In a world dominated by online content, news organizations have moved well beyond their paper and ink days. For many that includes a social media presence and often automated tools to maintain a constant stream of information.
But those auto-posted updates can be overcome by current events, such as what happened with The Washington Post and a piece written Thursday and scheduled to later autopost on Twitter.
The tweet was for an opinion piece with the title and Twitter caption:
"Imagine what it will be like to never have to think about Trump again"
But then news broke late Thursday that Hope Hicks—who spent the last several days maskless by President Donald Trump's side including traveling with him—tested positive for the viral pathogen behind the global pandemic. Then unsurprisingly the White House announced in the early morning hours of Friday that Hicks' also maskless travel companions—POTUS and FLOTUS—tested positive as well.
In addition to an announcement from former Vice President Joe Biden and running mate Senator Kamala Harris wishing the President and First Lady a swift recovery, people online were greeted by an announcement from The Washington Post about their aforementioned opinion piece.
"The Post has removed a tweet pictured below, which was written Thursday and released through an automated program, because the subsequent news of President Trump's infection rendered it tasteless."
The Post has removed a tweet pictured below, which was written Thursday and released through an automated program, because the subsequent news of President Trump's infection rendered it tasteless. pic.twitter.com/yVsocNl2MG
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) October 2, 2020
Not everyone agreed with the tweet's removal.
put it back
— Goreville Shriek (@amcnal) October 2, 2020
After being subjected to years of his indecency, corruption, racism, hypocrisy, nepotism, narcissism, attacks on the rule of law, and his obnoxious performance during the "debate," I would imagine that about 60% of the country never wants to think of * again.
— Brian Leong 🦠🧼👏🧴😷 (@SBK_Brian) October 2, 2020
Not offended at all pic.twitter.com/jhzDDPtUnU
— Just one World Series Win Padres (@SeanThomas39) October 2, 2020
Nope, still applies. Did people temporarily have sympathy for Hitler when he got a cold? I dont think so. 209k american are dead. millions unemployed homeless, penniless, starving while he galavants the country risking our health and wont even pass a 2nd relief bill
VOTE HIM OUT!
— Danielle (@donailin) October 2, 2020
Rendered it *prescient.
— More than $750 🇺🇲 (@politijack) October 2, 2020
Good call. Too bad he renders everything tasteless. I hope he recovers. I don't want him dead. I wish him a long, healthy life. In federal custody.
— Dorothy C Benson (@dcbenson67) October 2, 2020
don't be nice to monsters, silly
— Amy Dentata (@AmyDentata) October 2, 2020
— Nannykat1223 (@Nannykat12232) October 2, 2020
I really hope you are not going to stop reporting on his attacks on our democracy, support of white supremacists (and murderers), authoritarian tendencies, disgraceful mishandling of the pandemic, etc, just because he got sick. As the president he needs to be held accountable.
— Luaa (@Luaalei) October 2, 2020
See, it's already happening, just as Trump planned. We can't criticize him now because he's "sick." I call BS on that. Media, do not buy into this. We are being duped. #TrumpLiesAmericansDie #TrumpLiesEverytimeHeSpeaks
— Ohia Lehua Voting Is Our Superpower 🐙🐳🌺🌈🌊🌴🌊 (@OhiaLehuaMaui) October 2, 2020
However one person found The Washington Post's tweet a perfect set up for a joke.
Losing your sense of taste is one of the first symptoms.
— Kelly Bowman (@KellyBowman2) October 2, 2020
In official statements, Trump's presidential election opponents, Biden and Harris, wished the POTUS and FLOTUS well.
Jill and I send our thoughts to President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump for a swift recovery. We will continue to pray for the health and safety of the president and his family.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) October 2, 2020
Doug and I join Joe Biden and Dr. Biden in wishing President Trump and the First Lady a full and speedy recovery. We're keeping them and the entire Trump family in our thoughts.
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) October 2, 2020
The Biden/Harris campaign confirmed that their latest pandemic tests were negative. Harris' last test was on Thursday in advance of a campaign event scheduled for Nevada on Friday.