Vulture

Skip to content, or skip to search.

hoaxes

How Five Shows Can Mine the ‘Diane in 7A’ Twitter Hoax Story

Over the Thanksgiving holiday, one story seemed to dominate social media: the guy on the plane being an asshole to an asshole. As it turns out, the whole thing was a hoax, although, to be fair, very often in life assholes do indeed act like assholes to one another. In any case, the saga of Bachelor producer Elan Gale, the fictional "Diane," the bloggers who covered the story as fact, and the chagrined who feel misled is now ripe for the plucking for various TV shows. How should different series approach this? We have some suggestions.

Law & Order: SVU
Dutch Benjamin was a flashy reality-TV producer who became an Internet hero when he posted a video of himself standing up for a barista at a Starbucks when a fellow patron started yelling gay slurs. The video was a huge hit — thanks in particular to blogger Mandy Herman, who posted the video to the popular viral site UpVoting.com. When Benjamin turns up dead, all eyes are on the seemingly homophobic patron. But of course, in the land of SVU, nothing is how it seems: The video was phony, and to make sure no one found out and could besmirch her name or her website's integrity, it was Mandy who made sure Benjamin kept quiet. [Chung chung.]

The Good Wife
Blindr is the hot new app that pairs you with partners based on detailed common interests — not just looks. Chicago comedian Phil Chandler tweeted what he claimed was the "#worstblindrever," a play-by-play account of a terrible date. The tweets went viral, Chandler became an overnight star, and everyone could have gone on his or her merry way — except Blindr CEO Marrisa Mathys says the date never happened. Now she's suing Phil for defamation, with the help of Florrick/Agos. Phil, of course, hires Lockhart Gardner to mount his defense — that it was a parody, one that "reasonable people" would recognize as such. Alicia and Will fight it out in court over what's "reasonable."

Glee
Everyone learns a valuable lesson about not lying on Twitter and about the dangers of reblogging obvious lies. Then they all sing "No One Is Alone" from Into the Woods.

Scandal
Political blogger Tisha Graystone has the tabloid story du jour: She was on a flight with a freshman congressman who went a little crazy before takeoff, screaming at his fellow passengers and eventually harassing a middle-aged woman until she cried. But before she can even publish the story, she gets a phone call from one Olivia Pope, offering her some serious dirt in exchange for not writing about the congressman. Graystone agrees. If Graystone's story goes public, it'll draw the scrutiny of the mainstream media — scrutiny Pope and associates want to avoid, since the Congressman's bad behavior was actually just there as misdirection, distracting Graystone and her fellow passengers from who else was on the plane. Cliff-hanger!

Dog With a Blog
Stan (the dog) stumbles upon an amazing YouTube channel run by an otter. He breaks from his typical beat of covering the goings-on in his family home to write a whole post heralding the otter and his videos — only to discover that the otter's channel is in fact run by a zoo. Bleh.

Photo: Elan Gale / Twitter