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How did a major newspaper mistake A-Trak for a member of Odd Future?

Alain ‘A-Trak’ Macklovitch is many things: teen turntablist prodigy, former Kanye West tour DJ, head honcho of tastemaking Fools Gold Records, international DJ superstar and chart-storming hitmaker as one half of Duck Sauce. One thing he is not, however, is a member of sprawling LA rap and beatmaking collective Odd Future (aka OFWGKTA).

A journalist at controversy-baiting UK tabloid The Daily Mail, however, missed that bit of basic fact-checking yesterday in an article about the negative reaction to pop star Taylor Swift’s twerk-appropriating video clip for Shake It Off.

The article quotes Odd Future star Earl Sweatshirt, who tweeted, “Haven’t watched the taylor swift video and I don’t need to watch it to tell you that it’s inherently offensive and ultimately harmful. Perpetuating black stereotypes to the same demographic of white girls who hide their prejudice by proclaiming their love of the culture… for instance, those of you who are afraid of black people but love that in 2014 it’s ok for you to be trill or twerk or say nigga.”

A-Trak also weighed in with some thoughts on the video; and if you’re a keen follower of him on Twitter you’ll know that A-Trak, like many of his DJ brethren, is fond of novelty Twitter names (the master being, of course, Diplo, with stand-outs like ‘Above & Beyoncé’ and ‘CATEGORY 6 PLURICANE’).

A-Trak’s most recent moniker was the bemusing ‘Flan Emoji’ (now updated to ‘Bandmate Flan Emoji’), which the Daily Mail journalist obviously took for his true moniker (despite the fact that his Twitter handle is @atrak). Somehow, the journalist also decided that A-Trak must be a member of Odd Future, writing, “Bandmate Flan Emoji also piped up,” before quoting A-Trak’s tweets (which you can read below).

The Daily Mail sub-editor then added to the error with three cringe-inducing photo captions: “Earl Sweatshirt (left) and Flan Emoji of California hip-hop collective Odd Future took to Twitter on Monday night to slam the songstress for allegedly making a mockery of black culture”; “Inappropriate? Two members of California hip-hop collective Odd Future have weighed in on the video – despite admitting to not having even watched it – slamming the 24-year-old for ‘perpetuating black stereotypes’ with her attempts at break dancing and twerking”; and ”’Yay, cupcakes!’ Bandmate Flan Emoji also weighed in on the clip, his response more lighthearted than his pal’s though featuring a heavy dose of sarcasm.”

Despite much online mockery of the error, the Daily Mail has yet to realise its mistake: if you’re in the mood for some amusing schadenfreude, the as-yet-unedited article is over here.