“Hey @Pharrell, can we have our hat back?”
When Arby’s tweeted at Pharrell Williams during the 2014 GRAMMY Awards, they created a social media frenzy over the Vivienne Westwood-designed, fast-food-logo-lookalike hat the nominated musician wore on the red carpet. Now, the hat that became an internet sensation and raised $44,100 for the singer’s From One Hand to Another foundation will be on display at the Newseum for a limited run.
The original Arby’s tweet was retweeted more than 80,000 times, and Pharrell’s good-natured Twitter reply – “Y’all tryna start a roast beef?” – helped the hat go viral. The story caught the attention of traditional media outlets, whose reports on the music awards ceremony the next day frequently mentioned Arby’s and the hat. The newsmaking hat demonstrated the power of social media to connect people around the globe to events in real time.