“Nguyen-sanity” Story Goes Viral
May 18, 2012 • 3,115 views
Several local and national media outlets were on campus today as reporters in search of a fresh story found it in the pages of this year’s yearbook. There, on pages 37 and 38, eight Presentation seniors who share Nguyen as a last name collaborated on their senior quotes so that readers would see the following message: “We know what you’re thinking and, no, we’re not related.”
Students were abuzz as a camera crew from Inside Edition filmed shots of the girls posing in front of their lockers and signing yearbooks at a table in the courtyard, while a reporter from the San Jose Mercury News took photos. The front office phone was ringing all morning as other media from around the country called to get the scoop.
“It was Nguyen-sanity,” said full time sub Catherine Furtado, who was working in the front office this morning. “The phones haven’t stopped ringing all day.”
Students and teachers alike expressed surprise at how quickly the story went viral. Yearbooks were distributed Monday, and several students who found the pages amusing posted a photo of them on Facebook and Tumblr. From there, the photo found its way around the world, reaching the UK Daily Mail, reddit.com, and the Huffington Post, where it had garnered nearly a million views by today.
“I think it’s insane how quickly it went viral,” said junior Amber Viado. “I was tracking it as it went from Facebook to Tumblr to the UK Daily Mail, and it was just crazy.”
The Nguyens’ original yearbook quotes were rather traditional, but late last semester the eight girls had the idea for the special message and requested a change. The yearbook editors liked the idea and were happy to accommodate them.
“The editor-in-chief and I are very grateful that we didn’t mess this up because we had no idea it would have such a big impact,” said Yearbook Managing Editor Michelle Chellino. “It’s really important to the school and to the Nguyens, so we’re happy we were able to do this for them. It was nice to be a part of the experience.”
Any reporters who show up next week–finals week–in the hopes of interviewing the Nguyens might be disappointed. Presentation seniors who earn an A in their class are exempt from the final exam. With solid grades, the Nguyens have been able to avoid many of their finals. So the media might be here next week, but the newly famous Nguyens won’t.
To read media coverage of the story and see the photo, click here.