Hours after Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure posted a video from his consumer "listening tour" in which T-Mobile is called "ghetto," the clip was pulled down from the web Tuesday night.
The video was one of many that Mr. Claure has posted to his social media accounts based on his listening tour, none of which have received paid media backing or appeared on Sprint's own accounts, a company spokesman said. But the latest one provoked a reaction in social media that spread into traditional media -- the kind of "earned media" marketers don't usually want to earn.
Ha. One of my tweets about the Sprint ad was featured in a Washington Post article, and now racist egg accounts are trolling me. Good times.— Adam (@adamtyree) April 13, 2016
After initially defending the ad somewhat with a "Hey, she said it" line of argument, Mr. Claure reversed course.
We're sharing real comments from real customers. Maybe not the best choice of words by the customer. Not meant to offend anyone.— MarceloClaure (@marceloclaure) April 13, 2016
My job is to listen to consumers. Our point was to share customer views. Bad judgment on our part. Apologies. Taking the video down.— MarceloClaure (@marceloclaure) April 13, 2016
The videos were produced internally, not by any of Sprint's agencies, the spokesman said.