#Skittlegate day 2: Brand's PR team impersonated on Twitter

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Donald Trump Jr.'s comments mentioning the brand not only launched dozens of memes, but a Twitter account impersonating the Skittles communications team.

If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, Skittles’ PR team has some big fans on Twitter.

An imposter created a faux Twitter account for Skittles’ PR team on Tuesday, less than a day after Donald Trump Jr. stirred up a social media storm by comparing the plight of Syrian refugees to poisonous candies in a bowl.

The Twitter account, with the handle @Skittles_PR and username Skittles PR Team, appeared at about 1 p.m. on Tuesday. As of mid-afternoon, it had produced only five lighthearted tweets, mostly joking about catching up on tweets about Trump Jr.’s comments. Skittles-related hashtags including #SkittlesWelcome and #SkittleGate trended on Twitter on Tuesday.

One Twitter user gave a shout out to the official Skittles account for being "such an amazing candy," and the fake account replied, "Right back at you!"

However, the @Skittles_PR account is not legit, said Michelle Green, U.S. marketing communications manager at Wrigley.

"We haven’t seen any other fake Skittles social media pages set up, but we are not immune to it, and it is something we will look into to try to get to the bottom of," Green added. 

She declined to comment on Trump Jr.’s comments beyond the statement Skittles released to the media last night.

"Skittles are candy. Refugees are people. We don’t feel it’s an appropriate analogy," the brand said. "We will respectfully refrain from further commentary as anything we say could be misinterpreted as marketing."

Green declined to discuss the comms strategy behind Skittles’ response or whether a PR firm has been assisting the brand.

This article first appeared on preweek.com.


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