WELCOME TO SWEDEN where we don't have a bikini team that randomly skydives into your fishing trips with cases of beer, where we don't drive yellow and blue scooters singing about amazing diets. In advertising "Swedish" is pretty much a mishmash of all germanic countries, including of course Switzerland. Even the Italian speaking parts. They sound so alike! We all have chocolate, skiing and cable cars, right?
So it really is no wonder that Sweden decided to market itself on twitter, by allowing a 'random' Swede take over the twitter account @Sweden for a week, to represent but one of the millions of very different people who live here. I say "random" in quote-marks like that as practically every person who has run the account so far has been someone that I follow on twitter. Look, I know the country is small, but that is quite the coincidence. I shall teach you a Swedish word that may explain this phenomena: Ankdamm. Duck pond. The weird thing where everyone knows everyone in certain circles here. Sweden actually choose who gets to tweet as Sweden, by emailing the person and asking them if they would like to.
The twitter experiment could either be carefully selected tweets representing Sweden, and thus not truly representing the many voices here, or an unmoderated hands-off approach .... and today the world finally discovered that the democratic Sweden account is pure anarchy. Tweeter @hejsonja, a 27 year old mother of two from Northern Sweden (specifically Lapland) armed with a twisted sense of humor took over the account this week and began cracking jokes that balanced firmly on the edge of offensive all day, and sometimes fell off it.
She talks about her kids:
Sometimes I just look at my children and think about the time when they had my vagina round their neck.
She shares some images from her computer, and names her Freddie Mercury collage "hungry gay with aids":
I found some pics I've shopped on da computer. This pic I call "hungry gay with aids".yfrog.com/ke3mfwej
She uses the term "dolphin rapists" and Godwinned herself early (Hitler is some sort of running SEO joke on her blog by the way.):
Before WW2 Hitler was one of the most beautiful names in the whole wide world. I know. Its as chocking as dolphin rapists.
.....and then she hit upon the idea of using the Sweden account to do a Henry Blodget, as in popping the Q "why do people hate jews?", but only to try and get enlightened, mind you. It's not quite Gwyneth Palthrow's "N**ggas in Paris" tweet, but clearly her need to "research" this without looking it up comes from the same type of sheltered privilege.
Whats the fuzz with jews. You can't even see if a person is a jew, unless you see their penises, and even if you do, you can't be sure!?
When she writes "fuzz" she means "fuss" and not the police - being able to string 140 correctly spelled chars together for the Sweden account is clearly not a requirement for the gig.
At this point I have to teach you another Swedish word, and it is: SKÄMSKUDDE. The skämskudde is the "shame pillow" one hides behind when watching someone else make a total and utter ass out of themselves, either through pure and unlimited naiveness better known as ignorance, or through the bone-headed belief they're onto something. It's usually a pillow because we spend most of the Eurovision song contest behind our sofa-pillows when famous authors start song-talking random love poetry to techno and similar stunts. We only dare look when we win (luckily that's pretty often - neener!). I hid behind my skämskudde for the following hole dug so much deeper.
In nazi German they even had to sew stars on their sleeves. If they didn't, they could never now who was a jew and who was not a jew.
Once I asked a co-worker what a jew is. He was "part jew", whatever that means. He's like "uuuuh… jews are.. uh.. well educated..?"
No. She ain't no Sarah Silverman with her jokes....
Failing to understand what "ethnicity" is to "religion" she soldiers on. Note: In Swedish a naive person is "blue-eyed" which Sonja also is. How fitting!
Where I come from there is no jews. I guess its a religion. But why were the nazis talking about races? Was it a blood-thing (for them)?
At this point I'm blacking out from the inability to breathe behind my skämskudde. And so the avalanche of links now making blonde Swedish women famous for something other than willingness to have a lot of sex takes over the web: Gawker: Sweden’s Democratic Twitter Experiment Implodes Before Our Eyes, New Statesman Sweden's official twitter account just got freaky, Mashable: the Sweden twitter experiment goes painfully awry , Adfreak Sweden hands its twitter account to citizens and things get weird etc etc.
WSJ even spoke to the organizers and reports that "Sweden stands by the tweets despite the controversy". Like the CEO of Deep Focus Ian Schafer so aptly points out, "the Oil Spill created awareness for BP".
— Ian Schafer (@ischafer) June 12, 2012
Anna Dahlström called it way back in December 2011 Curators of Sweden: Social media gone wrong: "The idea behind the account hasn’t even hit home to the current and first curator of Sweden."
The dangers of pure uncensored Swedish tweets by "random" Swedes is of course that it will show you a slice of the real Sweden - and not everything here is pretty in the land of the midnight
fun er.. sun. No matter what you may think of her tweeted questions or how they were phrased, Sonja just revealed a big slice of the "blue eyedness" that lives in the Swedish psyche. Welcome to Sweden, where nine million people have been gazing at their navel-fuzz (see what I did there?) so long they failed to notice the Jewish population living alongside them since medieval times.
— Marina Rosenfield (@bird_named_Peng) June 12, 2012
Yes, that's it.
For extra credit, please do enjoy the often hilarious comics that truly explain the differences between the many nordic countries "Scandinavia and the world" where Swedish ladies are described as the total opposite of Swedish men....
See also Welcome to Sweden where nazi Bimbo-bloggers rule and advertisers like Interflora support them - ankdamm points - the blogger calling this out later tweeted for the account of Sweden on twitter! Only about five people actually live here, the rest of the population is polar bears.