FSU's #AskJameis Backfires: When Social Media Stunts Fail

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FSU's #AskJameis Backfires: When Social Media Stunts Fail
The Florida State Seminoles got more questions about Winston's off-the-field incidents than his on-the-field performance.
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Heisman winning sophomore quarterback Jameis Winston is having a pretty low-key offseason, which is more than you can say about his off-the-field issues last year. Still, Florida State and Winston managed to draw up a bit of controversy Sunday after a well-intentioned social media move flopped. 

The FSU football Twitter account asked fans to tweet #AskJameis if they had a question for the Seminoles' quarterback.

Which prompted several users to ask less about his football performance and more about his off-the-field incidents. Some asked "why'd you steal those crab legs?" and "how were those crab legs?"

Those questions, of course, are a jab at when Winston was cited for allegedly shopping lifting crab legs from a Tallahassee store earlier this year. Winston said he forgot to pay for them, but was still briefly suspended from the FSU baseball team. (Video via WCTV

But, the Internet ridicule didn't stop there for Winston, as some went a little further than just poking fun at the crab stealing incident. 

Several decided to tweet "questions" regarding the sexual assault allegations against Winston last year. 

Winston was cleared of all charges in that case, though the Tallahassee Police Department's handling of the case brought many to question the legitimacy of the investigation. 

With more jokes than questions hurled Winston's way, the FSU social media stunt was deemed a failure by many outlets. (USA Today | College Spun | LostLetterman

FSU's flub brings to mind a few other well-intentioned PR stunts on Twitter that turned into just bad publicity.  

J.P. Morgan had a similar Q&A session blow up in its face in November last year when the firm encouraged Twiter users to ask vice-chairman Jimmy Lee questions using #AskJPM. 

CNN"It didn't exactly work out how they planned. The masses, the average Twitter users are still very upset with J.P. Morgan and their perceived role in the financial crisis. "  

The result was questions like, "Can I have my house back? #AskJPM" and "Is it true "JPM stands for "Just Pay More"? #AskJPM ;)." 

J.P. Morgan later backed out of the Q&A by tweeting "Tomorrow's Q&A is cancelled. Bad Idea. Back to the drawing board."

 More recently, the New York City Police Department also ran into some Internet vigilantes after asking for users photos of the NYPD. What they got wasn't  alot of good feedback

WCBS"Within minutes, photos showing police violence inundated the hashtag. ... Other photos showed an officer pinning a dog. Another showed an officer, well, dancing with a woman at the West Indies parade."  

Winston hasn't yet responded to any of the questions on Twitter. Instead, the FSU feed says "selected" questions will be featured on its website later this week.

This video contains images from Getty Images.