Urban AT Shed Crew Twitter Gets Personal. Maybe Too Personal?

As much as any other Richard Armitage Fan, I’m hoping that Urban AT Shed Crew is a great film that achieves its distribution goals so that we all get to see it. That being said, I’m beginning to feel a lot overwhelmed and somewhat unhappy by the recent change in the voice, tone and frequency of @UrbanATShedCrew. There seem to be a lot of tweets ( practically continuously) with very little new information, or in some cases, wrong information. And much pushing.

The voice of the @UrbanATShedCrew account has changed dramatically from what it used to be, now engaging in constant banter and back and forth with fans, asking “for help” in some tweets, getting Urban recognized at LIFF, and in general, taking on a personality and voice  that is quite different from most other film sites I’ve followed. The relentless pushing is becoming a turn off.

I’m wondering whether this is helpful or harmful or simply irrelevant to the film and its success, but there seems to be a frenzy of activity to bring the hashtag @UrbanATShedCrew to light on Twitter – so much so, that it’s almost unseemly.

Maybe taking page out of the Hannibal crew book, @UrbanATShedCrew is filling its time line with tweets, in banter with fans and fan sites not only with some new photos of Richard Armitage that we crave – but with no photos of other stars, for example, not one of Anna Friel or Neil Morrisey has been released recently. (you’d think  @UrbanATSHedCrew is a hardcore Armitage fan or fan site admin),

The account has even engaged in some fan chastisement for what it considers inappropriate tweets.
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Furthermore, when one looks at the time of the tweets, it seems obvious that the tweets are coming from the U.S., and not the UK.

I’ll predict that a load of fans and tweeters are delighted with the personal and constant attention and “inside info” about film festivals work, etc., but I’m not one of them. In my view, the account has lost some of its professionalism, in tone, content and frequency. ( DO I really need to know that the @UrbanATShedCrew admin has cats or has been away for a day or uses a desktop?)

So what’s my gripe? Just that I care a lot about the success and exposure of this film, as do many of you, I know, and in my opinion, and I am no publicist, I’m just the audience, I think it’s kind of bush league for its air of unprofessionalism, lack of polish and humor and preachy, downright pushy tone.

It recalls to mind one of my favorite lines from a judge in a case I was trying, which lines later became a trope for my counsel and me – after a terrible direct examination by opposing counsel, during which she was interrupted a zillion times with objections by counsel and the judge, the Judge, Hon. Thomas Griesa ( pronounced Grisay), moaned in exasperation,

Who wrote these words!?!

srsly.

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65 thoughts on “Urban AT Shed Crew Twitter Gets Personal. Maybe Too Personal?

  1. I think you may be right. I think they may have a new twitter admin. Reminds me of someone (who shall remain nameless) on facebook who is also prone to fussing at fans of his.

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    • Hmmm. Very interesting observation. There is a similarity to one admin I know of. If so, I guess nameless’s wish came true. I don’t see the same kind of promo for any of the other LIFF films. It just seems desperate and unprofessional and very unBritish.

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      • Let me see … should I venture to guess who this individual is? Could it be the same US fan page who intentionally blocked after I criticized her precious RA for doing something not very nice? 😉

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      • Think you may be right. Cant find the original tweets now, but CB tweeted (about Aug/Sept?)that she needed some promo/tweeting advice (being a bit of a twitter novice)and the person you speak of replied saying she was in the US but would help. Said person had also been tweeting occassional comments to CB re environmental issues…

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        • If a fan site admin is professionally running a Richard Armitage related official site, that raises important issues, addressed previously in connection with Marlise Boland – i.e fan or journalist, and if journalist ( or publicist) isn’t that individual subject to criticism on performance, from which a fan is usually , or should be, exempt. And the person you spoke of was right in the thick of that.

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  2. Interesting observation. It seems they hope to tap into Richard’s fan base to gain support for the film and perhaps have hired someone to do that. And they did succeed in selling out all their LIFF showings, which probably has a lot to do with Richard’s fans, so they are getting positive feedback. Candida Brady’s twitter account had some things that sounded a little too desperate before LIFF was announced, and she too was posting Richard photos, so this may be part of the overall strategy. You are right — it is not really professional, particularly the corrections and advertising the GQ James Bond competition. The promotion activities should be trying to sell the film.

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    • Yeah. One of the negative indicators to me is promoting not just the film, but what other projects the cast is involved in. This is very fangirl and not very directed at Urban promotion. Even mentioning directly that the site is dedicated to promoting Urban strikes me as a negative. I just think it makes them look foolish. Its like a twitter admin on crack.

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      • If this is a marketing campaign aimed at gaining international exposure, the target audience of these tweets is completely off the mark. I had a gut feeling that something was off; I just couldn’t figure what it was, and I’m delighted that you give us your analysis.

        Honestly, I would be far more interested in knowing what became of the real persons behind the characters of UATSC and not what the actors are up to (sorry). It’s a film about the lives of real people, which makes it all the more interesting to know their destinies.

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  3. Oh and, I just checked out the new website ( which for some reason is a dot org address not used that way in the UK and reserved in the US for not for profits, AND, have you seen the new logo on the new official webpage, which is basically unreadable. http://urbanmovie.org/. Yup – change is not always good. But be careful. Criticizing will soon turn into a charge of bullying. It may be the first time a (commercial)? film promotion twitter account claims to be the victim of Cyberbullying. Well, not to worry, Richard Armitage can always step in and get Cybersmile to weigh in.

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  4. I have wondered about this too. There’s a definitely shift in style around 7-9 October.
    There are tweets in both German and Spanish and an apology for bad English. It makes me wonder where this is coming from. Though it is legit, right?

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  5. You make some good points there, Perry.
    I hadn’t notice the time difference; just presumed it was coming from the UK. It’s interesting though that the site uses ‘film’ rather than ‘movie’ – it’s more prevalent to use ‘film’ in the UK – though I did notice humour is spelt the US way, without the ‘u’.
    I thought the apology for bad English was actually for not being able to change something into German via their tablet/laptop?
    There has been an upping of tone/promotion on the twitter feed. It just looked to me as if they’re trying to whip up interest for the film, know RA’s got a big fan-base but at the same time trying to manage some of the more over-enthusiastic fans, who digress.
    However, I’m intrigued about your speculation that the account may now be run by an (US?) admin who’s on Facebook (am not on Facebook, so can only vaguely hazard a guess?!)

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    • Of for sure, they are trying to tap into RA’s fan base – nothing wrong with that – but here it seems excessive to me. The apologize I saw was for translated German.

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  6. I looked at the account, and noticed a tweet where the person said that they plan to respond to all multi-hundred tweets they receive each day. This decision seems to be the source of the strange messages. It seems misguided to try to respond to everyone. There is much redundancy, and a fair amount of garbage, in what people send out on twitter.

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    • At some point, the rhetoric changes from us/our to I/me. This is where the style change is modt noticable. I hadn’t noticed the time difference either.
      Not that I’m put off as such, but there IS a change, and I’m not sure it’s for the better (cannot make up my mind on that)😏

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    • That’s what I meant. For a site like that to respond to every tweet is unusual and unnecessary.It seems to me, and some others, that tweeters/fans may be deceived as to who they think they are communicating with.I think some thought it was Candida Brady herself.

      Liked by 1 person

    • The thing is, why would a junior publicist in the UK would look at and follow Anglophile Channel and Sarah Dunn and think those were more important follows than RA Net or Armitage Global or the many other fan accounts who are tweeting madly about UATSC? Why wouldn’t they get on board with the Share Urban blog initiative?

      Liked by 1 person

      • @Kellyduck Unless it’s personal. Or why follow Lee Pace? This person is not from the UK. It spells favorite the American way. Why provide info that RA is shooting Berlin Station, or went to the Empire Awards while he was filming Urban, or any number of other RA facts not remotely related to the film. Why does it matter? It matters because people ought to know who they’re talking to, it’s not a job well done, and it denigrates the promotion of the film. It seems to be catering to an audience that is already, wholly converted and in favor on international release. If I were a distributor or had designs on the film, I might thing WTF is going on. It also reflects poorly on Candida Brady, Blenheim and their judgment and savvy or lack thereof. Just my opinion of course.

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  7. Well said, Perry.
    You have expressed everything I was thinking and feeling.
    Everything being said by @UrbanATShedCrew is just a regurgitation of non-stop RA promotion. What about the movie this person is suppose to be promoting?
    I really couldn’t understand all the promotion of RA being James Bond this Twitter account was doing. Why am I reading about just RA? Isn’t the film called Urban and the Shed Crew, not RA and the Shed Crew?
    Thank you Perry for commenting. It is nice to see there are some admirers of RA who don’t have their heads shoved up his @$$. Sorry, I really wanted to get those words off my chest.
    You are also right about all criticism of @UrbanATShedCrew being misinterpreted as cyberbullying, when it’s clearly not the case.

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  8. Well, Urban is stuck between a rock and a hard place – most films have a key leading man/woman, (sometimes more) who the publicity is based around and who is seen as being the key to putting bums on seats, or more relevantly, this film being finding distributors.Would anyone here be even talking about Urban if RA wasn’t in it, but an unknown?

    The tweets would seem to suggest the Tweeter is trying to stick with promotion of Urban and tries to steer other tweeters not to veer off course from that. But it’s a tricky task to get the tone (and voice) of any written material right, to appeal to everyone, let alone in a restricted number of characters on Twitter! (And maybe that person is still trying to get it right?)

    Virtually all of The Crucible promotional posters/material, etc, showed images of RA. (The posters only him).

    It’s an independent film which needs distributors and RA has the lead role, so publicists/whoever is trying to find distributors, will use whatever publicity they can to promote interest in the film. As is the case with any form of publicity, individuals might not like certain aspects of it – one can read it or not, as the case might be.

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      • Although Anna Friel is English, she’s probably better known these days in the US than the UK, whereas Neil Morrissey is quite well-known in the UK, but presumably not in the US?!

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        • I didn’t know Neil Morrisey at all until Urban, nor Anna Friel, since I never wacthed Pushing Daisies, but either way, who is the intended audience of the UATSC twitter account? To me, it looks like Richard Armitage fans.

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  9. I get very tired of being marketed at… so if accounts post so many tweets, I tend to unfollow them. A tweet a day is more than enough for me… I haven’t been following this account and by the looks of it I don’t think I will start to do so either.

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    • In the beginning, when word first came out and shooting was on, it was a nice, friendly, low key account with occasional pics and a decidedly English voice. I liked it a lot and listed it among my favorites, ( for marketing) along with AJ Hartley and the Audible people. This now, has a strong Into the Storm vibe.

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  10. Let’s face it most RA projects tend to go into overdrrve to engage his fan base then start to back off or berate those who over indulge in what they have stirred to frenzy. I don’t get or use Twitter so only see what is exposed on certiain sites. I’m at a loss on this film that Candida Brady has been so naive as a documentary maker not to be able to harness the subject matter rather than the actors to get this film into the mainstream. Hey but what do I know about film making! Oh yes it just has to be the most hotly discussed topic at the moment in the UK about child abuse neglect and those who traffic our vulnerable. This is an anecdote piece about those who try to make a difference. Perhaps she struggles to get this into the mainstream because this topic is so raw and hard to believe given events that are now constantly being brought into our consciousness.

    … I have a ticket to Leeds but despair that it will all become about Richard and his tight fan base as this film is not or should not be aimed at us. I would never wish to insult anyone myself included but we are very identifiable.anyone who was at the Crucible gathering for the in conversation with would have to admit this. Urban is a dramatic documentary drama piece culturally set in a time and place which does not easily transcend or translate globally. Whilst We his supporters will champion to try and get every thing he does out there the fact remains this film is a cult piece which may or may not find that all important distributor. Personally I think it should happen via the BBC and if I were the publicist I would be looking at a more relevant and immediate medium to get this mainstream.

    What is interesting looking at other films in liff is that this appears to be the only film to have sold out every showing so lets not get carried away as we all know the might and the pound of RA followrs can do this very easily but we aren’t the majority of the cinema going audience. UATSC should not be looking for more dates they should be capitalising on the relevance of the film to today’s youth making this a cult piece.

    It is never my intention to offend anyone but as the saying goes if our man went to the opening of a letter we’d be there in droves. This does not guarantee the success of the film. However as I started out saying I just don’t get Twitter and yes agree those tweets very UN British! I also get very turned off by those who blatantly court and use fans for their own ends and then belittle US when they achieve our recognition. We should not bite!

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  11. Perhaps before all this frenzied buzz, she tried to sell the content and was not getting very far, so she, or her designee, went the other way. I am fairly certain that they are RA fans who have sold out the tickets, but I think the sold out status and additional showing is excellent buzz. Getting him there in person is a no brainer, to me. I always remember, that so far, Leeds was the first festival to admit this film. This could be because of the subject matter, or too many other entrants that touch on the same issue, even elsewhere in the world ( sooo many films about troubled children, poverty, tough lives, etc., and some may be more contemporary) , or, heaven forbid, the quality of the film itself. LOVE ” if our man went to the opening of a letter . . .”

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    • I haven’t learned how to set up groups on twitter, but I follow relatively few accounts, all things considered. I agree that Urban is taking over as a subject – never thought I’d be relieved to read about Armitage as Bond.A few more days, and BOTFA EE and extras will be what’s hot. I hope.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Pingback: Watch out, Richard Armitage fans. We’re a market segment again! | Me + Richard Armitage

    • I know what you mean. It’s not like I don’t have a job or a family to take care of. ✋ I suppose I should be spending all my time Tweeting about someone who I think is a great actor, but does not know who the heck I am. Maybe I should quit my job and forget I have a life while I’m at it. Good point Gratiana.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Actually, I’m afraid that you are mistaken in regard to how Twitter works. None of the tweets from the “Urban and the Shed Crew” Twitter account that you have used as examples in your blog post actually appeared in the timelines of the followers of the account. Those tweets are personal replies and were only intended for the recipients. In order for a reply to go out to all of an account’s followers, a period needs to be put before the “@mention” that starts the tweet. I follow the “Urban and the Shed Crew” Twitter account and I didn’t receive any of those tweets. You know of them because you looked at the account’s Profile Page. However, a typical Twitter user reads tweets from their home timeline and never looks at Profile Pages to read tweets. Here’s an article that will explain what I am taking about:

    http://www.copperfoxmarketing.com/period-before-a-mention-twitter/

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    • Thank you Hyacinth, and I am aware of that aspect of how twitter works, but as a fan I also scan the timeline of the account, itself, as, I am sure, do others, and in addition, there are retweets from those involved, and, of course the regular barrage of tweets. But, maybe with your help, I could figure out to set up a group. Thanks.

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  14. Pingback: Shed Crew Tuesday: LIFF Audiences to View UATSC for 3 Sold Out Shows! October 20, 2015 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #817) | Something About Love (A)

  15. Perry, I think you & I are in agreement about who is running the Urban twitter feed. She also has a FB page dedicated to RA. I visit it but don’t comment much as she’s fussed at me over my comments a time or two (heaven forbid someone suggest that we set up an 18+ page – that just wouldn’t do; heh, there’s more than 1 of those now).

    Anyway, Richard is not the end-all & be-all of Urban, even tho I suspect many (most ?) who will watch it are his fans. I’d frankly like to know more about Urban & Chop.

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  16. I think that if CB asked for help on Twitter and received it, that’s all well and good. But constant RA-fangirling isn’t really doing much service to the film, and of course, policing the Twitter interactions she receives is never a great idea. My hope is someone might catch wind of this and tone that down and start to market the film more effectively. It does seem that UATSC needs help in that arena… just not sure this is actually helpful. =)

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    • I have nothing against Candida Brady, but I do think that a film maker, publicly asking , *on* Twitter for help *using* Twitter is a bit odd – but she was also responding to a series of tweets “advising” her on how better to use it. i.e. how to use hashtags. Having said that, if she could get free competent help, which I assume she thought she was getting, as you say, well and good. Right now, there is no product to sell the movie goer. I think the market for the PR ought to be distribution companies and others in the film industry, which won’t happen on twitter. I hope it will happen at Leeds.
      I also like Anney’s suggestion of BBC – maybe the perfect home for this film.

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      • Just one point the BBC does not buy films when they are marketed to cinema distributors, it commissions films at much earlier stage, ie it receives proposals for ideas of films/documentaries/series and chooses amongst them which to spend money on. I have no idea if this idea was proposed to the BBC but it seems to me it hasn’t. They are looking for a wider distribution than the BBC. This does not exclude that at a later stage the BBC might choose to air it as it does other films, but this would be much much further along the line, after any cinema distribution has happened.
        They obviously managed to find the money to produce the film otherwise, did not use any BBC funds (i don’t know, but it could very well be as mentioned that this idea was never proposed to the BBC as a commissioning suggestion, maybe precisely because they wanted to produce it completely independently).

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  17. But doesn’t the BBC *air* films on some stations? I see this as more like the HBO arrangement where Elliott Lester’s Nightingale went from festival to HBO.

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      • Sadly not, ie at this point in time BBC is not really a player in this, maybe much later…. i honestly want to see the film first in any case. Haven’t had time to look at everyone’s track record, but the production company is relatively new with very little track record. The best known thing about it is B Hare’s book which is good. Let’s just say i’m a bit anxious at this point… The subject is engaging but that does not automatically mean a good film. I keep thinking of Trainspotting… but nothing guarantees this will be nearly as good as that. Wait and see at this point i guess.

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  18. Pingback: @Urban Fangirl Marketer: Leveling a Charge or Back-pedaling? | Armitage Agonistes

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