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July 25, 2011

'Crass' Amy Winehouse Tweet leaves Microsoft Scrambling for Apologies

By Jennifer Russell, TMCnet Copy Editor

Want a sure-fire way to lose fans? Microsoft (News - Alert) has it figured out.

Two hours after encouraging Amy Winehouse fans to remember the recently deceased singer by downloading her ground-breaking “Back to Black” on Zune, the company’s entertainment marketplace, TweetBox360, the official PR Twitter (News - Alert) account for XBox360 UK started delivering “mea culpas”.

The 27-year-old Grammy-winning singer passed away on July 23 and according to a story on AOL (News - Alert), fans have turned her London home into a shrine, leaving flowers, memorabilia and tributes.

“Apologies to everyone if our earlier Amy Winehouse ‘download‘ tweet seemed purely commercially motivated. Far from the case, we assure you,” read the first tweet, quickly followed by a second. “With Amy W’s passing, the world has lost a huge talent. Our thoughts are with Amy’s family and friends at this very sad time.”

Her parents have thanked fans for their support during this troubled time, with her father saying, “I can’t tell you what this means to us. It really is making this a lot easier for us. Amy was about one thing, and that was love. Her whole life was devoted to her family and her friends, and to you guys as well.”

 Three Twitter users lambasted Microsoft in 140 characters or less with “Classy.” “Crass much?” and “Cheap”. There are many, many more.

“@tweetbox360 In poor taste, ‘nice’ job on cashing in on a celebrity’s death @xboxshould reconsider their relationship with you,” tweeted one outraged Twitter user. Others pointed to the “Remembering Amy” advertisement over at Apple’s (News - Alert) iTunes store and noted that Microsoft wasn’t alone in its blatant commercialization.

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Jennifer Russell is a TMCnet Copy Editor. Previously she worked as an Editorial Production Assistant at the Taunton Press and as a Production Assistant at Hersam-Acorn Newspapers. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Jennifer Russell
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