The media maxim that you haven’t made it until you have a Twitter doppelganger now applies to the stars of New York University campus journalism.
As far as social media satire goes, Fake NYU Local is less interested in mocking NYU Local than it is in stirring up trouble across campus. While many of the account’s tweets and posts, which began last May, poke fun at the bloggers of NYU Local and the editors of the traditional paper, Washington Square News, Fake NYU Local has become less focused in its attacks, dispensing condescending advice about users’ web presence and information on how to pick up girls.
The Observer spoke with the group behind the account—they claim they’re a group of “artists, philosophers, thinkers, bloggers, journalists, and overall revolutionaries”—over e-mail, where they collectively explained their mission.
“What Fake NYU Local does is cultivate a content center for the world to come to and be enlightened,” they wrote. ”We are surrounded by thousands of haters, and that basically translates into attention on the web.”
Fake NYU Local explained the group began after they were sitting in a room together and “instantly” decided to start the Twitter and Tumblr accounts. When they first began, they mostly teased the real NYU Local in their attempts to be what Fake NYU Local calls “blogstars.”
“Dear FAFSA: stop sending us financial aid emails. Clearly we’re #blogstars and don’t need “money.” How else could we major in #socialmedia?” the group tweeted May 9.
Keyana Stevens, NYU Local editor-in-chief, declined to comment on the account. But in“Top 5 Fictional NYU Accounts on Twitter And Facebook,” Local writer Lauren Walters placed Fake NYU Local at number two, explaining the account was “almost as good as the real thing” because of its jabs at WSN, among other things.
Jaywon Choe, WSN editor-in-chief, could not be reached for comment on the fake account, but it’s no secret in the NYU media community that WSN and the Local have a long-standing rivalry. In this vein, many of the tweets mock WSN.
But even the account’s “jabs” at the WSN primarily serve to mock NYU Local’s pretension.
“Dear @nyunews, stop tweeting about @NYUAthletics, they fucking suck and nobody cares. We are real journalism, not your fail of life,” the group tweeted Sept. 22.
While the future of Fake NYU Local remains as mysterious as its creators, they’re definitely broadening their antics. In light of Occupy Wall Street, Fake NYU Local even began a similar—and completely mocking—movement, calling people to Occupy Stern, NYU’s business school. “For too long, they’ve hidden behind their fancy buildings, corporate presentation rooms, and suited minions,” they said in a blog post.
We can’t be sure what’s to come for Fake NYU Local, but it’s bound to be entertaining.