Tuesday, February 13, 2018

"How a 20-year-old from [Macedonia] tricked Martina Navratilova, Serena Williams, and the BBC"


As members of the local media cooled on Grncarov, his story caught fire on Twitter. The buzz began to pick up last summer, when a fleet of accounts began incessantly retweeting, liking, replying to, and generally worshiping Grncarov. I’ve found more than 200 Twitter accounts solely devoted to Grncarov


These Twitter accounts often yammered about the same topics simultaneously, whether it was Darko’s crush on Nicole Scherzinger or his purported net worth of $1.5 million. Some even appeared to be designated haters, posting negative comments about Grncarov only for the other accounts to rally to his defense.


Though his story was shared by a few accounts, Grncarov didn’t gain wider traction online until months later, when he began to praise the Williams sisters.


Journalists, too, latched onto Grncarov’s amazing comeback story.


Grncarov, meanwhile, posted videos and photos of himself training for his “return.” The videos clearly show different people—sometimes the player depicted switches to being left-handed. Most show a man only from behind, or with his face obscured.


By this point, that chorus of 200-plus Grncarov-loving Twitter accounts had been joined by a growing number of genuine supporters.