News

Obamacare’s ‘Glitch Girl’ disappears amid Internet speculation

Obamacare’s ‘Glitch Girl’ disappears amid Internet speculation

'GLITCH GIRL': Frustrated users unleashed their ire on the mystery woman, venting on Twitter and other social media. Photo: Associated Press

By Barbara Goldberg

(Reuters) – Hers was the face that launched 20 million snipes.

The smiling wholesome beauty was a symbol of Healthcare.gov but she has vanished amid a sea of frustrated users, her image taken down from the trouble-plagued Obamacare website by early Monday morning.

Nicknamed “Glitch Girl,” the unnamed model stirred curiosity among media who scrambled to try to identify her after the site, which went live on October 1, was immediately slowed by technical problems and visitors found themselves endlessly staring at her on their frozen computer screens.

So far, 20 million unique users have clicked on the federal site, but only 700,000 applications have been submitted through a combination of the site and state-run Obamacare exchanges, according to testimony prepared for U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, to deliver to a Congressional panel on Wednesday.

Frustrated users unleashed their ire on the mystery woman, venting on Twitter and other social media.

“The #obamacare girl got the worst photo shoot gig since Joey did the STD poster on Friends,” tweeted @RONCOULTER, referring to the sitcom character’s shock when he discovered that his modeling picture had been used in a campaign about venereal disease.

After the Obamacare girl disappeared from the site, social media users rallied to support the mystery woman, whose image file on the site is named “Adriana.”

“It’s not the obamacare cover girl they need to fire,” tweeted @joepatton.

Others said they planned to dress up as her character on Halloween.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which runs the website, was not immediately available for comment.

The government has replaced “Adriana” with four chunky icons that represent ways to sign up for the new mandatory health insurance. Creative critics have suggested other stand-ins, including the ghoulish Freddy Krueger character from the film series “A Nightmare on Elm Street” or Norwegian artist Edvard Munch’s “The Scream.”

The mystery surrounding the Obamacare girl may only deepen as new theories about her disappearance are tested online.

“Wasn’t Manti T’eo dating #ObamacareGirl?” tweeted @MonteBlachford, referring to the Notre Dame football star who admitted he lied to keep up a hoax involving a nonexistent dying girlfriend.

Recent Headlines

18 minutes ago in Entertainment, World

Queen Elizabeth II marks 88th brithday

Fresh
queen

The royal marks her 88th birthday with a black and white portrait.

40 minutes ago in Trending, Viral Videos

TODAY’S MUST SEE: The year’s best dunks

Fresh
lakers

The NBA playoffs are underway, let's take a look back at the season's most impressive dunks.

52 minutes ago in Sports

Monday’s Sports Minute

Fresh
lebron

Champs open NBA playoff three-peat run with win, "Hurrican" Carter has died, and more.

1 hour ago in Sports

Blackhaws’ Seabrook suspended for 3 games

Fresh
blackhawks

Defenseman Brent Seabrook was suspended by the National Hockey League for a violent hit to the head on St. Louis Blues David Backes.

1 hour ago in National

Boston Marathon looks to set race records

Fresh
marathon

More than 36,000 will run in the 118th Boston Marathon, putting the world-renown race back in the spotlight after it was marred by last year's bombing attack.