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hoaxes

Nasty Thanksgiving Note War Turns Out to Be a Hoax

A "note" Gale "sent" to "Diane."

For those listlessly browsing Twitter during a respite from the Thanksgiving festivities, or catching up after an unplugged holiday, the saga of ABC producer Elan Gale's supposed clash with a woman who was rude to the staff on a delayed flight was the buzz of the long weekend. Gale tweeted the "incident," in which he claimed to have exchanged some mean-sounding notes with a woman named "Diane," who then slapped him when their plane arrived. BuzzFeed quickly hailed the "epic note-passing war" as having "won Thanksgiving," and the Huffington Post called the feud "one for the ages." It's been the talk of the Internet for days, really, so naturally it turns out the whole thing was a fake.

While some celebrated and others wrung hands in anguish over Gale's supposed feud on behalf of service workers, only a few called it into doubt until Monday, when most people got back to work and sites such as Grantland, Salon, and Mediaite started pointing out logical inconsistencies. But by that time there was already a second hoax building: Someone anonymously claimed "Diane" had late-stage lung cancer, and was on her way to what would be her last Thanksgiving, which she missed. Ugh.

On Monday night, Gale decided it was time for the big reveal:

Given that many news providers got egg on their faces after the infamously stiffed New Jersey waitress turned out to be a fake just last week, it's a little surprising so many were so willing to believe Gale's schtick. Grantland pointed out this was not the first time he's carried out a Twitter hoax (he tweeted a fake blind date last year), though that one didn't get nearly as much attention as this.

Anyway, it's all over now; the Internet is surely a little wiser for it and won't make that mistake again. By the way, did you hear about that angel's skeleton they found out by the new mall?

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Photo: Elan Gale / Twitter