You couldn't make this up.
A Reddit user from London named Ben Berst had a little fun with One Direction fans who are upset over Zayn Malik leaving the band.
Berst took to Vine and made a six-second video of himself crying next to Malik's picture, which he then crumpled into a ball.
He posted his video online, and while most of those who saw it had a good laugh, One Direction fans were not amused — many of whom had videoed their own saddened reactions to the news, only they weren't joking.
Funny, right? But that's not where our story ends.
As part of one of its broadcast segments, CBS News put together a small collection of One Direction fans reacting to the Zayn Malik news and posting said reactions online. You can probably guess what happened next. Yep, CBS passed off Berst's fake video as the real thing. Berst promptly posted CBS' footage to YouTube, where it quickly amassed more than 750,000 hits.
I knew I'd become famous one day, I just, didn't expect it to be for this. http://t.co/PuCH9GgWdg — Ben (@benberst) March 25, 2015
Here's where our story takes a sour turn. After Berst posted the CBS clip to YouTube, CBS forced YouTube to take it down on a copyright claim. So aside from some screencaps of the video like the one above, CBS has effectively erased all evidence of its silly little gaffe.
Do you smell that...? That pungent odor CBS is giving off is called "hypocrisy."
Good ol' @CBS - use my content WITHOUT my permission, then when it backfires they take my content down.
— Ben (@benberst) March 26, 2015
So how did it get on CBS to begin with? Did a CBS reporter see Ben Berst's video and actually believe it was real? Did a researcher on staff come across the video and slip it into the montage just for fun? Was it a subversive move by some disgruntled intern?
The world will never know.