Hathaway, Hathaway, Hathaway

There’s something funny about the fact that popular stars fan a have some kind of effect on real world things, like the stock market or page views. The Hathaway effect isn’t the first documented, but for me, it’s the most interesting. I’ll discuss the Hathaway effect later, but let’s look at some of its antecedents first.

Streisand Effect

What happens when you tell people not to do something? oh, that’s right: they keep on doing it. A while back, someone was doing a series of photos of the coast, documenting erosion patterns. It just so happens that Barbara Streisands house was in the way of the photos.

Babs was FURIOUS and demanded that they be taken down IMMEDIATELY (they were uploaded to some site for some reason…I’m being a lazy librarian right now but the reason is not important). Well, with this publicity came the Internet – when something goes live online, it never dies. People kept copying the image and putting it everywhere!

Moral of the story? Can’t keep the Internet down – when you demand something be taken down, it’ll just keep popping up no matter what you do.

Tolkien Effect

Similar in idea, but apparently untrue: supposedly, the Tolkien estate claims that any reference to the word “Tolkien” is copyrighted by them. Meaning? You can’t use the word Tolkien without paying them and/or citing them….

Um, what? really? This came up because of a pin taken down from popular site Zazzle.com that stated “While you were reading Tolkien, I was watching Evangelion” referring to popular anime, Neo Genesis Evagelion.

This caused a backlash, with people creating shirts and products stating TO_KIEN or any other variation with a missing letter. Well, as it turns out? Zazzle took down the product, not the Tolkien estate. Oops?

Hathaway Effect

This effect actually has a real world effect – nothing as simple as more publicity.

As it turns out, whenever Hathaway does something – release a movie, host the Oscars, breathe – the stock price of Berkshire Hathaway goes up! How odd…until you consider the fact that they share a name – Hathaway. Any mention of Anne causes an increase in search results for Hathaway, with some effect being felt by Berkshire Hathaway.

How frickin weird is that? It’s like they are getting free publicity for sharing a famous celebrities name. I should come up with my own corporation. To be topical, I shall call it…”Charlie Sheen”. What should the focus of my company be? Adonis DNA or Tiger Blood?

Dan Mirvish: The Hathaway Effect: How Anne Gives Warren Buffet a Rise.

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