Enough people took the invade Area 51 event and memes seriously that thousands of people have shown up for two different festivals this weekend around the site.
But did they take it that seriously?
I mean what proportion of people there are going to actually “Naruto run” into Area 51?
The original Facebook event, “Invade Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us” said, “If we naruto run, we can move faster than their bullets. Let’s see them aliens.”
Sounds like these attendees are a serious threat to national security.
We’ll have to wait and see, but I doubt the invasion will actually take place.
But these brave truth-seekers will probably have a lot of fun, talk a lot about how creepy the government is, speculate about aliens, and make some friends.
The real story is how god-damn serious the government got about this.
The military is taking the threat very seriously and will respond with force. They even claim they’ll shoot anyone who trespasses on the Area 51 site.
Really? Really government? Are you so tone-deaf to not recognize a joke when you see it? Absolute silence would have been acceptable. That’s what I’d expect from a super-secret alien experimentation lab.
But you know what the government could have done to WIN?
They could have absolutely conquered this meme, this event, and gained credibility if they just opened the gate, and started giving tours of Area 51 to whoever showed up. It would have been a public relations master move.
Even better, force visitors to enter doing the Naruto run. No Naratu, no entry.
Now don’t get me wrong, I know the government isn’t just going to give up their secrets like that, “And here’s the reverse-engineered alien spacecraft that we’ve been flying around since the 60’s.”
I’m talking from a purely strategic standpoint, they could give tours of some outer unimportant building. Hell, make it the cafeteria, throw a couple of lava lamps and bald-headed “men in black” in there, and maybe declassify one cool little gadget to show people.
Boom, situated diffused. People actually go, “You know, that US government ain’t so bad.”
They could have just played along.
But they are so disdainful of the citizens of the United States, they can’t handle even a joke challenge. They take themselves so god-damn seriously.
The government needs to lighten the hell up.
But they won’t. They’ll continue to alienate more and more people. And their humorless elitism will eventually be their downfall.
Because at this point, trolling seems to be the most effective marketing method we’ve got.