As seen in the following photo from the Twitter page of Snopes, there was a Photoshop-altered Twitter screenshot claiming to have originated from the official Twitter account of Donald J. Trump — however, that tweet has been deemed fake. The tweet claimed that Trump would arrest “Alex Baldwin” — the misspelled named of Alec Baldwin — on January 21, 2017. The claim went on to say that Baldwin was guilty of sedition for his portrayal of Trump on SNL, and that Trump would also cancel SNL because their “portrayel” (not portrayal) of Trump was very unfair.
Donald Trump Threatens to Arrest Alec Baldwin https://t.co/eVPYhrrFZp— snopes.com (@snopes) December 21, 2016
As reported by Snopes, Trump did not threaten to have Alec arrested via Twitter, nor did Trump threaten to cancel SNL due to Baldwin’s portrayal of Trump. The publication notes that the tweet does not show up on Trump’s current Twitter timeline — and although the publication writes that it’s possible it could have been a tweet that was tweeted by Trump and deleted (and calls that move highly unlikely), Trump most likely never tweeted such a statement.
That’s because the tweet has one big giveaway that continues to separate fake tweets from real tweets: The tweet is dated December 17, however, it shows the word “favorites,” which is a term that is no longer used in tweets in such a manner on Twitter. As seen in the below tweet from The Atlantic about Trump, there are “likes” in place of the “favorites” wording that used to appear on Twitter.
However, the Twitter screenshot making the rounds claimed that Trump’s fake tweet gained more than 4,000 retweets and 2,380 “favorites” when it was captured. Apparently, folks who Photoshop fake tweets need to update their base tweet photographs to include the “likes” wording in place of the “favorites” wording if they don’t want their fake tweets recognized as such so readily.
In the meantime, sedition is defined as “conduct or speech inciting people to rebel against the authority of a state or monarch,” so the fake tweet was apparently designed to raise a ruckus over First Amendment rights and such in terms of allowing Baldwin to make fun of President-elect Trump via SNL.
Trump criticized Saturday Night Live and Baldwin on Twitter, so the fake tweet was par for the course and somewhat in line with what could be possible, as most fake tweets are comprised. A search for all the times that Trump has actually mentioned Baldwin on his official Twitter account turned up the following results.
Watched Saturday Night Live hit job on me.Time to retire the boring and unfunny show. Alec Baldwin portrayal stinks. Media rigging election!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 16, 2016
There was also the time back 2012 when Trump congratulated Alec and his new wife.
Congrats to Alec Baldwin, his new wife will be great for him and a gem.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 5, 2012
Other than that, Trump’s recent criticisms of Baldwin portraying Trump on SNL have ruled the roost on Trump’s Twitter account.
I watched parts of @nbcsnl Saturday Night Live last night. It is a totally one-sided, biased show - nothing funny at all. Equal time for us?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 20, 2016
One such tweet was published to Trump’s account on November 20.
Just tried watching Saturday Night Live - unwatchable! Totally biased, not funny and the Baldwin impersonation just can't get any worse. Sad— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 4, 2016
Another Trump tweet on Twitter featured Trump tweeting on December 3, calling Saturday Night Live “unwatchable, totally biased,” and “not funny” — writing that “the Baldwin impersonation just can’t get any worse.”
Alec and Trump can be seen in the top photo above from Monday, January 15, 2007.
Meanwhile, reactions to the fake tweet can be read below.
Billy Kennedy: “Of course it’s fake! Would you really believe he knows how to (semi-) correctly use a word like ‘sedition’?”
debi: “Like he would know the word sedition…”
Leesa DeAndrea: “Not yet, anyway. He’ll go after us little people first, we are more vulnerable.”
paulyboy: “The use of the incorrect font for the tweet body was the instant giveaway.”
Natalie Kirk: “Wow, why would you need to *make up* something awful Trump has tweeted.”
Brad: “Maybe we should jail Trump and just have Baldwin run the country. Couldn’t f*** it up any worse.”
[Featured Image by Matt Sayles/AP Images]