eMail hoax raises hopes of a day off from school

An eMail message purporting to be from a school administrator briefly had students at Brooklyn Technical High School looking forward to an unexpected holiday, reports the New York Times. For one glorious hour Sunday night, it looked as though the school’s 4,900 students would not have to drag themselves out of bed at 7 a.m. for the first day of school after the long winter break, as student government leaders got an eMail saying that a construction accident had forced the building to close. The students, thinking the message was real, passed it along via the many online channels regularly used by this tech-savvy school, reaching thousands of students within minutes. Then came a flurry of phone calls and instant messages as students debated the veracity of the note, which on closer inspection, looked suspicious. By 11:30 p.m.,, the online student newspaper, conveyed the news: The message was a hoax. The spoof note’s grammar was not perfect, but that did not stop students from thinking it had come from Marc Williams, an assistant principal whose eMail account appeared to be the source of the note. According to one discussion thread posted by a sophomore with the online name of “n4ru,” it looked as though an internet spoof site such as was used to generate the original message…

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