Sunday 19 August 2018

This exchange between two Twitter users who share names with famous people is glorious

Michael Cohen and Lauren Ingram are having a tough time online right now.

(AP)
(AP)

By Taylor Heyman, Press Association

Sharing the same name as someone or something in the media spotlight can lead to issues on social media. Just ask John Lewis, the very patient man who directs people to the British retailer.

When sports journalist Michael Cohen, who happens to share the same name as Donald Trump’s lawyer started getting mentioned in rather a lot of tweets, he felt the need to clarify his status.

The Michael Cohen people were actually talking about online is one of Donald Trump’s personal lawyers. His offices were raided by the FBI on Monday and records seized on topics including a 130,000 dollar (£92,000) payment made to a porn actress who says she had sex with Trump more than a decade ago.

Once Cohen had cleared that up, a woman named Lauren Ingram chimed in, saying she understood how Cohen felt.

Ingram, a journalist who lives in Australia, has been mistaken for Fox News and Ingraham Angle host Laura Ingraham by some online.

The TV host has been the subject of news broadcasts rather than presenting them thanks to comments she made about Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg.

After Ingraham mocked Hogg for being rejected from several universities, Hogg and supporters called for advertisers to stop sponsoring her programme. In all, 19 pulled away, including Expedia, Honda and Nestle.

She later apologised to Hogg.

So why is this happening?

Perhaps the confusion is due to both the famous and non-famous people in these situations being verified by Twitter, and thereby having the hallowed blue tick displayed next to their name. Or people take Twitter’s auto-suggestions for granted without checking the profiles of those they are tweeting to.

Either way, these cases of mistaken identity are an unpleasant experience. At least Michael and Lauren are taking care of each other.

Press Association

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