Now, add to that list Spike Lee who, according to the Hollywood Reporter, on Tuesday morning mistakenly tweeted to over 248,000 of his followers the address of an elderly Florida couple (whose son was named William George Zimmerman), instead of George Zimmerman’s address, the man who shot Trayvon Martin.
The tweet originated from Marcus Davonne Higgins, who also posted it to his Facebook wall with the message: “Feel free to reach out & touch him.” Higgins also tweeted that same address to other celebrities, like 50 Cent, LeBron James and Will Smith, but Lee was the only one to re-tweet it.
Call it poor judgment on Lee’s part, but we all make mistakes, and almost no one can say they have never in their lives sent a tweet or email they later wished they could take back. But the great danger with Twitter’s power-boosting abilities is that even the smallest misstep can produce catastrophic results for potentially millions of people and at lightening speed.
Now, it is reported that the couple — a school-cafeteria lunch lady, 70, and her husband, 72 — began receiving unwanted visits from reporters and fearful inquiries from neighbors. According to the elderly couple’s son, the couple have temporarily moved to a hotel to avoid any possible danger.
There may be little question that Lee has made a big mistake. But to what extent is America’s reliance on twitter communication to blame for this rapid brushfire of misinformation, mean-spirited exchanges and mob-like mentality? Or is twitter to blame at all?
What’s the value of twitter to you, and how seriously do you take what you read? Take our poll, and tell us what you think in the comments.