We first broke it down in the GBAG Nation, 7p-midnight 105.3 The Fan, Thursday night. Sorry it took a full 24 hours for our next level analysis knowledge bomb.
I really feel the need to put it in writing. That and come to find out the suits at CBS require me to provide bad ass digital content, as well as a popular local broadcast.
But Man I thought for sure by now the 100,000 watts of FM broadcast power and the show’s spot atop the night time men 25-54 ratings would be enough to get the word out. Stop the presses, The General has done it again.
So here I am.
This might be a sensational story to some, but it’s not uncommon. And it’s not hard to understand how this whole thing happened.
Ronaiah Tuiasosopo is not a sick person. He’s not malicious. He is just like literally millions of other people who are disingenuous on the internet for entertainment purposes.
The thing is people are weird and the anonymity of social networks brings out those eccentricities.
For me, I like to troll Facebook posts, and randomly comment “that’s the most racist s#!@ I’ve ever heard! Shame on you”. Hilarity ensues. Try it sometime.
Some people like to impersonate athletes in order to try to play a breaking news hoax. See fake Mike Jenkins last April.
Some people are jealous of famous people’s prowess and yell obscenities at them, a thing they would never do in real life.
Some fans want a meaningful conversation with the star athlete so much, they mock up a profile of a beautiful young woman. That’ll get him talking. If you don’t know, there is a portion of ball players who pretty much live on twitter looking for the next girl in the next town to keep them company. A pretty profile picture is enough to get the ball rolling for sure. Try it.
A buddy of mine invented this character called @pepesylvia and told stories of him beating up random celebrities, everyday at 1:00, 140 characters at a time. He laughed maniacally. Ocho Cinco enjoyed it too and they had correspondence.
So Ronaiah tricked Manti. He didn’t intend to create such a hullabaloo. That happened because of what happened next.
Te’o take the hoax baton and runs with it. His hoax wasn’t based on entertainment though, it was his attempt to avoid humiliation and embarrassment, which he admitted feeling when the story broke Wednesday night in a released statement.
Back in the Fall, when Grandma passed and word got out that his “girlfriend” had died as well, it became a national story. So sad.
When questions about the story came to the Notre Dame campus, Te’o embellished the extent of their relationship and it started. The wormhole was open. He did that.
He probably regretted it already. Definitely did once he heard the whispers of doubt. His teammates were reportedly rolling their eyes behind his back.
As people became more skeptical or turned off by Te’o playing up the death of this Twitter girlfriend (he was known to be having relations with multiple other women on campus), he felt the need to further validate her existence with more details.
The family became suspicious. Lies.
A cousin of a previous hoax victim contacted Te’o on Twitter to warn him. Blocked.
I’ll give Te’o a pass for his misdeeds because after all, we all mourn differently and the man had just lost Grandma. That sucks!
But, if we are going to point the finger at anybody it should be at Manti. Tuiasosopo played a prank that spun out of control. But it only spun that way Because Te’o lied.
So that’s the story we have. Something that plays out all the time on the internet. People being weird, guy gets tricked and lies to protect his pride. The only difference is in most cases Deadspin and the AP aren’t there to fact check and investigate.
See Me Beer Me.