Nick Vitale "open letter" ad page in in Wall Street Journal fools NBC New York

The other day, a supposed New Jersey man took out a full-page ad in the Wall Street Journal to voice his issues with modern customer service in various industries. The man, who identified himself as 36-year-old Nick Vitale, from Milltown New Jersey, had written a charming letter detailing what he likes and dislikes in customer service along various businesses, and how he'd rather see things work. 

Nick Vitale's open letter
The ad, written as an engaging open letter

"An open letter to anyone who will listen" the letter begins, and then Nick speaks about everything from flight-pricing to gas station sanitary wipes.

 

"On the subject of cheeseburgers, I am generally pleased with the product and service I have received. However, it would be great if you guys could slice both the lettuce and tomato much thinner, so they don't slide out of the bun when I bite into it. It's a little thing, but one that I think would dramatically improve the overall experience.
 

Subscription services for music: Yes.

Subscription service for dress socks: No.
 

Automakers, I absolutely love all the technology you're putting into my dashboard. But please don't start acting like the phone companies and build my car to stop working in three years. Because if you do, I give you my word, I'll leave you forever. The Bluetooth audio is sweet though."

This copy was so convincing that NBC New York fell for and wrote an article, that once existed here, about it.

Screendump of Google search results, showing the now removed article.

It wasn't a random person's open letter though. It was simply a set-up for this reply from SAP.  

It did have a brief moment of going viral, though, as NBC New York fell for it hook line and sinker, as well as people on Twitter like this guy. I don't know if this says more about how great the copy was on that letter, or how bad journalists are these days. 

Anonymous Adgrunt's picture
comment_node_story
Files must be less than 500 KB.
Allowed file types: jpg jpeg gif png txt doc xls pdf ppt pps odt ods odp wav avi mpeg mpg mov rm flv wmv 3gp mp4 dir dcr ogg m4v.

Adland is supported by your donations alone. You can help us out by donating via the Paypal link here, Liberapay,  or by buying our limited edition sneakers.  Feel free to use our amazon affiliate link here to buy yourself an ad book.