A short lived Twitter bird : The life and death of Twitter handle @MalalaYousofzai
@MalalaYousofzai, is the only official Twitter account of Malala Yousafzai. Or is it? As it soon emerged a parody twitter account of Pakistan child rights activist Malala Yousafzai fooled at least 860 tweeple, including prominent journalists and Hindustan times (@httweets) itself.Updated: Feb 04, 2014 02:23 IST
At around 7.30 pm on Monday @MalalaYousofzai tweeted:
Finally made a twitter account.— Malala Yousafzai (@MalalaYousofzai) February 3, 2014
Twitterati went into an immediate retweet frenzy ( including us at @httweets) and started following her, thinking that it was Malala Yousafzai herself. Her first tweet got 118 retweets and the subsequent ones also got retweeted a considerable number of times.
It was only later when Malala's manager Eason Jordan clarified in a tweet that it was a fake account did everyone realise they had been trolled.
The perfectly spelt Twitter id and a good enough description fooled even some prominent and seasoned journalists into following her. It also claimed to be, the only official Twitter account of Malala Yousafzai, something which real people usually don't bother to mention.
In her short 'true' life of — two and half hours @MalalaYousofzai tweeted responsibly and that added to making it look like a genuine account. There was no abuse of the fake account, either.
It said, "Peace can only come through a peaceful mediation. War is the not the answer to this question."
It also advised girls of the world to not fight with a sword but with a pen. It shared high browed thoughts like "initiating a war to stop another war is not much of a solution. We all must unite and give peace a chance".
Predictably, the tweets got responses from Twitter users the world over.
Interestingly, through it all, the fake owner must have had a real laugh, but he/she maintained decorum, and didn't resort to any abuse of the handle.
When HT asked Jordan whether he reported the fake account. He said: