Late Thursday night, a guy named Roy Handy from Atlanta went viral after he tweeted that he'd sat next to a professor on a plane, and someone named Taiwan Jones at Howard University miiiight not be too happy with his midterm results.
Handy even followed up his own tweet, and quipped he "feel[s] bad" for this "Taiwan Jones" student.
And...people straight up lost it.
And that's when the Great Taiwan Jones Search began.
It didn't take too long before someone with the handle @TaiwanJones_ went viral claiming to be the student...
...and soon another person with the handle @JonesTaiwan_ did the exact same thing and went even more viral.
That "Taiwan Jones" went viral several more times tweeting about the incident.
And the original tweet, which at this point had pretty much taken over Twitter, inspired a few copycats.
By Friday morning, "Taiwan Jones" became a national trending topic on Twitter.
The mad hunt to find the ~real~ Taiwan Jones eventually turned into a meme in and of itself.
Small, big, local, and international sites began running stories as fact that a student found out about his failing grade over Twitter.
Although some publications quickly updated their headlines and stories after realizing the ~real~ Taiwan Jones was someone still in question.
But Friday afternoon, doubts arose about the event, the student in question, and the entire debacle. Some questioned whether Taiwan Jones even exists.
When BuzzFeed News made contact with Handy (@Old_Orleans, the original tweeter) he said he could "not verify" any of the details he tweeted about originally, like the student's name or university.
But when asked to simply give his quick account of what he allegedly witnessed, Handy told BuzzFeed News he'd prefer the tweet be left "as a fun, relatable tweet that people enjoyed to take part in, and keep the confidentiality of the story being fact or fiction to myself."
"I’m not really in the position to take phone calls, and I can’t really give an account to anything that was tweeted under the terms that I’d rather leave the tweet in," he added.
A simple search on Howard's e-mail directory page yielded no results for anyone named Taiwan Jones.
Old cached versions of tweets from both accounts that claimed to be Taiwan Jones show they had changed their usernames.
So, the mysterious Taiwan Jones of Howard University may not exist after all. But in a way, aren't we all Taiwan Jones?
Julia Reinstein is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Julia Reinstein at email@example.com.
Tanya Chen is a social news reporter for BuzzFeed and is based in New York.
Contact Tanya Chen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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