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Anatomy of a Flash Crisis: The Apple iPhone "Baby Shaker" Fiasco

Posted by: Burth Helm on April 23, 2009

Last week it was Dominos. This week Apple is in the crosshairs after it allowed an 3rd-party developed iPhone app called “Baby Shaker” to go on sale online April 20.

The first blog post went up during the wee hours of April 21. Tonight, after activists at the Sarah Jane Brain Foundation held a protest at an Apple store here in New York, it made national TV news., the iPhone app review site that initially called attention to the story, has a time-line of how the story mushroomed. It’s a great study of how fast a crisis can spin out of control in the world of Twitter, blogs, and social media in 2009.

The app in question:

Meanwhile, over at the NYT, Saul Hansell argues Apple shouldn’t have capitulated. I can see where he’s coming from, but from a PR perspective this only would have poured oil on the fire.

Reader Comments


April 30, 2009 3:55 AM

It seems odd that apple would allow something like this to risk their current brand image which is awesome. Allowing this app to go up seems completely reckless. However, there are plenty of people that would by an iPhone for such programs, but not enough to fulling justify putting up in the first place.

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News, opinions, inflammatory meanderings and occasional ravings about the world of advertising, marketing and media. By marketing editor Burt Helm, Innovation Editor Helen Walters, and senior correspondent Michael Arndt.

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