TV Station’s Attempt At Being Twitter-iffic Just Ends Up Confusing Journalist With Convicted Rapist

Image courtesy of KHOU's Twitter widget before it vanished

KHOU’s Twitter widget before it vanished

Earlier this week, when former Houston cop Abraham Joseph was sentenced to life in prison for rape, the folks at KHOU-TV apparently thought it would be neat-o to have a widget on their website that aggregated and posted all mentions of #abrahamjoseph on Twitter. Except they didn’t think to check what this would do for the man who actually has the Twitter handle of @abrahamjoseph and who is not a convicted rapist.

The non-rapist attempted to contact KHOU by Twitter, which it should have seen if it was monitoring the widget it had placed on its own website.

Though KHOU has never responded to any of the not-at-all-a-convicted rapist’s comments, the Twitter widget (Twitdget?) has been removed from that article, presumably because there is an intern at KHOU who finally explained to the station what the problem was.

“This is a classic example of old media folks desperately trying to understand new media and basically falling on their faces,” the man who is not a sex offender told “Basic logic dictates that there is no way this is [the real Abraham Joseph’s] Twitter feed. For one: look at my avatar. It’s a really white, red-headed gentleman with glasses and the fact that this is a TV station would convey they have some visual sense of what this convicted rapist would look like. Also, how would I be tweeting? And perhaps even more importantly: why would I be tweeting at midnight about Homeland?”

He wrote yesterday on his Tumblr page, “This fracas has been picked up by CNET, CBS News, Andy Carvin, and (in a footnote) Romenesko. And yet, improbably, I have still heard nothing from KHOU!”