walmart, jc penney - stop being social

Walmart has just launched their back to school (that's BTS if you're from JC Penney) with a "social" site. Please make this stop.

They've created "the hub", where teens can "express their individuality" - as long as they don't express it by communicating with anyone else in the hub, as long as their parents know about it, and as long as Walmart approves of the content.

AdAge interviews an expert on youth trends, who says "Over the last year, we have been getting increasingly bad feedback from teen girls about Wal-Mart in contrast to Target -- especially Wal-Mart's apparent lack of cleanliness, messy layout and lack of stylish attire. This attempt at 'we media' is terrific. We'll have to wait and see if it's enough to overcome in-store issues." HUH?? Customers tell you that your stores are sloppy, and you solve the problem with a "social" website? Ummm, hello?

AdJab put it so much better
than I could. Go where they are, don't try to get them to come where you want them. There's more real power to be had by empowering people than forcing them to play in your sandbox.

This is not social. It's off-target, uncool, and anti-social. Walmart - JC Penney - please stop being "social media" - please be a store, where we can purchase things.

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