Plot of #AlexFromTarget thickens -

Plot of #AlexFromTarget thickens

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By Daniel Fredman By Daniel Fredman

(CNN) -- Remember Alex from Target? He took the Internet by storm this week with his good looks and strong work ethic, causing many to swoon and others to curse the power of social media.

Now a tech startup is claiming responsibility for making #alexfromtarget one of the “most amazing social media experiments ever.” But it’s unclear whether the company really deserves the credit.

The CEO of Breakr, a company that claims to connect “fans with their fandom,” said in a LinkedIn post Tuesday that the company harnessed social media’s “powerful fangirl demographic” to make Alex Lee, a real Target employee from Texas, a global trending topic.

According to Breakr, the company took the photo of Alex Lee that was posted by a Twitter user named Abbie (@auscalum) and fanned Twitter’s flames, “spreading the word amongst our fangirl followers to trend #AlexFromTarget.” The company says it then added “fuel to the fire by tweeting about it to our bigger YouTube influencers.”

The conversation then spread through people supporting the hashtag “just to trend it” and others raging over the fact that a guy could become “Internet famous” just for his looks, Breakr CEO Dil-Domine Jacobe Leonares said.

People tweeted parody images and created YouTube videos while the media, including CNN, published stories about it.

“It was based on looks,” Leonares told CNN late Tuesday. “You put a good looking guy in front of girls, girls are going to go crazy over him.”

But not everyone’s buying Breakr’s trending power. Many have raised an interesting question: Isn’t revealing the “man behind the curtain,” so to speak, a giant no-no in the social media world?

In the end, what really matters is that #AlexFromTarget has met #EllenfromEllen. Maybe we'll hear from the trending topic himself soon.

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