When I was a child one of my hobbies was to call strangers and ask them if their refrigerator was running. Some knew the answer and told me they were not going to go and catch it, where others were punk'd as they say now. More elaborate jokes grew out of that timeless joke until modern generations either stopped or switched to playing jokes on the internet. Ah, technology, now you can achieve in one second a level of idiocy that was unreachable for the average human being even ten years ago.
Along came Twitter where nothing is holds barred anymore. A young Twitter user (possibly Canadian) is learning the hard way that threatening a major airline on social media is not the best idea. On Sunday morning, a Twitter user named "Sarah," who claims to be a 14-year-old girl, tweeted this not-so-subtle message to American Airlines:
The airline caught on quickly but made sure she knew she was in trouble.
If that were my child, she'd lose her phone, her computer, ipad, and be banned from the internet except for school work. Chances are, like most things that happen on the internet her parents don't know anything about it - yet. She also quickly blamed her friend:
"I was joking and it was my friend not me, take her IP address not mine."
I know someone who has one less Facebook friend now.
Sarah's original tweet quickly went viral, garnering more than 10,000 retweets before finally being deleted. In a series of follow-up messages, Sarah -- whose Twitter account is full of news about pop sensation Demi Lovato -- expressed her awe at her sudden online fame. "highlight" of her twitter days was gaining notoriety for threatening an airline?
And here is the breakdown of her 20K new followers:
FBI, CIA, NSA and other law enforcement agencies: 1,000
AQ Jihadists: 18,000
Equally dumb 14 year-olds: 1,000.
Sarah will soon find out that she's on the "No Fly" list when her family wants to take that trip to Orlando for a Disney World week. Sarah is only 14 years old, right? A silly child who doesn't know any better and shouldn't be expected to, right? Contrast her with Malala Yousafzai, also 14 years old, who stood up to the Taliban and spoke out for the right for girls in her country, Pakistan, to go to school.
So, I guess being 14 years old is tough, not matter what country you live in, huh? A visit to a small room illuminated by buzzing fluorescent lights should cure her of her need for attention. She'll have a reality TV show in 3 months, watch.