Lady Gaga gets best possible revenge on ex-classmates who bullied her with a Facebook group.
via Shutterstock

We've all heard the saying "haters make me famous," but few celebrities have lived that truth as precisely as Lady Gaga.

While it's well-known by now that she believes you just need one person in a room of 100 to believe in you, this mantra isn't just PR positivity, but comes from personal experience.

During her early college years at NYU, when Gaga was regularly performing at local bars, she had a loyal crew of haters. As many college students do, NYU students created a crop of small and niche Facebook groups dedicated to everything from eyebrows to music swapping.


However, one very small and pointed group was dedicated to trash talking Gaga, then known by her real name, Stefani Germanotta.

Members of the group, titled "Stefani Germanotta, you will never be famous" regularly posted about how she was "an attention whore" and would never make it big.

Back in 2016, a former classmate of Gaga's, Lauren Bohn, made a Facebook post detailing the innerworkings of the group.

When I was a freshman at NYU and Facebook was only a year old and people created/joined groups like "I have dimples,...

Posted by Lauren Bohn on Sunday, January 17, 2016

She wrote about how Gaga's story serves as an ideal example of what happens when you lean into your drive, and not what other people project onto you.

"When I was a freshman at NYU and Facebook was only a year old and people created/joined groups like "I have dimples, f*** me" and "Fake ID, please!," I remember coming across a Facebook group that broke my heart. It's name: "Stefani Germanotta, you will never be famous.
The page housed pictures of a pretty Norah Jones-esque young 18-year-old NYU student who sang and played piano at local bars. The group was peppered with comments, sharp as porcupine needles, vilifying the aspiring musician for being an "attention-whore." Scores asked: "Who does she think she is?" I also remember one dude posting a flyer for one of her upcoming gigs at a local village bar. He had clearly stomped on the flyer, an outline of his muddy sole [soul] struggling to eclipse her name.
I couldn't shake the raw feeling of filth while scrolling down that Facebook page, but I pretty much -- and quickly -- forgot about that group and that girl with the intense raven eyes.
Until about five years later. I was on an Amtrak train from NYC to Philly, reading a Vanessa Grigoriadis New York Magazine profile on Lady Gaga. I floated somewhat mindlessly through the piece until I got to the first sentence of the second graf:
Before the meeting, I assumed that someone with a stage name like “Lady” (her given name is Stefani Joanne Germanotta) was going to be a bit standoffish..."
HOLY SHIT, I screamed to an empty car (Those who hang with me will know that I actually shrieked). LADY GAGA IS STEFANI GERMANOTTA? STEFANI IS LADY GAGA?
I was overcome with a dizzying emotional cocktail of stage-mom-at-a-beauty-pageant and nerd-revenge triumph. But also shame. Shame that I never wrote on that group, shame that I never defended the girl with the intense raven eyes -- the girl whose brave flyers were stomped on, probably somewhere near my dorm.
But again, I soon forgot about that revelation and that feeling. Feelings. They're so fleeting. Even more so, revelations. We need to constantly re-discover them every damn day. Like last week, when I woke up to this meme. I saw the muddy sole eclipsing her name. The eye-rolls. The cowardly virtual-giggles. The "Who does she think she is?""
I've got a lot of feelings, but the easiest one to articulate: gratitude. Stefani, thank you. Thank you for always thinking you're a superstar, for using your cracks to let the light come out more brightly. Humans, let's follow suit. #LadyGaga #ThatsWho"

Needless to say, Gaga got the ultimate revenge by becoming super famous and beloved. What's more, she broke barriers this year by becoming the first woman to win an Oscar, Grammy, BAFTA and Golden Globe in one year.

People are legitimately curious about how those 12 Facebook Members feel about their petty cruelty now.

Others noted how this just exemplifies that people will hate on anyone and any project, and that should never be a reason to stop.

This article was originally published by our partners at someecards.

Courtesy of Tiffany Obi
True

With the COVID-19 pandemic upending her community, Brooklyn-based singer Tiffany Obi turned to healing those who had lost loved ones the way she knew best — through music.

Obi quickly ran into one glaring issue as she began performing solo at memorials. Many of the venues where she performed didn't have the proper equipment for her to play a recorded song to accompany her singing. Often called on to perform the day before a service, Obi couldn't find any pianists to play with her on such short notice.

As she looked at the empty piano at a recent performance, Obi's had a revelation.

"Music just makes everything better," Obi said. "If there was an app to bring musicians together on short notice, we could bring so much joy to the people at those memorials."

Using the coding skills she gained at Pursuit — a rigorous, four-year intensive program that trains adults from underserved backgrounds and no prior experience in programming — Obi turned this market gap into the very first app she created.

She worked alongside four other Pursuit Fellows to build In Tune, an app that connects musicians in close proximity to foster opportunities for collaboration.

When she learned about and applied to Pursuit, Obi was eager to be a part of Pursuit's vision to empower their Fellows to build successful careers in tech. Pursuit's Fellows are representative of the community they want to build: 50% women, 70% Black or Latinx, 40% immigrant, 60% non-Bachelor's degree holders, and more than 50% are public assistance recipients.

Keep Reading Show less

Stillbirth after the 20-week mark happens to approximately one in 100 pregnancies. Approximately 24,000 babies are born stillbirth each year. And while stillbirths are rare, the experience can be emotionally painful for those who have to go through it.

Last month, Chrissy Teigen and John Legend lost their third child, Jack, at 20 weeks. Teigen suffered a partial placenta abruption, a rare diagnosis in which the placenta and the lining of the uterus separate. It prevents the fetus from receiving oxygen and nutrients and causes bleeding in the mother. Now, Teigen is opening up about her experiences with the loss in a heart wrenching Medium essay.


Keep Reading Show less
Photo courtesy of Claudia Romo Edelman
True

When the novel coronavirus hit the United States, life as we knew it quickly changed. As many people holed up in their homes, some essential workers had to make the impossible choice of going to work or quitting their jobs— a choice they continue to make each day.

Because over 80 percent of working Hispanic adults provide essential services for the U.S. economy, the Hispanic community is disproportionately affected. Hispanic families are also much more likely to live in multigenerational households, carrying the extra risk of infecting the most vulnerable. In fact, Hispanics are 20 times more likely than other patients to test positive for COVID-19.

Claudia Romo Edelman saw a community in desperate need of guidance and support. And she created Hispanic Star, a non-profit designed to help Hispanic people in the U.S. pull together as a proud, unified group and overcome barriers — the most pressing of which is the effects of the pandemic.

Because the Hispanic community is so diverse, unification is, and was, an enormous challenge.

Photo credit: Hispanic Star

Keep Reading Show less

Electing Donald Trump to be president of the United States set an incredibly ugly example for the nation's youth.

We know how it's affected the national discourse of regular adults. But there's no denying the conduct of a president impacts how children around the world see the example being set for them. Every day for the past four years, children have been subjected to the behavior of a divisive figure that many of their parents chose to exalt to the most powerful office in the world.

Sure, adults can make excuses for him saying he's an "imperfect messenger" or that they "didn't vote for him to be reverend," but these are all just ways to rationalize voting for a man with zero character. What a message to send to children: Act awful and you'll be handsomely rewarded.

But what if you took away the "Trump" name and examined the character traits of him as an ordinary person? More specifically, what if your daughter came to you and said this was the kind of person she was planning to date? Well, one MAGA family found out and the results are funny, insightful and quite revealing about how we somehow hold our leaders to different and lower standards than we expect from ourselves in our day to day lives.

Keep Reading Show less

Even before he became president, Donald Trump was known for his unhindered use of Twitter. He and his many press secretaries have lauded the president's frequently used and abused social media account as his way of connecting directly with the people, but if you scroll through his feed, it usually seems more like a venue for him to brag, bully people, and air his grievances. Oh, and lie a whole bunch.

Then there is Steak-umm, the anti-Trump Twitter account. And by "anti-Trump" I don't mean against Trump, but rather the opposite of Trump. Instead of griping and sharing falsehoods that constantly need fact-checking while being the single biggest source of coronavirus misinformation, Steak-umm use their account to share helpful tips for avoiding misinformation in the midst of a confusing pandemic, to explain psychological concepts like "cognitive dissonance" and "dualism," and to encourage people to really examine and think about things before sharing them.

In other words, Trump tweets conspiracy theories while Steak-umm tweets about how to not fall for conspiracy theories.

Keep Reading Show less