While the headlines in 2015 have been dominated by Jeremy Corbyn’s rise from the backbench, the Piggate scandal that will forever be seared into our minds and Justin Bieber's renaissance, other headlines have been made on the basis of just a single tweet.
From ‘sadness in his eyes’ gaffes to cringe-worthy feuds, the following examples demonstrate how social media can become a PR’s worst nightmare.
The year got off to a bang when a US ESPN sports presenter unintentionally shared a link to a very, very different one to the one he had intended to share.
In an attempt to tweet a sporting update to his 15,000 followers, Hamilton tweeted a link to a porn video.
Don't worry ESPN analyst Gerry Hamilton, we tweet incorrect links from our other browser tabs too. (just not porn) pic.twitter.com/T8Y2CkPkZC— So That Happened... (@WTFark) January 22, 2015
Twitter erupted and even Pornhub gave Hamilton a ribbing by asking if he wanted to switch jobs for a day.
Hamilton immediately took the tweet down and re-posted it - this time with the correct link.
A Twitter list of this variety would be incomplete without at least one offering from West, the rapper who has continued his quest for world domination one bizarre quote at a time.
West became the ultimate embarrassing Dad when he embarked on a Twitter rant about his daughter, North, buying ‘in app purchases’ while playing games on his iPad.
Echoing the calls of parents of toddlers in the digital age everywhere, West pleaded for tech companies "give us a break for Christ sake!".
That makes no sense!!! We give the iPad to our child and every 5 minutes there's a new purchase!!!— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) October 10, 2015
If a game is made for a 2 year old, just allow them to have fun and give the parents a break for Christ sake.— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) October 10, 2015
In an unsuccessful effort to be current and cool, the National Police Air Service shared a police helicopter image of comedian Michael McIntyre in July.
But after asking followers to guess which “energetic funny man” they had found with surveillance, they were faced a backlash amid concerns over McIntyre’s right to privacy.
@NPASLondon Wow. That's kinda creepy— Peter Main (@PeterDJMain) July 15, 2015
A simple “error” on Twitter in June led to the entire BBC Language workforce embarking on a social media refresher course, a rare intervention from Buckingham Palace and international news sites reporting the death of the British monarch.
Why? Because BBC Urdu journalist Ahmen Khawaja told 8,000 followers the Queen had died. The tweet was accidentally sent during a regular rehearsal by the BBC for royal deaths and swiftly deleted. But it was too late, and a few news sites ran with headlines proclaiming the Queen's 'death'.
The embarrassing ordeal concluded with the journalist’s tweet and subsequent retraction being branded a “serious breach of editorial guidelines” by a BBC investigation.
People news in pictures
People news in pictures
US President-elect Donald Trump and musician Kanye West pose for media at Trump Tower in Manhattan, New York City
Anna Wintour apologises for criticising Donald Trump on a train. Fashionista was reportedly heard saying the President-elect would use the Presidency 'to sell himself and his brand'
Ivanka Trump and her husband might be joining the next administration. The couple is plotting a move to the nation's capital
Samuel L Jackson calls Muslims 'the new black kids in America' 'People perceive them as a threat before even saying hello,' actor says of Muslims in the US
Former JLS star Oritse Williams denies rape allegation The singer has not been charged
Bill Gates announces $1bn investment fund for clean energy technology Team-up with Richard Branson, Jeff Bezos and others aims to fight climate change - and reap 'super' rewards
Donald Trump's aide worked for anti-immigation extremists Poll was used by President-elect during campaign to justify banning Muslims from the US
Henry Kissinger tells Nobel Peace Prize forum to give Donald Trump a chance More than 7,000 people called for the 'mastermind of war' to be arrested while visiting Norway
John Travolta dismisses new Scientology documentary by former member Leah Remini The actor defends the church and says it was a source of support for him when he lost his girlfriend, mother and son
The reality TV star almost faced the wrath of an entire country after an Argentian entertainment site misinterpreted a tweet about the Pope.
During his highly successful trip to the US in September, the outlet speculated that Kardashian-West calling the pope ‘dope’ was a negative insult and warned she could be an “enemy” of the Catholic church leader.
The pope is dope— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) September 24, 2015
The former Tory MP’s Twitter campaign to dissuade Labour voters from electing Corbyn as leader of the party came to a mortifying halt after a faux pas.
In an attempt to prove the anti-Semitism of Corbyn supporters, Mensch shared the apparent ‘automated search results’ next to Liz Kendall’s name.
Yet despite having posted 120,000 tweets in six years (that’s an average of 54 per day) it became clear Mensch still hadn’t quite grasped Twitter.
The ‘x’ next to the search term actually reveals the user’s past search history, not the general Twittersphere’s – meaning, yes, Mensch had searched those terms herself.
Luckily, John Prescott, the former Deputy Prime Minister, was on hand to highlight the Twitter fail.
So here's my autocomplete on Louise Mensch pic.twitter.com/GJWQQX8Vzw— John Prescott (@johnprescott) August 21, 2015
Taylor Swift v. Nicki Minaj
The spat that reminded the world Taylor Swift isn’t always right arrived in 2015, when Swift was forced to apologise to Nicki Minaj for firing back at a tweet she believed was aimed at her.
I thought I was being called out. I missed the point, I misunderstood, then misspoke. I'm sorry, Nicki. @NICKIMINAJ— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) July 23, 2015
Minaj was upset that her videos for Anaconda and Feelin' Myself weren’t nominated for VMA Video of the Year and said if she were a “different kind of artist” it would have been nominated.
Swift, who’s video for Bad Blood went on to win the gong, read this as a reference to her and hit back:
@NICKIMINAJ I've done nothing but love & support you. It's unlike you to pit women against each other. Maybe one of the men took your slot..— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) July 21, 2015
A mere two days later, in a rare public apology, Swift said sorry. The two resolved their issues and the important discussion about race in the music industry that Minaj had tried to highlight was opened up.
After quitting One Direction, which resulted in a large number of the British workforce taking sick days, Malik began the quest to find his own identity – which apparently involves online arguments with DJs.
Following a re-tweet by Malik, which Harris believed to be a dig at his girlfriend Taylor Swift, Harris told him to “stay out of things you don’t understand”.
This didn't go down well with Malik who used the most natural put-down anyone would give to a 31-year-old man: “Calm your knickers before them dentures fall out”.
@CalvinHarris so i suggest you calm your knickers before them dentures fall out— zayn (@zaynmalik) August 17, 2015
This particular incident followed after another spat with bandmate Louis Tomlinson, breaking the hearts of Directioners everywhere.
@Louis_Tomlinson remember when you had a life and stopped making bitchy comments about mine ?— zayn (@zaynmalik) May 6, 2015
Never fear, Louis has since told the Late Late Show with James Corden the squabble had been "resolved".
Sky News journalist Kay Burley headed to Paris following the terror attacks on in November.
While reporting on the sombre mood in the French capital, Burley believed a Golden Retriever summed up the situation perfectly and captioned “the sadness in his eyes”.
Unfortunately, the internet had other ideas, resulting in numerous memes and photos from followers sharing the sadness in their dog’s, cat’s and potato’s eyes.
Brilliantly, Burley managed to laugh at the incident and used it to aptly sum up Peter Andre’s departure from Strictly.
Recently, the Arsenal player turned Tory activist received online backlash after publicly criticising a waiter for his “terrible service”.
@SolManOfficial Liam here. Think we got off on the wrong foot. Would love to make amends. Hopefully see you soon— Cambridge St Cafe (@CambridgeStCafe) November 25, 2015
All credit to poor Liam, who found his identity broadcast to Campbell’s 71,000 followers, he replied apologising for “getting off on the wrong foot”.
However, Twitter was not as forgiving as Liam and branded Campbell a “grass” and criticised him for “trying to lose someone a job a month before Christmas”.
sol campbell having a bitch about service in a cafe... couldn't he sort it out there and then instead trying to get bloke done on twitter— Scott J (@TheRealPundit) November 26, 2015
Ok, so, the infamous post which resulted in an annual day in the tweet’s honour didn’t happen in 2015…. but we will take any opportunity to remind people of the time Ed Balls tweeted: “Ed Balls”.
Ed Balls— Ed Balls (@edballs) April 28, 2011
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