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Facepalm: A good social media account manager can improve their employer's public image through thoughtful interaction with customers. But there's a vital distinction between giving an intelligent response to a genuine complaint and calling someone a "milkshake brain." Unfortunately for EA, its Need for Speed account chose to throw said insult at a fan, prompting an apology from the company.
The official Need for Speed Twitter account had already received complaints and plenty of headlines over its antagonistic responses to users. But this approach has brought the latest entry in the long-running franchise plenty of attention ahead of its November 29 launch.
However, it appears that the person controlling the account went a little too far when one fan complained about the game's early access policy; those who pre-order the Need for Speed Unbound: Palace Edition will receive three days of early access ahead of the racing title's release.
One individual tweeted that paying more to access a game three days early is exploitative, to which the account responded with "cry about it bro or buy regular price idc," before calling them a "Milkshake brain." Following a four-sentence-long complaint about customer relations from the user, the NFS account sent the following reply: "I'm not reading all that, sorry that happened to you or congratulations." Yikes!
The messages have since been deleted, unsurprisingly. But they were captured by Dexerto.
Need for Speed had enough pic.twitter.com/QsEDuxLd26— Dexerto (@Dexerto) November 23, 2022
The Need for Speed account has now tweeted that some of its social media replies "crossed the line." As is always the case with public apologies, it's aimed at the people who were "upset."
Responses to the apology have been mixed. Some acknowledge that the account did go way too far, while others say it was great seeing people get "roasted" by social media managers and the whole incident was hilarious. There are also unconfirmed claims the person behind the account has been fired.
We admit we got a bit caught up in the hype for launch and some of our recent social media replies crossed the line. To those fans we upset, we apologize. We will do better. See you here next week.— Need for Speed (@NeedforSpeed) November 23, 2022
In fairness, official social media accounts often deal with unwarranted abuse and threats. In these cases, dishing out a witty retort and blocking the user is usually the best response. But name-calling will always be risky, and it wasn't as if the person in question was being especially hostile.