The Washington Post

If you retweeted this breaking NBA news, you got trolled

No, LeBron’s agent has NOT told the Miami Heat that James won’t re-sign with the team. Not yet, anyway. (J Pat Carter/Associated Press)

‘Tis the season for waiting breathlessly on any NBA news. What’s LeBron thinking? Where’s LeBron going? Just how much penny candy does J.R. Smith have?

Oh, that much.

So for hoops junkies, Yahoo reporter Adrian Wojnarowski is a must-follow on Twitter, considering he’s like the NBA’s version of Adam Schefter, Chris Mortensen and Jay Glazer rolled into one. His Twitter handle is @WojYahooNBA.

Unfortunately, there are several fake-Wojnarowski Twitter accounts, and one in particular — note the ‘i’ after ‘Woj’ — got a bunch of people to spread some very bogus news.

If you’re counting at home, that’s about a thousand combined retweets as of this writing, including by ESPN’s Bomani Jones.

It got to the point that Sports Illustrated columnist and Twitter maven Richard Deitsch felt compelled to warn his legion of followers:

And just to make things even more meta, someone faked a retweet of the fake Wojnarowski account. This one got retweeted 11 times as of this writing, one hopes for all the right reasons.

So this stands as a cautionary tale: Twitter accounts are very easy to set up, and well-known Twitter handles are easy to closely approximate. There’s a reason why well-known or widely followed tweeters get the blue ‘Verified’ check mark next to their names. Also, the fact that the prankster @WojiYahooNBA account had only 31 total tweets should have been a huge red flag, considering that the real Woj has tweeted over 7,500 times.

On the other hand, we don’t know that LeBron’s agent won’t tell the Heat that James won’t re-sign with the team …


Des writes for the Early Lead and the D.C. Sports Bog, scouring the Web to bring readers items of interest, both serious and amusing. He also covers fantasy football, as well as fitness topics for the MisFits.



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