CNET también está disponible en español.

Ir a español

Don't show this again

AOC starts Twitch channel 2020 Orionid meteor shower Walmart Black Friday Stimulus negotiations Fauci warns against thinking pandemic is nearly over Control Game of Thrones star in live game iPhone 12 and 5G

Giraffetweet: A geek, a girl and a weird use of Twitter

If you've never had a restaurant get in touch with you because it heard you had a crush on one of its waitresses, you might not appreciate how weird I found Twitter recently

If you've never had a restaurant get in touch with you because it heard you had a crush on one of its waitresses, you might not fully appreciate how weird I found Twitter recently.

I had taken a friend to a restaurant called Giraffe, on London's South Bank. After a gorgeous meal -- and, crucial to this story, several glasses of wine -- I happened to mention on Twitter that I thought our waitress was cute. I thought nothing of it, and left full of beef and grapes.

Then a couple of hours later something weird happened: I got a message from a Giraffe employee. "We have quite a few cute staff at South Bank... Wanna describe her??"

Erm. That's odd. Also, I suddenly felt like a total sleaze -- the type of dude I spend most of my time wanting to slap. See, when I idly posted my opinion on Twitter, I didn't account for the restaurant's marketing people actively monitoring the site for uses of the word 'giraffe'.

But the restaurant's marketing 'team' -- actually a very pleasant lady called Vikki O'Neill -- makes extremely pro-active use of the site for keeping in touch with the restaurant's visitors. And, apparently, matchmaking.


A Nate, a South Bank restaurant and a giraffe

"We started twittering about six months ago, dabbling a bit first as I just couldn't quite get my head around it," Vikki told me in a refreshingly honest email. "I quickly figured that talking like a dumb corporate was a big no no. I started engaging in tweets with people -- initially about what we were doing in the restaurant, uploading pics if we were busy.

"The more I got to know our fellow tweeters, the more random stuff we'd tweet about -- late trains, X Factor, the news etc, and it built relationships. It's a lot of fun."

Businesses across the globe are using Twitter to market themselves. But I've got to admit, pseudo-matchmaking has to be the most bizarre use of a corporate account I've ever encountered.

Now I just have to quash the overpowering feeling of being a total tool for writing the message in the first place. Maybe a burger will help.