And Finally Artist News Beef Of The Week

CMU Beef Of The Week #135: Example v Wigan

By | Published on Friday 9 November 2012


We often discuss using data from social media and other online sources to target specific groups of fans and better engage them. Turns out there’s a flipside to all that, as Example discovered this week.

“What Twitter needs is a block button for the whole of Wigan”, he tweeted on Tuesday. “Most abuse I get comes from Wigan. Are there any nice people in Wigan?”

The other thing we’re always told about social media engagement is that calls to action are important. For example, the question “Are there any nice people in Wigan?” invites people to respond, hopefully positively. Let’s see how it turned out.

“Tweeted earlier about how most abuse I get on Twitter is from people in Wigan”, Example recapped later. “Unsurprisingly this has resulted in more abuse… from Wigan”.

Although his original tweet was subsequently deleted, it did nothing to stem the tide. Though it should be noted that many also responded saying that they were the nice people from Wigan, or at least they knew some. Subsequently explaining his complaint to Wigan’s Wish FM, Example said: “I reckon last week alone I had abuse from 20 people in Wigan” adding later that he received “multiple death threats from [people in] Wigan last week”.

Later that morning, Example claimed to have “replied to approximately 87 people from Wigan today – more than the Mayor Of Wigan”, adding: “Is there even a mayor in Wigan?” Another call to action, though the responses again were disappointing.

By the evening things had got out of control and Example found himself on the front cover of the Wigan Evening Post under the headline “Bad Example”, with an article claiming that the rapper had managed to “insult [the] whole town”.

In the article, local councillor Chris Ready told the paper: “It’s totally out of order for him to say that, if he has only been to Wigan once. I challenge him to come here and I will take him around the borough and introduce him to the kind-hearted people here who keep this town alive. It is a well known fact that people from Wigan and people who choose to move here rarely move away, because it is such a welcoming, lovely, vibrant place. Maybe the rapper needs rapping”.

Oh, ho ho, he made a rapping joke. All’s well that ends well though, with the aforementioned Wish FM coming to the rescue. The next morning Example appeared on the station’s breakfast show where he was proclaimed to be a “friend of Wigan”. Now he and Wigan are going to watch the new James Bond movie together this weekend and have booked a holiday in Cornwall for the spring. Widnes is going to be dead jealous.