TECH
01/10/2015 08:35 BST | Updated 01/10/2015 08:59 BST

Call Of Duty: Black Ops 3 Twitter Stunt Destroyed Singapore In Fictional 'Terrorist Attack'

Call of Duty used its official Twitter account to live report the destruction of Singapore on Wednesday after a fictional "terrorist attack".

Updates on an apparently unfolding incident were sent to the game's 2.88m followers on the social network which was rebranded as an "aggregate news network".

The name, header image and profile picture of the Twitter account was changed to mirror that of a fictional news network as part of the campaign. It has since been turned back to the Call of Duty brand.

And perhaps unsurprisingly, people taken in by the fictitious events were unimpressed upon finding out it was part of a publicity stunt, with many saying it was in poor taste.

call of duty

The game's account was completely rebranded to appear like a news organisation

And for context, this is how the updates appeared on people's smartphone timelines.

Devoid of any Call of Duty branding, the tweets understandably confused -- and concerned -- many people reading them.

Here's how the fictional 'attack' unfolded


But users of the social network were initially left baffled by the tweets being fed into their timelines from the account named "Aggregate News Network".

But confusion soon gave way to criticism.

And tech industry observers have been quick to point out why the stunt appears to many to be in such poor taste.

"This was a bad idea," technology reporter Allegra Frank wrote, "The Twitter platform is at its most productive when deployed as a crowd-sourced news-gathering and -generating service.

"...the developer re-appropriated one of social media's most beneficial functions in order to serve its needs."

Singapore's military wouldn't comment on the matter when asked by the BBC. Activision, Call of Duty's publisher, has yet to respond to request for comment.

Nonetheless, Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 is already one of the year's most hotly anticipated games and is set to sell multi-millions of copies worldwide.

It's released on November 6 on all current-generation gaming consoles, including PS4, Xbox One and PC.