Almost instantaneously after the Chicago Cubs unveiled a cartoon rendering of the team’s new mascot, Clark the Cub, Facebook and Twitter got mean. Here are a few of Monday’s Facebook reactions
• “Dumb. Just dumb.”
• “My son is 8 and he thinks it’s stupid.”
• “He reminds me of Poochie from ‘The Simpsons.’”
• “I have endured a lot being a Cubs fan for 48 seasons and have never been embarrassed for them until I saw this mascot. The Cubs don't care about the product on the field, only the money that they make. This proves it. They used a focus group to select this dreck.”
Meanwhile, on Twitter:
At least Clark has one supporter in hip-hop blogger Andrew Barber:
The Chicago Tribune
has been diligently cataloguing
social media response to the new mascot, the first the Cubs have had in their modern history.
Clark is the result of market research. The Tribune
reports that fan surveys and interviews suggested the Cubs should work harder to be family friendly, and suggested a mascot as a way to do that.
Though Clark will greet fans at games—he’d better prepare himself for some harsh words, it seems—his main role will be to “carry out the Cubs Charities’ mission of identifying improvements in health and wellness, fitness and education for children and families at risk.” He’ll make appearances at schools, hospitals, and Cubs events.
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The true test, then, will be whether kids, not adults on social media, embrace the new mascot. Still, Clark’s early status as a joke or an object of hatred isn’t a great start.