A 2012 Melania Trump Tweet Has Mysteriously Changed
As just about everyone on social media knows, Twitter has no edit button. I mean this literally. If you post something on Twitter, you can not go back and edit that post. It’s simply impossible.
So this is why so many internet users are a bit disturbed this morning. A tweet made by Melania Trump on August 10, 2012 has suddenly changed. No, it’s not a cover up by any means, and certainly nothing that Special Counsel Robert Mueller will be looking into, if that’s what you were thinking, but it does go against everything the internet knows about Twitter-dynamics and twitology.
The tweet, as seen below, was posted by Melania Trump over 8 years ago, and while the text within the tweet remains the same, reading “What is she thinking?”, the image has changed significantly.
What is she thinking? pic.twitter.com/rFufrgMb
— MELANIA TRUMP (@MELANIATRUMP) August 10, 2012
As you see in the embedded Tweet above, a photo of a beluga whale (at least for some people) is displayed, but if you click on the link to the tweet from most desktop browsers, the image you see suddenly becomes very different. You will now likely see a giraffe (see below):
On most mobile browsers, or if you visit directly via the mobile link to the same tweet, you will be shown the original image of the whale, that was actually posted by Melania in August of 2012.
While this certainly isn’t something to lose sleep over, internet users have been going crazy trying to figure out what the heck is going on.
While, we have not received a response from Twitter on this issue, what is very possibly happening here is that the URL’s image ID has been used by two photos somehow — perhaps because after 6 years Twitter doesn’t think anyone is viewing tweets which are that old. This is a form of phenomenon called ‘hash collision’ where “two distinct pieces of data have the same hash value, checksum, fingerprint, or cryptographic digest.” In this case it would be that the two tweets have the same image ID.
Regardless, Twitter users have used the phenomenon to start some quite humorous conversations:
me, pretending we're not in a simulation and that I can't see Melania's beluga whale/giraffe tweet anymore!!! pic.twitter.com/xv32bXa0hz
— Jenna Amatulli (@ohheyjenna) December 30, 2018
this melania tweet keeps switching back and forth between a giraffe and whale am i having a stroke pic.twitter.com/ceOCbstGY6
— carly mihovich (@carls256) December 30, 2018
New laurel/yanny blue/gold dress.
is it a giraffe? Or is it a whale? https://t.co/m9N7JuoWfA
— ℑ𝔩𝔩𝔲𝔪𝔦𝔫𝔬𝔯𝔱𝔦𝔦 (@Illuminortii) December 30, 2018