Kids, this is why you don’t play online vigilante. Thanks to the over-enthusiastic efforts of internet lynch mobs and trigger-happy publications, innocent individuals were wrongly accused of being the central figures of an incident that went viral over the weekend.
Surely you’ve already seen the clip by now. On Saturday, someone uploaded footage of a quarrel at a hawker centre, in which a young couple was caught bullying an elderly man over a seat. The original context is unclear, but footage showed said older man and a young woman arguing for the seat before the asshole of her male companion shoved the old man from the back. Another man then stepped into the frame and diffused the tense situation by offering the elderly man a seat at another table.
According to netizens commenting on the video, the incident took place at Toa Payoh Lorong 8 hawker centre on Friday night. Though the couple may very well have been *chope-ing* seats for their companions, one thing was clear — the old man did not deserve to be viciously barged into.
The supreme act of assholery drove netizens to start hunting down the identities of the couple; a quest that had some Facebook users ‘expose’ the wrong people. Dozens of posts accused the young couple in subject to be employees of UOB’s Toa Payoh branch, and word quickly spread around, thanks to Singapore’s endless, vapid thirst for viral news.
Inundated by complaints and accusations about its employees being pricks, UOB had no choice but to launch an investigation into the whole shebang. In the end, it turned out that all the allegations were untrue (unsurprisingly), and the bank issued a statement on its findings.
TL;DR — sure, it’s pretty fucked up how the couple acted towards the old man, but don’t go butchering the wrong people and companies in your misplaced expedition of righteousness on the internet. Some people still haven’t learned, have you?