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Swedish teen caught in Obama Twitter crossfire

Swedish teen caught in Obama Twitter crossfire

Published: 17 Jul 2012 12:29 GMT+02:00
Updated: 17 Jul 2012 12:29 GMT+02:00

A 19-year-old Swedish woman has been caught in the middle of an internet storm after her Twitter account matched the name of US President Barack Obama's "Life of Julia" women’s rights campaign.

Julia Lindberg, from Eskilstuna in central Sweden, created her Twitter account two years ago with the name “@LifeofJulia”.

When President Obama launched a campaign by the same name in May this year, Lindberg noticed a surge in unusual messages.

“I thought it was spam,” she told The Local.

“I hadn’t heard of the campaign and didn’t understand what was happening. It wasn’t until after two months when I showed my brother that I got it, and we were on the floor laughing!”

Obama’s campaign, “The Life of Julia” followed the life of “Julia”, a fictional character, from the age of three until her retirement.

Throughout an accompanying online slide show, Obama’s healthcare plans were contrasted with Mitt Romney’s as “Julie” experiences such life events as college, surgery and pregnancy.

Meanwhile, there was a backlash from political commentators in the US, one of whom created a parody Twitter account - and this is where the complications really began for Lindberg.

The parody account, which now has 2,500 followers, had the name @LifeofJulia too, except the “L” in the word “Julia” was actually a capital “I”.

This meant that when outraged people wanted to respond to the parody account’s messages, they were inadvertently sending their messages to a 19-year-old dance student from Eskilstuna.

“This whole thing is so weird and random, but that’s typical, these things are always happening to me,” she says.

While admittedly not a keen follower of US politics, Lindberg explained that it’s been both interesting and hilarious reading the messages she has recieved.

“Some are actually kind, many are very angry. The parody account surely gets people talking… and when they write, I answer – in English of course,” she says.

For now, Lindberg is keen to continue leading the real “life of Julia” and intends to keep the account.

“I definitely won’t change it; this whole thing has been really fun. And I’ve got so many new followers from it anyway, I’d be mad to get rid of it now!”

Oliver Gee

Follow Oliver on Twitter here

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Your comments about this article

13:44 July 17, 2012 by Paul_225
Why bother writing about this non-event? Who cares. Honestly.
15:35 July 17, 2012 by Liquidmonkey
does she not have any arms?
16:01 July 17, 2012 by Åskar
@Paul_225

Yes, why oh why?
16:15 July 17, 2012 by foxpur
It is a news of International interest to the communication age. You people need to understand that NOT all news is there JUST for your limited minds.
21:23 July 17, 2012 by cogito
@Paul. ditto that, but since it's been inflicted on us...

...far from being about "women's rights," as the (male) writer claims, Obama's Julia ad reveals a contempt for women seldom seen outside Sharia Law.

Obama's infantile propaganda portrays the ideal woman as a weak idiot/child, without any aspiration, depressingly dependent on government from birth to death.

His Julia is the antithesis of a strong, independent woman.

btw,one of the main characters in George Orwell's dystopian novel 1984 was… Julia.
22:10 July 17, 2012 by Just_Kidding
I didn't know that being a dance student is an occupation.
17:13 July 18, 2012 by Avidror
Wow, she's hot.
02:57 July 23, 2012 by csence
Obamas Julia is his Marxist idea of the world ie: total governement control and taxation, of all from cradle to grave. They call it the "Collective" which is the total opposit of an INDIVIDUALS RIGHT to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. = Freedom. Good for Swedens Julia to pursue her happiness with her new Twitter success!! Find out what BO is hiding....

http://www.nogg.se/blogg.asp?idHomepage=126216&idBlogg=1195237
17:30 July 24, 2012 by batista
What a waste of article and time....
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