@FakeShellyRyan: Phase One Summary

August 31, 2009 - By

Did you catch my first post about “my” very own Shelly Ryan Social Experiment? If so you no doubt spend your weekend trying to unsee some of the tweets you read, or trying to think of something even better (or worse from another perspective) to post…  If you didn’t here’s the summary of what happened.

It was about 11pm EST on Friday night. Kristi was playing a video game and I had some time to kill. I decided to get a start on this Social Experiment that my friend Tim and I had joked about. I had no sooner written my ArleyM.com post about it when people started tweeting. It was spreading like wild fire! It became apparent to me very quickly that this wasn’t “my” experiment; FakeShellyRyan had struck a chord with the spammed masses and had become a property of the community.

Within two hours @FakeShellyRyan had nearly 70 followers, had made 125 tweets and was following a few hundred people. Then, the expected happened: the account made too many tweets in one hour. I was one of those who would have seen the pop up. I would have loved to warn the other users, but it was too late. After a couple more attempts the account got killed.

When I was able to reactivate the account I had lost all my followers, and followed. Ah well. The first phase was over and I had my data!

A Censorship Explanation

I then made a decision that will annoy many of those who took part: I deleted many many posts. I went through and deleted exactly 50  of the 127 tweets – these were just the foul or otherwise NSFW tweets. I did this knowing it might cause a backlash from the community that made her what she was. I did this for a couple reasons and I hope the users understand. I don’t want to set a nasty tone that taints the voice in the following phases, and I want to keep the profile as clean as possible for phase 3.

You know, kids might see it.

I know this kind of censorship is never very popular on the internets, but I knew before starting this experiment that it was a decision I was going to make. I would encourage disgruntled fans to make their own Shelly Ryan accounts and keep the fire going! Don’t be sad; gone is not forgotten. Many of her very worst (or best from another perspective) messages got retweets.

Phase One

In summary Phase One was testing the reactions of the Friday Middle-of-the-night crowd. For some reason I had guessed that these would be playful, partyesque tweeters; many equipped with dirty frat humor. We had some good times didn’t we? Stay tuned for Phase Two in a few weeks.

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This post was written by ArleyM