Netflix Plays a Sarah Palin Hashtag Game, Gets Burned

Sarah Palin - Iron Sky
Iron SkyStephanie Paul plays The President of the United States in "Iron Sky" by Blind Spot Pictures.
Sarah Palin's totem is the mama grizzly, and her admirers are as protective of her as the fabled bear is of her cubs.

Their target today is the resurgent Netflix (NFLX), which reported its first quarter results earlier this week. Twitchy -- conservative commentator Michelle Malkin's Twitter monitor/controversy generator -- reports that the hashtag #SarahPalinFilms arose on Tuesday night, attributing it to "lefties" whose apparent dismissiveness towards Palin is belied by their purported obsession with her: "You know, because her 15 minutes have come and gone and she's totally not living rent-free in their heads." #Sarcasm.

Sensing an opportunity to #leverage #socialmedia to #grow their #brand, whoever was manning the Netflix Twitter account thought of a 2012 science fiction comedy film called "Iron Sky," which features a character obviously based on Palin. But the plot of this Finnish-German-Australian production would provide an occasion for the kind of theatrically outraged response that Twitchy specializes in ginning up. For "Iron Sky" concerns a group of Nazis who flee to the moon after Germany's defeat in World War II and return in 2018 via spaceships to take over the world. And the Palin-like president of the United States winds up collaborating with a couple of moon Nazis on her reelection campaign, and in general seems like a figure of ridicule.

It sounds like a pretty dumb movie, and got terrible reviews, but the Sarah Palin connection is indisputable. Netflix tweeted:
A vigilant follower alerted Twitchy to this apparent breach of corporate PR political neutrality, and the site followed its usual procedure, posting angry replies from Twitter users who resented the "cheap shot." Soon the hashtag was taken over by reactions to the Netflix tweet. Mission accomplished.

On the plus side, the tweet has now achieved much more #reach and #engagement than it otherwise would have, which sounds like a social media #win for $NFLX. Twitchy amplifies the voices of users who indignantly insist that they'll cancel their Netflix accounts or use Amazon Prime after something like this, but Netflix might sense that deleting the tweet, or issuing some kind of apology, would only provide an occasion for further commentary.

Twitchy has already documented, in a follow-up post, several conversations between concerned citizens and Netflix reps, including one employee who mistakenly stated that Netflix was not responsible for the tweet (which remains online as of this writing). The company line seems to be that Netflix was merely promoting a new release and takes no political position on Palin.'s entertainment division, Big Hollywood, has also taken up the cause, declaring, "The Internet will not only ensure that Netflix's shockingly tone-deaf tweet spreads like wildfire, but this is the kind of divisive behavior that can blemish a company forever."


"Had Netflix contributed to an #ObamaFilm hashtag game with the exact same title... Well, we all know Netflix would never do that," writer John Nolte continued. "The mainstream media would pummel them into dust." More likely Netflix wouldn't do that because "Iron Sky" has nothing to do with Obama, but the general point is probably true.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings himself once got into social media hot water when he posted on his personal Facebook page in July 2012 that the company's users had exceeded 1 billion hours of streamed content. Netflix shares rose 6.2 percent that day, leading to threats of an SEC civil claim. Last month, the SEC said companies are allowed to make announcements on social media, as long as investors are alerted to how stock price-affecting information will be disclosed.

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Why doesn't Netflix use their "supposed" influence for something useful, like providing 50% off coupons for gas fill-ups??!!!

May 04 2013 at 9:09 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Al Benacquisto

Sarah is a True Patriot, unlike the fraud who is currently leading the Divided States of America.

May 03 2013 at 7:42 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Michael Creel

Looks like I'll be closing that account. Tired of the left wing b.s., no need to give them my business. Didn't know Netflix was partisan.

May 02 2013 at 4:17 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply


May 02 2013 at 1:22 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

The film Iron Sky is actually quite good, especially if you're into certain kind of European-style humor. It certainly divides opinions, but the team behind it doesn't try to please everyone. They have attitude. ;) They make fun not only of Palin, but also of Hollywood-style big money comedy productions (which we Europeans don't often find funny at all). The director of the film is already very proud and having good laughs of all this noise the American conservatives are making over this "Palingate". One might say that he, like most of us Northern Europeans, would never, ever vote for Bush, Romney, Palin - etc. For us, they are more like very dangerous, ignorant fools. Bad jokes, really. Therefore good material for a film! ;)

May 02 2013 at 12:37 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Nagamorich's comment
Gary Jackson

It's a stupid hate filled movie made by idiots with the expressed reason of attacking Palin and smearing the American people.

Worse, it's historically WRONG. Palin is a CONSERVATIVE and the Nazis were SOCIALISTS, just like Barack Obama and his democrat party.

Wise up idiot.

May 02 2013 at 12:52 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Gary Jackson's comment

No, the key makers of this film are very good, clever people (I know them personally). They just disagree with your political views, and have a very Monty Python -like attitude and sense of humor. They are not against Americans, but the religious right does look hilarious to most Europeans. ;)

May 02 2013 at 1:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down
Geoffrey Butler

Better Bush, Romney, and Palin than Hollande, Zapatero, and Brown, my dear chauvinistic friend.

May 02 2013 at 4:40 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

Forget Palin!

May 02 2013 at 11:35 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Palin sent a son off to join other American soldiers to fight terrorists in Afghanistan and keep us safe, loves God, decided to raise and not to abort her baby boy, and fulfilled every campaign promise she made as governor before handing it off to someone who could fulfill new promises for Alaska. No wonder she is hated.

May 02 2013 at 11:17 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to RASlater's comment

She is hated because she is insanely ignorant, yet speaks out continually on matters she knows nothing about.

May 02 2013 at 11:41 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Alan's comment
Gary Jackson

The only insanely ignorant person is YOU. You are too stupid to actually research Palin and find out that she was America's best Governor. Nope, like all good democrat zombies, you just spew nonsense you hear your masters say.

May 02 2013 at 12:45 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down
Michael Creel

Kind of like you?

May 02 2013 at 4:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down

cant take the heat get out the kitchen! lolol

May 02 2013 at 10:45 AM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
Tom Beard

I believe HITLER has more fans then palin

May 02 2013 at 10:44 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Tom Beard's comment
Gary Jackson

You realize Hitler was a socialist, just like Obama, right?

BTW idiot democrat, according to the left wing website Mediaite, Sarah Palin is the most influential politician in America.

May 02 2013 at 12:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michael Creel

Certainly more than you.

May 02 2013 at 4:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I just can't fathom why anyone would listen to this blithering idiot in the 1st place. All she is capable of doing is getting rich by way of having a greedy publisher like her who will print her BS and make a profit from it. PLEASE just make it go away!!!!!

May 02 2013 at 10:40 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to ctmach1's comment
Jack Adler

Tom Beard, is a sick IDIOT. I don't care much for Palin either. Tom, use a little class. sorry I forgot, you don't have any.

May 02 2013 at 11:20 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Gary Jackson

Funny how democrats HATE successful people and DESPISE those evil profits. Well guess what moron, without hard working people like Palin, who's work is actually worth something, there would be no profits, thus no taxes paid, and you wouldn't get your welfare check, food stamps, and free Obama phone!

May 02 2013 at 12:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply