It looks like choose-your-own-adventure Twitter games won’t be a one-hit wonder, now that Apple’s social team has adopted the format. A new tweet from the @AppleTV Twitter account today helps users find a movie to watch by having them click through a series of Twitter threads. However, their effort (so far at least) pales compared with the original viral sensation — a Twitter choose-your-own-adventure style game that blew up earlier this month, where Twitter users try to not get fired as Beyoncé’s new assistant.
If you haven’t seen this masterpiece of Twitter handiwork, give yourself a break this Friday and go try it. It’s great fun.
Being Beyoncé’s assistant for the day: DONT GET FIRED THREAD pic.twitter.com/26ix05Hkhp
— Green Chyna (@CORNYASSBITCH) June 23, 2019
The game is played by presenting you with a multiple choice question. You then click on your answer from among the Twitter replies presented by the original poster.
For example, you start your day by ordering Queen Bey her breakfast. You’re asked to choose between ordering a five-star breakfast or granola and yogurt. If you choose the former (spoiler alert!), you’re fired. If you click the right answer, you move on to the next task.
Further questions take you to new threads where you choose things like who Beyoncé should FaceTime, what activity you suggest while she waits for hair and makeup, what song to play for her when she asks for music, when she should get dressed for the event and where, whether you should photobomb her on the red carpet to fix her dress, where she sits at an event, and so on.
The game isn’t always simple A/B choices, either. The answers lead you down different paths. Your choice may not immediately result in being fired, but still could later on. For instance, if you send Beyoncé swimming, there’s no way to save your job when the next set of choices comes.
According to a TIME profile, the idea for the thread came from 19-year-old student Landon Rivera, who lives in L.A.
The thread, now which now has over a quarter million Twitter likes, was noticed by celebs like Chrissy Teigen and Questlove, the report also noted
My own assistant just got fired on the very first question https://t.co/VrTrv8Y26k
— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) June 23, 2019
This is amazing and really well done I got fired about 3 in. https://t.co/gLdnqQY8tE
— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) June 23, 2019
I failed the first time and surprisingly made it to “to be continued” status
— Questlove De La Rose (@questlove) June 23, 2019
After the Beyoncé game blew up into a viral hit, the creator started new threads about being Cardi B’s bodyguard and getting away with murder. These haven’t yet taken off to the extent the original Beyoncé thread did, which today stands at over 250K Likes on the thread placeholder tweet, and 97,300 retweets.
While it’s interesting that Apple’s social media team has now copycatted the idea, their choose-your-own-adventure thread falls short.
Actually, really short.
In fact, it’s not much of an adventure at all.
What movie should you watch this weekend? — A THREAD
Start here to get our recommendation! pic.twitter.com/Twv8Pn1hau
— Apple TV (@AppleTV) June 28, 2019
Instead, the movie suggestion thread doesn’t go much further than letting your pick between two movie watching scenarios, then directs you into a genre of your choosing…then, it dead ends with a movie suggestion.
This misses the reasons the Beyoncé game went viral in the first place: because it was lengthy, complex, multi-branched, and funny. You could get down several threads deep into the thing and then get booted out and lose.
saw someone made this kind of thing for bandersnatch so guess who wasted the better part of her morning making a flowchart for the Beyoncé’s assistant twitter thread pic.twitter.com/Lsakl4hCK9
— the queen of abortion (@aunticapitalist) June 24, 2019
Whoever created that Beyoncé assistant thread : pic.twitter.com/VCDN7Jt2vW
— U Bum (@ktippyy) June 25, 2019
The questions themselves also prompted commentary from those who knew Beyoncé actual habits (or at least, thought they did.)
Social media teams looking to replicate this formula for their own success will need to do more than create a handful of quick-to-end threads with little payoff. Either invest the serious effort in designing a clever branching narrative or just tweet as usual.
Earlier today, when Instagram suddenly transformed into a landscape-oriented Tinder-esque nightmare, the app’s dedicated users extremely lost their minds and immediately took to Twitter to be vocal about it.
As we reported, the company admitted that the abrupt shift from Instagram’s well-established vertical scrolling was a mistake. The mea culpa came quickly enough, but Instagram’s accidental update was already solidified as one of the last meme-able moments of 2018.
That was supposed to be a very small test that went broad by accident. Should be fixed now. If you're still seeing it simply restart the app. Happy holidays!
— Adam Mosseri (@mosseri) December 27, 2018
Why learn about the thing itself and why it happened when you could watch the meta-story play out in frantic, quippy tweets, all vying for relevance as we slide toward 2019’s horrific gaping maw? If you missed it the first time around, here you go.
us: pls chronological timelines
insta: what? insta stories?
us: nonono chronological timelines
insta: did you mean IGTV
us: NO CHRONOLOGICAL TIMELINES
insta: ohhhh you want to scroll horizontally #instagramupdate
— 𝓪, 𝓶, 𝓪, 𝓻, 𝓲, 𝓼 (@triviastigma) December 27, 2018
Instagram literally went “felt cute but might delete later” #instagramupdate
— Basma (@basmahxmde) December 27, 2018
@ instagram during those 0.2 seconds of the horizontal feed pic.twitter.com/ZyfKIHsOGI
— alex (@alexojovel) December 27, 2018
These Instagram updates are weird. I think Instagram wants us to leave. Like when a guy goes “you’re just to good for me.” We should listen.
— Quinta. (@quintabrunson) December 27, 2018
A handful of memes even managed to incorporate another late-2018 meme, Sandra Bullock in Bird Box — a Netflix original that is not a birds-on-demand service, we are told.
Everyone: we hate the new Instagram update
— Jeyson Paez (@jeysonpaez) December 27, 2018
You know how in apocalypse movies where a part of the population starts freaking out because they’re infected by something unfamiliar and start rampaging? I felt like I was in one when I woke up to people losing their minds over the Instagram update. I’ve already locked my doors.
— Eugene Lee Yang (@EugeneLeeYang) December 27, 2018
Unupdate might not be a word, but it is absolutely a state of mind.
— Skyleigh Tweedy (@SkyleighTweedy) December 27, 2018
— 𝔏𝔲𝔫𝔞 (@localsatanicboy) December 27, 2018
For better or worse, the Met got involved with what we can only assume is a Very Important Artifact for the cause.
When you hear #Instagram might update its format so you hold on tighter to your vertical scroll…
— The Met (@metmuseum) December 27, 2018
— Meg Warpus (@MegWarpus) December 27, 2018
Due to a bug, some users saw a change to the way their feed appears today. We quickly fixed the issue and feed is back to normal. We apologize for any confusion.
— Instagram (@instagram) December 27, 2018
But can we ever really go back? Can we unsee a fate so great, one still looming on some distant social influencer shore? Probably yeah, but that doesn’t mean we won’t all lose it if it happens again.