28 people who were joking about America turning 2,013 years old

It’s amazing how much of journalism these days consists of someone searching for something on Twitter and then being shocked at finding that thing that’s being searched for.

On Thursday, a few people had the bright idea to search for people who posted on Twitter that the United States turned 2,013 years old on July 4. Of course that’s ridiculous and a sign that the U.S. education system has failed miserably.

Or maybe they were all kidding. Don’t bother checking that, just publish and shame! It doesn’t matter how young they are, they must be ridiculed, post haste!

Here’s a post on something called Twitchy that lists “30 people who say America turned 2,013 years old today.” Wow, those people all sound super stupid.

But let’s go through them one by one, shall we?

1.

16 minutes later:

2.

7 minutes later:

3.

She’s actually German. Later in the day:

4.

49 minutes later:

5.

Two hours, 27 minutes later:

6.

I’ll point you to the feed and let you judge for yourself.

7.

Four hours later:

8.

Four hours later:

9.

Two hours later:

10.

Twitter profile lists Poland as location. 25 minutes later:

11.

This tweet was deleted. The account is a kid in Saskatoon.

12.

The previous day:

13.

10 hours later:

14.

One minute later:

15.

Four hours later (retweeted):

16.

Honestly I’m not sure about this one.

17.

Location: Birmingham, England. Four hours later:

18.

No context to tell here, but the “apparently” in the tweet suggests to me it’s not serious.

19.

Previous tweet (retweted):

20.

User appears to be German. I’ll let you check his profile and you can see if he’s a moron.

21.

Repeat of #3.

22.

Next tweet, four and a half hours later:

23.

Tweet was deleted. User is Canadian.

24.

Repeat of #5.

25.

User is Canadian.

26.

Two minutes later:

16 hours later:

27.

14 hours later (after retweeting a bunch of similar tweets from others):

28.

10 minutes before (retweeted):

29.

I’ll point to the Twitter feed and leave it to you.

30.

21 hours later:

So, to recap, of the 30 people (actually 28 because two were repeated), all but a few made it very clear they were joking. Of the rest, many were either (a) not even Americans, or (b) obviously very intelligent.

I suppose you could argue that some or even most of them backtracked after the fact, pretending they were joking to hide their ignorance. You could argue that if you didn’t read their timelines, or if your commitment to taking what someone says at face value causes you to find reasons to not take other things they say at face value.

But who cares, right? Even if it’s not real it’s funny.

The problem is that there are real people behind these Twitter accounts, and many were subjected to verbal abuse as a result of these bad jokes. And it’s one thing if you’re a high-profile comedian facing some online hecklers. But it’s another if you’re a 14-year-old being told by dozens of strangers that you should kill yourself.

So how about, before you start mocking identifiable people online, you check to make sure they’re actually doing what you think they’re doing.

Because not doing a basic check before asserting something on the Internet, well, apparently that makes you a dumbass worth making fun of. And we wouldn’t want people to be getting the wrong impression of you.

8 thoughts on “28 people who were joking about America turning 2,013 years old

  1. Capt. 'Murica

    1- you MUST be ‘Murican.
    2- you put WAYYYY too much time into this.
    3- the only one you don’t think is joking is the little black kid. You’re obvi racist..

    Face it.. Americans are stoopid and the Canadians, Germans, Brits etc were the ones joking and being sarcastic.

    This is THE INTERNET!!! Nobody is WASTING THEIR TIME (*cough* like you), performing all kinds of unnecessary research to figure out if ppl are really THAT stupid!! We KNOW they are “that” stupid! We know this because only stupid people would sit idle and let someone like Bush or Obama be POTUS. Stupid people cheer on their troops and defend them when others disapprove saying “How dare you not support! Freedoms not free! ‘Murica!!!” SMH

    Americans need to stick to what they DO know and that’s ‘GOD.’ Gold, Oil, Drugs.
    Keep freedom fightin, America.. The NWO needs you!

    Reply
  2. Kevin

    People are assholes Steve.
    The internet just makes it easier for them to out themselves.
    In fact that should be publicly stated to every child on every day of school starting in about grade 3 in those exact terms.

    If you exist, you will be insulted online by horribly pathetic people.

    Reply
  3. Dan

    Good reason why you can NEVER count on sarcasm to be interpreted over text, without context. I still find it hard to believe that these people would post it ‘sarcastically’.

    Reply
  4. Josh

    How long have we been texting? Long enough to know that emotion doesn’t translate into text for sure. If you want to defend these people, knock yourself out… but if they aren’t stupid for messing up a birth date, then they’re stupid for not making sure people knew it was a joke.

    As for them being harassed, yeah, it happens. We’ve all been through it and we’re all still here.

    Reply
    1. Fagstein Post author

      they’re stupid for not making sure people knew it was a joke

      Why should it be someone’s responsibility to ensure that people who they don’t know and don’t follow them on Twitter understand what they’re saying?

      Reply
  5. hakieri

    I think we were all confused because a) the joke isn’t funny, and b) “sarcasm” in this context makes no sense. I don’t think it matters what country they’re from, since if they have Twitter they certainly have Wikipedia. I hope these twits have learned that making “sarcastic” “jokes” on Twitter can definitely be screencapped and held against them later.

    Reply
    1. Fagstein Post author

      I think we were all confused because

      My problem isn’t people being “confused”, it’s people making assumptions about these people’s intelligence based on things they see without even bothering to check the context.

      I don’t think it matters what country they’re from, since if they have Twitter they certainly have Wikipedia

      It matters if you’re making conclusions about the intelligence of Americans based on these tweets.

      I hope these twits have learned that making “sarcastic” “jokes” on Twitter can definitely be screencapped and held against them later.

      Just as anything taken out of context can be used against someone. I don’t know that teenagers making poorly explained jokes are deserving of such public ridicule, though.

      Reply

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