The Escaped Bronx Zoo Cobra Joins Twitter

The Escaped Bronx Zoo Cobra Joins Twitter

By Alexandra Lue, Intern

The venomous and potentially deadly Egyptian Cobra snake that escaped from the Bronx Zoo over this weekend  has become quite the celebrity through a fake twitter account, where  it has been tweeting adventures of New York sightseeing.

The infamous cobra gives credit to the 2005 cartoon film “Madagascar,” where the animals escape from the Central Zoo in its first tweet, “I would like to thank those animals from the movie ‘Madagascar.’ They were really an inspiration.” The twitter account started about 24 hours ago and has accumulated just over 35,000 followers.  Under the profiles location, it writes “not at the Bronx Zoo.”

The twitter account, @BronxZoosCobra has no affiliation to the Bronx Zoo, but the concept is cute and some humorous relief to the situation (as long as it doesn’t end tragically).

“Anyone know if Rebecca Black lives in NYC? No Reason,” reads one of the tweets.

“Donald Trump is thinking about running for President?! Don’t worry, I’ll handle this. Where is Trump Tower exactly?” another one reads.

And some are using the publicity to their advantage. The Cobra replies to a tweet from Bergdorfs: “If I recognize a single belt… RT @Bergdorfs @dkny @BronxZoosCobra it’s a good time to visit you know. Our resident mongoose is on holiday.”

Social media has become this epidemic. Some use Twitter for business, and most users participate for entertainment. Since many people retrieve their news through social networking, the creator of fake Twitter accounts definitely stroke the iron while it’s hot.  Twitter might have to change their motto to “so easy a Cobra can tweet it.”

2 Comments
  • S Peters

    April 5, 2011 at 11:24 am Reply

    I think the creation of the Twitter account is what really made this story great and enabled the Zoo to avoid panic. The Zoo could have drawn in negative press and caused a panic but in the midst of this mini crisis, they remained calm and embraced social media. The individual who created the Twitter account in the name of the missing snake that gave details of where the snake was “visiting” on its travels deserves a pat on the back. It is difficult to say how many people would have suggested potential names for the cobra had it not escaped, but the escape fueled more than 33,000 people to offer suggestions, which is incredible. The number of followers that the snake had on Twitter is also amazing to me.

    Although the escape of the snake was unfortunate, it caused a substantial amount of press and fueled otherwise uninterested individuals, to pay attention to the Zoo. The situation was handled well and I truly believe that if they had insisted that the Twitter account be deleted, it would have done more damage.

    The zoo made a strategic decision not to over inform followers of their Facebook page by posting a brief statement that let followers know not to expect daily posts that information would be posted only if necessary. They attempted to reassure followers of the page that the snake was likely in hiding within the confines of the Reptile House. The Twitter page was complimentary to the Zoo’s Facebook page in that it kept readers interested in the story without causing a panic. Social media, as you said, was very effective in bringing a light hearted tone to a serious situation.

  • S. Peters

    April 5, 2011 at 11:28 am Reply

    Great Post!

    I think the creation of the Twitter account is what really made this story great and enabled the Zoo to avoid panic. The Zoo could have drawn in negative press and caused a panic but in the midst of this mini crisis, they remained calm and embraced social media. The individual who created the Twitter account in the name of the missing snake that gave details of where the snake was “visiting” on its travels deserves a pat on the back. It is difficult to say how many people would have suggested potential names for the cobra had it not escaped, but the escape fueled more than 33,000 people to offer suggestions, which is incredible. The number of followers that the snake had on Twitter is also amazing to me.

    Although the escape of the snake was unfortunate, it caused a substantial amount of press and fueled otherwise uninterested individuals, to pay attention to the Zoo. The situation was handled well and I truly believe that if they had insisted that the Twitter account be deleted, it would have done more damage.

    The zoo made a strategic decision not to over inform followers of their Facebook page by posting a brief statement that let followers know not to expect daily posts that information would be posted only if necessary. They attempted to reassure followers of the page that the snake was likely in hiding within the confines of the Reptile House. The Twitter page was complimentary to the Zoo’s Facebook page in that it kept readers interested in the story without causing a panic. Social media, as you said, was very effective in bringing a light hearted tone to a serious situation.

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