someone who claims to be an expert in social media marketing. Similar to “hipster”, social media douchebag can often be seen as a self-parody phenomenon.
On October 17th, 2007, blogger Kelly Stewart uploaded the video “New Media Douchebags Explained” to YouTube. The video criticized people who work in the emerging social media industry, characterizing them as people who don’t really work and shameless self promoters. The video has accumulated over 148,000 views as of February 2012.
A number of variations of the label “social media douchebag” have been used to convey the same idea including “social media expert” and “social media guru.” A definition for “social media expert”, was submitted to Urban Dictionary by user Social Media Student on April 27th, 2009.
1). A joke used to refer to persons claiming to be experts in the field of social media. The punch-line being that those with enough expertise in the field know it’s an impossible field to be an expert of.
2). A self proclaimed title by carpetbaggers and snakeoil salesman to mesmerize unsuspecting people with their recipes of easy “1,2,3” success in Social Media.
A similar definition for “social media douchebag” was submitted by Bulwark_jrm on August 12th, 2011.
Somebody who abuses social media to promote their own agenda.
That Social Media Douchebag is asking everyone for reciprocal follows.
On October 18th, The Kelly Stewart video was blogged by Ford Motor Company’s head of social media Scott Monty. The video was posted to tech writer Robert Scoble’s personal blog and by MashableCEO Pete Cashmore on November 21st, 2007. The satirical website Social Media Douchebag, which masquerades as an educational website providing social media tips, was created on June 15th, 2009. The site was linked on the web culture blog Laughing Squid on June 17th.
On February 1st, 2010, an article titled “How to be a Social Media Douchebag” with tips on how to annoy people by abusing social media applications was published on the travel culture blog Matador Life. On February 12th, “The Social Media Douchebags” Facebook page was created. The single serving website “What The Fuck is my Social Media Strategy” that randomly generates sentences using social media buzz words was created on August 1st, 2010.
On April 18th, 2011, a post titled “How to be a Digital Media Douchebag” was published on the Brennan PR blog. A guide to identifying social media douchebags was posted by blogger Julio Peironcely on November 7th.
The “Social Media Guru Ryan Gosling” Tumblr with photos of American actor Ryan Gosling accompanied by captions with social media buzzwords, similar to Feminist Ryan Gosling, was created on February 10th, 2012.
Xtranormal is a website created by Chris Albrecht in October of 2008 which creates short videos using monotone text-to-speech and computer animated characters in a variety of scenes. The first Xtranormal video parodying social media consultants, suggesting they were overpaid and under qualified, was uploaded by YouTuber markhamnolan on September 30th, 2009. On January 29th, 2010, a video titled “The 5 Ways to Become a Social Media Douchebag” that parodied meaningless buzz words used by social media gurus was uploaded to YouTube.
A Bajillion Hits
Comedian Alex Blagg launched the site BajllionHits.Biz on September 6th, 2010 and included several promotion videos in which he plays a social media douchebag character:
On October 18th, 2010, a clip of a Dallas, Texas local Fox news station segment which satirized Facebook, Foursquare, Skype and Twitter was uploaded to their official Facebook page. The video was published in an article in the Dallas Observer the following day, praising the video for its humor. The YouTube upload of the video accumulated over 329,000 views within 15 months.
Search queries for “media douchebag” rose significantly in July of 2009, one month after the Social Media Douchebag website was launched.
BajillionHits.Biz – Bajillion Hits – If you dont get it, you dont get it
WhattheFuckisMySocialMediaStrategy.com – What the Fuck is my Social Media Strategy by Mike Phillips
SocialMediaDoucheBag.net – Increase Your Twitter Followers by Eleventy Billion in Seconds
Dallas Obersever – Down to City Hall O Death for KDFW-Channel 4s Roast of Social Media