Internet comes down angrily on wrong Will Smith after Oscars blow

Actor Will Smith holds up his Oscar at the 2022 Academy Awards.

PhotoFrazer HarrisonGetty Images

The internet is a mess, especially after something big has happened that breaks and bleeds the online zeitgeist. Right now, that’s the fact that newly minted Oscar winner Will Smith is seemingly beaten two-time Oscars host Chris Rock about a bad “joke” about Jada Pinkett Smith at the 2022 Academy Awards last night. And while millions rushed to post their feelings about something that had nothing to do with them, people that aren’t the Will Smith of the Chris Rock – but still happens to share their legal names – were caught in the social media crossfire.

“keep,” tweeted video game publicist and former editor-in-chief of Maximum PC, Will Smith, Sunday night at 10:35 p.m. ET, shortly after the Oscar incident aired live around the world. The game developer followed up with “oh shitafter Smith was later named Best Actor for his role in last year King Richard

In the wake of the blow, allegedly done in defense of Pinkett Smith’s public battle against an autoimmune disease that can lead to hair loss, many attempted the Will Smith on Twitter to shout about what happened. But at one point, the Fresh Prince actor had his account locked down, so they got another Smith, @willsmith, instead. This is seemingly what happened to famed ESPN sports commentator Stephen A. Smith who: taunted the actor before the incident, but doing so sent a viral shitstorm the other way around Smith.

“Real talk, I’m not the person you’re angry/happy about,” another Smith later tweeted. “I make podcasts and video games for a living.” Smith is currently doing communications for Stray Bombay which: recently released co-op shooter The Anacrusis in early access on Xbox. “At the risk of people getting mad at me instead of that other guy, the world would be a better place if we stopped answering words with violence.” Smith did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Some people tried to play along with the latest case of identity switching on the internet. “I think you guys should cherish this,” one person wrote to Smith jokingly tagging @chris_rock, who also happens to be an accomplished game developer. “Learn to accept a joke…I mean your wife did it!” game developer Chris Rock wrote back.

Meanwhile, the comments under the exchange were filled with accounts genuinely trying to weigh one side or the other. †[S]but he must personally apologize to JADA, not you, she is an independent woman,” one person commented. ‘Why all this violence? Nobody wants to see that!?!” wrote another.

Twitter accounts that aren't Will Smith or Chris Rock are trying to go with the flow.

ScreenshotTwitter / Kotaku

Other non-Will Smith accounts were also bombed. “It is clearly at a peak rn,” said Good Willsmith, a drone music trio with only a few thousand followers. “I’d say it’s a mixed bag really – some people said ‘that was despicable and you should be ashamed’ and some said ‘thanks for standing up for your family. chris rock got what he deserved.'” Based on screenshots shared of Kotakuone person had DMed Good Willsmith approvingly with the clip “Welcome to Earth” from the movie Independence Day, where Will Smith punches an alien in the face.

This is by no means a new phenomenon† The nature of how social media is structured means that the controversy of the moment has a way of engulfing and engulfing bystanders. Someone is doing something. People are outraged. They try to message the stranger directly. A random person will sometimes burst the internet through their door like the Kool-Aid Man, except instead of saying “OHHH YEAAAH!” he yells things like “You’re a disgrace!”

“Sharing the name with a famous person is always interesting,” said Chris Rock, the game developer Kotaku† “In my case, it generally ends up being a disappointment to the person the comedian Chris Rock expects rather than a game developer. @willsmith was hit a lot harder than me, although we got mixed up on tweets pretty quickly. Got it We feel like we’ve kept it humorous, but as a platform people use to express their opinions, they certainly did.”

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