President-elect mistakenly retweets praise for a Brighton council worker with the same first name as his daughter, leading to Twitter storm
A woman from Brighton is waking up to chaos on Twitter after having been singled out by Donald Trump as his daughter.
The president-elect quoted a praiseworthy tweet directed to him by Lawrence Goodstein, a Twitter user in Seekonk in Massachusetts, that described his daughter Ivanka as “a woman with real character and class” late on Monday.
But Goodstein had mistakenly put @Ivanka, not @IvankaTrump – not a significant mistake in light of Goodstein’s 160-odd followers; of far greater consequence circulated by Trump to his 20.1m.
So Trump’s shout-out was instead directed to Ivanka Majic, a council worker from Brighton, England, with just over 2,800 followers.
“Ivanka Majic from Brighton, England, is a wonderful woman. You’re right,” replied Mark Pygas, a writer for Distractify, to Trump and Goodstein. “RIP her mentions though.
“I mean, she’s probably trying to sleep and her phone is going off the hook but it’s a hell of a story.” (According to a subsequent screenshot tweeted by Pygas, Goodstein blocked him for pointing out the error and made his account private.)
Trump had not deleted his tweet nor acknowledged his mistake at time of writing, though Goodstein made his account private.
It had been retweeted 2,800 times and favourited 15,000 times, with more than 4,600 replies – the vast majority of them including Majic.
The Guardian has attempted to contact Majic, believed to be employed as a researcher at the Brighton and Hove City Council.
Her profile suggests she is not as active a user of Twitter as the president-elect, with just six tweets – most of them retweets – in the past week.
Her last activity on Twitter was a retweet encouraging votes in Brighton’s upcoming restaurant competition and another publicising another resident’s appeal for return of her lost house keys.
On Saturday Majic had tweeted a link to a news story in The Argus about Brighton’s “thriving food scene”: “Made the local paper. Fame at last!”
Meanwhile, Ivanka Trump seemed oblivious to the compliment paid to her by the Twitter user Goodstein and co-signed by her father, sharing a photo of “#datenight” with her 2.74m followers.
Ivanka Trump had been the subject of a “special report” that broadcast on CNN on Monday night that her father had expressed concerns about.
“At 9:00 P.M. @CNN, of all places, is doing a Special Report on my daughter, Ivanka. Considering it is CNN, can’t imagine it will be great!”
As president, Donald Trump will have the option of taking over the official @POTUS handle or maintaining his own, @realDonaldTrump. With 20.1m followers hanging on his every missive compared to @POTUS’s 13.5m, Trump himself has given no indication he will make the switch.
Sean Spicer, the incoming White House press secretary, told CNN earlier in January that Trump would “probably be tweeting from both, or whatever he chooses”.
Last week BuzzFeed News publicised concerns that Trump’s “shockingly insecure” personal Twitter account had no known special security protections and was open to being exploited with potentially devastating impacts for the stock market and geopolitical stability.
It would not be the first time Trump’s account has been hacked before: in 2013, when he was best-known as a real estate tycoon and host of The Apprentice, someone reportedly gained access to his account to tweet Lil Wayne lyrics (“These hoes think they classy, well that’s the class I’m skippen”, from the remix of will.i.am and Britney Spear’s Scream & Shout).
“My Twitter has been seriously hacked— and we are looking for the perpetrators,” said Trump at the time.