Recently, a bizarre trend on Twitter, originating from France, has gone viral, specifically targeted to fool Americans. A French Twitter user shared a photo of a map of Europe with a red arrow edited onto it. This arrow pointed to a fake country, Listenbourg, on the side of Portugal, and Americans think it’s a real country. Read on to learn about what has now become the most significant November trend on Twitter.
What Is The ‘Listenbourg’ Trend?
Je suis sûr que les américains ne connaissent même pas le nom de ce pays ptdrrr pic.twitter.com/aecSupQdyU
— Gas🅿️ardo (@gaspardooo) October 30, 2022
Listenbourg is the newest country in the European Union, at least, that’s what the Americans believe. The fictional country was added by a French Twitter user, Gaspardo, who described himself as the President of Listenbourg, sharing a photo of a map of Europe with a red arrow edited onto it.
This arrow pointed to a fake country, “Listenbourg”, and what began as a part of a joke, using a photoshopped map, has become a huge trend on social media. A TikTok hashtag for the nonexistent nation has garnered over 70 million views in just a few days. Some users are even making themed accounts, pretending to hold powerful government positions in this country.
Not only this but there is even a Listenbourg national hymn, which has amassed over 30,000 views on YouTube. It all started with Gaspardo’s tweet, who wrote alongside a photoshopped map: “I’m sure Americans don’t even know the name of this country,” In reply, someone said it was Listenbourg. That’s it, Twitter was buzzing with some French humor while Americans were left confused, and even offended.
Why Fool The Americans?
The photoshopped image of the map was shared by the French user to trick the Americans, who are stereotypically bad at European geography. While I intend no insult to the gorgeous people of America, it’s a harsh fact that most Americans don’t know basic geography beyond the United States, courtesy of the systematic exclusion of international geography and history from public schools.
Not only this but 90% of media coverage in the United States is domestic-based. One person previously claimed that growing up in rural Oregon, he was forced to memorise the geography and history of his own country in minute detail, but his class was never taught international geography or history. Even though American schools have slightly changed this narrative, this joke was focused on the typical stereotype that Americans are bad at European geography.
Nous soutenons l’adhésion du Listenbourg à l’🇪🇺. pic.twitter.com/yWkl23xT4J
— L’Europe Ensemble (@Ensemble_UE) November 1, 2022
As real as the name, “Listenbourg” sounds, the viral tweet made everyone believe that it could be a real place in Europe, and it included people other than the Americans. Well, the real moment came when the official page for the France 2024 Olympics joined in the meme and said “Listenbourg had joined Paris 2024, increasing the number of countries taking part from 206 to 207.
Le reportage sur le Listenbourg, bientôt disponible. https://t.co/gvqhbVTQzd
— Prime Video France (@PrimeVideoFR) October 31, 2022
On this meme, Map service Waze wrote: “Listenbourg, at least we know how to get there!” The political group Europe L’Ensemble said they support Listenbourg’s membership of the European Union. Another hilarious tweet included Prime Video France who wrote: “The report on the Listenbourg, soon available.”
Le nombre de délégations olympiques pour #Paris2024 passe de 206 à 207 avec l’arrivée du Listenbourg.
Bienvenue l’ekip ✨
— Paris 2024 (@Paris2024) October 31, 2022
The trend has even spread across the U.K. after airline Ryanair, known for sharing comedic content across social media, tweeted alongside a photoshopped map of Europe: “Proud to be announcing our new base in Listenbourg!” Well, Listenbourg may be fake, but Twitter-verse is taking a real trip to this country, isn’t it?