Batman's trusted Butler, Alfred, once told him that "some men just want to watch the world burn." In the digital age, while some use this technology for good purposes, others are able to inflict carnage from the comfort of their computer screens. This a lesson that countless companies, marketing agencies, and even countries learned the hard way by taking polls on the Internet. Over the Internet's storied 25-year history, there has been several a survey hijacked by the web in truly incredible ways. You could almost say that poll trolling has become as much of a time-honored internet tradition as celebrity hacking at this point.
If the marketing geniuses behind the following 21 online poll fails actually honored their end of the deal, Justin Bieber would be stuck in North Korea, there would be a Canadian girl named “Cthulhu All-Spark," and a $287-million-dollar polar research ship would be named "Boaty McBoatface." If Ghandi were still alive today, he'd probably look at the results of all of these hijacked internet polls and say, "Be the change internet trolls want to see in the world."
A Sinking ShipPhoto: Metaweb / GNU Free Documentation License
Boaty McBoatface is the mother of all Internet poll riggings. A British government agency decided it would be a good idea to let the Internet suggest a name for a 287-million-dollar polar research ship, and the result is the greatest boat name in history.33711Is this funny?
Turning A Deaf EarPhoto: Metaweb / CC-BY
Papa John's and Chegg thought it would be a great idea to create an online contest where Taylor Swift would perform a free concert at the school that received the most votes on Facebook. 4 Chan and Reddit jumped at this once in a lifetime and crowned the Horace Mann School for the Deaf as the winner.26515Is this funny?
Just Dew ItPhoto: flickr / CC0
In 2012, Mountain Dew created an online poll to help them name their new green, apple-flavored drink. The tragic poll called "Dub the Dew" was quickly shut down once they realized "Gushin' Granny" was competing with "Hitler Did Nothing Wrong" for the top spot.30028Is this funny?
Canadian Couple Sorry For Letting The Internet Name Their BabyPhoto: Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY
A Canadian couple decided to crowdsource the name of their unborn daughter, and all things considered, the Internet was pretty civil about it. After 150,000 votes were tallied, the clear-cut winner was “Cthulhu All-Spark.” The couple decided to go with boring, old "Amelia Savannah Joy" instead.19210Is this funny?