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Brands That Abandoned Their Core Audience And Paid Dearly For It

Reddit user Fflewddur_Fflam_ asked: 'Who abandoned their core audience and paid the price for it?'

As the saying goes, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it."

Nonetheless, several brands and businesses will sometimes make noticeable changes, be it to reach a wider audience, or simply to shake things up a bit.

In some cases, the effort pays off, like Dunkin' Donuts, who decided to stretch beyond simply selling doughnuts and coffee, eventually even dropping the "Donuts" from their name, but losing none of their popularity.

Other times, things don't go as smoothly, such as when IHOP (an acronym for the International House of Pancakes) temporarily changed its name to IHOB (International House of Burgers), which turned out to be nothing but a weeklong publicity stunt, but was met with anger and vitriol from it's fanbase during that controversial week.

Redditor Fflewddur_Fflam_ was curious to hear what other brands the Reddit community thought betrayed their core audience to disastrous results, leading them to ask:

"Who abandoned their core audience and paid the price for it?"

Humans Are Technically Animals...

"Animal Planet."

"Their tagline became 'surprisingly human.'"

"Nobody wants to watch ANIMAL Planet for people."

"They have other channels."- rainbirdmelody

You Could Say Their Mission Slipped Through The "Cracks"...

"Cracked.com."

"There were a couple years there where they transformed from a second rate Mad knockoff to some of the smartest, funniest stuff on the internet."

"Then the people who held the purse strings decided listicles and photoshop contests were more profitable than a writing staff."- MichaelMyersResple

"StumbleUpon."

"It was a small website giving you randomized internet pages which I used to browse for hours as they were so fun."

"Now it turned into Mix and I have no clue what it is."

"Pretty sure no one uses it and it makes me sad."- MightyDaisy

Working On It GIF by KAT BALLGiphy

Less Handcrafted, More Hand-Me-Down

"Etsy."

'Used to be a fairly cool place to buy and sell mostly handcrafted stuff and items to make handcrafted stuff."

"Now it's basically shady Amazon with worse shipping."

"Everyone seems to be drop shippers and a lot of the more niche crafter/artisan things are pushed out and overwhelmed by cheaper, mass produced goods."- THIS_IS_MY_JOYSTICK

The Dreaded Paywall...

"Photobucket!"

"Back when forums were still a thing, Photobucket would host your images for free."

"Then one day they decided EVERYONE would have to pay monthly, no free tier, nothing."

"We all collectively agreed we would not be paying, and that was that."

"I feel like it may have contributed to the death of forums."

"Ruined a few of my car build threads, that's for sure."

"To this day they still send me emails a couple times a year threatening to delete all my photos if I don't come back."-pr0b0ner

Arguably, All For The Best?...

"Yik Yak."

"It was a way to have conversations with people in the area anonymously (really popular on college campuses)."

"They made an update to create user profiles and pretty much everyone just stopped using it because anonymity was the whole point."- Fakjbf

episode 16 moe GIFGiphy

Chocolate Lovers Revolt!

"This is incredibly niche, but in Norway there used to be two providers of chocolate powder, the kind you mix with hot or cold milk to make hot chocolate or chocolate milk."

"They were O'Boy brand and Nesquik, equally loved and enjoyed a healthy fanbase 'rivalry'."

"O'Boy is a Swedish product sold in Scandinavia and the Baltics since the 50s, Nesquik is of course Nestlé brand and sold all over the world."

"Sometime in the 2010s Nesquik decided to change the formula of the choco powder."

"I imagine to save money."

"And for making hot chocolate the new recipe was fine."

"What Nestlé underestimated, however, is that most Scandinavians drink their choco powder cold to make chocolate milk."

"The new recipe had a different type of sugar in it that wouldn't dissolve in cold milk, leaving a crunchy powder in the milk."

"Norwegians outraged, Nesquik was deemed useless, nearly everyone in the Nesquik camp migrated to O'Boy, and Nestlé lost almost all its market share overnight."

"A few months later, Nesquik is gone from the shelves nearly everywhere, never to recover from the blunder."- -Yngin-

Tornados Filled With Sharks Are Not For Everyone...

"Sci-Fi Channel."

"At some point there was no sci-fi on it."- AlienBeingMe

Tara Reid Storm GIF by SYFYGiphy

Not Everyone Can Keep Up With The Times...

"RadioShack."

"They went from selling electronic components, little gadgets, and interesting tech bobbles to nerds to trying to sell expensive cell phone plans and sh*tty batteries to a different audience."

"We saw that the customers who came to RadioShack shifted from middle/upper-income engineers and tech geeks to lower income people in a six year period."

"Then we saw the geeks stop coming in at all because they would come in for some capacitor or breadboard, and the person there wouldn't know what that was."

"If it wasn't a phone, they didn't know."

"Even if it was a phone, they probably couldn't tell you anything about it."

"Old RadioShack employees were knowledgeable and well paid."

"New RadioShack employees didn't give a sh*t about technology."- 001235

Seems FittingThat Their Old Audience Is "History"...

"Anyone else remember when The History Channel was about history and not about aliens?"- rienjabura

Found Footage Video GIF by Eternal FamilyGiphy

There's A Reason They're Not So Well Known For Their Food...

"Every restaurant that opens in the UK goes through the cycle:"

"New and interesting food."

"Very different from most British food."

"Becomes very popular."

"Owners sell to a large company."

"Large company decides that being popular isn't enough, they want everybody to eat there."

"Make the food more British."

"Looming failure is hidden for a while because they attract new customers at exactly the rate they lose old customers."

"New customers have tried it, realize they can get that food anywhere, stop going."

"Chain closes and is replaced by a Greggs or Nandos, depending on the size of the location (not dependent on how far away the nearest Greggs or Nandos is."- skztr

Money Doesn't Solve Everything

"Quora."

"There were excellent groups with intelligent discussions."

"Then it became monetized and people submitted 100s of questions a day."

"'What time does the Walmart close in Boise?'" "

"'My 16 yr old came home with an A- so I took away their phone for 6 months'."- JanuarySoCold

Bored Sales GIF by EGiphy

Success can be a very dangerous thing.

As it can make you think about nothing but getting bigger, often resulting in your leaving people behind along the way.

A cautionary tale for young entrepreneurs.


People Break Down How They Realized Their True Sexual Orientation

Reddit user TheGreek1 asked: 'What made you realize your true sexual orientation?'

Group hug with people holding rainbow flags
Janosch Lino/Unsplash

Everyone has a different journey on their road to self-discovery.

Especially when it comes to their sexual identity, many young adults struggle with not fitting in and wondering where they belong in social situations.

It's common for many of these individuals to be ashamed and suppress their identity for fear of being judged or ridiculed, while others have a support system at home or among close friends.

Curious to hear how people arrived at their moments of self-discovery, Redditor TheGreek1asked:

"What made you realize your true sexual orientation?"

Exposure to media helped these Redditors with their epiphany.

The Guy On TV

"So one day I saw a tv show, and there was a gay guy in some part of it, so I thought to myself, am I gay? And I came to the conclusion that I am in fact, straight."

– ShapeShiftingBruh

"Same! Or you may see a good looking guy but it doesn’t feel the same way as seeing a good looking woman. I hope that makes sense."

– gomeazy

Erotic Magazine

"I stumbled upon a stack of old playboys when I was 7 actually. I was very very intrigued. Before that I thought boys and girls both had penises lmaoo."

– 335i_lyfe

'Cuz Ya Gotta Have Faith

"I’m dating myself here but George Michael’s video for 'Faith.' At the beginning there is a hot girl in high heels leaning against a jukebox on one side and he’s on the other side. My eyes went to him. I thought, maybe I just want some jeans like that. Naw. I wanted what was IN the jeans."

– shakycam3

Some experimented to determine their sexuality.

Trying Oral

"Honestly? I had some doubts at first. So I let a guy go down on me during a 3some with his girlfriend. He was a freshman psychology student and had just learned about Kinsey and was making a big long speech about how sexuality is a spectrum, and nobody is truly 100% straight, and you know what? It was kind of compelling. So there I am, getting what was probably the third blowjob of my life, and I just can't stay hard. This dude was motivated, and no matter what he did... I think I was every bit as surprised as he was."

– porn0please

Best Buddy Hook-Up

"Same here. I thought, 'let’s try men, see how it goes!' Found myself hooking up with a close male friend who is, by all means, a f'kin smoke show."

"It was a safe space. I felt comfortable. And I learned - at most I’m a Kinsey 1 maybe. Maybe a Kinsey 0.5."

"If I die without ever being with another man, all good."

– astoneworthskipping

Those who were acquainted with or related to these Redditors tried to convince them of their sexuality.

Recognizing Beauty, Not Acting On It

"My sister in law was trying to convince me I was 'bisexual with a preference for men.' She wouldn’t let it go, all because I can appreciate when a woman is beautiful. I told her that I can see when a woman is beautiful, but it doesn’t mean I’m attracted to them."

Saint_Galahad

Little Closeted

"My best friend in high school was a lesbian, and was always trying to convince me that I was bi. I was like, 'lol no, I'm straight af.' Well, one night with my guy of many years, we were opening up about our kinks and- I don't know, I guess I just finally felt safe enough- but I realized I'd always kept a door closed inside of me where I knew I was also attracted to women."

"I've had way too many bad experiences in the past with female friends (who I think were actually crushes) to actually ever think about dating a woman, but I'm definitely also sexually attracted to them."

– Dizzy_Duck5436

Impressions made from a certain age can't be forgotten.

Kindergarten Crush

"When I went to kindergarten round-up when i was 5, I remember seeing two very pretty girls and thinking I would like to kiss them. To be honest, 35 years later those two women are still very pretty and I would still like very much like to kiss them."

– 2aboveaverage

The Handsy Child

"I remember falling in love with my first grade teacher. Ms. Florence. It has always been ladies for me. I read these modern discussions where people are debating sexuality, and it just doesn’t compute. My Grandpa told stories about me putting my hands down women’s shirts at age two/three."

– momentum_1999

My elementary teacher's assistant was a high school student named Randy.

He was the first guy I couldn't take my eyes off of.

He was a redhead, had freckles, and stunning green eyes that looked deep back into mine whenever I pretended I had a question for him but fumbled with my attempt at small talk.

I recognized him as a beautiful man but I didn't understand why I gravitated toward him as I was years from having any kind of sexual comprehension or awakening as a ten-year-old.

But I know for certain that was when I realized I was "different" when I pined for him and wanted to be near him every time I went to school.

I wonder what Randy is up to now?

Do you sometimes think about the people from your past you've had crushes on?

CW: Death and miscarriages.

It's always sad when a couple doesn't make it all the way.

Especially when a promise was made.

Isn't that what an engagement is?

A very expensive promise.

Diamonds ain't cheap.

Redditor mimi_nivi wanted to hear about the reasons why finally getting to "I DO" was impossible, so they asked:

"People who were engaged at one point but never got married, what happened?"

I've never been engaged.

And I thank God everyday.

My laundry list of exes is full of stains.

Not in Bed?

Season 5 What GIF by The OfficeGiphy

"Came home for lunch one day to surprise her. Surprise was on me as she was in the middle of doing her co-worker on my couch. I loved that couch."

Siguldg

3 Months Before

"He wasn't participating in the wedding planning at all and I realized he didn't actually want to get married. There was a lot of pressure from his family and admittedly, me as well. I just wanted a family and to be married and hadn't really paid attention to his reluctance up until that point."

"It was 3 months before the wedding and I sat down and reviewed our relationship. We were incompatible at several crucial points, even though we loved each other a lot. So I called off the wedding and ended it and while we were both sad, we were also relieved."

"This was more than a decade ago and whenever we run into each other we catch up and there are no hard feelings at all. He's married and a father now and I couldn't be happier for him."

Midnight_Muse

Back in 2012

"She died due to seizures. 3 am: she was home alone. She woke up and had a seizure and unfortunately hit her head against a wall… 7 am: she was supposed to show up at her parent's house to drop off the dog before work. She didn’t. 9 a.m.: her parents went to check on her, the dog was fine, but she was unresponsive. 9:30 am she was declared deceased at the scene. 10 am: I was at work and I got a call from her father… I lost it right there. It was back in 2012 but still, I’m not over it yet."

Fragrant-Snake

Cruel

"We had like 6 miscarriages."

"At the end of the relationship, he said something to me like 'It’s just so hard… I look at your face and I feel like I SEE nothing but 6 dead babies.'"

"Can’t really come back from that one. I mean some people can. We couldn’t."

"It’s crazy in hindsight but everything just kind of worked out. I have two beautiful daughters and a stepdaughter I love and a great life!"

relentpersist

Whoops

"Turns out she liked vagina as much as I did."

wayneo88

Sometimes too many of the same interests are NOT a good thing.

Lesson learned.

Thank You

Preach Amy Poehler GIF by SistersGiphy

"He cheated before we got married and I found out. I thank the stars every f**king day I didn’t marry him."

fatfemmebish

Old Friends

"She started hanging out with an old group of high school friends and just changed. She became extremely nasty over wedding plans, telling me we had to have the exact same number of guests on both sides. If I had one more guest than she did, she made me remove someone from my side. I knew if I moved forward it would have ended in divorce, so I just ended it before it got to that."

Wastoponcene

True Colors

"The longer we lived together leading up to the wedding, the more he showed his true colors. One day while I was cooking dinner for us he started screaming at me, like an inch from my face, and called me a (see you next Tuesday.) Something about it snapped some sense into me. I walked out and never went back."

gamergirl007

Technicalities

"We’re still technically engaged, but we never wanted a wedding. We met way late in life (I’m 50, she’s in her mid-40s), no kids, and if we get legally married the gov’t f**ks with her disability assistance so she is my spouse, my partner, and my soul mate. But we don’t feel the need to get married. But I do have a living will just in case. We will be celebrating our 10-year anniversary early next year."

lovedontfalter

Holy Mary

like a virgin madonna GIFGiphy

"The Holy Spirit came to him in a dream and told him that he couldn’t marry me because I wasn’t a virgin."

hitlersd**k69420

Well, sometimes it's just not meant to work out.

And that sounds like a blessing.

woman taking photo of high-rise building

Priscilla Du Preez 🇨🇦 on Unsplash

As a child, my family traveled extensively throughout the United States. Both of my parents loved to travel.

I went to 48 of 50 states—just Alaska and Hawaii left—as well as parts of Mexico and Canada with my parents. As an adult, a job I had for 13 years required travel, sometimes for a month or more.

Through that job I made it to Germany and Japan.

Needless to say I've seen my share of tourist attractions and tourist traps. But I'm a sucker for kitsch.

So while I love going to Wall Drug every time I'm headed west on Interstate 90 in South Dakota, others might say to skip it.

Keep reading...Show less
Man thinking hard
Photo by jose aljovin on Unsplash

We've all heard our fair share of conspiracy theories, and whether or not we truly believe them, we can agree that they're fun to think about.

But there are some that are more sinister than others, and some that are far too applicable to simply ignore.

Redditor Specific_Shop_3975 asked:

"What's a conspiracy with the most evidence to back it up?"

The Sinking of RMS Lusitania

"The British government deliberately put the RMS Lusitania in harm's way to get her sunk to bring the USA into WW1. The fact the records have been resealed for another 100 years adds credence to this conspiracy."

- Blackmore_Vale

"Dude, it's not even a conspiracy theory. The German consulate took out a two-page ad in the New York Times telling people to not board because they were going to sink it."

"Also at the time Britain didn't have an option but to sell the ship because it was carrying so many munitions that they desperately needed. This isn't a conspiracy theory; it's just plain fact."

"Both governments knew the risks and they needed it to galvanize support."

- hagantic42

Not So Sweet Candy Stores

"In the UK, there was a recent boom in American sweet shops that sold grossly overpriced import candy. They were suddenly everywhere after the pandemic, they didn’t sell much, but they were everywhere."

"Someone on TikTok theorized that they were all money laundering fronts, so people started filming in the shops laughing at the prices, and staff always seemed to get really angry about it."

"Then it was announced last year that there was an HMRC (UK’s tax wing of government) investigation started because the theory held water, and suddenly they all shut down."

"The one in Leeds Centre near Trinity currently has a notice of abandonment in the window and you can see the shelves are still stocked: the owners just ran off and left it."

"Sounds like another successful case for the TikTok detectives."

- fearthe0cean

What's Behind the Price of a Piece of Art

"Modern art is just money laundering."

"Nobody pays 2.2 million for a blank canvas."

- Poultry_Master123

"The brilliance of modern art money laundering can't be understated."

"Alfred wants to pay Brad $100k for a bribe."

"Brad wants this money to be 'clean' to avoid authorities looking into him."

"Brad 'sells' a worthless modern art piece for $100k."

"Alfred has now successfully transferred the bribe to Alfred. However, Brad is now in possession of a painting that the 'market' says is worth $100k. Down the line, Alfred might be able to sell this now 'valuable' piece of art to a third party for $50k, $100k, or potentially at a profit!"

"It can get even more complex when the artist is basically a part of the money laundering ring. This makes it so that Brad can fictionally increase the cost of buying the art from the artist in the first place in order to make the money laundering less obvious."

- Zigxy

Why So Many Options?

"There is something fishy going on at Mattress Firm. How can they stay in business with a store in practically every plaza when the average person buys a new mattress every decade or so?"

- PWcrash

Quite the Distraction

"Might not be a 'conspiracy theory' per se. But I believe that the government works hard to cover up their own incompetence."

"Part of that is manufacturing insane conspiracy theories as a way to make anyone who asks questions look crazy. Or at least to serve as a distraction."

- ButtFarquad66

A Conspiracy Is a Conspiracy

"The meta-conspiracy to convince dumb people that the word 'conspiracy' means 'a crazy person’s imagination.'"

"Conspiracies happen every day. There’s a global conspiracy of adults to convince kids Santa is real. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it’s a conspiracy."

"Somewhere along the line, the word got hijacked and it immediately discredits whoever says it. It’s practically a trap to use the word, so you have to dance around it if you want to describe people planning things in secret."

- Bob_the_peasant

Widely Discredited

"The government deliberately leaked false information to UFO investigators to discredit them because they were getting too close to the truth."

"(The truth being that Area 51 was a testing grounds for spy planes and stealth aircraft and was attracting too much attention for a secret weapons facility.)"

- 4thofeleven

"I think the government does this with conspiracy theories across the board. Promoting outlandish tinfoil hat-type theories helps discredit the ones that are actually real."

- QUINNFLORE

Another Money Laundering Front

"Benetton is a front for Italian mob money laundering."

"Probably wasn't at first back in the 80s but now... decent-sized stores in expensive real estate all over Europe, never anyone in the stores, never seen anyone wearing the clothes, don't know anyone that's bought anything from them, ever, and neither do those people."

- Bannedin_3_2_1

"I shop there all the time, in both Italy and Switzerland. It’s the highest quality for the most reasonable price that I can regularly find in Europe. I’m never the only one in there or checking out, either."

- AdultDisneyWoman

"Sounds like something a money launderer would say."

- kjm16216

Residential Monopoly

"Blackrock and Vanguard are buying up all the residential property they can in order to get the majority of Americans renting from them. Estimates say by 2030 they will own 60% of residential property."

- smartsapants

"I so wish we could all stop fighting about dumb sh*t for just a few weeks so both sides of the country could pass a law that bans any corporation or non-US citizen from owning residential property(with some provisions to account for things like bank loans obviously)."

"This would have such a massive effect on quality of life going into the future. Of course, it won’t happen."

- ternic69

People of Influence Parties

"The Bilderberg group. Every year in summer, they meet, and people keep track of who is there. Guest lists every year. Top politicians, royalty, corporate owners. Extreme security. No protocols."

"There is confirmation from a variety of these people that they were there."

"So, what do they talk about? Are they coordinated somehow after each meeting? How much influence do they have?"

"Well, given the extreme security, it's difficult to say. I am sure it's nothing, though. Why would those groups of people want to influence the world to suit their agendas, right?"

"Also note, anyone discussing this gets called a tin foil hat, or paranoid, or a conspiracy theorist who probably also believes in antivaxx reptilian....."

- Common-Wish-2227

Secret Climate Change

"The petroleum companies knew burning fossil fuels would lead to global climate change but hid the evidence of their own funded studies and did nothing to curb consumption, instead funded groups opposed to renewable, non-greenhouse gas generating energy to maximize shareholder value."

- 85_Draken

The Travels of Elvis Presley

"Elvis didn’t die in 1977. He was working with the government (DEA OR CIA? I can’t remember?). When he was compromised they had to fake his death."

"He actually moved to Argentina and lived the rest of his life down there."

"There were a lot of sightings. My favorite is when one of his house workers reported someone that looked just like him lying out by the pool at his own house the day after he died."

"It’s a fun theory that is pretty convincing the more you look into it."

- Affectionate-Win-788

Conspiracies All the Way Down

"People believe all the governments in the world have collaborated on keeping the shape of the Earth and our inability to visit the Moon a secret..."

- draculamilktoast

"But what about the turtle we are sitting on?"

- KAG25

"More importantly, what about the turtle THAT turtle is sitting on?"

- Hym3n

Intentionally Divisive

"That our governments are turning us all against each other to distract us from the blatant wealth manipulation, corrupt practices, nepotism, cronyism, among hundreds of other big issue things. Their plans working a treat and the people as a whole can't see what's happening and start working together against it."

"We are losing our privacy, our rights, and our sense of connection with one another. We drift away while they get more and more powerful. People hand away their rights like they're going to get them back and never question it when it's not."

"Our planet had to deal with another of the world power's attempts at control and that's the pandemic or should I say the reaction to it. I was always a believer it happened naturally but as time goes on it becomes more apparent it wasn't."

"We are bodies hanging from the roof being bled dry slowly but if this keeps up we aren't just f**ked like a world war or nuclear war, if we don't do anything we will lose whatever control we have and we will never get it back."

- Magic_Kushroom

From interesting and wowing to deeply troubling, there's truly no shortage of conspiracies and conspiracy theories out there for people to puzzle over and research.

The most troubling thing about them, honestly, has to be the stigma surrounding a person's interest in them. As soon as someone expresses interest in one of these theories, others are quick to discredit them.