Minnesota Vikings unintentionally troll the Bank of England


It’s not very often that unintentional trolling happens.   Usually, when this happens online, it is on purpose and the only goal is to upset or frustrate the target.  However, the Minnesota Vikings put a pretty good trolling on the Bank of England recently without even knowing it.

You see, the Bank of England was doing some research.  They were trying to determine how much bank customers were fearing a bank run (mass withdrawal of money from the financial institution) by gathering data from social media sites like Twitter.  You see, on September 18, 2014 there was a big fear that many folks would withdraw their money and go  to Scotland, where rumblings of them wanting to become free from their UK family through the Scottish independence referendum.

They took a group of banking keywords to run through Twitter and wanted to analyze the results to see how much the fear of a bank run was being discussed on the popular social media site.

Here were the keywords they chose to include in their Twitter search:

  • England
  • Bank
  • RBS (Royal Bank of Scotland)
  • runs

Sep 14, 2014; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Matt Cassel (16) looks to pass against the New England Patriots in the fourth quarter at TCF Bank Stadium. The Patriots win 30-7. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Those are all great keywords to include when looking for potential bank runs.  But their data was clogged with something very unrelated to what they were looking for.

You see, on September 14, 2015, the Minnesota Vikings were at TCF Bank Stadium taking on the New England Patriots.  During that game, the team’s running backs (or RBs as they like to be abbreviated) struggled mightily, totaling 15 carries (or runs) for only 43 yards.

When the results of the study came back to the Bank of England, they found the results of their study dominated by news of the Minnesota Vikings vs. New England Patriots contest.  Immediately, they knew that this method of research using the designated keywords was not going to give any meaningful results as they were too cluttered between tweets about american football.

The Wall Street Journal had this to say about the results of the experiment:

"“Although the Bank of England analysts failed to spot economic omens by examining 140-character tweets, they concluded that ‘this was a valuable exercise, building capabilities and knowledge to serve as a foundation for future projects.’”"

It’s nice to see the Minnesota Vikings dominate those search results, but it was the Vikings that were dominated during that game.  The New England Patriots won the contest 30-7.

Next: Minnesota Vikings 2015 Game By Game Previews

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