HBO CEO Went Underground To Stay On Top: Social Hacking For TV Success

Hyping up your TV pet project can be a tricky thing. But should you go underground when someone gets under your skin?

How about cajoling, convincing, and perhaps even scaring some TV reviewers, using secret and bogus social-media accounts? This is something Casey Bloys, now chairman/CEO of HBO, did some years ago.

Last week in New York at a scheduled programming presentation, after responding to testimony from a former HBO employee's wrongful termination suit against the company, Bloys apologized for the fake tweets, admitting that he spent an inordinate amount of time scrolling through Twitter during the pandemic: "I came up with a very, very dumb idea to vent my frustration.” 



It wasn't just one dummy social-media account but many, with regard to critics' comments and negative reviews of TV shows. 

In June 2020, for example, he targeted Vulture TV reviewer Kathryn VanArendonk after she posted thoughts on X (Twitter) about HBO's revamped TV classic, “Perry Mason.”

All this speaks to what modern-day TV series promotion, advertising, and general awareness can be all about -- and not just with established critics, business writers, but the whole spur-of-the-moment, off the cuff, social-media world of communications.

Perhaps one should also include press attention when it comes to pre-set media interviews with talent and creators, and straight-on promotion/on-air advertising campaigns.

Given the plethora of places to place critical comments about any and all new pieces of entertainment, trying to change public opinion on open media spaces is a fool's errand.  

Not only that, but swatting at flies can lead to entertainment and creative exhaustion. Sometimes you can be stuck with a loser against your best intentions.

Even HBO can admit to shortcomings, probably even “John From Cincinnati” in 2007 -- a show about miracles, spiritualism, surfing, dirtbags, and honest people. 

1 comment about "HBO CEO Went Underground To Stay On Top: Social Hacking For TV Success".
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  1. Ben B from Retired, November 8, 2023 at 10:16 p.m.

    Casey Bloys should go after the censorship org that is The PTC since they are known liars and lie about HBO and their shows.

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