The only problem, of course, is that Kimye is still going strong, and the juicy headline was only meant to entice people to click on a link for voter registration — a form of celebrity Rickrolling, as noted in the Washington Post.
While an earlier faux tweet about the end of the Kardashian-West marriage and one claiming to offer details about the reason for Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson’s breakup (both of which linked to a voter registration site) went over well, the Elle effort fell flat for many. (CNN anchor Chris Cillizza called the ploy “brilliant,” but that was an unpopular opinion.) Notably, the earlier messages had come from individuals, not news organizations.
People were insulted, they commented, that Elle thought readers wouldn’t have been interested in a straightforward headline about registering to vote. They also condemned the publication for giving people a reason to distrust the media, at a time when many, including President Trump, routinely paint it as the enemy.
When a random tweeter did this it was clever but now you’re just stealing their tweet and also spreading fake news. https://t.co/RDZg4bQsMc
— Yashar Ali 🐘 (@yashar) October 18, 2018
This is trash nonsense. Who do you think you are reaching with this? Guess what? One can be civic minded and interested in celebrity gossip. Do better.
— roxane gay (@rgay) October 18, 2018
.@Twitter should take action against your account for spreading FakeNews & posting misleading content links.
— 𝑵𝒊𝒄𝒌 (@9Joe9) October 18, 2018
Actually this is insulting to all women…why use click bait for voter registration? Do you assume readers of @ELLEmagazine aren’t smart enough to understand the importance of registering to vote?
— cloud9yogi in SLC (@darylwolke) October 18, 2018
Hot tip: Women are fully capable of being self-actualized people who can be interested in pop culture news AND the current political landscape, @ELLEmagazine.
This is trash, and so is my newly-canceled subscription. https://t.co/Y0xMRvPfdu
— AC Slayer 🔪🔪🔪 (@amber_lcarter) October 18, 2018
Omg this is just flagrant electioneering. Wow. https://t.co/3aYNmhvHwb
— Andrea Ruth (@AndreaNRuth) October 18, 2018
You give journalists a bad name. This is horrible. So unethical.
— Brittney Hopper (@brittneytv) October 18, 2018
You’re a news site so………maybe don’t with the fake headlines? pic.twitter.com/XsSig6kNNf
— P.S. You’re Wrong: A Pop Culture Podcast (@psyourewrong) October 18, 2018
I’m not calling the authorities over this to be clear, it’s just not the most tasteful thing in the world. I think there are other memorable ways to do this that involve a little bit more effort.
— bubba atkinson (@BubbaAtkinson) October 18, 2018
You get the picture.
A spokeswoman for vote.org told the Post in a statement that more than 100,000 people under 30 have registered to vote “since the vote rolling memes started.
“While we can’t suggest they caused all the registrations, we can say all of the cultural conversations surrounding voting certainly correlate to spikes in young voters engagement,” she said.
Elle declined Yahoo Entertainment’s request for comment.
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