By: JoyLynn Keeton
Photo Courtesy of USAtoday.com
In February of 2020, people across the world took brooms from their closets and made them ‘stand’ straight up. It was proclaimed via Twitter user @mikaiylaaaaa that NASA said that February 10, 2020, was the only day the brooms could do this. In typical viral etiquette, people began flooding their own social media accounts with pictures and videos of their own brooms standing. However, as February 11 began, many people found their brooms still standing in the places they left them the day before. In turn, though, there was little dispute or questioning about the original post making the trend.
Did NASA make a mistake? Did the Twitter user mix up her facts? Did NASA ever say this to begin with?
Turns out, NASA never issued any statements proclaiming brooms could stand on Feb. 10, 2020. In fact, on the following day, NASA astronaut Alvin Drew and scientist Sarah Noble took to social media to declare that “it’s just physics”.
While it is unclear what made that Twitter user falsely assert that NASA had stated brooms could stand solely on that day, it definitely helped her tweet go viral amongst multiple social media platforms. In this instance, the author did not experience much, if any, backlash; however, one should not use government entities, experts, etc. to boast their own false claims in any circumstance. If doing so can lead millions of people to believe that brooms can stand on a random day in February, imagine what other harm could come from the same dangerous practice.