Queen's University

Fake AP tweet reports explosions at White House: Queen's University expert


Queen’s University sociology professor Vincent Mosco is available to talk about a fake tweet from the Associated Press this afternoon that reported two explosions occurred at the White House and President Barack Obama was injured.

AP is now reporting the account was hacked. But within minutes of the hack, stock markets started to plunge before it became clear that the news was false and stock markets are returning to normal levels.

Dr. Mosco, a mass communication and social media expert, can talk about how quickly social media can spread a rumour.

“The Boston Marathon bombings showed us how difficult it can be to accurately report on social media. Today, we learned the sheer speed of social media can have economic consequences,” says Dr. Mosco. “One question that has to be asked is how can one of the most trusted and most secure wire services get hacked and send out a tweet that has potential economic consequences? What if the tweet said ‘North Korea has launched a nuclear missile at Tokyo.’ It could have created mass panic.”

Please note that Dr. Mosco is available for phone interviews only.

To arrange an interview, please contact Queen’s University communication officers Michael Onesi (613-533-6000 ext. 77513 or michael.onesi@queensu.ca) or Anne Craig (613-533-2877 or anne.craig@queensu.ca).

Follow Queen’s News and Media Services on Twitter: @QueensuMedia

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Last updated at 4:55 pm EDT, Wed August 27, 2014
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