BERLIN (Associated Press) – US President Joe Biden, Chancellor Olaf Schultz, ministries and many well-known companies and institutions have caused an uproar with strange SMS messages on Twitter. “The rule of law,” the Federal Ministry of Justice wrote on the SMS platform on Friday. He tweeted “respect” at Chancellor Schulze’s (SPD) account. Finance Minister Christian Lindner got “freedom”, US President Biden chose “democracy” and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for “freedom”.
The background was a trend in the social milieu that had been circulating since Thursday: user accounts had written a term that fit their role or was associated with them by themselves or others. The US railroad company Amtrak, which on Thursday sold – it’s unclear whether it was intentional or not – may have been motivated by a tweet containing only the word “trains” (trains).
The short message, which was exchanged about 25,000 times on Friday afternoon, found many imitators: “The universe,” the US space agency NASA wrote. Amnesty International tweeted “Human Rights,” the US Washington Post picked “The News,” fast-food chain McDonald’s alluded to the “clown” mantra and the French embassy in the US: “Revolution.”
This action sparked mixed feelings among users. Many readers commented confused, others amused. Among the notifications from German official bodies, some users speculated whether accounts, such as those of Scholz or Lindner, had been hacked. “Cringe” (embarrassing) commented the satirical moderator Der Postillon. Amtrak gave a moody assessment of what happened on Friday: “Yesterday was weird. Anyway, it’s still trains.” (“Yesterday was weird. Still, the trains go on”).
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