Oh Look, RadioShack Is Edgy on Twitter Now

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The difference between a good crypto idea and a bad regular idea may be nonexistent.

To a large extent, you can think of the crypto world as a marketplace for dumb stuff — joke currencies, bad art — that would otherwise be considered thoughtless garbage. To succeed there, you don’t really need to be profitable so much as you have to be talked-about.

This is all a wind-up to get to the painful news that RadioShack is being mildly shocking on Twitter. This isn’t a ploy to get people to buy power adapters; it’s a stunt to get people to pay attention to its cryptocurrency, which has lost most of its value during the last few months. Radio Shack’s recent tweets mention porn, and drugs, and are sometimes sexist and often crude. A sample in screen-cap form:

RadioShack pivoted to crypto a couple years ago, after Retail Ecommerce Ventures — a company that owns Pier 1, Dress Barn, and Modell’s — bought the remnants of the oft-mocked chain, which had closed most of its retail locations. (A few hundred stores live on, independent of the new owners.) REV’s executive chairman is marketer Tai Lopez, a YouTuber who tells people to drop out of college in front of expensive cars.

Radio Shack is hardly the first old-school company to confuse people by pulling this kind of stuff online (there’s Denny’s and Wendy’s and Old Spice, which are all basically doing different degrees of the same joke), and by now it’s surprising that anyone is surprised by it. When in doubt, assume that a corporate Twitter account posting edgelord material hasn’t been hacked; it’s probably just going in a new, dumber direction.

Look — I don’t know about whether any of this means anything. Paying attention to crypto gimmicks day in and day out destabilizes your traditional notions of what you think is real, or good, or noteworthy. Intuitively, I’d think that because most crypto markets are not doing so well, and the Federal Reserve is squeezing investors who are taking risk, that high school-level jokes = $$ isn’t a solid thesis for buying a particular cryptocurrency, but I’m not a professional and none of this is investment advice, so do whatever you want. RadioShack is making the case that they’re an Old People Brand doing a Young People Thing and that’s why they’re going to make money. Sure, man! Shoot your shot. It didn’t really work out when Kodak tried it, but I’m here writing about it, so what does that tell you?

Oh Look, RadioShack Is Edgy on Twitter Now