Kmart Tweets About Shooting Tragedy Using Self-Promotional Hashtag

Going forward, we strongly urge brands to close up their computers and step away from Twitter during times of national (or international) tragedy. Just hours after a gunman opened fire on a Connecticut elementary school classroom killing 27 people, 20 of which were children, Kmart offered up its social media condolences, totally tone-deaf hashtag included.

The big box retailer has been hosting a toy-focused “Twitter party” for most of the day, organized by their #Fab15Toys hashtag. Shortly before 3PM this afternoon, they tweeted the following.

A heartfelt sentiment that is completely negated by the grossly self-promotional #Fab15toys appended to the tweet. Indeed, the brand saw the error of their ways approximately twenty minutes later (after no shortage of outraged responses) and kind of, sort of apologized.

And as of press time, it looks like their original tweet has been deleted.

UPDATE: A spokesperson for Kmart offered the following explanation.

We wanted the participants in the Twitter party we had just halted to see our message of sympathy. The way you do that is by adding the hashtag for the Twitter party. It was absolutely not used for any promotional reasons, but simply to ensure the participants of the Twitter party were able to see our message of sympathy.

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