The Associated Press's official Twitter account, @AP, issued this tweet (it's since been removed):
I was in the bathroom reading Twitter (I know.) when this first broke, and the first thing I saw wasn't one of the most respected news sources in the world tweeting that the White House had been bombed. I don't follow the AP on my personal account, so the first thing I saw was this:
The next three tweets I saw about this possibly breaking news story were as follows: "there's no way that @AP tweet is real," "Not believing this," and "h a c k t i m e." Not a single person in my feed believed the tweet; the closest was Anil Dash asking for "other sources." The jokes followed immediately--jokes about those who had bungled coverage of the Boston Bombing (the New York Post, CNN, former Reuters social media editor Matthew Keys, Reddit), and then aggressive ignoring of the tweet. My feed, largely made up of reporters, editors, writers, and other news-types, barely even bothered to make a reasoned rejection, so silly was the AP tweet and so jaded our reaction to news.
That's the same experience everyone had; within seconds, the balance of those talking about the tweet swung from earnest disbelief to cries of "hacked," "fake," and scorn. By five minutes in--an eternity on Twitter!--the conversation was almost entirely about the "AP hack," not the "news." Even the stock market, run by alarmist algorithms, snapped back from an absurd drop in minutes.