Controversial biotech outreach program gets mixed reception (April Fools)

shill2By Abril D Primero

The Biotechnology industry, struggling to gain acceptance for their products, has looked at social media as a wild animal they’ve been unable to tame, until now. Momsanto, a giant corporation that sells genetically engineered seeds and low-calorie sweeteners, has launched a program called “$hill Bucks.” This new social media-based incentive program, the industry believes, will allow them to regain control of public opinion, which according to online comment discussions, is entirely based on who wins comment thread arguments on the internet.

“It’s high time we started rewarding people who argue with our opposition online.” Cora Perate, Vice President of Momsanto’s New Media Programs, explained how the program works. “Our $hill Bucks social media team members monitor comments threads in prominent articles on traditional and social media sites. When they see a $hill in the comments, they debit the pseudo-currency into the $hill’s account.”

$hill Bucks are awarded according to the following scale:

  • 5: First comment to appear on the article
  • 10: Links to industry sites
  • 20: Link to non-industry sites
  • 30: Explain the science in a calm, approachable way
  • 40: Explain the science while calling another author nasty names
  • 50: Get accused by another commenter for being a “Shill” for industry.
  • 100: Argue with this commenter and claim that you are not.
  • 1,000: Convince an anti-GMO organization to publish an embarrassingly faked story.
monoply money_1

$hill Bucks have rapidly overtaken Monopoly money and Mexican Pesos in terms of value and stability.

“We’re particularly proud of that last one,” said Perate. “Our $hills created this great story about how bald eagles lost the feathers on their heads by eating our GMO cucumbers. We had a good laugh at the office as we saw bald protesters waving signs with this meme, because the cukes only work on mammals! It has allowed us to map the misinformation machine and insert embarrassing red herrings at key times to derail the activists while we push forward with our agenda for World dom-, I mean, Domino’s Pizza. Definitely Domino’s Pizza,” she said, quietly adding “Whew, that was close.”

$hill Bucks program participants, or “$hills”, must pre-register their usernames with Momsanto to receive credit for $hilling. “To accrue rewards, $hills must register no less than 5, and no more than 2,000 active pseudonyms.”

“Just kidding,” she said, “there’s no limit to how many pseudonyms you can register. The more you talk to yourself, the greater your rewards.”

$hill Bucks can be redeemed for a variety of merchandise, such as Momsanto hats, shirts, and silken handkerchiefs. At higher levels, $hills can trade for company stock, or weekend getaways to the S.S. Conspiracy Theory, a luxury cruise ship and casino that constantly circles the Caribbean, where they can drink limitless Mai Tais with CEO Huge Paycheck on Friday nights. Awardees will be flown in by helicopter, or can arrive by speedboat – also available for 1 million $hill Bucks. The cruise ship and speedboats come with high-speed satellite internet and business-class WiFi, so theoretically, successful $hills could stay there indefinitely.

1957907_1458867161011863_1732114028_o

The S. S. Conspiracy Theory, taking its passengers on a tour of one of the last coral reefs not affected by a dead zone.

$hill bucks can also be awarded by special recognition of achievement. Momsanto recently rewarded the anti-GM organization GM Wash a sizeable sum of $hill Bucks, for keeping a close eye on their share prices in social media. “GM Wash has helped our investors identify good times to buy stock by frequently raising awareness of when our stock is down,” said Perate. “We’re giving their director, Jonathan Batham, 1,500 $hill bucks!”

300px-Mai_tai_029_lores

Mai Tais allow you to $hill in style

An anonymous investor commented “I used to follow GM Wash and buy into their anti-GM stuff. But now I’ve bought into a nice retirement portfolio that I couldn’t have afforded without them.” Batham was unable to be reached for comment by press time. An aide reported that he was last seen logging into his stock brokerage account.

The $hill Bucks program has not been universally well-received. Anti-GMO activists working for hemp-based nonprofits worry that their will get drowned out in social media spheres, where they have traditionally held an advantage in numbers. “We motivate people with fear and misinformation, but now we have no idea whether the misinformation is ours or theirs.” Rumors have spread that a competing “Organic ₵ents” incentive program will be launched, providing free soapy showers on the street with a company’s traveling suds-mobile.

Knarl D’Ches Nutwood, a prominent blogging scientist was doubtful that this new outreach program would help sway public opinion about biotechnology. “I don’t like this idea at all. Rather than have meaningful dialog about this technology, it is just going to perpetuate the status quo.” Pausing to sip a Mai Tai, he continued. “If Momsanto thinks that they can buy support with this then they’re going about this all wrong.”

Perate responded, “Knarl just lost 10,000 $hill Bucks for that. Good luck getting that speedboat now.”

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34 comments on “Controversial biotech outreach program gets mixed reception (April Fools)
  1. theoldtechnite says:

    The SAS, Shill Accusation Syndrome, sufferers finally have their day of justification. But, alas, a day is all we can spare. – F.O.

  2. theoldtechnite says:

    LOL all around !

  3. MaryM says:

    Oh, c’mon–the first rule of Shill Club is….you DO NOT TALK ABOUT SHILL CLUB!!1!

    I used my shill miles for a new Windows Surface tablet (you know, Gates and all…).

  4. Dick says:

    This would be so awesome if this were real!

    Where are my shill checks, Monsanto? Syngenta? I could use the money! I’ll take U.S. dollars, Euros, British pounds, Bitcoins, and gold bullion.

  5. TheOldTechnite says:

    With so many $hills on the rolls, I’m afraid this is all we’re getting:

    http://randomrationality.files.wordpress.com/2013/07/monsanto-shill.jpeg (Random rationality)

  6. TheOldTechnite says:

    What currency are Shills paid in? Why, Shillings, of course !

  7. G.E.S. says:

    Bonjour!

    How many $hills I would get, for, let’s say, doing the last point to the global news media?

  8. Joel Starr says:

    I’d like to buy Boardwalk and Marvin Gardens, also I would like a get out of jail free shill. It’s your turn to roll the dice.

  9. Gillian says:

    Are Momsanto employees excluded?! :(

  10. Hellz yeah!! Mama needs to get her hair did and some dinner at the Sizzla’! Shillin’ all way!

  11. Axiom says:

    when comedy reveals truth !

  12. Dallas McCormick says:

    I wrote to Monsanto asking for educational pamphlets to distribute, and asking if there was any way I could help discredit their detractors; all I got was some lousy links to really good educational information nor even linked to their corporation. I was on my knees, begging to be a shill, but I guess they have high standards.

  13. John says:

    Darn the shills should just be proud and wear that button with a smile!

  14. Tanmay Roy says:

    LOL! Where are my shill checks, Monsanto? Syngenta? I could use the money! I’ll take U.S. dollars, Euros, British pounds, Bitcoins, and gold bullion.

  15. Tin Foil Hat Man says:

    I’m sorry to say, this site is obviously an astroturf front for: Big Appliance, Big Hair, Big Vacation, Big Apparel, Big Soap and Big Pet! If Thor had intended man to ride in automobiles, she would have made horses with wheels instead of legs. Aliens have implanted RFID chips in my potato chips, so the NRZ can track my every movement! I would shout in all caps, but I won’t fall for the tricks of “Big Caps”. Pon Raul 2016!

    • Those weren’t aliens who planted the RFID chips in your potato chips – that was the NSA. They’re listening in on everyone’s bowels, now. Good idea not to use all caps – that’s how they find you.

  16. Steve Savage says:

    An all along I thought the payments were maybe coming in those emails that say, “You have received an inheritance. Contact us” Never had the nerve to try that, so this would be way better :)

  17. Marco says:

    “Convince an anti-GMO organization to publish an embarrassingly faked story” should be only 5 $hill Bucks, it’s the easiest one! :)

  18. Eric Bjerregaard says:

    If you people wouldn’t constantly stoop to spreading the propaganda of big ag and monsatan. It would not be necessary for honest, kind hearted,caring and concerned people to point out the evil of your ways. This drive for profit “at all costs” must end or the “children” will suffer for your transgressions. You “shills” should be ashamed.

    • Way to not see the humor in this, Eric.

      • Eric Bjerregaard says:

        Karl, if I informed you that I was voted “most sarcastic” of my graduating class. Would you consider changing your comment? Also, you must have missed a few of my comments where in I complained of the constant shill accusations on linked in’s sustainable ag group. Please check with your fellow highly disappointed Badger, William Petersen. He will confirm.

      • Eric Bjerregaard says:

        BTW. Karl, The clas was 1966 from Bluffton elementary school in Muskegon Mi. I did look for a red shirt to wear for tonite and actually found one amid all the Maize and Blue ones. Furthermore the photos of women over 50 who want to date me have improved considerably since I have been reading the biofortified info. Does this mean you folks are responsible for this? Or perhaps the correlation should not considered causative? I’ve got a six pack of no-alcohol beer that says you’ll get the sarcasm next time.

    • theoldtechnite says:

      The drive for profit at all costs? Isn’t that Oxymoronic?

      • Eric Bjerregaard says:

        Mr. Technite, I was quoting a lefty who hated being called a lefty from the sustainable ag. group. Seems she thinks that there is a magic level at which a business changes from being a wholesome, clean, positive, and always fair and reasonable business to being an evil corporate monstrousity. She can not define that level. And Yeah, it would be difficult to actually profit that way. I understood her to men it in a Machieavelian [sp?] sense.

  19. I got a gold-plated Ferrari for my shilling.

  20. First Officer says:

    Some guy in Nigeria just called and said i won 10 million $hill bucks !

  21. Gillian says:

    $hillers are what makes the world go ’round. Keep $hilling real. Uncle Monty says thanks, the checques are in the mail.

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