Time magazine refutes US President Donald Trump's Twitter claim he was nominated Time 'Person of the Year'

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Monday, November 27, 2017

On Friday, US president Donald Trump released a tweet via Twitter claiming New York-based magazine Time had informed him they would "probably" name him "Person of the Year". The claims made in the tweet, sent while Trump resided for the Thanksgiving season at his Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida, were promptly refuted by the magazine itself and personnel connected to its publication.

File photo from 2016: that year, US president Donald Trump was named Time "Person of the Year".
Image: Time (magazine).

Trump's tweet read, "Time Magazine called to say that I was PROBABLY going to be named 'Man (Person) of the Year,' like last year, but I would have to agree to an interview and a major photo shoot. I said probably is no good and took a pass. Thanks anyway!"

Time magazine recognizes as "Person of the Year" an individual who "for better or for worse... has done the most to influence the events of the year." The magazine named Trump in 2016 in an issue titled "President of the Divided States of America" a month after his successful bid for the U.S. presidency. Agence France-Presse noted, in 2012, 2013, and 2015 Trump used his Twitter account as a platform to highlight his displeasure at not being so named.

Time magazine released a tweet of their own on Friday refuting the claim made by Trump, which read, "The President is incorrect about how we choose Person of the Year. TIME does not comment on our choice until publication, which is December 6."

Rather than a photo shoot such as Trump claimed they requested, Time magazine used a painting to depict German chancellor Angela Merkel for their 2015 "Person of the Year" issue, when they chose her to receive the title.

Alan Murray, the chief content officer for Time Inc., the magazine's publisher, also countered Trump's claim in a tweet on Friday, stating, "Amazing. Not a speck of truth here—Trump tweets he 'took a pass' at being named TIME's person of the year".

Richard Stengel, a former editor of the magazine, also weighed in on Trump's comments in a tweet posted half an hour after Trump's, "Hate to tell you but that PROBABLY means you're NOT Person of the Year. They just wanted a photo shoot. But I'm sure you still have that fake TIME cover somewhere in storage." Stengel's tweet refers to fake Time magazine covers prominently displaying Trump's face that were hung on the walls of golf clubs owned by the President, as reported in the Washington Post in June. The magazine requested their removal.

Since Trump entered the race for U.S. president, he has frequently called news outlets in the United States "fake news" when they release reports critical of him.