Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) has confessed it hired a marketing company to create a fake blog to drum up Christmas support for its PlayStation Portable (PSP).
The www.alliwantforxmasisapsp.com blog had all the makings of a genuine but amateurish fan-site replete with YouTube rap videos, but excessive Sony spruiking and a poor cover-up by the marketing company employed to create the site, Zipatoni, unravelled the doomed stealth campaign.
"Busted. Nailed. Snagged. As many of you have figured out (maybe our speech was a little too funky fresh???), Peter isn't a real hip-hop maven and this site was actually developed by Sony," now reads the www.alliwantforxmasisapsp.com blog.
SCEA senior director of corporate communications, Dave Karraker, deflected criticism that the blog's creation was an intentional attempt at stealth marketing, and instead played it off as a joke site.
"Zipatoni was hired to create a humorous "underground" PSP site for the holidays for SCEA," he said. "The tongue-in-cheek nature of the site didn't come across as intended, so we have already altered it."
"[I] guess we were trying to be just a little too clever. From this point forward, we will just stick to making cool products, and use this site to give you nothing but the facts on the PSP."