Multiple sockpuppets for one user
November 15, 2005 10:11 AM   Subscribe

So, to recap, dhoyt was highsignal, hall of robots and jenleigh. [more within]
posted by y2karl to Etiquette/Policy at 10:11 AM (702 comments total) 39 users marked this as a favorite

For starts, it's a fact. After I hollered about his linking some lame comment by amberglow in my own outraged purple and florid callout of dhoyt last week, I got sent the names highsignal and ahll of robots. I Googled same and found the ruckus in aisle 10450. And there put two and two together there and in my lamely worded post.

Except for the dhoyt being jenleigh part. That seemed a little too rich. However, upon my email sent upon Matt's closing closing my callout over the amberglow link--because of, uh, dhoyt's report that his account had been, um, hacked--which went something like Hey! But what about the highsignal part, huh?. Matt then went back and checked the ISP's of the acoounts under discussion and found out all originated from the same place. He then asked a few questions of dhoyt. Who admitted to Matt that he was all four members. As Matt put it, he knows what he did was totally fucked up and says he won't do it again--that is, should dhoyt wish to make a fresh start and return again under a new name some day in the future.

Be that as it may, all four aforementioned accounts are closed for now.
posted by y2karl at 10:11 AM on November 15, 2005 [2 favorites]


You may ask, Really, what is the big deal ? Is it really fair to ban anyone simply for using a sockpuppet to call out a long time arch enemy--especially if one was kind enough to use yet another sockpuppet to wonder if anyone else had let said arch enemy know about said call out? Not that any sock puppet involved really bothered to actually do so--but so ? At least a sense of conscience was publicly displayed, was it not ? Well, your mileage may vary.

And why should it matter that jenleigh and dhoyt both got to weigh in on the subject of an impersonal etiquette post ? Those were merely two opinions expressed among many in a first Metatalk post made by an anonymous new member with no obvious ax to grind.

And, apart from ^Post flagged for: "Fantastic post/comment", Great links ... or ...and good post, jenleigh, I really have not noticed that much reach around back patting going on. And besides the seven odd comments in one or two or three threads, there really wasn't that much thread moderation by proxy so far as I can tell. So far.

However, giving, in a post by Ms. Sockpuppet 1, a credit to Mr. Sockpuppet 2's blog is an act which might possibly be interpeted as potentially--in a tiny way--sneaking past the no self-links rule in spirit. Now, that will no doubt piss off a few.
posted by y2karl at 10:12 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


But notice how he stuck up for her in 10450. There sticking up for her meant sticking it to people who questioned her bonafides. Re-read the thread. Heywood Mogroot provides a detailed analysis of jenleigh--there's something hinky about her which he is trying to put his finger on. dhoyt responds by belittling Heywood Mogroot for being an obseesive little creep who does not have a life.

But this is all details. Look at the larger picture. There are only two accounts really in play--dhoyt and jenleigh. What were dhoyt's politics ? He never really said unless really pressed. For a clue, however, read his blog as highsignal. My impression is that the post on highsignal reflects dhoyt's politics in real life.

But then look at jenleigh's posts. Compare and contrast. Her's are some very provocative posts made against the grain of the likable lefty consensus by defualt.. And people got provoked. She got attacked. Was that the point ? If so, Mission Accomplished. Tiem to strut around the flight deck, taunting the losers. Were people being unfair or did she in fact set off bullshit detectors enmass ? Was this a matter of the wisdom of the crowd in action ?

She called Barrack Obama a golden boy in one comment in a thread I recall. Hat Maui bridled at that and asked heatedly who she was calling a black man boy ? Her reply? Hey, she's from Scotland--what does she know about American idioms ? Did Hat Maui go off on her a little too hard, too fast? Probably. Was she straight about being from Scotland and her knowledge fo American idoms ? Fuck, no.

But up on her User Page went a link to Hat Maui on the list she formerly kept there of every totally unfari and shitty thing said about poor innocent her. Here I got called a racist.

Remember that--she had a link to everyone who called her a name. Was it going to show everyone what a lynch mob we had on MetaFilter ? If so, it was by entrapment, or the evidence suggests. I brought up her link to that Hat Maui comment a couple of times until she wrote to me. I suggest that Hat Maui had called her a racist but, as she told me, We BOTH know what he meant.

But, um, No, we do not, I replied--suggesting that if she really wanted the benefit of the doubt, she might give the benefit of the doubt, adding that her User Page was a Loser Page which mades her look like a victim collecting insults. She actually thanked me for that, as it turned out.

She thanked me for what turned out to be good tactical advice and later lost the User Page Formerly Devoted To Belittling Other Members as being perhaps too obvious. But I gave her the benefit of the doubt that time and allowed to myself that it might a positive gesture on the part of a valued contributor But was it ? Fuck, no.
posted by y2karl at 10:14 AM on November 15, 2005 [2 favorites]


I wonder if some members live in their parents basement, only coming out for occasional pizza and diet coke refills.
posted by Dean Keaton at 10:16 AM on November 15, 2005 [5 favorites]


Jesus, Karl. Save it for your book.
posted by Ogre Lawless at 10:17 AM on November 15, 2005 [2 favorites]


You been talking about this for days and fretting over this on e-mail and this is the result? I was expecting so much more.

In the end, who cares? Guy messes around with sock puppets and gets banned. They really all should. And that's the thing: the focus on this post should be "Sockpuppets are bad and should be banned" not "Watch as I prove that dhoyt had a sockpuppet." As far as I know the latter has already been resolved, but former is a good point of discussion.
posted by dios at 10:18 AM on November 15, 2005


But don't take my word for it--look though her posts and her comments. And remember jenleigh was dhoyt all along. Read cllosely. You got played. And you who got shit for questioning her, re-read your run ins with dhoyt. And you who stuck up for jenleigh, re-read 10450 again at the very least.

Many people picked up on the falsity of jenleigh from the git go. It's funny how that works out--somebody sails under false colors and, as a consequence, gets called on it. But then some self-appointed voice of reason steps forward to run interference for the phonies and muddies the water. Well, for a number of people not so invested in being voices of reason, something about jenleigh just did not add up. Just as something with 111 did not add up for some, the TILT sign went off for others when jenleigh began posting, and, as a consequence she came under the scrutiny of some.. Both were regarded as malicious by many, defended by the few. And both turned out to be malicoously used sockpuppets. And both had their champions. But so it often goes. How can you be such a lynch mob ! He's such a decent fellow in his emails to me ! She makes valuable contributions !

Was she created to mousetrap a select few or was she created to air unpopulat opinions dhoyt cared not to publish under his own name ? Who knows ? H elet his feuds take over his common sense.

For example, see Heywood Mogroot's contributions in < a href=http://metatalk.metafilter.com/mefi/10450" ">dHandeloyt's Messiah.

Mogroot had his eye on jenleigh's posting history, he'd gone back and looked at her record, and, in detached detail, he presents his analysis.

Now note the reaction of dhoyt. He hammers Mogroot in derisive comment after, in retrospect, ever more desperate derisive comment., insisting Mogroot has no argument while providing no argument to the contrary,, insisting that any fool can see what Mogroot asserts is full of holes, sneers that he is getting more and more pathetic with every comment and implies that all this proves is that Heywood Mogroot is a pathetic creep who needs to get a life. . Don't take my word for it. Re-read the thread. Perhaps your mileage may vary. For everyone else...

Can you say ironic ? ...I knew you could. /Fred Rogers

Now skip the torches and pitchforks, folks. Go back and read. We got played. And I see no need to express contmept for what is beneath contempt. Not for any of us. Such is my opinion.

Post the ironies. There's little we can do but laugh. It is funny the second time around.
posted by y2karl at 10:19 AM on November 15, 2005


That way you can quote a page out of it using google books and make it look like gospel.
posted by Dean Keaton at 10:19 AM on November 15, 2005


dhoyt was jenleigh? Oh you have got to be fucking kidding me.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 10:19 AM on November 15, 2005


Oh, and one more thing, I am amazed you refer to usernames of people who are sockpuppets (in my best guess) for support in your screed about someone else using sockpuppets.
posted by dios at 10:19 AM on November 15, 2005


My great aunt Betty says it's "hinkty" not "hinky". Hinkty is definitely more fun to say out loud.
posted by zarah at 10:19 AM on November 15, 2005


I am left with one conclusion at present: dhoyt was not on dial up.
posted by y2karl at 10:21 AM on November 15, 2005


Well, dios I thought he was (although a nice enough guy) totally off the deep end, and this apparently shows that he wasn't. Much to my surprise.

Plus jenleigh == dhoyt? How crazy is that?
posted by delmoi at 10:23 AM on November 15, 2005


four user accounts? jesus christ how do you people keep your jobs.
posted by spicynuts at 10:23 AM on November 15, 2005 [2 favorites]


$5 says dios is y2karl's sockpuppet.
posted by aaronetc at 10:24 AM on November 15, 2005


This is comedy gold. Beautiful. Dhoyt, you magnificent bastard, you done Pwned Metafilter.

So how many actual regular posters does the site have? 3?
posted by selfnoise at 10:24 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


When I was about five or six, a teenaged friend of the family showed me his erection and asked if I wanted 'to touch it'.

For some reason, this thread brought that episode to mind.
posted by item at 10:25 AM on November 15, 2005


It's time to step away from the navi..
posted by The Jesse Helms at 10:25 AM on November 15, 2005


Well, if this was the same character, who, instead of merely arguing political points, posted personal information about members he/she didn't pack the gear to argue with, and also provided personal information about members to others so they could be attacked ad-hominem off site, it ain't too surprising.

I wish he/she well. Obviously there's some growing to do.
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 10:27 AM on November 15, 2005


Kinda puts this little gem into perspective now, no?

If you have ominous suspicions about someone's motive for posting, ...

Many of us had many questions about jenleigh's games on this site all along. Some fools here were even defending her as if she were real (a certain hatwearer comes to mind).
posted by amberglow at 10:28 AM on November 15, 2005


I think we should have all sockpuppet accounts outed.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:29 AM on November 15, 2005


Wasn't jenleigh a co-admin? With deletion powers?
How did Matt let that happen?
I am fascinated by these revelations, and wish to subscribe to this Metatalk thread.
posted by Balisong at 10:30 AM on November 15, 2005


y2: I guess I sort of owe you an apology, I may have claimed that you should just relax and stopped worrying, or something, I don't remember. I certainly thought that, and if I thought that, then I probably typed it.

The strange thing is dhoyt and jenleigh never seemed like that big of trolls to me. Odd. strange stuff going on in metafilter-land these past few days.
posted by delmoi at 10:31 AM on November 15, 2005


What? Whoa. Really.

Okay, this is the kind of crazy delicious metatalk shit I've been craving.

First, independent corroboration. Somebody else confirm this for me. Lord knows I'm not up on sockpuppets around here. For all I know half of you could be Zeldman. But this is crazy.

Secondly, what was the deal with 111 that didn't add up?
posted by furiousthought at 10:31 AM on November 15, 2005


As far as I know the latter has already been resolved, but former is a good point of discussion.

Until last week, I had no idea. I am tired of people knowing these things and not telling. I don't like the idea of people keeping secrets like these. If there is a sock puppet outing in the works, well, let it come out here. Let's get it over with. I felt a little set up to be sent clues from someone who'd been in the know for months.
posted by y2karl at 10:32 AM on November 15, 2005


I wish I was Smeldyman's sock puppet, but, alas, I'm not.
posted by Balisong at 10:34 AM on November 15, 2005


Wasn't jenleigh a co-admin? With deletion powers?

err, are you thinking of jessamyn? I can't imagine matt would give someone mods if he didn't know them personaly.
posted by delmoi at 10:34 AM on November 15, 2005


Ah... OK... Nevermind...
posted by Balisong at 10:35 AM on November 15, 2005


So does everyone's user number move up a notch?
posted by horsewithnoname at 10:35 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


My only other sockpuppet factoid is that puke and cry is probably the member formerly known as Bob Sarabia. That is apparently common knowledge, from the comments I have read.
posted by y2karl at 10:37 AM on November 15, 2005


As much as I loathe sockpuppets, this is all a bit obsessive, karl. Please recheck your med levels.
posted by crunchland at 10:39 AM on November 15, 2005


Y2Karl's bestest Christmas ever!
posted by LarryC at 10:39 AM on November 15, 2005


If there is a sock puppet outing in the works, well, let it come out here. Let's get it over with. I felt a little set up to be sent clues from someone who'd been in the know for months.
posted by y2karl at 10:32 AM PST on November 15


Well, karl, I can only assume you are referring to matteo who apparently has a giant McCarthyite list in the works to try to Out the Reds People He Doesn't Like As Sockpuppets. You have referred to him a couple times recently, but for some reason don't want to be explicit. I will be for you, though. If the guy wants to be McCarthy, he ought to be up front about it.

But the issue of sockpuppets should be resolved. I think they should all be deleted. The issue of particular sockpuppets (that is, dhoyt) seems moot at this point.
posted by dios at 10:39 AM on November 15, 2005


How do you spot a sockpuppet, anyway?
posted by Jon-o at 10:40 AM on November 15, 2005


You been talking about this for days and fretting over this on e-mail and this is the result? I was expecting so much more.

You've got to be kidding me. dhoyt == jenleigh is major fucking news. This is disgusting.
posted by If I Had An Anus at 10:40 AM on November 15, 2005


(as a side-note, if we say "sockpuppet" enough, it'll stop sounding like a real word and deteriorate into a silly noise. Say, "furniture" a few times and know what I mean.)
posted by Jon-o at 10:42 AM on November 15, 2005


Is it too early to 'Blame Bush'?
posted by Balisong at 10:42 AM on November 15, 2005


Some fools here were even defending her as if she were real (a certain hatwearer comes to mind).

Yes, languagehat (presumably) certainly was a fool! After all, it was completely obvious that she was fake all along, eh, amberglow? You just wanted to let other people figure it out for themselves, being magnanimous like that, and the model of a good teacher. Christ.
posted by kenko at 10:42 AM on November 15, 2005


If someone tells me Ethereal Bligh is actually MiguelCardoso I will just fucking snap.

LIES IT'S ALL LIES
posted by furiousthought at 10:44 AM on November 15, 2005


If someone wants a fresh start on metafilter, and thus creates a new account, that's fine. I can think of at least two users who wanted to disassociate themselves from previous comments.

I can see the value of having a different AxMe and MeFi account, in order to be able to offer better, more frank advice. I've thought of taking a second account so that I could talk more about my job, in a semi-anonymous way.

But to have multiple, active identities, and to use them as dhoyt did, well, that's just basically dishonest. So I applaud the sockpuppet outers, and sockpuppet banners, for that matter.
posted by MrMoonPie at 10:46 AM on November 15, 2005


How do you spot a sockpuppet, anyway?

Any two people who disagree with you are probably sock puppets. Every once in a while this proves to be true, validating all your other conspiracy theories.
posted by LarryC at 10:50 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


dhoyt was jenleigh?

no, but dressing like her got him all excited.

(truth be told, I'm embarassed that I ever stuck up for dhoyt. This was dirty pool.)
posted by jonmc at 10:53 AM on November 15, 2005


If I ever create a sockpuppet I think I'll name him Billy Milligan. Seriously, how did dhoyt keep four different accounts/personalities straight? Wild.
posted by yhbc at 10:57 AM on November 15, 2005


I'm just curious as to why it really makes a difference in terms of past interactions with them (him?). I mean, everyone here is anonymous anyways, and I thought that the whole idea is to respond to content, not to personalities. If I agreed with what dhoyt (or whoever) said before, I'm still going to agree now. Makes no difference if he was using sockpuppets or eating children while posting. Sure, defending the sockpuppets in hindsight was silly, given that they were presumably created to stimulate conflict, but who knew? I sure didn't. Looking back, I wouldn't have acted any other way given the knowledge I had at the time.

That being said, the whole episode is more than a little strange.
posted by loquax at 11:01 AM on November 15, 2005


dhoyt was jenleigh? Seriously? Wow. Thats....wow. Not to be judgmental, but shouldn't dhoyt receive some banination?
posted by unreason at 11:01 AM on November 15, 2005


Nobody from Dundee would ever brag about it on their profile page.

Seriously, I remember reading that after reading some jenleigh comments and thinking "Nah..."
posted by fire&wings at 11:02 AM on November 15, 2005


I'll probably get banned for this, but ....for a long time, while metafilter was just getting going, there was a secret metafilter policy that we all have a sockpuppet account. Ideally, we were supposed to contradict our other persona, since flamewars and controversy breeds interest in online communities. Lurkers stay hooked when they can read that sort of stuff. Several people -- people with low self-esteem, like dhoyt -- used their alternates to stroke their own egos. This was privately frowned upon, but was expected.

Once we opened up the doors and let the unwashed masses in, though, the policy was pointless, and abandoned. The unwashed masses provided enough noise to make our bogus banter unnecessary.

So, it's maybe it's safe now to finally admit it. I was MiguelCardoso. What's more, before I started using this alias, I used this one.
posted by crunchland at 11:04 AM on November 15, 2005


>Wasn't jenleigh a co-admin? With deletion powers?

err, are you thinking of jessamyn?


Yeah, jessamyn is my sockpuppet.
posted by timeistight at 11:05 AM on November 15, 2005


Yeah, jessamyn is my sockpuppet.

In your dreams.
posted by jessamyn at 11:09 AM on November 15, 2005 [2 favorites]


Wait, does that mean it's really the pores on dhoyt's nose that have gotten bigger and much more orange-rind-like than they were ten years ago? And what about the plumbing in jenleigh's Dundee flat with extremely soft water which leaves my hair looking flat & somewhat ridiculous? I'm so confused.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 11:10 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


dhoyt = jenleigh is certainly news, dios. Just because you hate y2karl or something doesn't change that.

Reading 10450 now is amazing knowing it was a sockpuppet defending a sockpuppet defending *head explodes*.
posted by livii at 11:13 AM on November 15, 2005


*looks for pot & kettle*
posted by brain_drain at 11:14 AM on November 15, 2005


Ignore the man behind the curtain. I am the great and powerful OZ.
posted by chunking express at 11:15 AM on November 15, 2005


I am my own sock puppet. There, I said. It's been said. I have no more secrets. Please stop looking at me like that.
posted by blue_beetle at 11:15 AM on November 15, 2005


Well, honestly, it's hard being an apologists for the bush administration.

Sometimes, you just need to astroturf.
posted by Freen at 11:17 AM on November 15, 2005


note: the screwy pluralization above was fully intended.
posted by Freen at 11:19 AM on November 15, 2005


I don't think it was ever his intention to create sockpuppets. He just had one account for each of the four internets.
posted by selfnoise at 11:21 AM on November 15, 2005


He just had one account for each of the four internets.

Or one for each face of nature's harmonic simultaneous 4-day time cube.
posted by eddydamascene at 11:24 AM on November 15, 2005


One thing I wonder is if jenlegh was actually dhoyt's wife, or if he was using his wife's name (and account) as a sock-puppet.

this comment by y2 in the November 4th thread indicates that there's a Jennifer Leigh, who might also go by Jennifer Hoyt. Is there? Was Dhoyt just using his wife's (?) name to cause havoc?

What's the deal?
posted by delmoi at 11:26 AM on November 15, 2005


THE GREAT PURGE HAS BEGUN!

*scurries into nut-filled bunker*
posted by sciurus at 11:27 AM on November 15, 2005


For what it's worth, after some initial shcadenfreude, I just felt flat upon finding this out. I didn't like dhoyt--he was always going after people in threads, he was always calling for people to be banned, he was hot tempered and had a hard time letting things go. I had it in for him having it in for so many other people, so I picked on him. And, well, duh, the whole projection concept is there for me, too. It's easy to hate in others what you hate in yourself. But, for a fact, I really do hate the name calling. I'm just as guilty of it as the next person but I really try not to go after people these days. I hounded crunchland for awhile for crunchland hounding Miguel back in the day but we got over it. I let Faze get on my nerves. I stalked hama7 through the threads back in the day. And I got on jonmc's case not all that long ago. Sure, I had my Gotcha moment but . I don't feel all that at ease in doing this. I've gone back and forth for reasons more ignoble than noble. I've told enough lies in my time to know how it feels to get caught out by people whose opinion mattered to me. So, I am not pretending my hands are clean here. But I decided people have to re-read those some of those comments. It's really unfair. Even so, it's a strange situation--I can see where he thought he meant well, as I can see how he got caught up in this stuff. Just as I am seeing some people get caught up in it here.

But let him come back as another. If he changes, he will go unnoticed. If he doesn't, we'll recognize him soon enough. I'm almost always for the second chance. I have made too many mistakes in my life to want to morally lord it over anyone else. I just don't like the name calling and labeling. Say what you want, one truth we all share is a maxim by La Rochefoucauld, which goes something like In their opinions of us, our enemies are sometimes closer to the truth of who we are than are our friends. That truth hurts us all in our turn because it's true. We are all more than the people who belittle us say we are and the same is true for those we belittle. Being here has been a wake up call for me. And right now I don't have anyone on my shitlist right now and I sure hope it stays that way. You know--the Bob Dylan about I'll let you be in my dream, if I can be in yours. That should be our tagline every little so often, no ?
posted by y2karl at 11:31 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


dhoyt was banned? Fuck, there goes my "People Who Link To Me" count.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 11:33 AM on November 15, 2005


mathowie:
why are you leaving it to y2karl to make admin announcements about inappropriate commenting, fake accounts and bans? Clearly, the info he shares with us here derives originally from you: it would have been more authoritative for you to inform us, no?
posted by dash_slot- at 11:33 AM on November 15, 2005


dios: But the issue of sockpuppets should be resolved. I think they should all be deleted.

Then we'd better find someone who can spot them, wot? Instead of just seeing them in the person of everone who takes an obsessive dislike to him and follows him around sniping.

Personally, I think sockpuppets are rude and dishonest, with a few obvious exceptions like Pot and Kettle. (Or back in my Plastic days, JesusOnPlastic and SatanOnPlastic.) But people who use them to count coup on other members are typically the kind of people who'll eventually start to lose sleep over the fact that they're not winning "clean."

As for how you keep them straight -- well, I wouldn't do it, but I've known people who could/would. I once dated a woman who claimed to be maintaining some huge number (accounts would vary from time to time) of personal profiles in different personae, ranging from a 13 year old punk chick to a middle-aged male psych prof at BYU.
posted by lodurr at 11:34 AM on November 15, 2005


*scurries into nut-filled bunker*

AHA! You're squirrel's sockpuppet!
posted by gleuschk at 11:34 AM on November 15, 2005


dhoyt was banned? Fuck, there goes my "People Who Link To Me" count.

Hey, it could be worse. loquax's count just went down by three.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 11:35 AM on November 15, 2005


It will be an Oscar-winning movie "The Four Faces of dhoyt"
posted by Cranberry at 11:35 AM on November 15, 2005


I don't know which is more pathetic - creating four sock puppets and using them on a daily basis for about a year in order to your reinforce batshit arguments about post formatting guidelines, the Bushes and Israel, or tossing on a detective hat and writing a self-important, milkcrate preacher-style screed about said sockpuppets, taking the time to include, in bold print, every time the sockpuppet called you a racist.

That's a really hard decision... I'm going to go smoke a cigarette and mull that over.
posted by SweetJesus at 11:36 AM on November 15, 2005


I live for this!
posted by Suck Poppet at 11:37 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


can I just say.... WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED!!!

And there I was, setting up my acronym tags in jenleigh threads because I was certain it would be a long and glorious history of stupidity.

So, sockpuppets... are they hurting America, or what?
posted by gsb at 11:37 AM on November 15, 2005


I bet Mathowie would find all users 15753 and under are sock puppets. With fraying gray threads and magic marker eyes.
posted by ?! at 11:40 AM on November 15, 2005


Using sock puppets as an enabler for some personal vendetta is just sick. It sickens me.

SICK!
posted by we heard you the first time, Seth at 11:43 AM on November 15, 2005


Yes, languagehat (presumably) certainly was a fool! After all, it was completely obvious that she was fake all along, eh, amberglow? You just wanted to let other people figure it out for themselves, being magnanimous like that, and the model of a good teacher. Christ.

Thanks, kenko. WTF, amberglow? Will you think for two seconds before posting drivel? I'll stick up for anybody I think is being unfairly treated; as many people are aware by now, I do so without regard to political affiliation. If I had a crystal ball and knew that jenleigh was going to turn out to be a sockpuppet, yeah, I wouldn't have stuck up for her. Are you happy now?

And I second dash_slot-'s question: why didn't mathowie explain this himself? Is dhoyt somehow so special he's allowed to slip quietly out the back door without having to undergo the indignity of the flashbulbs and the rude questions? I'm beginning to wonder if there isn't a cabal after all.
posted by languagehat at 11:44 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


Fucking WEIRD. And I do feel like a tool for defending jenleigh as a "rational" conservative... How fucking bizarro world...
The only time I've ever had a fake persona was for a livejournal fake band, and I think anyone who saw it knew that it was fake...
posted by klangklangston at 11:45 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


What's the deal? I thought sister or girlfriend, too. Some sort of personal female acquaintance.

I was told, upon sharing my speculation, he was her.

With feather me knock over you could. /babyyoda


So, leave any real life she hoyt out of this.


Just read the sentences both have written. Read highsignal's callout taunts. Save hall of robots, all do that thing.

And really, what woman here has ever acted like that and at such lengths ? No one who I can recall.
posted by y2karl at 11:46 AM on November 15, 2005


Does this mean there are really only 4-5 Bush apologists left?
Does it also mean that there are really only 3000 registered 'users' here, instead of 10K?
posted by Balisong at 11:47 AM on November 15, 2005


AHA! You're squirrel's sockpuppet!

No, different species.
posted by sciurus at 11:47 AM on November 15, 2005


Does this mean there are really only 4-5 Bush apologists left?

We'll always have Paris.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 11:49 AM on November 15, 2005


I think, if nothing else, this whole sordid issue demands that Matt deal with all of the obvious sock puppets he's aware of. In the past, he said he didn't think it was a big enough deal to warrant it.

How about now, Matt?
posted by crunchland at 11:49 AM on November 15, 2005


We'll always have Paris.

*cues music*
posted by Balisong at 11:50 AM on November 15, 2005


Why are we hearing this from y2karl? Shouldn't Mathowie be saying something?
posted by unreason at 11:50 AM on November 15, 2005


any real life she hoyt

as in like "Dam, she hoyt, baby!"
posted by jonmc at 11:50 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


Best. Investigation. Ever.
posted by Elpoca at 11:52 AM on November 15, 2005


Wow. That's uh, that's something there. 3 sock puppets? One has an ebay shop, one had a blog, and one was jenleigh? That's both great and crazy.
posted by puke & cry at 11:53 AM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


why are you leaving it to y2karl to make admin announcements about inappropriate commenting, fake accounts and bans? Clearly, the info he shares with us here derives originally from you: it would have been more authoritative for you to inform us, no?

Because, it's a touchy issue. It took a while over email to figure this all out and I was just as stunned as everyone else. But after banning the accounts, and ending the matteo-y2karl-dhoyt feud, they all knew and I figured the people most involved knew, so there wasn't much to gain by taking it public.

So now it is public, and I'm seeing what I figured I'd see. One person gamed us all, but a few people here are doing little sore-winner victory laps and dropping "I told you so's" to those they disagreed with.

I didn't really want to out people in a thread because I don't go around outing people's sockpuppet accounts. It's an unfair breach of their privacy and makes me look like I'll do anyting to send someone up the river. Of course, once you game a community all bets are off and it's probably ok to ban someone and make an example out of them, but I still feel uneasy whenever I have to mention IP addresses or private emails and other bits of evidence found offsite, in private spheres. There is an assumption that an administrator won't post your IP address to the world when you leave a comment on a site somewhere, and I was trying to respect that.

At this point, now that it's out, I'm not sure what more can be gained after this hit 100 posts or so. It's a crappy situation for all involved and I don't feel like there are any winners here. I got duped just like everyone else did.

Going forward, there's no way to block sockpuppet accounts. People can use different paypal accounts and keep their user details completely separate. This could happen again, though I hope to god it never does again.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 12:00 PM on November 15, 2005


I think we need to separate the issue of stealth sockpuppets (bad) and blatant sockpuppets (not so bad). For example, Pot & Kettle are obvious sockpuppets, and that's not bad, because we know they're sockpuppets. We don't think we're dealing with unique snowflakes when we deal with them. Jenleigh, on the other hand, is a bad sockpuppet, because we think we're dealing with a discrete individual, when we aren't.

languagehat : "why didn't mathowie explain this himself? Is dhoyt somehow so special he's allowed to slip quietly out the back door without having to undergo the indignity of the flashbulbs and the rude questions?"

LH, I'm just going from memory, but I don't think I've ever seen matt start up a thread to announce a bannination. If someone spots a problem, he usually says "Yeah, I banned him/her". Assuming (I think it's a fair assumption) that matt occassionally finds problem accounts that other people haven't, that would indicate that in those cases, he usually kills them silently. So in this case, it isn't unusual that matt killed a user without explanation first. It isn't unusual that an explanation then came from another user. The only thing that's unusual is that matt hasn't popped in to comment about it. Again, though, I'm going from memory, so I may be wrong.
posted by Bugbread at 12:01 PM on November 15, 2005


On postview: Great timing, bugbread. "The only thing that's unusual is that matt hasn't popped in to comment about it", posted immediately after matt has popped in to comment.
posted by Bugbread at 12:02 PM on November 15, 2005


I'll stick up for anybody I think is being unfairly treated; as many people are aware by now, I do so without regard to political affiliation.

You have a good heart. But for you, too, the best thing to do is not respond personally to callouts, even for you. Don't squander your moral capital. Both callout and retort there were examples of human frailty. Remember amberglow was called out by dhoyt all the time when he had said nothing. Which explains but does not excuse that stupid MetaChat post he made. Jus the same, think about how he was treated and why he might resent your sticking up for someone who had it in for him via two accounts.

And the other thing is to remember sticking up for people vs. the concept of the wisdom of the crowds on another. People reacted to her very strongly because something about her seemed wrong. You got burned for being a trusting person. Making her was an abuse of your trust. There is no sadder but wiser here. It's just sadder and sadder. If people go after you, let them. Don't respond. Remember you haven't taken anything near the shit some people do. We know you are a good guy.
posted by y2karl at 12:02 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


"... there's just one more thing that's bothering me" - y2karl
posted by NinjaPirate at 12:03 PM on November 15, 2005


I think we should have all sockpuppet accounts outed. - five fresh fish

I am five fresh fish.
posted by raedyn at 12:08 PM on November 15, 2005


(Isn't it obvious, I'm always going on about what a cool Canadian dude he is)
posted by raedyn at 12:09 PM on November 15, 2005


But seriously? I'd really appreciate hearing from Matt on this. y2karl isn't an official voice. Matt, is this true?
posted by raedyn at 12:12 PM on November 15, 2005


See, this is why I always read MetaTalk.

Thanks everyone, for an enjoyable Tuesday afternoon!
posted by rocketman at 12:12 PM on November 15, 2005


People reacted to her very strongly because something about her seemed wrong.

I've defended jenleigh, because with the exception of the recent "Selected images from Saturday's anti-war rally" post, I think, ummm, "their" posting history had some interesting stuff. If something was wrong, I don't think it was their FPP history.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 12:13 PM on November 15, 2005


pssst, raedyn. Look a few posts above yours.
posted by terrapin at 12:14 PM on November 15, 2005


This is seriously the greatest MetaTalk thread in the history of mankind.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 12:15 PM on November 15, 2005 [2 favorites]


We know you are a good guy.
posted by y2karl at 12:02 PM PST on November 15


Which makes amberglow's cattiness even more repulsive.

In amberglow's world, it's all about his politics. He is even more blindly "with me or against me" then the person he hates most, Bush. So in amberglow's world, languagehat's typical act of good faith and fairness was viewed as taking the side of an enemy. In amberglow's world, people who do such things are apostates and must be discredited. Because in his world, it's all about the message.

It is repulsive to see someone like that snipe at languagehat. There are plenty of people here who are deserving of amberglow's scorn (and I'm perhaps one of them), but languagehat is one of the most consistently fair people on this website. And note, fair has nothing to do with politics, but it has to do with the idea that you treat people fairly irrespective of their politics. Would that we all had his ability to fair.

I apologize; I know that I should amberglow's comment pass. But it really angers me. And while I think y2karl's comment was right, that languagehat shouldn't squander his moral capital in responding to it, it seems incumbent on people who disagree with amberglow to say so and not let such comments pass. I'm sure languagehat would prefer to have someone else do his defending. To that extent, I apologize to him for speaking up for him.

But amberglow's comment is just disgusting bitchiness that is too often accepted and is deserving of rebuke.
posted by dios at 12:16 PM on November 15, 2005


didn't like dhoyt--he was always going after people in threads, he was always calling for people to be banned, he was hot tempered and had a hard time letting things go.

Is there a new style guide here that requires we keep everything completely impersonal or are you just being cute? Other than that, I'm with you 100%: I can't stand people who have a hard time letting things go.

This is way too much fun. Someone get me two socks and a magic marker. I'm playing "Metafilter: The Home Game". And is SchweppsGirl on the list or not? How about Carlos what's his name? Are we shocked by a user running multiple accounts only when it's not common knowledge?

Sincerely,

goliche
posted by yerfatma at 12:18 PM on November 15, 2005


Dios hates living in Amberglow's World.
posted by Balisong at 12:18 PM on November 15, 2005


That makes perfect sense — disingenuity sucks.
posted by highsignal at 6:49 PM PST on November 3


hahahaha holy shit
posted by Optimus Chyme at 12:19 PM on November 15, 2005


In amberglow's world, it's all about his politics.

In the online world, perhaps. He's far less combative in person.
posted by jonmc at 12:19 PM on November 15, 2005


Going forward, there's no way to block sockpuppet accounts.

Sure there is. But it would require you not having a life.

Until there's a sufficient commercial motivation to render ethics merely moot, "bad" sockpuppets will sort themselves out eventually. The tradoffs just aren't there to make sockpuppet-prevention cost-effective. You'd lose too much for the small amount gained.

Seriously: What does a sockpuppet circle-jerk cost us, how does it harm us, unless we determine the outcome of discussion by concensus? Theoretically, somebody with a good job could just buy $5 accounts until s/he outvoted "us"; but why should we care? I know my parents taught me that the fact that other people think something doesn't make it so, no matter how many there are. (Well, maybe if there's a lot of them. A whole lot.)

On prev: There just one thing that's bothering me [thanks, Ninja...]. dhoyt did seem to have a really inordinate fascination with sockpuppets....

On prev2: I'm beginning to suspect that davy is scarabic's sockpuppet. Or vice versa. No two real people would make such an effort to snipe at one another that much....

posted by lodurr at 12:22 PM on November 15, 2005


This War on Sockpuppets will consume us all!
posted by Balisong at 12:25 PM on November 15, 2005


pssst, raedyn. Look a few posts above yours. - terrapin

Thanks, terrapin. I would have noticed eventually. I guess that's what I get for being so eager to yank fff's chain.

posted by raedyn at 12:27 PM on November 15, 2005


"Each alter is designed to do a job and only that job. It is endowed with characteristic traits which the Original Personality would have taken on, if it were in charge. The situation can be viewed as operating a doll factory, with only the outfits of clothes being produced. The doll, itself, is not present. The alters are the sets of clothes, but there is no doll inside any of them. Therefore, they cannot grow and change. They can only do what the ISH has programmed them to do."

Alas, dhoyt. A slave to his ISH.
posted by maryh at 12:28 PM on November 15, 2005


matt:
Of course 'it's a touchy issue': and from past performance (justifiably) y2karl was likely to start this thread - and it would perhaps have been best if y2karl had given you advance warning of this thread, or asked you to post it in his place. You could have actually set the tone and moderated effectively by initiating the thread.

I understand where you're coming from. However, I'm not entirely convinced of your arguments: you haven't published the exact information - IP addresses, etc. - and so merely referring to them is not a privacy breach. You have indeed reinforced the mutual respect we all need to maintain on a site such as this, by your implementing a ban on the culprits.
Clearly there are other SP a/c's here. Being as how Mefi gets really catty on occasions - even some of our most articlate and literate posters resort to name calling at times - we can all keep our eyes peeled for mutually backslapping postings. Good sleuthing, y2karl.
posted by dash_slot- at 12:29 PM on November 15, 2005


dhoyt was an asshole and a troll. This isn't news to most people, I think. jenleigh is a loss though. I defended her a few times because she made decent posts and seemed to be able to make rational arguments unlike other frothing-at-the-mouth conservatives here. A few of her actions were disingenious and she did pull some stunts but nothing too terrible. y2karl is right to out this, especially considering the beating he and Heywood took in the last dhoyt-jenleigh-matteo-y2karl-Heywood Meta clusterfuck. Well, c'est la vie.

As for sockpuppets, I still can't imagine any valid reason for them. Besides this extreme example it's not clear it's even worth the effort to bother hunting them down.
posted by nixerman at 12:29 PM on November 15, 2005


This is seriously the greatest MetaTalk thread in the history of mankind.

This is good, but untill someone mentions their right-hand and electrodes and knives and other such things, it will never ever be the greatest metatalk thread ever.
posted by chunking express at 12:29 PM on November 15, 2005


Many of us had many questions about jenleigh's games on this site all along. Some fools here were even defending her as if she were real (a certain hatwearer comes to mind).
posted by amberglow at 10:28 AM PST on November 15 [!]


Nice. Do you feel better being able to say that now, amberglow?

Next time there will just be a nice big pile-on on the person regardless of whether we have proof that he/she's a sockpuppet or not. Would that make you happy? I mean, I know how much you love pile-ons.
posted by Stauf at 12:30 PM on November 15, 2005


You're full of shit, dios, and what languagehat did was defend jenleigh by bashing me--based on nothing but some unwarranted impulse of chivalry--for a sockpuppet--of a troll.

Repulsive goes both ways, darling dios, and you're just as repulsive as me, if not more so, for continuing to bash me here. Get the fuck over yourself--you're not any kind of moral arbiter here, and you have no standing at all to try to describe what others believe. You have no clue what i believe, and have never even bothered listening to what i say--either in MeFi or here in MeTa. If i have glee over the unmasking of a troll who was a total ass to me--both as dhoyt and as other people--i'm entirely allowed and justified in doing so. You, on the other hand, have nothing to do with dhoyt's games--you obviously have your own. Jumping in here shows your true colors, so i'd look in a mirror first next time before spouting off about how repulsive anyone else is.
posted by amberglow at 12:32 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


and yes, Stauf, i do feel better for saying that. next question?
posted by amberglow at 12:33 PM on November 15, 2005


Good sleuthing, y2karl.

Well, if by "good sleuthing" you mean "well done at reading the email you received, disclosing two of the sock-puppets, and at finding out from Matt that their IPs matched those of two more users".
posted by Marquis at 12:33 PM on November 15, 2005


you're all repulsive. Happy now?
posted by jonmc at 12:33 PM on November 15, 2005


I like to pick boogers.
posted by selfnoise at 12:34 PM on November 15, 2005


A few of her actions were disingenious and she did pull some stunts

Uh, linking to highsignal's blog, i.e., his own; dhoyt saying "great post" to jenleigh's post, i.e., his own; defending himself with four fucking accounts in one MeTa thread . . . and that's off the top of my head, I'm not even to the creamy center of all these links yet.

Good god, is there nothing so dishonest that someone somewhere will not say "no big deal"?
posted by Optimus Chyme at 12:34 PM on November 15, 2005


I heard Rothko had a sockpuppet. I think a discussion of that would be helpful.
posted by Falconetti at 12:34 PM on November 15, 2005


next question?

How about a nice tall glass of Shut The Fuck Up?
posted by Armitage Shanks at 12:35 PM on November 15, 2005


I don't know if I'm neutral enough to defend LH, but I'll give it a shot:

Languagehat tried to give the benefit of the doubt. It turns out he was wrong. That doesn't mean he's a fool, any more than it makes everyone who believes in the "innocent until proven guilty" standard of US law a fool because some of the people they presume innocent at first later turn out to be guilty. Or, rather, if we use that standard for deciding who is or isn't a fool, then we're all fools, because we're all misled by others from time to time, and using that definition of "fool", sure, languagehat is a fool, and so am I, and so is amberglow, etc. etc., and being a fool is no longer a bad thing.
posted by Bugbread at 12:36 PM on November 15, 2005


Everybody plays the fool sometimes..
may be factual, may be cruel...
posted by jonmc at 12:37 PM on November 15, 2005


>Going forward, there's no way to block sockpuppet accounts.
Sure there is. But it would require you not having a life.


Really? Discuss in:re AOL users who might share an IP address at some point during their account lifetimes? See also: two members who work at the same location.
posted by yerfatma at 12:39 PM on November 15, 2005


p.s. amberglow, I defended jenleigh and don't regret it at all. Looking over her FPP history and comment history, I think jenleigh was a net positive for the community. I like(d) many of her FPPs and her comments were also good, for the most part. I've no idea why dhoyt felt the need to play this silly game or what he thought he was really accomplishing--but he did. The lesson here isn't 'I told you so! S/he's evil!' The lesson, which some will learn hopefully, is to not take this place so seriously. Like mathowie said, there are no winners here. And there are never any winners. This isn't a battle or a war, and when shit like this happens we all lose.
posted by nixerman at 12:39 PM on November 15, 2005


Amberglow: If your problem with languagehat is that he bashed you unfairly, then it probably would have been better to say that, instead of saying that his problem was that he was a fool for defending someone who turned out guilty.
posted by Bugbread at 12:40 PM on November 15, 2005


Matt-

I understand your impulse, and in general, I think that your stance toward personal violations like this is a good one. In this case, however, I think that the outing is important because this is clearly a violation of the community norms, which you have the largest hand in enforcing. Letting other members know that this is not only a bad idea, but will not be tolerated as behavior, is, I think, a good enough reason to overcome your scruples in this case.

Plus, the gossip is outrageous.
posted by OmieWise at 12:41 PM on November 15, 2005


Discuss in:re AOL users who might share an IP address at some point during their account lifetimes? See also: two members who work at the same location.

The latter would be a regrettable but necessary loss. The former would be a bonus.
posted by crunchland at 12:41 PM on November 15, 2005


*dons fool's cap, jingles*
posted by languagehat at 12:41 PM on November 15, 2005


Hey, it could be worse. loquax's count just went down by three.

I am the 5th dhoyt sockpuppet.
posted by loquax at 12:42 PM on November 15, 2005


*whispers in OmieWise's ear*

I heard WolfDaddy is Gay!
posted by jonmc at 12:42 PM on November 15, 2005


The latter would be a regrettable but necessary loss.

The latter would result in losing yours truly.
posted by jonmc at 12:43 PM on November 15, 2005


I haven't kept up with exactly what jenleigh wrote (to be honest, the name never registered on my consciousness until this debacle). However, a lot of people are defending jenleigh's comment. I find that kind of interesting: the usual sock puppet approach is to start with a core account, and then later add accounts for flaming and uncivil behavior. I'm gathering that in this case, the order was reversed: the sock puppet was (it seems) more civil than the core account.

Not trying to make any point in noting this, I just found it interesting and unusual.
posted by Bugbread at 12:43 PM on November 15, 2005


I always liked dhoyt for consistently going against the flow, even if he got a little vindictive and petty as time went on. This is pretty surprising, and really makes me wonder about motive. Was it all just to be able to buttress his own arguments in threads, or was it an enormous, elaborate joke? Would there have been a punch line eventually?

I mean, this seems like an awful lot of effort to go to just to be able to log in with different names and agree with yourself.
posted by COBRA! at 12:43 PM on November 15, 2005


Jonmc, you work with/at the same place as dhoyt?
posted by Bugbread at 12:44 PM on November 15, 2005


We're all getting distracted from the real question, which is: is dhoyt a Zionist, and did he order the killing of Eduardo Agnelli?
posted by selfnoise at 12:45 PM on November 15, 2005


I think we need to roughly interrogate the user that dhoyt and highsignal both claimed to have met.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 12:45 PM on November 15, 2005


dhoyt == Jenleigh

GOD DAMN IT FUCK!!

Well, there goes the engagement.

Do you think I can get my credit card company to refund all the money I spent on plane tickets, hotel bookings and wedding paraphenilia?

If it wasn't for that meddling y2karl I'm sure that the wedding would still be on, dhoyt would have magically transformed into the cute redhead in the pictures I was sent and that we would have lived happily ever after.

*calls lawyers to prepare emotional damages lawsuit against y2karl*
posted by loquacious at 12:45 PM on November 15, 2005


no bugbread, but I do work at the same place as another mefite. So, if theoretically, she got banned, I'd be SOL, too. And Metafilter can't have that, as I'm sure you realize.
posted by jonmc at 12:46 PM on November 15, 2005


loquacious: call me crazy, but the penis shoul'dve tipped you off.
posted by jonmc at 12:46 PM on November 15, 2005


no bugbread, but I do work at the same place as another mefite. So, if theoretically, she got banned, I'd be SOL, too

If worst came to worst, you could always post outside of work hours.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 12:47 PM on November 15, 2005


This is seriously the greatest MetaTalk thread in the history of mankind.

I disagree. This is really disappointing. It turns out that a lot, or at some portion of the meta-drama was being artificially fomented by one person for god knows why. I mean what dhoyt was doing, ultimately, was defacing the site and making people pissed off at each other and hateful.

This War on Sockpuppets will consume us all!

Hehehe. I can just imagine Metafilter taking a turn for the ugly with people trying to out all sock puppets, invasive IP log analysis, with an elite core of sock puppet hunters with jessamyn like powers and the ability to see 'potentials' based on a TIA-like algorithms and interrogate them via email.
posted by delmoi at 12:48 PM on November 15, 2005


yerfatma: Really? Discuss in:re [trivial example of why it would entail not having a life deleted]

Lighten up, Francis.

... though I guess that's what i get for assuming that people will assume a basic level of knowledge in a discourse on technological matters...
posted by lodurr at 12:50 PM on November 15, 2005


I disagree. This is really disappointing. It turns out that a lot, or at some portion of the meta-drama was being artificially fomented by one person for god knows why. I mean what dhoyt was doing, ultimately, was defacing the site and making people pissed off at each other and hateful.

You know that scene in Pulp Fiction, where Vincent Vega is talking about how his car got keyed less than a day after being taken out of storage?

"Boy, I wish I could've caught him doing it. I'd have given anything to catch that asshole doing it. It'd been worth him doing it just so I could've caught him doing it."
posted by Optimus Chyme at 12:52 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


loquacious: call me crazy, but the penis shoul'dve tipped you off.

I don't believe in sex before marriage, you godless heathen. I was saving myself.
posted by loquacious at 12:54 PM on November 15, 2005


I spent some time reading this funny little thread and I am still confused: what did the person who was dhoyt/jenleigh/etc do wrong?
posted by xmutex at 12:55 PM on November 15, 2005


I'm not exactly certain what this post is about but Hall of Robots is a real person who lives in my hometown. Just thought I would clear that up. Perhaps there's more to it than that, but I don't feel like reading this topic.
posted by cloeburner at 12:56 PM on November 15, 2005


johnmc- So, if theoretically, she got banned, I'd be SOL, too.

You are Steve@Linwood?!?!

Oh, sorry...
posted by Balisong at 12:56 PM on November 15, 2005


what did the person who was dhoyt/jenleigh/etc do wrong?

apparently they annoyed y2karl.

which is funny, because in his time y2karl has annoyed a lot of people himself.

not funny in a ha ha kind of way, though.
posted by andrew cooke at 12:57 PM on November 15, 2005


raedyn, please stop stalking me.

why didn't mathowie explain this himself?

Because... duhduhduh! Y2K is Matt's sockpuppet account!
posted by five fresh fish at 12:57 PM on November 15, 2005


You're trying to tell me that dhoyt was/is jenleight? I'll bet you think that soylent green is people, too.
posted by Godbert at 12:59 PM on November 15, 2005


I spent some time reading this funny little thread and I am still confused: what did the person who was dhoyt/jenleigh/etc do wrong?
posted by xmutex at 12:55 PM PST on November 15


Read this comment and follow the links.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 1:00 PM on November 15, 2005


Is there a new style guide here that requires we keep everything completely impersonal or are you just being cute?

I'm being very conflicted. I don't feel vindicated. I knew someone was going to make a post and I didn't want--.I didn't want it posted ugly. No, honest. And it's so very strange and there is no with whom I can talk about all this. I didn't want to put it on anyone else. I didn't want to hide behind someone else. I 'm not mad, I'm sad. I don't know what else to say.The ironies keep coming when I go back and re-read things. It's so weird. Like cognitive dissonance, man.

Upon review: I mean what dhoyt was doing, ultimately, was defacing the site and making people pissed off at each other and hateful.

I disagree. He was being human, all too human. He fucked up. There but for fortune... That's how I see it.
posted by y2karl at 1:01 PM on November 15, 2005


a sockpuppet--of a troll


posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 1:01 PM on November 15, 2005


I was saving myself.

Well, you're attracting fruit flies, brother. Your cherry's gone bad.
posted by jonmc at 1:03 PM on November 15, 2005


waittasec... is this the preggers raedyn that I shared fetal jokes with? In that case, the stalking is wholly justified. You may continue.
posted by five fresh fish at 1:03 PM on November 15, 2005


For some reason, it's the askme record that's really skeeving me out about all this. There were a lot of questions being asked there by all four of them - mostly about guitars, granted - but a lot of pretty personal stuff as well, and now I'm not sure I believe any of it. Ick.
posted by mygothlaundry at 1:04 PM on November 15, 2005


jonmc writes "I heard WolfDaddy is Gay!"

Is that what all the talk about hot gay sex is about? Dadgum, you learn something new every day.
posted by OmieWise at 1:06 PM on November 15, 2005


Someone should work with mathowie to produce a warning when two different usernames successively log in from the same IP.

By the way, my sockpuppet has a profile that says "HELLO THIS IS A PRETTY_GENERIC SOCK PUPPET".
posted by Pretty_Generic at 1:06 PM on November 15, 2005


Delmoi has a point. What hurts this place is not sockpuppet accounts per se; rather, it's why people use them.

I'm kind of a sporadic user, here. I come in for a while, go through a use-cycle, and take a vacation. Not uncommon for six months to pass between cycles. But I've noticed names persisting over time. I have a general impression of a lot of people and their intellectual styles. I'll snipe about this not really being a community, but a lot of you think of it that way, and that's an important fact. But I digress...

I do believe that I've gotten acquainted with people's personalities -- enough to notice a change. I'd be hard put to commit to when it happened, but sometime after September of 2001, and I'm quite sure there was a hard turn in summer/fall of 04.

What's been most striking to me has been that people I'd previously thought of as bastions of stability and wit and often actual bona fide wisdom were getting mean. Tired-mean; worse than just cranky. Worse than being a curmudgeon; more like becoming cynics. "The cynicism of the failed romantic," to filch from Peter Weir.

Matteo's been one of the most striking examples of this. I don't know him, but I know what he writes, and he writes like a man who's just gotten tired of dealing with the world. At least, with this part of it.

Others, I've seen get meaner, but in a different way: As though they'd developed a taste for red meat and been taught where to find it.

And then the great influx brought in all those $5 Bob!bies, and the great coup-counting contest started all over again. Only now, there was more blood in the water, and so the feeding frenzies were more frenzied. We had enough critical mass to sustain a chain reaction. To blantantly mix a metaphor or four.

No prescription, just my view: It's definitely gotten meaner in here. And to jessamyn's earlier point, the only remedy for that is to stop fighting. The problem is that the people who recognize that, are the ones whose input is most needed, and in the words of their best selves, to keep the place going.
posted by lodurr at 1:08 PM on November 15, 2005


fff - Sorry, are you serious? No evil intent here, so if I'm freakin' you out, 100% apologies.
posted by raedyn at 1:08 PM on November 15, 2005


I mean what dhoyt was doing, ultimately, was defacing the site and making people pissed off at each other and hateful.

Oh bullshit. We are almost all adults here, we are individually and solely responsible for our own feelings and behaviours.

There aren't many fresh fish on this BBS. Most of you didn't have to take the bait Dyoht dangled. You're not cold-blooded automatons with little capacity for decision. You chose to play Dhyot's games.
posted by five fresh fish at 1:10 PM on November 15, 2005


raedyn: s'alright, we're cool. I'm always a little unnerved when I appear to have attracted someone's attention.
posted by five fresh fish at 1:11 PM on November 15, 2005


lodurr- I'd be hard put to commit to when it happened, but sometime after September of 2001, and I'm quite sure there was a hard turn in summer/fall of 04.

It's called the presidential election cycle.
posted by Balisong at 1:15 PM on November 15, 2005


No. we didn't choose to play his game. Taking things at face value, we were playing by a different set of rules. Even in this thread, the confusion is obvious ... people are still referring to janleigh as "she."
posted by crunchland at 1:16 PM on November 15, 2005


*licks lips, leers at five fresh fish crosseyed*
posted by loquacious at 1:17 PM on November 15, 2005


It's definitely gotten meaner in here.

Yeah, it has. Used to be you could avoid it by staying out of political threads, but now politics infects everything and people drag it everywhere and beat up on whoever doesn't toe their particular line.

As for sockpuppets, I agree with whoever made the distinction somewhere up there between obvious sockpuppets created for fun (Pot, Kettle) and evil sockpuppets like dhoyt's. I think Matt should ban the latter ruthlessly, but allow the former as long as they're used strictly for purposes of everyone's amusement.
posted by languagehat at 1:17 PM on November 15, 2005


Jeez, the least you could have done was post a spoiler alert.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 1:18 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


y2karl: I applaud you. Seriously.

Also, I'd like to take this opportunity to point out that jsavimbi is insane for believing insomnia_lj and I are the same person.

Thank you, that is all.
posted by odinsdream at 1:19 PM on November 15, 2005


And what marquis said. I didn't go looking for this. It was handed to me. I figured out a couple of things and thought out loud in a thread and ended up gaming the gamer into outing himself by default. I'd just as soon as have somebody else put it together. I'm damaged goods on this one. On the other hand, nobody held a gun to his head and made him do all this. That part pisses me off. I can feel only so sorry.

And, I'm not opening his emails to me today. He should write someone else and speak his piece in public if he wants. Or not, if he doesn't.
posted by y2karl at 1:21 PM on November 15, 2005


Most of you didn't have to take the bait Dyoht dangled. You're not cold-blooded automatons with little capacity for decision. You chose to play Dhyot's games.

You'd be surprised.

People are actually predictable. One of this site's biggest problems is the constant fighting and noise. It really turns people off. Yes, it would be nice if people could control themselves, but if you poke someone often enough they'll poke back. Or try. This guy was going around needlessly inflaming the site, making it worse for people who don't like all the acrimony.
posted by delmoi at 1:24 PM on November 15, 2005


loquax: I mean, everyone here is anonymous anyways,

Not true! There is a large minority of users who reveal their real names - I would guess that most of them would prefer it if everyone would.

KevinSkomsvold: there goes my "People Who Link To Me" count.

I have heard this mentioned several times in the last week or so. It always surprises me that anybody actually uses the feature. It isn't hard to figure out what it is for, but maybe somebody could link up a conversation where its importance is being discussed.

mathowie: So now it is public, and I'm seeing what I figured I'd see. One person gamed us all, but a few people here are doing little sore-winner victory laps and dropping "I told you so's" to those they disagreed with.

As you say, a few people are being sore-winners, and not that sore really.

This situation stinks, I'm glad I know about it, and I doubt I've ever had an exchange with any of the 4 dhoyt accounts.
posted by Chuckles at 1:28 PM on November 15, 2005


And, I'm not opening his emails to me today. He should write someone else and speak his piece in public if he wants. Or not, if he doesn't.
posted by y2karl at 1:21 PM PST on November 15


dhoyt please feel free to email me :)
posted by Optimus Chyme at 1:30 PM on November 15, 2005


No. we didn't choose to play his game. Taking things at face value, we were playing by a different set of rules. Even in this thread, the confusion is obvious ... people are still referring to janleigh as "she."

So dhoty et. al was banned for having more realistically fleshed out sock puppets than everyone else? Banned for creativity!
posted by xmutex at 1:31 PM on November 15, 2005


delmoi, is there anybody who likes the acrimony? I know Mefi has a long tradition of penis measuring contests and it's all good fun, but the personal feuding is a different animal. Personally, I'd like to see the admins be more free with the timeouts for those persons who can't even make the effort to strike a civil tone.
posted by nixerman at 1:31 PM on November 15, 2005


What I'm tired of is all this hand wringing and washing of hands being spouted by various longtimers who should know better.

This thread is, in a way, one long mea culpa by y2karl: I found this out/was told this, and I'm partly responsible. For that - much kudos, sincerely. I except you from this particular complaint of mine.

Here, today, several posters are saying they wish this place hadn't taken a turn towards the mean, in say 09/2001, or in 2004 sometime. That's BS.

There's always been a mean streak here - and many of those complaining of it now are responsible for it themselves. Check out your own posting histories: then, get over yourselves.

If you can seriously resolve not to attack members personally, throwing petrol on the flames, do so. It ain't hard, it ain't that clever, it ain't big. But it is a small step you can make to improve Mefi. Why not?
posted by dash_slot- at 1:34 PM on November 15, 2005


Not true! There is a large minority of users who reveal their real names - I would guess that most of them would prefer it if everyone would.

Well, even the act of having to click on a username provides a level of anonimity. The only times I've ever done it is when I've wanted to email someone. It's a layer behind what you see in the threads, and personally, I've always responded to everyone as they present themselves through their words, not their flickr accounts.
posted by loquax at 1:41 PM on November 15, 2005


Can we post GIFs yet?
posted by fire&wings at 1:42 PM on November 15, 2005


So dhoty et. al was banned for having more realistically fleshed out sock puppets than everyone else? Banned for creativity!
posted by xmutex at 1:31 PM PST on November 15


Since we're all talking about acrimony now, let me say this: you are stupid. Just for starters, he used his little system to SELF-LINK TO THE FRONT PAGE. Read the thread, goddammit.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 1:45 PM on November 15, 2005


Since we're all talking about acrimony now, let me say this: you are stupid. Just for starters, he used his little system to SELF-LINK TO THE FRONT PAGE. Read the thread, goddammit.

So, if I understand you right, dhoyt was banned for having a sock puppet? Is that what you are saying?
posted by xmutex at 1:50 PM on November 15, 2005


Metafilter:$5 Bob!bies,
Well Lodurr, as one of those I have to say this is exactly like a community, family even. This is what Christmas is like with my in-laws. You know in advance it is going to be a train-wreck, you you still watch in fascination as a group of highly intelligent people tear each other apart.
OK so now I'm prolly rubber-necking as the fire service would say.
So what other trash cliche am I, I wonder, Hmmm, you know what? I'm part of this community too.
Dhoyt's SP history is bizarre and sad, but Y2Karl's terrier-like inability to let go is equally sad.
Just a normal family Christmas then! (Is this what Thanksgiving is all about? cos it sure sounds like a family Xmas fiasco to me, and does that mean this will continue until January, HELLLPPP!!!)
posted by Wilder at 1:54 PM on November 15, 2005


xmutex, I assume you're being disingenuous, but, as far as I can tell, dhoyt was banned for having multiple sockpuppets, which he used to deliberately mislead and lie to the community.
posted by MrMoonPie at 1:54 PM on November 15, 2005


Mebbe dhoyt just needs a vasectomy.
posted by xmutex at 1:55 PM on November 15, 2005


As for sockpuppets, I agree with whoever made the distinction somewhere up there between obvious sockpuppets created for fun (Pot, Kettle) and evil sockpuppets like dhoyt's. I think Matt should ban the latter ruthlessly, but allow the former as long as they're used strictly for purposes of everyone's amusement. - languagehat

I agree that it's a valuable distinction.
posted by raedyn at 1:56 PM on November 15, 2005


It ain't hard, it ain't that clever, it ain't big.

I don't know about the It ain't hard part but otherwise, what he said. The sharpest tongues here should relent from excess lamentation and think about it. Even the I'm trying to make this place more civil type venerable statesmen have gotten disappointingly meaner. And they have as easy a time copping to it as those with no such pretensions. Which is to say not at all. All hands are dirty. Talking about walking off disheartened in light of such a predicament is a pose. The getting nasty part is always easy to condemn in another. Stop bringing up people by name. Stay out of other people's fights. Your good intentions do not erase your malice. It's not them--it's us.It's not him--it's you. You are the person you can control. Pick up your socks. Go put the tools away. Stand up straight.
posted by y2karl at 1:57 PM on November 15, 2005


...and furthermore: clean up your room, do your homework, leave the damned cat alone, stop picking on your little sister and get your fingers out of your nose.

And that goes for YOU, too!!

(Don't MAKE me stop this blog!!!)
posted by Floydd at 2:04 PM on November 15, 2005


In your dreams.

I dreamed I was a lady editor…
posted by timeistight at 2:05 PM on November 15, 2005


I know what my next novel will be about now.
posted by cortex at 2:14 PM on November 15, 2005


All I know is that I feel even better for having called dhoyt a prick when he accused everyone of not feeling sufficient rage and grief over the Beslan school hostage crisis last year.
posted by scody at 2:19 PM on November 15, 2005


shit that came out of a bull
posted by cortex at 2:20 PM on November 15, 2005


/passes the dutchie to left hand side

What if we're all sock puppets?
posted by mullingitover at 2:26 PM on November 15, 2005


I wonder if that was all of his accounts?
posted by edgeways at 2:27 PM on November 15, 2005


Whoa, that's really dee--

Man, my hands are huuuuge!
posted by cortex at 2:28 PM on November 15, 2005


(Wow, good rant, scody.)
posted by nobody at 2:28 PM on November 15, 2005


Nobody from Dundee would ever brag about it on their profile page.


Well said that man.

i vote dhoyt can come back - but he's only allowed to use the jenleigh account .
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:29 PM on November 15, 2005


Take enough errant swings, y2karl, and you're bound to hit the ball eventually.
posted by Kwantsar at 2:31 PM on November 15, 2005


Most of you didn't have to take the bait Dyoht dangled. You're not cold-blooded automatons with little capacity for decision. You chose to play Dhyot's games.
You'd be surprised.

People are actually predictable. One of this site's biggest problems is the constant fighting and noise. It really turns people off. Yes, it would be nice if people could control themselves, but if you poke someone often enough they'll poke back. Or try. This guy was going around needlessly inflaming the site, making it worse for people who don't like all the acrimony.
posted by delmoi at 1:24 PM PST on November 15 [!]


I guess that I hold enough respect for the people I desire to read on MeFi that I believe that they should be capable of controlling themselves.

If Dhoyt can be banned for being incapable of being a git, then so should those people who participated in his bizarre vignettes. They are equally culpable.

I think the people I respect and read can meet the challenge of participating in these forums in a manner that is pleasant, respectful, honest, and well-argued.

Here is my commitment: I am actively trying to reduce my use of conventionally vulgar language. I don't want to use "fuck" and "shit" and suchlike in my writing any more. It is unnecessary and I suspect it drives away some interesting and intelligent people who would be a source of enjoyable reading and debate.

So call me out on it from now on. Drop a little badfish! into whatever it is you are writing, and it'll startle me into realizing that I slipped up again. You can help me break my bad habit.

I think I've broken my previously bad habit of being suckered into unreasonable debate with a troll. But if I fail, call me on that one, too.

kthxbye.
posted by five fresh fish at 2:34 PM on November 15, 2005


Where are the Clif's Notes for this post?
posted by Tuwa at 2:34 PM on November 15, 2005


I do have to admit it would be easier to not descend to the trolls and dhoyts and PP's levels if Matt would grow a pair and get rid of the substandard.

Tuwa: "I'm working to be better than you."

badfish!
posted by five fresh fish at 2:38 PM on November 15, 2005


I hereby vow to do my best from calling anyone cockwranglers, Anal-sniffing schnoz gobblins, and pussyfarts from here on out. Regardless of such behavior.
posted by Balisong at 2:46 PM on November 15, 2005


First, the earth cooled. Then...
posted by fixedgear at 2:46 PM on November 15, 2005



So call me out on it from now on. Drop a little badfish! into whatever it is you are writing, and it'll startle me into realizing that I slipped up again. You can help me break my bad habit.


I dont remember you asking me to be your fucking sponsor mate.
Give it up yourself, you lazy bastard.

; )
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:48 PM on November 15, 2005


So, that vegan haggis not working out for you, Sgt. A Wee Bit Agitated ?
posted by y2karl at 2:51 PM on November 15, 2005


Metafilter: Agitated Vegan Haggis
posted by Balisong at 2:54 PM on November 15, 2005


Where are the Clif's Notes for this post?

I'll give it a shot:
"dhoyt had three sockpuppet accounts."

"WHATTHEFUCK! OHMYGOD! THATSBULLSHIT! INEVERBELIEVEDJENLEIGH! WEALLKNEW! LANGUAGEHATWASAFOOL! BANSOCKPUPPETS! BANTHEBADKINDOFSOCKPUPPETS! MATTHOWCOMEYOUDIDN'TTELLUS? TROLL! BASTARD! AAHHHHHHHHH! AAARRRGGHHHH! UUUUNNNGGGHHH!"
I think that about covers it.
posted by pardonyou? at 3:01 PM on November 15, 2005


I am too childish-foolish for this world.
posted by homunculus at 3:03 PM on November 15, 2005


And, I'm not opening his emails to me today.

In all seriousness karl, is there any good reason to open them ever?

/posts Mary J. Blige album cover
posted by yerfatma at 3:04 PM on November 15, 2005


I think pardonyou? pretty much has it covered.
posted by raedyn at 3:08 PM on November 15, 2005


No, but there are good reasons to forward them to me.

Shameless, vulgar curiosity is a good reason, dammit.
posted by cortex at 3:09 PM on November 15, 2005


Thanks, pardonyou? ... I've been out of high school too long; I realized that what I really needed was the Norton Critical Edition; as a relative latecomer who's avoided most of the partisan mefi threads it was all Greek to me. But then I realized I didn't care to get into all the interpersonal warfare so I don't want them after all.
posted by Tuwa at 3:13 PM on November 15, 2005


Sockpuppets?

I am Sparticus, and pardonyou? wins.
posted by Wulfgar! at 3:15 PM on November 15, 2005


As for a simple summary, get a simple answer.

Personally, I think this has more to do with honesty and trust. We call ourselves a community. One of our members was being deceitful in a manner that also broke one of the few rules we have around here. That person paid the price for breaking the rules.
posted by terrapin at 3:20 PM on November 15, 2005


Gracious sakes. And two of the puppets link to me (I think because I went off on an ill-advised tirade on F&M once).
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 3:31 PM on November 15, 2005


The self-linking via use of the sock puppet clearly makes for banination.
posted by Carbolic at 3:33 PM on November 15, 2005


If worst came to worst, you could always post outside of work hours.
Then what on earth would we do during work hours?
posted by dg at 3:40 PM on November 15, 2005


cloeburner said: I'm not exactly certain what this post is about but Hall of Robots is a real person who lives in my hometown. Just thought I would clear that up. Perhaps there's more to it than that, but I don't feel like reading this topic.

Could we get some clarification here? Confirm/deny? Etc?
posted by cortex at 3:47 PM on November 15, 2005


I think that about covers it.

Hmm... there was, to be fair, the 10:1 in total word count barrage screech at amberglow on the part of dios. And you seem to have missed the YOG SOTHOTH !! N'YAARLOTHEP ! THE BEAST IN THE WOODS WITH A THOUSAND YOUNG !! AIEEE !!! SHUB-NIGGURATH !!!! YAAHH!!! part as well.
posted by y2karl at 3:49 PM on November 15, 2005


In the end, who cares? Guy messes around with sock puppets and gets banned. They really all should. And that's the thing: the focus on this post should be "Sockpuppets are bad and should be banned" not "Watch as I prove that dhoyt had a sockpuppet." As far as I know the latter has already been resolved, but former is a good point of discussion.
posted by dios at 10:18 AM PST on November 15 [!]


Who cares? I do. Evidently others as well. Is this astonishing to you for some reason?

And I'm not surprised that you object to y2karl backing up a statement with extensive evidence, much of which would, think (though I could be wrong), have been asked of him had he not provided it up front. I suppose general proclamations without explanation are a better approach?

And I find your perception that you have the ability to know what a thread will be about so early on into it's history truly amusing. Is it a game or something?

I know what my next novel will be about now.
posted by cortex at 2:14 PM PST on November 15 [!]


What was your first or other novel(s) about?

The self-linking via use of the sock puppet clearly makes for banination.
posted by Carbolic at 3:33 PM PST on November 15 [!]


Not to xmutex. Though I'm pleased he finds this thread amusing, I'm at a loss to answer his questions since the answers are spread throughout this thread and the policies of this blog. Wise men may look like fools for asking certain questions, but the truly foolish are those who don't ask any questions at all. I respect his wish to increase his wisdom. What other approaches can we take to help xmutex understand?
posted by juiceCake at 3:52 PM on November 15, 2005


Also, which of the persons using the cloeburner account knows Hall of Robots?
posted by cortex at 3:56 PM on November 15, 2005


juiceCake: the first one was about a burntout rocker and the compulsive liar he fell in love with, and their ridiculous intersection with a religious fanatic. It was a terrible mess.

The novel-in-progress is about a girl who hears voices, a girl down on her luck, and the high school guidance counselor who's worried about them. So far it's less terrible of a mess.
posted by cortex at 3:59 PM on November 15, 2005


Who cares? I do. Evidently others as well. Is this astonishing to you for some reason?

It's astonishing to me.
posted by justgary at 4:02 PM on November 15, 2005


juiceCake: My only confusion is that there is such vitriol here for someone who used sock puppets to self link and play out this weird little soap opera with himself. It's really a little strange.

No, wait, given the strange hypersensitivty and tendency of Karl to really go the fuck off about silly nothings, I guess I shouldn't be surprised that this issue's being presented like it's freaking Watergate.
posted by xmutex at 4:03 PM on November 15, 2005


xmutex, this situation is a little strange. And the only one escalating it to Watergate status is you. This was a shitty little effort by a shitty little poster, dhoytjenlieghetall. y2karl pointed out the facts. People got pissed at being played. NO wonder that people don't liked getting spoofed. Deal.
posted by Wulfgar! at 4:11 PM on November 15, 2005


So the GREAT PURGE isn't beginning?

*creeps out from bunker*
posted by sciurus at 4:15 PM on November 15, 2005


I'll give it a shot:


"dhoyt had three sockpuppet accounts."

"WHATTHEFUCK! OHMYGOD! THATSBULLSHIT! INEVERBELIEVEDJENLEIGH! WEALLKNEW! LANGUAGEHATWASAFOOL! BANSOCKPUPPETS! BANTHEBADKINDOFSOCKPUPPETS! MATTHOWCOMEYOUDIDN'TTELLUS? TROLL! BASTARD! AAHHHHHHHHH! AAARRRGGHHHH! UUUUNNNGGGHHH!"

I think that about covers it.


# Wow. I read the whole thread and actually...it does. Golf claps!
posted by angeline at 4:21 PM on November 15, 2005


vegan haggis not working?

well , have you heard fff say any rude words since that helpful advice i gave him ?

some people will help you and others will save your life.

also my local tescos are doin 4 cream cakes for 20p , i'm feeling very fat and sassy.
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:32 PM on November 15, 2005


Ahh MeFi, still interesting after 2 years of reading. Must be a geek thing *moves on*
posted by wheelieman at 4:32 PM on November 15, 2005


This sort of stuff fascinates me, thanks for taking the time to explain it y2karl.
posted by chill at 4:36 PM on November 15, 2005


juiceCake: My only confusion is that there is such vitriol here for someone who used sock puppets to self link and play out this weird little soap opera with himself. It's really a little strange.

No, wait, given the strange hypersensitivty and tendency of Karl to really go the fuck off about silly nothings, I guess I shouldn't be surprised that this issue's being presented like it's freaking Watergate.
posted by xmutex at 4:03 PM PST on November 15 [!]


You had asked what was wrong with what dhoyt and his sockpuppets did initially. I guess we were supposed to know what you actually were asking was why was there so much vitriol (as perceived by xmutex) about what dhoyt had done? I apologize for failing to realize that your actual question was "Why is there so much vitriol for dhoyt having and using mulitple sock puppets. The failure, I am sure, is entirely my own.

As for Watergate. I disagree. But then, people often do. I've known many that have disagreed with me, many that haven't, and many that I've both agreed and disagreed with. Sometimes over points-of-view, what interests each other, and of course many other things.

A warning. If you think this is a Watergate level issue on MetaTalk, be prepared for far worse.
posted by juiceCake at 4:40 PM on November 15, 2005


Who cares? I do. Evidently others as well. Is this astonishing to you for some reason?

It's astonishing to me.
posted by justgary at 4:02 PM PST on November 15 [!]


Fabulous. I'm blushing.
posted by juiceCake at 4:41 PM on November 15, 2005


"...there was, to be fair, the 10:1 in total word count barrage screech at amberglow on the part of dios."

Dios overreacted, but his complaint was valid. Amberglow's swipe at LH was bad manners, at least. Languagehat's instinct to defend the underdog is admirable and the fact that jenleigh was a fraud is irrelevant to this. And one can understand dios's zeal in defending LH being that he's one of the few people that has defended dios in the past. Amberglow's harangue against dios in response was far more than was called for.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:41 PM on November 15, 2005


I also sort of know the real life Hall of Robots, unless someone has commandeered a picture of the guy I know for use on the mefi frappr page.
posted by Espy Gillespie at 4:41 PM on November 15, 2005


Well, at least this thread puts the "amberglow is a nice guy" myth safely to rest.
posted by Krrrlson at 4:49 PM on November 15, 2005


A warning. If you think this is a Watergate level issue on MetaTalk, be prepared for far worse.

Like when you find out there really are people from Dundee using metafilter.

anyway , twa plain bridies and an ingin in an aw please.
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:52 PM on November 15, 2005


sorry , twa plain pez.
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:53 PM on November 15, 2005


I also sort of know the real life Hall of Robots, unless someone has commandeered a picture of the guy I know for use on the mefi frappr page.

That seems (knock on wood) pretty unlikely. So if Hall of Robots is, uh, not dhoyt, then are we talking collatoral damage here?
posted by cortex at 4:54 PM on November 15, 2005


Wow, I almost feel like I missed something by not caring about dhoyt or jenleigh (or even knowing who they were). Almost.
posted by Eideteker at 4:56 PM on November 15, 2005


Sarge, I think you mean "...an an ingan ane an aw." (For the uninitiated, he's requesting two plain meat pastries and one onion one as well.)

So is it time for the group sex yet, or are we still on the tar and feathers part?
posted by languagehat at 5:09 PM on November 15, 2005


Finkle is Einhorn...
Einhorn is Finkle...

*wretches*

Add one more vote to the "Greatest Thread Ever" category. I'm left not knowing if I hate sock puppets... or if I want one! Not an evil one or anything... definitely not that. But a good one. Hmmmm...

*wonders if '72' is taken*
posted by 27 at 5:10 PM on November 15, 2005


are we talking collatoral damage here?

The dude just emailed me and fessed up, so no. Nice sleuthing or whatever.
posted by Espy Gillespie at 5:13 PM on November 15, 2005


So...fuck. Are those pictures of the actual dhoyt? Or did dhoyt actually acquire/construct a secondary physical persona (complete with daughter) for one of the alts?

I was gonna watch Twin Peaks tonight, but now I don't think I need to.
posted by cortex at 5:18 PM on November 15, 2005


No, he's a real guy and everything. I used to follow his old band. So odd that his membership ends like this.
posted by puke & cry at 5:32 PM on November 15, 2005


Sgt– are you sure it isn't just the one peh, an' an ingin in an ah?
posted by Len at 5:37 PM on November 15, 2005


He's dhoyt! *slap* He's jenleigh! *slap* He's dhoyt and jenleigh!! *breaks down sobbing*

Man, what a crazy thread. Totally wild, man.

Can we post GIFs yet?

+

"WHATTHEFUCK! OHMYGOD! THATSBULLSHIT! INEVERBELIEVEDJENLEIGH! WEALLKNEW! LANGUAGEHATWASAFOOL! BANSOCKPUPPETS! BANTHEBADKINDOFSOCKPUPPETS! MATTHOWCOMEYOUDIDN'TTELLUS? TROLL! BASTARD! AAHHHHHHHHH! AAARRRGGHHHH! UUUUNNNGGGHHH!"

=


posted by kosher_jenny at 5:39 PM on November 15, 2005


A Scottish meetup sounds good, but I live in California. Sorry.
posted by gramschmidt at 5:58 PM on November 15, 2005


There is not nearly enough Guu love on the Internet. Also, if it's image time:

<img src="http://img314.imageshack.us/img314/3852/marioplan9ja.jpg/"
posted by darukaru at 5:59 PM on November 15, 2005


The reason for the outrage (imnsho) works on a couple of different levels. There are MeFi posters with whom I disagree. There are MeFi posters whose style rubs me the wrong way. That's fine. It adds depth and texture to the community (whether you believe it exists or not).

dhoyt's posts were always standouts, though. A greater archivist than I might be able to sift through the archives and produce a list of dhoyt posts which contained something of value, but no other user (again, my opinion) produced a greater number of useless posts. If an FPP contained anything which might be considered left/liberal leaning, dhoyt would appear to defecate in the thread. He never provided useful counter arguments, he never provided thoughtful analysis. His sole reason for existence seemed to be to tell us that we were wrong for believing what we believed; or that we weren't good enough human beings to value the things we valued or grieve the things we lost.

If you are a sensitive or thoughtful creature, you hear those things and you engage in self-analysis. You worry that maybe you aren't the best person you could be. Perhaps I should have mourned more for the children in Chechnya and spent less time giggling about the internets or getting some practiced love from my OB/GYN.

Each time someone validated dhoyt's comments, it ticked up another mark inside the little mental democracy that makes up the psyche. Am I really justified in my outrage? Are my values and priorities in the wrong place? The fact that some of the people validating dhoyt's comments also happened to be dhoyt is a fundamental betrayal.

We're outraged for every time we said to ourselves, "What if he's not a prick?" (thanks, scody) Moreover, we're a little chuffed at the idea that we were right. Pardon a little self-righteous glee on our parts. We've earned it.

On preview: maybe I'm a little late if the GIFs have started...
posted by FYKshun at 5:59 PM on November 15, 2005


Is Dhoyt also Karen? That'd be almost cool.
posted by five fresh fish at 6:09 PM on November 15, 2005


Also, which of the persons using the cloeburner account knows Hall of Robots?

DHoyt, most likely.
posted by klangklangston at 6:21 PM on November 15, 2005


delmoi writes "Plus jenleigh == dhoyt? How crazy is that?"

Crazy? It's about the least surprising thing to come out of this whole sordid affair.
posted by clevershark at 6:21 PM on November 15, 2005




posted by selfnoise at 6:30 PM on November 15, 2005


I was gonna watch Twin Peaks tonight, but now I don't think I need to.

I was going to drop this purple microdot I've been saving but now I'm certain I don't need to.



Attention Fuzz, Feds and DEA fuckbuckets: that was a joke. I haven't seen nor hear of any such thing in far too many years. Thanks. Thanks a whole lot. Keep up the good work. ETC.
posted by loquacious at 6:31 PM on November 15, 2005


dios writes "In the end, who cares? Guy messes around with sock puppets and gets banned. "

Step 1 -- try to dismiss the whole thing as irrelevant.

dios writes "Oh, and one more thing, I am amazed you refer to usernames of people who are sockpuppets (in my best guess) for support in your screed about someone else using sockpuppets."

Step 2 -- attack the rhetoric

dios writes "Well, karl, I can only assume you are referring to matteo who apparently has a giant McCarthyite list in the works to try to Out the Reds People He Doesn't Like As Sockpuppets."

Step 3 -- attack the messenger outright

dios writes "In amberglow's world, it's all about his politics. He is even more blindly 'with me or against me' then the person he hates most, Bush."

Step 4 -- deflection -- attack a third party

dios is nothing if not talented in this rhetoric stuff. Is that what they teach in law school now?
posted by clevershark at 6:35 PM on November 15, 2005 [3 favorites]


I really, really don't understand what's going on, but it's not as cool as Law & Order, sorry.
posted by cmonkey at 6:49 PM on November 15, 2005


Nice analysis, clevershark, but the last line will be the only thing dios focuses on. He has an uncanny knack for taking things out of context.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 6:54 PM on November 15, 2005


Hi guys.

Dhoyt here, courtesy of Bardic.


First I want to apologize to mathowie & the rest of you for carrying out this dumb ruse so long. I know it's a pain in the ass cleaning up the mess now, but before the torches are snuffed out for good, I want to explain some things.

In short, the various MeFi personas you've seen were created for a variety of reasons, albeit none of them as juicy as some might wish. I'd actually asked mathowie two weeks ago to delete the dhoyt account because the Contentious Heel persona had long worn out its welcome—yet I was finding it increasingly hard to resist—though for whatever reason he never responded. Dhoyt was an old account I'd used over the years—with contributions here & there early on from co-workers who also had the login—which would create little dramas for myself and friends or co-workers to watch. It was a silly way to pass the time while at work. And the occasional hatemail was priceless for all the morbidly fascinating reasons you'd expect.

But two things happened: MeFi grew, and I realized I didn't want the persona anymore, so here & there more users were created as a lark. I'd hoped I'd be able to abandon the dhoyt altogether as I didn't want anyone higher up at work thinking I spent all my time at MeFi. So other accounts were created with the hopes of diluting my MeFi activity. Additionally, I hoped to just stop playing "human chess" with the accounts, all contributing to each other's threads ala Pot & Kettle, because I knew some day someone would figure it out. Again, a lame way to pass the time during slow days at work, and I should've quit while I was behind.

As for the comments I've made over time, some are literal, many are just for provocation, and the political stuff is anathema to almost everything I believe -- anyone who browsed the highsignal blog could probably have guessed that. Part of playing The Heel for so long involved acting more Right-Wing-Than-Thou, as well as cribbing opinions from DailyPundit et al. I saw how far I could push a ruse, and I got what I asked for. But minus the petty snipes, which I wholeheartedly regret, I learned a lot more by playing the Heel than I thought I would.

Sorry to disappoint anyone who thought I lived in my parents' basement, or was a schizophrenic, or what have you ;) Weirdly enough, until now I'd always assumed MeFi was made up of quite a few users operating a handful of accounts for the same reason: to watch the weirdness which ensued.

In the end, seeing the mess it's made has caused me to lose some sleep and realize I owed a big Sorry to the MeFi community for being on the receiving end of an anarchic experiment I was sure had to end soon, and did, just exactly as I suspected it would. I shouldn't have played "human chess" with MetaFilter identities, and I shouldn't have engaged as many as I did. I partially masked my identity for the same reason so many here do: to keep their bosses off their trail. But using multiple identities and dicking around with them for the enjoyment of others was not necessary, so I understand why the identities have to be retired.

Take care all, and sorry a million times for the trouble. MeFi is a great community and does not need sockpuppets to dilute its purpose. Sorry most especially to mathowie.



-Dhoyt
posted by bardic at 6:56 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


Armitage Shanks writes "If worst came to worst, you could always post outside of work hours."

Now your just talking crazy.
posted by Mitheral at 6:58 PM on November 15, 2005


Hey, I guess it's true that Mefi's rightwingers have more money and they are ready to use it to silence/oppress the people. This thing must have cost dhoyt a whole fifteen dollars!
posted by Krrrlson at 6:58 PM on November 15, 2005


Interesting. So jenleigh's a complete invention, then? Wasn't entirely sure about that part.

You know, I think banning dhoyt was proper and all, but I gotta say, he's a more interesting person than I ever took him for.

Also, stop needling dios, guys, you cheapen the psychological richness of this thread by making this into ideological red vs. blue.
posted by furiousthought at 7:10 PM on November 15, 2005


Optimus Chyme writes "Nice analysis, clevershark, but the last line will be the only thing dios focuses on."

Well, obviously he's free to do what he wants. Nowadays I only scan his posts as a short exercise of dialectics anyway.
posted by clevershark at 7:11 PM on November 15, 2005


The above was cutnpasted from an email I got from Dhoyt which he asked me to forward.

For those who care, I met dhoyt while living in Charlottesville. He'd mentioned mefi as a cool site, and I was a lurker for a long while before getting an account last year. I'm not a co-worker of his, just a friend.
posted by bardic at 7:12 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


dios writes "In the end, who cares? Guy messes around with sock puppets and gets banned. "

Step 1 -- try to dismiss the whole thing as irrelevant.


Maybe to dios it is. This might surprise you, but to some people metafilter is just a place to find cool links. Hell, plenty of readers on the front page will never hear of this thread and their metafilter experience will be none the worse.

dios writes "In amberglow's world, it's all about his politics. He is even more blindly 'with me or against me' then the person he hates most, Bush."

Step 4 -- deflection -- attack a third party


Step 5 -- conveniently forget that amberglow had already brought a third party into the situation.
posted by justgary at 7:17 PM on November 15, 2005


Thanks for passing that on, bardic. It looks like complete and utter bullshit to me, but you are just the messenger.

Unless you are another one of dhoyt's little inventions, of course.
posted by dg at 7:17 PM on November 15, 2005


Wow. It's interesting: I think dhoyt's even more of a prick than before. Who knew?
posted by scody at 7:18 PM on November 15, 2005 [2 favorites]


To clarify my position: I shared an account with a band member just because we were too cheap to shell out 5 bucks [as opposed to dhoyt who could afford upwards of 15 bucks worth of accounts]. I too am from Charlottesville and am slightly aware of Darren through the music scene [a band he's in is on Absolutely Kosher] of which we are both a part. The person I shared an account with has now split off from me and created a new account to avoid any future confusion. Cville represent.

This whole ordeal is quite intriguing though. Well done y2karl. I hope everyone can move on, no hard feelings.
posted by cloeburner at 7:19 PM on November 15, 2005



I know on the internets no one knows you're a dog and so forth, but I always thought there was something odd about jenleigh's posts - "she" never read like a girl to me.
posted by Lynsey at 7:19 PM on November 15, 2005


Well whaddayaknow... the right really does rally! How cute.
posted by clevershark at 7:23 PM on November 15, 2005


clevershark is Rothko's sock puppet
posted by Carbolic at 7:24 PM on November 15, 2005


Man, my birthplace sure is full of people with multiple or fractional accounts.
posted by selfnoise at 7:27 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


Well whaddayaknow... the right really does rally! How cute.
posted by clevershark


Such beautiful irony.
posted by justgary at 7:33 PM on November 15, 2005


Is it bad that I now assume that bardic is some un-outed dhoyt alter-ego? And how many other sleepers does that psychopath have?
posted by crunchland at 7:33 PM on November 15, 2005


26434 members, 10238 of them dhoyt.
posted by Krrrlson at 7:36 PM on November 15, 2005


This definitely puts a different spin on the infamous dhyot versus AlexReynolds thread...
posted by juiceCake at 7:39 PM on November 15, 2005


So ah, my multiple hawt cyber sessions with JenLeigh ("putcher hand undrr me kilt again lass, and you'll ken why the sheep cannae no longer walk!"), they didn't mean anything to you dhoyt???
posted by orthogonality at 7:45 PM on November 15, 2005


My greatest disappointment is that justgary isn't one of dhoyt's accounts.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 7:45 PM on November 15, 2005


So, dhoyt isn't really dying of cancer?

If the above email is authentic, then dhoyt's biggest crime isn't in dhoyt being jenleigh, but is dhoyt being dhoyt. Cracking down on sockpuppets wouldn't have helped.

Clevershark, put a sock in it.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 7:48 PM on November 15, 2005


My greatest disappointment is that justgary isn't one of dhoyt's accounts.

My greatest disappointment is that I have no idea who the hell you are.
posted by justgary at 7:50 PM on November 15, 2005


I don't know who ANY of you are anymore!

*cries*
posted by scody at 7:54 PM on November 15, 2005


What's really odd, and I mean REALLY odd, is that no one has yet mentioned that there may be a fifth or even sixth account held in reserve.

Sockpuppets have been around for ages, but this incredible orchestration leads one to believe the poster may have suffered from MPD. Really, no one should blame themselves for not realizing the fact considering that nearly every actor out there is capable of portraying several different personalities (often in the same movie).

This might all be annoying, but surprising? Don't tell me you've never thought of it.
posted by IronLizard at 7:55 PM on November 15, 2005


Oops. They did. Preview dammit, remember preview or they'll rip you apart like a pack of rabit geese!
posted by IronLizard at 8:03 PM on November 15, 2005


It was a silly way to pass the time while at work. And the occasional hatemail was priceless for all the morbidly fascinating reasons you'd expect.

On the other hand, sending out hatemail as the Contentious Heel persona was getting a bit obsessive, no?

still like Bottom of the Hudson though
posted by Armitage Shanks at 8:03 PM on November 15, 2005


Err... rabid. Crap, a spelling error too, now I'm done for.
posted by IronLizard at 8:03 PM on November 15, 2005


*rips into IronLizard's sweet, tender flesh*
posted by scody at 8:14 PM on November 15, 2005


>>I'm not a co-worker of his, just a friend.
posted by bardic at 7:12 PM PST on November 15 [!]


oh okay. whatever you say.

seriously, getting ostracized from an "online internet community" is pretty fucking pathetic. please make sure you tell your friend dhoyt/jenleigh/hall of robots/highsignal that tia.
posted by naxosaxur at 8:16 PM on November 15, 2005


I've gone through my online life, wondering why people would spend the time and energy to troll, and why trolls always seem to be so static, unidimensional and uninteresting. It's because the people who troll do so because they are board and boring. Interesting.
posted by Freen at 8:17 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]



posted by brain_drain at 8:18 PM on November 15, 2005


Going forward, there's no way to block sockpuppet accounts.

but you can put a big crimp in their ability to wreak havoc:

posted by quonsar (67.172.70.46) at 11:16 PM on November 15
posted by quonsar at 8:18 PM on November 15, 2005


Oh YEAH! I don't think I've ever asked for a pony before, but that's the one I want, daddy Mathowie!
posted by scody at 8:23 PM on November 15, 2005


what did the person who was dhoyt/jenleigh/etc do wrong?

One of the guiding principles here is trust in each other. The index page of metafilter.com can be added to by almost everybody that has signed up, as there is very little editing or deleting going on. Anyone can post a comment in a thread, and say whatever they feel.

I give you the ability to do this because I trust you. I trust that you'll act in a civilized manner, that you'll treat others with opposing viewpoints with absolute respect, that you'll contribute in a positive way to the intelligent discussions that take place here everyday.

I give you the benefit of the doubt, because I trust you, so all that I ask is for you to honor that trust and promise to become a good contributor.

posted by Likable Lefty at 8:23 PM on November 15, 2005


If the above email is authentic, then dhoyt's biggest crime isn't in dhoyt being jenleigh, but is dhoyt being dhoyt. Cracking down on sockpuppets wouldn't have helped.

Did you guys catch this along with the message from dhoyt? At the core, this was one big troll. Sockpuppets were a side issue to the core problem.

I have even less sympathy for dhoyt than I did earlier today. To knowingly fuck with an entire community. To make it a harsher place to be. To purposely goad people into fights for shits and giggles. It drove people away from the site in droves.

We've all been played, and it fucking sucks.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 8:24 PM on November 15, 2005 [2 favorites]


Eh, IP tags. Great, just what I need is more South Korean script kiddy pings o' death, ICMP bombs and port probes.

Having it run in the background I have no problems with. A script for Matt's use to spot abusive multi-account, same-IP usage is fine by me.

But then I'm on a DHCP cable modem, so a mild selection of individual IPs are available. And there's lots and lots of DHCP PPPoE ADSL lines out there, probably more common than static IP dsl these days for the average consumer.
posted by loquacious at 8:26 PM on November 15, 2005


i understand that metafilter appears quite different to the admins from what the users see. it would be fairly easy to show the users IP only on the admins pages. and no, its not foolproof, with dynamic IP's and proxies etal, but it would make life more challenging for someone trying to dhoyt the community.
posted by quonsar at 8:30 PM on November 15, 2005


Well loves, be he deeply sad, probably mentally ill, internet troll, egotistical self deluding anti-climactic art fucker or merely a perfectly normal feller with too much free time and a lack of access to Lionel train sets, I hope when the histories are written and the Ozymandias verbiage is worked out, it can be written thus:

Dhoyt, sure he was a lotta people, but he had quick hands and sometimes that's enough.


Everyone should stop being such dicks to each other, and I include myself in that, I like it here, it's pretty much better than everywhere else and worth the effort.
posted by Divine_Wino at 8:35 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


So what did dhoyt do, now?
posted by xmutex at 8:35 PM on November 15, 2005


Dhoyt isn't schizophrenic, nor does he have multiple personality disorder; Dhoyt is a sociopath, operating under the guise that "it's just a message board," and forgetting that this place is comprised of real people.

Also, the "I just assumed everyone else was doing it too!" is a bullshit excuse.
posted by Quartermass at 8:36 PM on November 15, 2005 [2 favorites]


scody and FYKShun - I remember that Beslan thread and I have to admit that it soured me a bit on MetaFilter too. dhoyt was always painfully tendentious and it made like MetaFilter less pleasant and more of a chore.

Thanks to y2karl and matteo for tracking this down and bringing it to light.
posted by rks404 at 8:37 PM on November 15, 2005


100$ says dios is the latest round of the dhoyt masquerade.

And, damn, dhoyt's been a fraud since 2000. That's impressive.
posted by xmutex at 8:40 PM on November 15, 2005


...the political stuff is anathema to almost everything I believe...

Am I reading that right? dhoyt is a...lefty?
posted by event at 8:43 PM on November 15, 2005


Hell, I'm a raging lefty, but I'll never argue that position here. Fucking echo chamber that it is, I'd be wasting my breath.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 8:45 PM on November 15, 2005


dhoyt is a...lefty?

He's just blaming it on Clinton like a good little rethug.
posted by If I Had An Anus at 8:45 PM on November 15, 2005


a bunch of bullshit
posted by dhoyt via bardic at 6:56 PM PST on November 15


Cram it. It's pretty clear that this is just another game to you - can you appear regretful and contrite? maybe get some sympathy from the kinder members like, say, languagehat, whom you thoroughly fucked over and deceived in the past? I sure fucking hope not. You are as nasty as you ever were, and you have not changed and will not change. I'll take a dozen link spammers over you any day; they don't care about the community, but they don't try to dismantle it the way you did. Get a fucking life.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 8:50 PM on November 15, 2005


seriously, getting ostracized from an "online internet community" is pretty fucking pathetic. please make sure you tell your friend dhoyt/jenleigh/hall of robots/highsignal that tia.

I suppose some might think that giving a shit about being ostracized form an online community.... fuck. What's the point.

The thing is, having grown up with the long distance BBS (and later, usenet). Even then, there was an incredible amount of bullshit floating through the ether and as a result , I've never really thought of any of these characters flowing down my screen, at anywhere from 1200 baud to impossibly fast, to be anything other than works of fiction. Perhaps not even backed by real human beings, who were, after all, anonymous for the most part. The temptation to create a little excitement in the goofier threads had always been strong, since I didn't really have much of value to contribute. Then I grew up. I stayed away from conversation online, with the exception of a special interest or two, and never looked back. I lurked, leeching information for a years and observed the weird trends of assorted forums I stumbled upon. Most eventually devolved into the teenage shenannigans I remembered and ridiculously boring word games. Along came Mefi. "Wow", I thought, "Some of these people show those, all too rare, signs of intelligence!". And yet, many of those are as attached to their online 'personas' as any teen playing an mprog (mmorg? morpg?). Oh wait. Those aren't just for adolescents anymore, either. Taunting, scoring points, cheats, scandals. It's all here, buried in the nooks and crannies.
Really, though, it wouldn't be as much fun without the diversions. It's when an entire contingent of users add their own drama by prosetylizing and demanding strict controls that the slide downhill begins. This is similar to what we keep denouncing in the threads. I know, terrible example. It doesn't mean anything. It's a straw man. Or is it a SOCK PUPPET? Hell, take away the outrage and what, exactly, are you left with? Some sort of nursing home intranet? Add the spice to what's otherwise excellent, thoughtful conversation and you have even more to waste your time away. The real garbage is usually deleted quickly, leaving the best juicy insanity for all to see.

Just kidding :) Thought I'd play devil's advocate since we're down four of those now!

posted by IronLizard at 8:51 PM on November 15, 2005


When I first heard about this, I was confused. Then a little angry, followed by a feeling of self-righteousness. Then I ate dinner and forgot about all it. Then I remembered and laughed. Then I read his email today and I was angry again, and a little disappointed. Then I giggled. Throughout this fluctuation of emotion, I couldn't quite put my finger on whether or not I cared. I wonder what the fact that I may care about what a random person that I've never met and never will meet writes on the Internet says about me?

Oh, and I'm actually a Marxist-Leninist.
posted by loquax at 8:54 PM on November 15, 2005


Hell, I'm a raging lefty, but I'll never argue that position here. Fucking echo chamber that it is, I'd be wasting my breath.

heh. amen to that!
posted by stirfry at 8:55 PM on November 15, 2005


mathowie: To knowingly fuck with an entire community. To make it a harsher place to be. To purposely goad people into fights for shits and giggles. It drove people away from the site in droves.

We've all been played, and it fucking sucks.


Abso-freakin-lutely. Everyone who ever took dhoyt's bait (myself included): made a fool of. Everyone who ever tried give him the benefit of the doubt (e.g., languagehat): made a food of. Even every rightie here who felt they were on the same side: made a fool of, too.

And above all, Matt: made a fucking fool of. In his years of pulling this stunt, dhoyt did real, measurable damage (i.e., "drove people away in droves") to a site that Matt's spent immeasurable time and resources and energy on.

It fucking pisses me off. I swear, every time there's some fucking petty pile-on aimed at matteo for being prickly or y2karl for his small type/epic posts or EB for being wordy, people should back that truck up and remember what it truly means to disrespect an entire community.
posted by scody at 8:58 PM on November 15, 2005


I don't know why running a few sock puppets is such a big deal or why dhoyt should be censured for his workday fun. Who blipping cares? It's not like he was running a monetary scam on anybody, I don't think s/he broke anybody's heart, nobody's shown dhoyt was a narc or an FBI agent, and it's not like total honesty in self-representation is worth anything around here anyway. I don't see how it drove people away from the site either: I'm not saying it didn't, just that I don't see why it would, when viewed from what I see as the proper perspective. I.e. as websites go it is kinda nifty but still it's only a website.

I hate to have to say this, but perhaps y'all should step back from your computers a bit more often. Or do some more work during your workdays. Yes, y'all might well be real people, but then unreal people don't need to be asked to get themselves a grip.

So is Pot Kettle's sock puppet or vice versa? Or are all y'all really Quonsar?
posted by davy at 8:58 PM on November 15, 2005


oops, languagehat was not really made a "food" of. "Gah! Soylent Green is languagehat!"
posted by scody at 8:59 PM on November 15, 2005


I have even less sympathy for dhoyt than I did earlier today. To knowingly fuck with an entire community. To make it a harsher place to be. To purposely goad people into fights for shits and giggles. It drove people away from the site in droves.

We've all been played, and it fucking sucks.


Uh uh, he's trying for the one last spin.

I shouldn't have played "human chess" with MetaFilter identities, and I shouldn't have engaged as many as I did. I partially masked my identity for the same reason so many here do: to keep their bosses off their trail. But using multiple identities and dicking around with them for the enjoyment of others was not necessary, so I understand why the identities have to be retired.

Who has friends entertained by such a thing ? I mean, c'mon. He's playing for an audience ? Don't even think of buying into that now. After how desperately had he fought to keep his hsitty littie shecret hidden ? He's trying to put lipstick on his little turd. Who hangs out at the office saying, Ooh, way to go, dhoyt, You really told him Great one, dhoyt! In his dreams.

He is trying to spin what he has left, Matt. It wasn't for shits and giggles--the emails he sent me that last Sunday when I put it together--man, they were so craven and cowardly and creepy. Surely you got the same or worse. Administrator, please hope me--my account has been hijacked! Look at how desperate he got in his stupid callout with Heywood Mogroot--GET.A.GIRFLFRIEND.

He was no cool puppetmaster. No way. He was the pathertic loser of our worst imagination. He spins his ashes trying to make himself look like the evil genius he was not Those weren't his opinions, he was the Heel on purpose ? Ha Ha! Look at what he is saying about himself. Oook at him grasp at straws--he still hasn't thought it thorugh. He ain't no Hannibal Lecter. He's a pantywaist's Lee Harvey Oswald. Evil genius, my ass. This cracks me up !

Man, it's the classic meltdown after all ! By proxy !

The Loser-nator, spinning his swan song by the copy machine !

Please Hope Me Before I Comment Again!
posted by y2karl at 9:02 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


3-4 years ago, when this place was a lot smaller, I could understand your outrage scody. But now, with so many people here (all strangers), with the viciousness that's increased, and with the daily 200 comment MeTa fuckfest, I don't feel your level of outrage at all.

I think some people are pissed (rightly so) because dhoyt's an old-timer that gamed us all. And to some of us who've been here a while, that hurts. But to say that this "destroys the community", given it's current state of increasing membership and increasing anonymity, is complete hyperbole.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 9:03 PM on November 15, 2005


Maybe I'm just the trusting sap again, but honestly, it seems like DHoyt was trying to say that he fucked up and that he's sorry.
But don't let me stop a good pile-on. I was wrong before. I'd just prefer that Metafilter was a place where people can sincerely apologize and not have it be just one more speck of blood on the chicken.

(I hope that it's not just laziness; keeping track of DHoyt's output and analyzing it against current trends should perhaps be left to a more OCD member. I'd rather just accept the latest data as the most representative...)
posted by klangklangston at 9:04 PM on November 15, 2005





You can't make this stuff up ! Man, now I am writing to This American Life !

Thanks, dhoyt ! I feel tons better !

This is comedy gold !

Break out the party hats !

Na Na Na Hey Hey.....
posted by y2karl at 9:08 PM on November 15, 2005


Whatever. I just know I'm not telling my wife about any of this, if I ever want to be able to get on the internet, let alone MeFi or any of its spinoffs, ever again.

Man-o-man, sweetie, you should have seen the big day that happened at MetaFilter today. Turns out this one guy, who'd been around since - oh, heck, since 2000 or so - so, about five years - who had always been this grumpy, insufferable kind of argumentative right-winger, well, it turns out that all along he had just been playing that role, to bait everyone else into getting all mad at him. No, wait! The best part is that along the way he made another character, who was this woman who supposedly lived in Scotland, but was an even bigger right-winger, and he switched back and forth between the two of them to really start everybody arguing, and - oh, yeah - he made a couple of other people, too - there may be more, but there's only two others they found out about - who were more reasonable likable sorts with real interests and all and maybe they were closer to this guy's real personality, but he couldn't stop going back and forth between the other two. Anyway, a bunch of people finally figured it all out - it took a long time and all, and so all four of his characters are banned now and - what? No, see that guy is the crazy one ...
posted by yhbc at 9:10 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


y2karl, just fyi: this many orgasms in a row can be hazardous to your health.
posted by Krrrlson at 9:12 PM on November 15, 2005


wow, I gotta hand it to dhoyt here. The mother of all trolls. Good job.
posted by puke & cry at 9:12 PM on November 15, 2005


Who blipping cares?

Reading the comments in the thread helps to answer questions you might ask about the issue brought up in the thread. Try starting from the top down. You'll discover that a few people do. Really. It's in this very thread!

it's not like total honesty in self-representation is worth anything around here anyway

You are, of course, welcome to that opinion and viewpoint, and it is noted for future reference. However, to others, clearly, it is worth something. Again, please read the comments in the thread. You're questions have already been answered.

I hate to have to say this, but perhaps y'all should step back from your computers a bit more often.

And perhaps you should step a bit closer to yours so that you could at least, you know, read the comments in the thread before asking questions that have already been answered. Nonetheless, your kind and gracious advice is indeed, greatly appreciated.

Or do some more work during your workdays.

Do you have a time card system we can register with and use so that you might be able tell us when, in fact, we're doing enough work to consitute as more work during our workdays? Do you have some sort of mega-standard and omniscience that makes you aware that we are not doing enough work? If so, kindly let us in on it. Please?
posted by juiceCake at 9:13 PM on November 15, 2005 [1 favorite]


My reaction to this has ranged from "meh, another sock puppet outed" to "that fucking arsehole, he made us all look fucking stupid". Mine has been more linear, though and was cemented pretty much in the arsehole range by the alleged e-mail from dhoyt. The fact that this was done just for the sake of being an arsehole makes it all worse somehow, as does the sneaking suspicion that he is out there watching the end-game play out and sniggering with his workmates.

If you aren't pissed off by this at least a little bit, you don't get the community thing that goes on here. No matter how many times people say it, this is not just a web site for many of us - it is a community (albeit a malformed, poorly adjusted one at times). This action strikes to the very heart of that community.
posted by dg at 9:15 PM on November 15, 2005


yhbc - I know exactly what you mean. I tried explaining this to someone for about 10 seconds before I came to a full stop, dropped the subject completely and made a hasty retreat.

(to come back here and check the thread)
posted by loquax at 9:15 PM on November 15, 2005


and forgetting that this place is comprised of real people.

Except that it isn't.
posted by solid-one-love at 9:16 PM on November 15, 2005


Who has friends entertained by such a thing ? I mean, c'mon. He's playing for an audience ?

Yeah, I don't get this either. Here's the email he sent me out of the blue a few months ago:
From: dhoyt [cutout@gmail.com]
To: armshanks@gmail.com
Subject: http://www.metafilter.com/mefi/44487#1018775
Date: Tue, 23 Aug 2005 01:53:40 +0100

I'm interested to know what you make of cleardawn's comment here, which mysteriously makes Bush the focus of the post, though it falls short of saying anything significant about the mutaween site. I feel like this is the exact thing you chided me about not long ago since I commented "off-topic" about terrorism vis a vis the Jean Charles de Menezes killing. In fact, whenever my thoughts fall out of line with the MeFi consensus, both you and matteo are there to deride it, though I'm not clear what beef you have.

I'm confident you'll be asking cleardawn to avoid "deflecting" the topic, or using it as leverage for her off-topic opinions.

-dhoyt
I mean, I can understand why he might get off on trolling in a public forum for laughs. But emailing individual users? What's the point of that?
posted by Armitage Shanks at 9:16 PM on November 15, 2005


I swear, every time there's some fucking petty pile-on aimed at matteo for being prickly... people should back that truck up and remember what it truly means to disrespect an entire community.

Ah, yes. KKKrlson, likudgirl, and I (KKKwantsar) need to back the truck up and remember, lest we disrespect an entire community!
posted by Kwantsar at 9:18 PM on November 15, 2005


I mean, I can understand why he might get off on trolling in a public forum for laughs. But emailing individual users? What's the point of that?

Verisimilitude.
posted by interrobang at 9:20 PM on November 15, 2005


*beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep*
posted by Krrrlson at 9:21 PM on November 15, 2005


Just for the record I am not a real person.
posted by xmutex at 9:30 PM on November 15, 2005


*burns in his tank*
posted by quonsar at 9:31 PM on November 15, 2005


JuiceCake, I did not attack you by name nor did I in this thread assail any real-life group you might be part of, so you're a prime example of someone who I might advise to "get a grip". As should those people who gratify dhoyt et al. by speculating on what he/she/they are really like or what it all really meant. Does the subtitle now say "Please Feed The Trolls Your Souls"?

And hey, why are you hopping specifically on this here? If reading through a whole thread from top to bottom and/or taking what somebody's already said as The Answer (and/or, I must add, avoiding repeating basically what somebody else said) were such Good Things then how exactly would this website get so many 200+-comment threads? Without you, I mean, complaining there?

If y'all are going to take this website that seriously then maybe matthowie should incorporate The Church of Metaology; that ought to be worth at least a mansion and a yacht.
posted by davy at 9:47 PM on November 15, 2005


Shorter Dios and Davy and Dhoyt apoplogists: Shitting in the pond? What's the big deal? Why is everyone so pissed about it?

Now I know why Dios is so gung ho about the war in Iraq. Or maybe he's just trying to dhoyt us.
posted by Freen at 9:48 PM on November 15, 2005


Matt should lower the ban-hammer on the twenty-five most-frequent posters. See how the place changes. It would be a great experiment.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:53 PM on November 15, 2005


This thread proves what I have long known: Metafilter is exactly like any other (sometimes dysfunctional) family.

I've never hidden who I am on the Internet: I try to live my life in a manner where I won't be ashamed of what I've written. That may not be the course for others, but I like to think that I'm dealing with discrete, real, people. Perhaps that's delusional in this day and age. I'll just chalk it up to being an old phart, then.

I truly love you people: you all have provided me with an alternative view of many things- some of you have agreed with me, some of you I would not agree with on my best, most tolerant day. I have laughed so hard here that i couldn't breathe, and cried at the pathos.

Having said all that: One of the reasons I stick around here is that I have a sense that there are real people behind the usernames; sock puppets dilute that trust. Put me in the camp of those who don't like it.
posted by pjern at 9:58 PM on November 15, 2005


Seems to me the politics of some people is determining their reactions to this -- their, 'so fucking what get a life' moralising. That's a good reason to not bother posting/reading or even trying to make an effort, how can one even face such rampant spin without seeming anal/inane or whatever. Maybe the whole point of noise and smokescreen is to dissuade people from engaging in any class of reasonable discussion. Or, to break fff's rule, fucking assholes.

quonsar, re: IP addresses with the comment; it's been done before, in this Metatalk thread, and it failed spectacularly.
posted by gsb at 10:06 PM on November 15, 2005


Even every rightie here who felt they were on the same side: made a fool of, too.

No kidding.

The ickiest part of this affair for me was remembering that when I expressed relief to see another non-male kinda-Republican hanging around Metafilter in an e-mail exchange with jenleigh many months ago, she--no, make that "she"--played right along. Didn't even cross my mind that she was yet another Internet guy playacting at being (perceived as) female for his own twisted reasons. Apparently, Darren thought that being a cute widdle female on the Net would somehow insulate his posts from otherwise-harsher critics, trying to use sexism as a shield--to spew things that he apparently didn't even believe in the first place!

*sigh* Darren, dearie, some of us here actually have vaginas and/or non-mainstream political views, and don't think of them as mere cheap props to be used for our personal mindfuck projects.

"until now I'd always assumed MeFi was made up of quite a few users operating a handful of accounts for the same reason: to watch the weirdness which ensued."

That's sick. And I mean that in the pathological sense.
posted by Asparagirl at 10:07 PM on November 15, 2005


Interesting. I used to create multiple personas on newsgroups just to fuck around, but I would have lost interest long before now. He did a nice job on the jenleigh persona, seemed like a unique individual. Makes me wonder about the rest of you people. heh
posted by weretable and the undead chairs at 10:10 PM on November 15, 2005


[this is bad]
posted by Freen at 10:18 PM on November 15, 2005


Wow, what a thread. What a thread. And just when MeFi was finally getting some BIG positive press.

I have no doubt we'll open the Village Voice tomorrow to see the headline SHOCKER: DHOYT WAS JENLEIGH

"Gah! Soylent Green is languagehat!"

Damn you, scody, for catching your own typo. I couldn't wait to make that exact joke!

posted by soyjoy at 10:24 PM on November 15, 2005


Other people have already expressed what is disturbing about these "four" users; I've been around here for a couple of years, and I've tuned out dhoyt in the same way that once had to out tune thomcatspike did, I, but the thing here is that dhoyt was just so fucking loud.

I tuned him out, and I read some of "jenleigh"'s posts--and started ignoring them, too. Jenleigh and dhoyt aren't high on my list of most hated users, because they were mostly noise to begin with.

I know the "voices" of many metafilter people, and with many of my favorites--and most frustrating--I think they'd probably be like that in real life.

This has been shown to be true at meetups--rocketman really is a cynical, prematurely elderly jerk (which is why I lived with him for two years, and why he's one of my best friends and doesn't post here often), and melissa may really is the intelligent sweetheart she appears to be, and Shane is a really, really nice guy on the phone, with lots of interesting and insightful things to say.

Granted, these are only the people I've had personal interactions with. There are others I've followed over the years, and found to be consistently smart and worthwhile.

What a lot of people are pissed off about here, xmutex, is that metafilter really is like a closed community, like a space station. There are no physical dangers on metafilter, but the emotional dangers are very real. Everyone here who is not a sock puppet is a real person, with real feelings.

Read this comment, by solopsist. This is a real person who was hurt by this. And, this is a person--like me--who doesn't hide his real identity on the internet.

Granted, I stopped trying to hide it only about a month ago, but most of us are real people, and I don't know anyone who likes being treated like a sucker. I don't buy dhoyt's apology, and I have absolutely no incentive to.
posted by interrobang at 10:31 PM on November 15, 2005


"until now I'd always assumed MeFi was made up of quite a few users operating a handful of accounts for the same reason: to watch the weirdness which ensued."

That's sick. And I mean that in the pathological sense.


No, it's not; it's the internet. What's strange is when people time and and time again expect web-based 'communities' to function like real in-person societies and not to actually be comprised of various people doing strange things for weird and varied reasons. It's the freaking internet, where people should expect the strange. How many examples of this sort of thing do we need to see before we realize it's more the norm?
posted by xmutex at 10:38 PM on November 15, 2005


JuiceCake, I did not attack you by name nor did I in this thread assail any real-life group you might be part of, so you're a prime example of someone who I might advise to "get a grip". As should those people who gratify dhoyt et al. by speculating on what he/she/they are really like or what it all really meant. Does the subtitle now say "Please Feed The Trolls Your Souls"?

I know you didn't, nor did I even remotely imply that you did. Very peculiar statement. If I choose to take some time to read through this thread and post a comment or two, like you, why is that I and others like me, like you, need to get a grip? Please, let us hear more of your wisdom, even if I can't understand it.

And hey, why are you hopping specifically on this here? If reading through a whole thread from top to bottom and/or taking what somebody's already said as The Answer (and/or, I must add, avoiding repeating basically what somebody else said) were such Good Things then how exactly would this website get so many 200+-comment threads? Without you, I mean, complaining there?

Not complaining. Trying to help you out. You asked some questions like who cares for examples. Even a cursory glance through the comments on this thread answers that question and indeed, the other questions you asked. Indeed, as you say, we have 200+ comments. I find it astonishing that having read through them you could still ask who cares. I just assumed that since it was obvious, you couldn't possibly have read anything. I apologize for the error. Surely it is mine. I also apologize if trying to help you out has deeply offended you.

If y'all are going to take this website that seriously then maybe matthowie should incorporate The Church of Metaology; that ought to be worth at least a mansion and a yacht.

Problem is mate, the expectation of fair representation isn't something that automatically qualifies as taking it "that seriously". It's just taking it at a cusory level of expectation and respect. I'm guessing, and perhaps erroneously, that if others take things not as a complete joke, as you do, then they're "too serious." Thanks.
posted by juiceCake at 10:38 PM on November 15, 2005


Someone should work with mathowie to produce a warning when two different usernames successively log in from the same IP.

Yes, absolutely. Now that Matt's finally experienced the truly evil side of sock puppets, maybe we can get some action on one of Mefi's worst problems: folks who refuse to debate issues honestly and just shit on the site by posting anonymous, deliberately inflammatory garbage.

mathowie: This could happen again, though I hope to god it never does again.

Uh, Matt, I'll bet it's happening right now somewhere on the site. And it'll keep happening - and keep pushing people away "in droves" - until something is done to make it difficult for people to have multiple sock puppet accounts active simultaneously.
posted by mediareport at 10:38 PM on November 15, 2005


My leprechaun jenleigh tells me to burn things.
posted by homunculus at 10:39 PM on November 15, 2005


No, it's not; it's the internet. What's strange is when people time and and time again expect web-based 'communities' to function like real in-person societies and not to actually be comprised of various people doing strange things for weird and varied reasons. It's the freaking internet, where people should expect the strange. How many examples of this sort of thing do we need to see before we realize it's more the norm?
posted by xmutex at 10:38 PM PST on November 15 [!]


You're a great example of the above. However, so too is the real world. A mix of people with different perspectives and approaches to communities. Astonshing I suppose.
posted by juiceCake at 10:40 PM on November 15, 2005


Verisimilitude.

Nuh uh, he couldn't let it go. I shudder to think of his Favorites page. He kept track of so many people. He's the guy who, by his own unselfconscious admission and in his own words, Googled Anton Rivera a handful of times over six months. Call me a hypocrite but, really, that's not the sort of thing one ever expects to read or hear. It's not quite up to the level of admitting to having had sex with your dad's cows in your freshman year of college at your first dorm bullshit session--but it is a step farther towards that end of the pool than most things you read here. He made some amazing admissions sometimes in both his comments and emails. I'm at the place where I was when I wbegan to wonder if jenleigh was dhoyt. Perhaps he doth indeed protest too much and actually does live in his parent's basement.


Upon review:

Didn't even cross my mind that she was yet another Internet guy playacting at being (perceived as) female for his own twisted reasons.

You really don't know what he believed in. He was at war. He wanted to make people he hated look bad. He used a woman with unpopular opinions in order to bait people into beating up on the poor girl so he could beat on them--in order to compile a list of personal insults and play the victim. Remember the insult collection on 'her' user page back in the day. She collected them like Green Stamps.

He used a woman's persona as bait and bludgeon--so, who was the misogynist there ? I know what kind of Trekkie he is not: a Klingon.
He has no honor.

She seemed like a unique individual. Oh, I beg to differ. There was something incredibly artificial there. I always wondered.

Asparagirl, but at least you come across as the real deal snowflake. Man, what a burn. I really feel bad for you. I am sorry.
posted by y2karl at 10:45 PM on November 15, 2005


Waiter! I'd like a side order of sanctimony with my hindsight please.

"Some fools here were even defending her as if she were real.."

Oh hang on, I'll just have what he's having.
posted by peacay at 10:51 PM on November 15, 2005


So, I found this old espresso machine i had forgotten about in a closet i was cleaning out this afternoon and just had to test it. Now it's late and i should be asleep, instead i'm gonna throw some half-formed thoughts onto this pile--

I think the reason many posters are (rightfully) freaking out about this is because it inspires a really complicated emotion. See, i care about you people. But even saying that produces some cognitive dissonance. I mean, i don't really know any of you in real-life, so what i care about are personas made of words made of pixels. In a way, i care about you all like i care about the patrons of the dive bar across the street-- in some abstract way i am interested in the general wellbeing of those with whom i share a space. Whether that space is the (lamentably shuttered) Lakeview Lounge or MetaFilter; whether i vehemently disagree your opinions or roundly enjoy your insights, we're all undeniably spending some time together and for me, that means i care about you.

And that means I care about dhoyt and jenleigh and whomever else. And that means i've been handily manipulated and lied to by someone i sort-of care about. But that's weird, am i really feeling a sense of hurt about some pixels?

So here's where it gets really sticky in my noggin-- part of me wants to roll with davy and say 'yikes, i am taking this too seriously' but wouldn't that also mean i need stop caring about bar regulars, about folks i pass frequently in my neighborhood...

I guess what i'm trying to get at is this-- i'm not overly invested in MetaFilter, i pop in while at work, read some stuff, click some links, occasionally post, whateves. But until now i would have said that MetaFilter is very clearly a real community. This episode shakes that up, by raising questions of trust and knowability of the Other and whether one ought to invest time and care into pixeled personas. I think the answer for many of us, myself included, is yes; but until this I hadn't really felt the need to ask.

Hmm, well, have at it. On preview this little novella seems more than a bit overwrought, it's the espresso i suppose. Apologies for using up so many pixels.

On preview again: what interrobang said.
posted by verysleeping at 10:56 PM on November 15, 2005


It bothers me as well. I usually stay away from political threads unless I'm really bored, and from the backlash to Jenleigh's posts, I noticed them more and deliberately gave them a more impartial reading. And given that it really is difficult to keep track of who is who among such a huge membership, I would argue that even this small mental association between username and posts/comments is costly.
posted by dhruva at 11:09 PM on November 15, 2005


"...he made us all look fucking stupid"

I think dhoyt did some things very wrong, but making us "look stupid" is the least of them. It seems strange to me that this is the first thing people think about.

Davy's attitude is what makes Kaycees and dhoyts possible—it's not at all the answer to the problem. It is the problem. Merely by participating heavily this becomes a vibrant community for those who do. Doubly so for those who are not anonymous. Disregarding or discounting the reality of people qua people is no less abhorrent here than it is elsewhere. It is, in a non-biblical sense, the first sin from which all others follow.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:26 PM on November 15, 2005


~~~didn't read a word~~~
posted by moift at 11:27 PM on November 15, 2005


And to be clear: inventing fake people and promoting them as real is no less wrong—and is complementary to—denying the personhood of those who are real. The two go hand-in-hand and encourage sociopathy.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:35 PM on November 15, 2005


... on this whole "so what, it's the internet, you should have expected this" thang (a la xmutex, and a cast of assorted others):

Sure. So what?

"dhoyt" still behaved like a sociopath. "He" (... and "he" gets scare-quotes from now on, I'm thinking...yes, that works...) fucked with people's heads for amusement -- and that's true, whatever version of this you accept -- and expended great effort at it. That may BE "teh Internet", but it's not the way people treat one another.

Put another way: That whole "wake up and smell the coffee" line basically amounts to saying that you can never trust anybody, for anything. Which is a load of crap. In my own, not-so-humble opinion.

As for what dhoyt's real game was -- hey, no one's ever gonna know. "He" won't even know. After all, this is a "guy" who went to lengths to maintain four (count 'em, four) sockpuppets for several years.

Just think: Every day, "he" got up and decided to make posts to Mefi, as dhoyt, jenleigh, or whoever. This is the very stuff of right-wing rhetoric: "He" CHOSE to be a prick. "He" could have chosen not to. This is all, entirely, on "him". All we did was act like humans act.
posted by lodurr at 11:36 PM on November 15, 2005


peacay: too right.
posted by kenko at 11:52 PM on November 15, 2005


There are at least two silver linings to this cloud:

1. the newly reconstituted quonsar has created a neologism using "dhoyt" to mean "fool" as in "someone trying to dhoyt the community". If languagehat can hear this over the jingling of the fool's cap he donned in a demonstration of good nature, perhaps he would endorse the usage and it would become the common coin of the meta-realm.

2. y2karl used a legible-sized font all through this thread.
posted by Cranberry at 12:43 AM on November 16, 2005


I just spent too much time reading this thread. However, it really hadn't occured to me that people create "sock-puppets" for use here on Metafilter.

I'm sure I'm naive for not realizing this, but there you go.

So thanks y2karl.
posted by moonbiter at 1:41 AM on November 16, 2005


If dhoyts actions stuck the boot into the pompous winbaggery with which this site is riddled, well fucking good job.
posted by Joeforking at 1:49 AM on November 16, 2005


I first knew there was something up when i turned up at the very first Scottish meetup , I didn't know anyone but i remember jenleigh promising that she would be there , so i'm going to the meetup with like a few presents for her and everything , flowers and that.....(as a friend , obviously , my intentions were entirely honourable , i would never dream of trying to make out with a female member of metafilter).
There we all were , standing in a crowded trendy bar in Glasgow , little islands of Meta nerds all clutching their bunches of flowers and books of love poetry in Klingon , we looked like an explosion in the Beechgrove Garden.
There are a lot of broken hearted Scots guys hurting today , please spare a thought for us.
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:03 AM on November 16, 2005


Metafilter: little islands of nerds all clutching their bunches of flowers and books of love poetry in Klingon.
posted by orthogonality at 2:05 AM on November 16, 2005


interrobang: Well said.

Despite all this hoopla, I'm still in favor of sock puppets. No, I'm not a sock puppet, nor do I have any. My one moniker is enough. Besides, my writing/thinking style doesn't lend itself well to sock-puppetry. I've had old friends "rediscover" me on boards simply by recognizing my tone, with no other clues as far as location, age, sex or recognizable usernames were concerned.

Anyway.

What I like to try to do here on MetaFilter is simply this: Judge the statement or argument only by the statement or argument itself. That's it.

Read a snark? Ok, it's a snark. A troll? Shitting in the thread? Derail? Whatever.

Sometimes it isn't easy. Some users stick out like sore thumbs over and over again, and it'll color your perspective if you allow it to.

I'll concede that the dept and breadth of dhoyt's gaming and trolling is - hopefully - unusual and unusually manic and obsessed. Perhaps it was damaging, but perhaps it's really not that big of a deal.

But I seriously started tuning him out by the 2nd or 3rd post of his I ever read. Later it was jenleigh.

Not because I didn't agree with their proclaimed political leanings - but because their arguments were frequently unsound. There are examples of users with political leanings or archetypes I don't agree with - left, right and center - but I still try to simply judge only their comments and arguments.

But dhoyt's arguments have always struck me as oddly malformed and ungenuine. And in hindsight, now I know why. And frankly it makes me wonder about a few others that have given me the same ungenuine/malformed vibe as dhoyt/jenleigh.

But I won't wonder too much. It's frankly not worth my time.
posted by loquacious at 2:53 AM on November 16, 2005


MetaFilter is fun because it's awesome to see so many people get worked up over nothing. This was a non-event. I've only been a member for a year, yes, but I've been reading for years. I couldn't tell dhoyt from dhartung (no offense, Dan, I love your cleanlyrics rollyo). Apparently, people are worked up because someone played on their political biases. Serves you right for pigeonholing yourself as liberal or conservative or whatever the fuck you want to call yourselves. You are so into the hype of whatever political ideology has been sold to you that you let yourselves get played. And it comes as no surprise, because you've been similarly played by the two-party system. You are the same people who scoff at wrestling as fake, yet are taken in by a (self-proclaimed) heel because his rhetoric is political. Congratulations to everyone who's been outraged in this thread; you deserve exactly what you got. I've been on a number of internet forums (fora?) and I've seen people's lives destroyed for real by someone online. I still remember watching someone get drawn into a manipulative relationship she didn't know how to escape. This was nothing.

What the fuck is up with constantly attacking dios, too? It's like you people go looking for fights. In this case he's right; this is not a big deal. Correction; it's as big a deal as you let it be.
posted by Eideteker at 2:56 AM on November 16, 2005


There are examples of users with political leanings or archetypes I don't agree with - left, right and center - but I still try to simply judge only their comments and arguments.

I also meant to add that for some of these people I disagree with politically, I find them to be fantastic and valuable posters and debators - and frequently look forward to their posts. Just to be clear it's not even close to all tune-out all the time, or all negative.

Often all we hear about is the dislikes and negatives, because that's what goads us into replying. And the agreed upon and liked posts are all too easy, but often the most invisible of all is accolades for enjoyable posts from people we disagree with. Those are the comments and posts I appreciate the most.
posted by loquacious at 3:00 AM on November 16, 2005


I've looked thorugh the user data at Metachat and I've discovered that one other user is using the same IP addresses as all the dhoyt accounts.

This most likely means that either dhoyt has yet another sock puppet that's unaccounted for, or that he was imitating another user.

I've passed the name on to Matt and he can do with that information whatever he wishes.

Just so you all know...
posted by dodgygeezer at 3:14 AM on November 16, 2005


"Apparently, people are worked up because someone played on their political biases."

It's not apparent to me. It looks to me like people are worked up because their trust was violated, which is the sort of thing that gets people worked up. Is it the end of the world? No. Is it the worst thing that can happen online? Nope. It is what it is, no more and no less. Some amount of anger is both justified and appropriate. And the only thing the community can do—which is not much—to help prevent it from happening again is to make it very clear that such behavior isn't tolerated. I, myself, am not that upset over this but I respect the anger of those who are.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 3:23 AM on November 16, 2005


Its the internets. Disturbing but true. You will always get someone trying to "game" the system in any society. Its a rough world in there. I enjoyed Theatrical Matriarch.
posted by adamvasco at 3:25 AM on November 16, 2005


big ups to krrlson/kwantsar/justgary for feeling persecuted and acting all defensive! god knows it's beneath you to admit that dhoyt was a fucker and the messengers that establish that conclusively (including dhoyt himself) are just whiny lefties or something.

libertie, egalitie, fraternitie, acrimonie!!!

you guys are right, it's not such a big deal acting like a total asshole online. pleasure crossing paths with fellas such as yourselves.

and loquacious, i have to disagree with Judge the statement or argument only by the statement or argument itself. That's it.

everything involving communication of any sort takes place in a context, and often with fora like these, there's not enough information to glean exactly what someone's saying unless you have a context -- there's no non-verbal communication, no body language, no tone of voice (which everyone knows is a significant limitation of non-vocal electronic communication) -- so a well-developed sense of someone's persona, built up over multitudinous posts, is frequently only way to suss out quite what a person is getting at.

but i guess you're right in the sense that just as frequently, you can glean what a person is saying at face value. but it's all about the nuance on a forum like metafilter, no?
posted by Hat Maui at 3:48 AM on November 16, 2005


Davy's attitude is what makes Kaycees and dhoyts possible—it's not at all the answer to the problem. It is the problem.

It's true. And like gsb, I find it very interesting to note who's in the "no big deal, it's the Internet" camp. I don't think it's a coincidence that those people are mostly the ones you'd expect to say similar things about lying politicians, or abusing prisoners, or corporate greed. Some of us expect people to behave better. Some don't care if they don't. This thread is a good barometer of who's in which camp.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:55 AM on November 16, 2005


Nuance, and learning how to say what you mean and mean what you say. And/or how to spot the difference.

I've seen hundreds of ill-executed arguments here that were either a failure in writing skills or a failure in reading comprehension skills, both willful and unintentional.

Not an easy task, personal experience wholeheartedly included, but a worthy task.
posted by loquacious at 3:58 AM on November 16, 2005


also, FWIW, i happen to know that y2karl was very conflicted about posting this for a number of reasons and i practically goaded him into it.

his trepidation stemmed in part for fear of assholish recrimination from shoot-the-messenger types that might accuse him of political axe-grinding, but i told him surely people would want to know about this and no one could characterize it as impertinent or based on political agenda. i was quite wrong about that.

but more significantly, i can tell you firsthand that he sincerely felt no joy in outing someone like this. i prodded him about it -- surely it must be addressed, i said. i'll do it, i said, but it'd be weird to do so since i wasn't the discoverer of the malfeasance.

i encouraged him to make a MeTa post about it. but there was no joy in Muddville, contrary to the characterizations of some that he (and others) are somehow reveling in it.

what seems beyond dispute is that this is a post that needed to be made
posted by Hat Maui at 4:04 AM on November 16, 2005


big ups to krrlson/kwantsar/justgary for feeling persecuted

Go home. You're part of the problem.
posted by yerfatma at 4:25 AM on November 16, 2005


if i'm part of the problem, what's that make you and your comment?

and... i am home, so whaddya gonna do with that?
posted by Hat Maui at 4:30 AM on November 16, 2005


I mostly don't read the political threads, so I've had, as far as I know, probably zero exchanges with the user formerly known as dhoyt, et al, and thus find this kind of fascinating from somewhat of a distance, but it is destructive and I do resent the degree to which these games have made MeFi an uglier, meaner place.

This is still a community of real people, though, despite what anyone wants to believe, and I have made very real, strong friendships here... But I'm usually inclined to gravitate more towards the people who are more transparent, and take them more seriously. I know for certain that this will pretty much be a personal rule of thumb for me from now on.
posted by taz at 4:47 AM on November 16, 2005


Hi orthogonality! Been to any good meetups lately?!
posted by terrapin at 4:49 AM on November 16, 2005


What about all the female MeFites I have a crush on? Do they not exist?

*crumbling Weltanschaunng*
posted by sciurus at 5:13 AM on November 16, 2005


mathowie: To knowingly fuck with an entire community. To make it a harsher place to be. To purposely goad people into fights for shits and giggles. It drove people away from the site in droves.

Surely the behaviour of the posters (whether sock puppets or not) drove people away in droves, not the fact that sock puppets exist here behind the scenes? A harder approach to moderating people who start fights and post deliberately contentious FPP's/posts would solve plenty without even having to touch on the issue of sock puppets.
posted by fire&wings at 5:24 AM on November 16, 2005


badterrapin!
posted by cortex at 5:33 AM on November 16, 2005


Well, shit.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:38 AM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


I've passed the name on to Matt and he can do with that information whatever he wishes.

Just so you all know...


*laughs* Just so we all know what? Good lord, dodgygeezer. What does a person have to do around here before it's ok to stop protecting him? If dhoyt's stolen someone else's username at Metachat, don't you think we all should know that? If he hasn't, don't you think it's important for us to know which of the other accounts here was yet another of his trolls?

*shakes head* This coy nonsense helps no one.
posted by mediareport at 5:38 AM on November 16, 2005


Someone should work with mathowie to produce a warning when two different usernames successively log in from the same IP.

What about the households that have more than one mefi member? Is Matt going to have to harass them into divulging personal information to prove that they're married or have a roommate or kid who uses the same IP at home. In 5 years how many dhoyt type incidents have there been? Enough to warrant Matt becoming a full time paranoiac, a la grandpa simpson & the specter of death?

Also, what fire&wings said.
posted by zarah at 5:50 AM on November 16, 2005


sorry, cortex, but I found the irony too hard to pass up.

You know "people in glass houses" and all that.
posted by terrapin at 5:51 AM on November 16, 2005


A harder approach to moderating people who start fights and post deliberately contentious FPP's/posts would solve plenty without even having to touch on the issue of sock puppets.

Agreed, but that would take a lot of time and have an emotional toll. Yech. A closer eye kept on users with multiple IDs is a simpler way to start; it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest to find a few more dhoyt-style posters among the "couple dozen" sock puppets Matt says he's noticed. At the least, it would be interesting to see if frykitty got it right in this comment back in July:

Those who get sockpuppets--especially those who have been banned--are doing it because they want to be active in the community. They are often some of the most active members. So while the actual number of accounts are few, there are still many posts from these accounts.
posted by mediareport at 5:53 AM on November 16, 2005


Is Matt going to have to harass them

No. I think what some of us would like to see is Matt and Jessamyn keeping a slightly closer eye on the behavior coming from those accounts. The recognition that there has indeed been at least one serious problem with sock puppets here is also a good start.
posted by mediareport at 5:57 AM on November 16, 2005


I'm waiting for the "sockpuppet" flag.
posted by terrapin at 6:04 AM on November 16, 2005


it's not coy--it's doing what dhoyt never did--respecting a real person--giving dhoyt the respect he never gave any of us--something i couldn't do.

and for some of us, it wasn't political so much as it was personal--using sockpuppets to bash other users while purposely baiting them using other accounts--it's what sociopaths do, not members of communities. i disagree with pretty much every single thing some users say and it's no secret, but neither those users nor I use alternate personas/sockpuppets to further the fights. If someone here is defending someone else, or jumping into a pileon, etc, it used to be that they were separate and real people stating their thoughts--now that's not so clear anymore, at least to me and some others. (i'm old too, and think that we who grew up pre-internet don't see this community-or any community online or off- as not a big deal--we took the rules we grew up and brought them here. i'm thinking those here who think it doesn't matter are younger, for whatever that's worth and whatever that means in the long run.)
posted by amberglow at 6:07 AM on November 16, 2005


The problem is this -- you have to give a certain amount of credibility to anyone in an online forum at the start, or you end up with a degenerate loop -- You have no credibility, therefore, I cannot trust anything you say, therefore, since I cannot trust anything you say, you cannot earn credibility, therefore, you have no credibility.

So, you have to make an initial grant, even if it is as little as "Well, I'll read the n00b for a couple of weeks..."

Things like this are direct attacks based on that initial grant of trust. That's why they are so insidious -- as you read yet another troll and yet another screed, and as you become yet another hardcase, you're willingness to give the new guy a break for a bit shrinks -- then someone takes what little you're willing to grant, then pulls a stunt like this.

Suddenly, you're not willing to cut anybody any slack. Welcome to the monastery, kids -- down, not across. (The monastery, for those not catching it, is alt.sysadmin.recovery, a griping ground for sysadmins.)

Under every dark, bitter sysadmin lies the crumpled corpse of the helpful sysadmin that they started as -- but thousands of abusive users and script kiddies have robbed them of the ability to grant the initial trust. Now, you're either with us, or against us. You were at Bastonge, or you weren't.

You're us, or you aren't us -- and when one of us isn't one of us, it's betrayal -- and makes us even *more* convinced that you're either one of us, or you aren't, and you don't trust those who aren't.

That's what the dhoytaires did -- they snuck in and robbed us of our ability to trust. Now, not only don't we trust them, we don't even trust us. Now, it's not Us v. Them, it's a whole bunch of Me v. Them.

Meanwhile, the guy who's fought to keep this site running for six years now feels like he's been kicked in the balls. I can't blame him. He's trying to keep a community thriving, and he finds one of the long standing members is busy throwing glass into the street and firebombs into the cars.

Matt's a better person than I am -- he hasn't shut down the site, and I might have. I didn't know what to think last night, but I'm rather annoyed by this whole mess now. I'm with scody, except the absol-freaking-lutley part (ma'am, if you're fucking going to fucking swear, just fucking do it. ;) )

It's so fucking frustrating to watch -- both this and my reaction. At a certain point, when you see enough people fucking with somethign, you no longer want to help keep it running, because you're tired, you're angry, and you're deeply afraid that you'll start to make progress, just to find that the next idiot has already lit the fuse, and you watch as another big chunk of your project -- and by extension, a bit of you -- is about to be knocked down and pissed on by somebody.
posted by eriko at 6:07 AM on November 16, 2005


One thing I'd like to suggest, though I'm sure it will be controversial, is that when a user does this or the equivalent and is banned for it, and where it is possible and makes sense to block his/her IP address, that the block be put in place and that the admin and/or tech contacts for the FQDN or IP range (whichever is appropriate) be informed of the IP block, why it was configured, and the identity of the former mefite.

This makes sense for two reasons. One, it's a matter of courtesy to inform an administrator why, possibly, his entire company is unable to access MetaFilter. Two, it closes the causal loop between the offline and online world and makes people accountable for their actions, particularly when they are accessing MetaFilter from the workplace. For example, in dhoyt's case, he's been doing this from work for years and necessarly spending a great deal of time on it by playing the role of at least two very active contributers.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:12 AM on November 16, 2005


*shakes head* This coy nonsense helps no one.

Good grief. Let me explain this simply.

The accounts that dhoyt used at Metachat all used the same IP addresses and there was an account, let's call it UserX, that also used the same addresses.

UserX is a well known user here.

The person who owns the UserX account here may not be the same person who uses the UserX account at Metachat.

Only Matt can confirm if the UserX account here is used by dhoyt.

There's a good chance that dhoyt registered the account to imitate UserX.

So, now you can see why I'm reluctant to out this user. Imagine if I came here and said "Listen everyone, mediareport is another dhoyt sock puppet" - you'd be pretty pissed off and with good reason.

No, until Matt can confirm or deny I'm not prepared to say who it is.
posted by dodgygeezer at 6:15 AM on November 16, 2005


Dhoyt was an old account I'd used over the years—with contributions here & there early on from co-workers who also had the login—which would create little dramas for myself and friends or co-workers to watch. It was a silly way to pass the time while at work.

Man, what an asshole. I think even less of "him" (great idea, lodurr) than I did before all this came out, and that was damn little. It's very interesting to me to see who all is claiming this is no big deal or they don't see what's wrong; I shall discount their opinions accordingly in future (except for davy, who's just being his contrarian self). Special props to Asparagirl for her straightforward response.

Merely by participating heavily this becomes a vibrant community for those who do. Doubly so for those who are not anonymous. Disregarding or discounting the reality of people qua people is no less abhorrent here than it is elsewhere. It is, in a non-biblical sense, the first sin from which all others follow.

Ethereal Bligh is absolutely right. Save your oh-so-clever ontological doubts about whether any of us really exists for philosophy class; as a practical matter, the health of an online community like this depends on our being able to trust (to a reasonable extent) in the bona fides of our interlocutors. If I think the "people" I'm talking to here are just personae of assholes playing games because they're bored, why would I want to stick around? (Question for those who are announcing so loudly that it doesn't make any difference because this is all just words on a page and none of us actually exist: why do you stick around?)

the newly reconstituted quonsar has created a neologism using "dhoyt" to mean "fool" as in "someone trying to dhoyt the community". If languagehat can hear this over the jingling of the fool's cap he donned in a demonstration of good nature, perhaps he would endorse the usage and it would become the common coin of the meta-realm.

I would heartil endorse it, Cranberry, but ever since scody revealed I was food, I've been pretty much nibbled away. Look for me soon under the name soylent_green. (And I'll be a rabit environmentalist!)
posted by languagehat at 6:26 AM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


if i'm part of the problem, what's that make you and your comment?

I'd like to think I'm a completely different type of pain in the ass. It's depressing to see people trying to harvest political capital from something so . . . trivial? Like every single event that happens here is a plus on one side of the ledger and a minus on the other. Everything is some great binary war and (with apologiegs to long-time Mefi favorite Henry Kissinger) the politics are vicious precisely because the stakes are so incredibly low.

My problem here, and my ongoing problem with Life in These United States circa 2005, is the desperate need to see everyone as On the Team or part of The Other Side. It's a hell of a way to never get to know anyone. I'd say, "Let me know how that works out," but that would require some sort of interpersonal communication. And that's hard to do when your one setting is Screed.
posted by yerfatma at 6:30 AM on November 16, 2005


It's depressing to see people trying to harvest political capital

yerfatma, I'd agree with you (I too hate the Our Team stuff) but I really don't see that going on here. People are outraged that dhoyt scammed the site, not that "he" was a right-winger (which "he" doesn't seem to have "been" anyway).
posted by languagehat at 6:44 AM on November 16, 2005


Ethereal Bligh writes "it closes the causal loop between the offline and online world"

That's called retribution and is not cool. We tar/feather/burn people here. He didn't personally come and break your window (in which case you'd call the Police, right?) so I don't think such advocacy is furthering anything other than sublimating bloodlust. The accounts have been banned. End of story. It's what happens here in the future that counts - what the attitude towards sockpuppets is and how they can be managed that's worthy of discussion and not one that aims to carry on with a vendetta out there.
posted by peacay at 6:44 AM on November 16, 2005


A bunch of people are missing a major point in matthowie's last post.

And that is this: It's not about the sockpuppets. It's about the assholery. If "dhoyt's" proxy missive is to be believed (and for that matter, even if it's not), "he" has spent the last five years intentionally goading users -- picking fights with other members, instigating or exacerbating fights between other users, etc.

The "dhoyt problem" is not sock-puppetry. Sock-puppetry is merely one tool that "dhoyt" deployed in "his" effort. The problem is people being inhuman toward one another.

More to the point: The problem is people not taking responsibility for being inhuman to one another.

To be fair, most of us get that. A lot of us, though, don't. Most of those are mooks who basically seem to think that Strength Is Good (though they pretty it up in pragmatistic code-language). A small subset are people who used to think of themselves as allies of "dhoyt" in what "he" would now have us believe was a big game. They seem to be reflexively downplaying the impact as a way of denying that it affects them. Like teenagers who've just had a defection from their clique -- "doesn't matter to me, I don't care."
posted by lodurr at 6:56 AM on November 16, 2005


I've been following this for a couple of days, interesting stuff. Someone should write a thesis from this...

my thought at the end... yep, it's a bit sad, but, with a community this large, it will happen...and it will happen again.. Meta filter is a subset of a much larger dysfunctional and failing culture, accelerated by the speed of cyberspace and the negation of distance...

folks... as we used to say back in the days of BBS's... its all just 1's and 0's
posted by HuronBob at 7:01 AM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


Quartermass probably has to redo his whole paper now.
posted by sciurus at 7:09 AM on November 16, 2005


Ha, I just finished too!
posted by Quartermass at 7:13 AM on November 16, 2005


Going forward, there's no way to block sockpuppet accounts.

Sure there is, raise the price of admission from $5 to $50,000 per account.
posted by SteveInMaine at 7:14 AM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


Actually, SteveInMaine, that would almost certainly guarantee sockpuppet accounts. If a new account is $50K, for example, I could score a quick $5K or so by selling my ID to someone. (You KNOW there'd be a market -- scarcity creates demand, wot?) People who throw around that kind of money have lots of time and perversity on their hands....
posted by lodurr at 7:17 AM on November 16, 2005


quonsar writes "but you can put a big crimp in their ability to wreak havoc:

"posted by quonsar (67.172.70.46) at 11:16 PM on November 15"


Not only totally useless in preventing this kind of abuse as someone with dhoyt's persistence can partake of one of the many open proxies. But also a big pain for many of us who are doing no wrong.

Eideteker writes "MetaFilter is fun because it's awesome to see so many people get worked up over nothing. This was a non-event.

Glad to see we could brighten your day with our little "non-event".

Eideteker writes I've only been a member for a year, yes, but I've been reading for years. I couldn't tell dhoyt from dhartung (no offense, Dan, I love your cleanlyrics rollyo). Apparently, people are worked up because someone played on their political biases. Serves you right for pigeonholing yourself as liberal or conservative or whatever the fuck you want to call yourselves. You are so into the hype of whatever political ideology has been sold to you that you let yourselves get played. And it comes as no surprise, because you've been similarly played by the two-party system.

If your seeing everything through a two-party, with us or against us, you've got to be wrong because of something else you believe filter then I can see why you think this of everyone else. Many (most?) of the members of MetaFilter don't fit into the US two party system, even those of us who are Americans.

What dhoyt et.al. has done is both unforgivable and damaging to this community, just because you don't see this site as a community doesn't mean it isn't. Stuff like this is what makes MF great not people getting upset over a betrayal.
posted by Mitheral at 7:18 AM on November 16, 2005


Hmm. I'm a little surprised at the amount and type of hurt I see here.

I'm in no way one of the people who thinks this is fine and dandy, and that everyone is taking things too seriously. I agree that we can only know of people what they present, so being deceived in text isn't so different from being deceived over the phone, or being deceived in person. I think what dhoyt did was shitty, and his bannination was good.

However, a lot of people are phrasing this like it destroyed the community, like it has shaken their very core beliefs. I don't see why that is. To that degree (and that degree only), I agree with some of the naysayers: it's the internet. This happens. I would extend it to: It's life. This happens. Unlike the naysayers, I don't think that justifies anything. Yes, people lie on the internet. And, yes, kids get hit by busses. Saying it happens doesn't mean "so don't take it seriously". But all the folks here who are acting like their foundations have been so completely shaken and destroyed seem remarkably naive. Yes, people lie, and that sucks. If someone lies to you, you are totally justified feeling pissed off and angry. But being shocked that lying itself even occurs seems like the opinion of someone incredibly sheltered. I know that people here aren't all necessarily highly sheltered, so I'm a little confused and surprised at some of the reactions.
posted by Bugbread at 7:19 AM on November 16, 2005


The more I think about it, I'm interested by what this says about my own projection. I'd always lumped dhoyt into the smallish group of posters who get accused of being right-wing but seem to me to be more opposed to lefty orthodoxy (another example being pardonyou?). Like, I read him as someone whose heart was in the right place, who was being contentious for a good purpose (I missed the Beslan thread where Scody tore him a well-deserved new one). So, knowing now that it was a big exercise in assholery, I guess I see how silly it is to think you have any conception of anyone's motives online.

Actually, for going around ascribing good motives to dicks, I feel like every post of mine should henceforth be read in the voice of Achewood's Phillipe.
posted by COBRA! at 7:21 AM on November 16, 2005


Dibs on Roast Beef.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 7:24 AM on November 16, 2005


Here comes a special boy!
posted by Divine_Wino at 7:25 AM on November 16, 2005


bugbread: I do agree that it's a bad idea to let yourself be naive about how people behave -- and that this ought not shake beliefs to the core. dhoyting does happen everywhere, and in that sense, it's nothing unusual.

But let's be clear: It was "his" choice. Right left or other, we all ultimately have to agree that we own our choices, or we get nowhere. "dhoyt" made "his" choices, and we have paid for them.
posted by lodurr at 7:27 AM on November 16, 2005


we have paid for them.

i didn't.

just checked my waller, and my sanity, and both seem to be completely uninfluenced by this storm in a teacup.
posted by andrew cooke at 7:29 AM on November 16, 2005


"-it's what sociopaths do, not members of communities."
No, that's what immature folks do on the internet. He's not John Wayne Gacy.

Look, I've been through this two times before, on a couple of other message boards. I've developed close friendships with people who later turn out to be, essentially, compulsive liars. Even rather intimate relationships (I was young; it was the internet). People invent personas and then feel trapped inside their creations. This obviously doesn't excuse the level of acrimony and needless emails etc. that Dhoyt sent, and yeah, he's an asshole for doing it. But what does anger and flaming him now accomplish? We all get to beat at a devil in a passion play, and let him know (since I'll bet he's reading this with a deep sense of shame) that we all disapprove of his actions. A few others get to show their ugliest sides toward an approved target.

Perhaps it's because I never had all that many interactions with him (or "her"), but he never seemed all that particularly vicious or petty, at least no more than plenty of the people that engaged him. He just didn't create the viceral anger in me like PP, and honestly many of "his" FPPs were things that interested me and decent presentations, even from an artificial point of view. That they raised leftist ire is kind of a shame now, because it gives many of those same people a platform to proclaim moral superiority from. I don't mind so much that he was Ern Malley. If I were more contrarian, I'd argue that we should celebrate his art.

When I got burned previously, I felt angry for a little bit, but the end result was more a feeling of pity. What's it like to have to keep elaborating this lie? What's it like to so play a character that you're willing to be vicious over email to people that disagree with the views of your troll? Deeply and sadly hollow, I'd guess. Especially after being exposed.

After I got burned before, I resolved to be more open and to take people at face value more often. I don't feel like Languagehat was a fool for trusting him, for defending him. I feel like he took words on a screen as representative of a person, and that the sin is in the one who misled him. Further, the ultimate danger to the community is one that we can all control by continuing to assume that everyone is relatively on the level. If they aren't, if someone chooses to lie, well, why does that reflect on us? They'll be found out sooner or later and when they are, the response should be to move on.

There's a lot of assumption of non-fiction here, and of the autobiographical fallacy. Instead, this site represents all the literary conciets, from satire to polemic to rhetoric gratis rhetoric to poetry. Every book is written by a real person too, but that doesn't mean that they're all true. All you can do is hope that your intentions are honorable and your prose honest. Anything else is a recipe for unending unhappiness here.
posted by klangklangston at 7:29 AM on November 16, 2005 [2 favorites]


Ethereal Bligh writes "where it is possible and makes sense to block his/her IP address, that the block be put in place and that the admin and/or tech contacts for the FQDN or IP range (whichever is appropriate) be informed of the IP block, why it was configured, and the identity of the former mefite."

Can we please stop calling for IP banning. That kind of thing might help on game servers where ping time is everything but it doesn't fly on a discussion board.
  1. It doesn't work. There are thousands of proxies available to a blocked user.
  2. It hurts anyone who may share an IP with the asshole.
  3. It requires time to maintain that could be better used coding ponies.
  4. It'll undoubtly stop some innocent future member from signing up.
      To sum up, not a solution to anything.

posted by Mitheral at 7:32 AM on November 16, 2005


echoing languagehat and in rebuttal to yerfatma, this isn't (and shouldn't be) about teams at all, yet posters like dios (whom i neglected to mention initially) and the other posters i referenced (thereby triggering yerfatma's puzzling "go home" imperative) didn't say "huh. that kinda sucks." they said things like "Ah, yes. KKKrlson, likudgirl, and I (KKKwantsar) need to back the truck up and remember, lest we disrespect an entire community!" and "Well, at least this thread puts the "amberglow is a nice guy" myth safely to rest" and so on.
posted by Hat Maui at 7:38 AM on November 16, 2005


Well, if IP banning is out, maybe we should kidnap him, put him in an orange jump suit and make him confess to his 'real' crimes and condemn the vast conspiracy on Metafilter that outed his MultiplePersonalityDisorder.

Hey, maybe it could be done during a meetup, with a Flickr sildeshow and everything.
posted by gsb at 7:40 AM on November 16, 2005


languagehat: "I think even less of 'him'..."

No, you're thinking more of him. Let it go. Letting this get to you is just part of his game. Posting 400 comments about dhoyt just adds to the legend of dhoyt. Chalk it up to experience and move on.
posted by Eideteker at 7:49 AM on November 16, 2005


Comment #400, w00t!
posted by Eideteker at 7:51 AM on November 16, 2005


gsb - that's a great idea. we could have fpps about him where we bemoan his treatment and blame bush.
posted by andrew cooke at 7:52 AM on November 16, 2005


(That was a lucky coincidence. Please note that none of my comments have been about dhoyt, but rather about people's reactions to dhoyt, so it's not actually 400 comments about dhoyt. Give it time, though. You'll get there, kids!)
posted by Eideteker at 7:53 AM on November 16, 2005


Do we have any real reason to suspect this isn't a resolved problem?

I realize that the issue of sockpuppets isn't resolved--and I think it should be--but I am referring to a particular person who seemed to take involvement in this site to a seemingly pathological extreme? He is gone, right?

Yet I already see that someone is betting that I am him (but probably joking), so I am curious if this dhoyt thing is going to be viewed as an isolated incident or if the discourse here will be ruined even further by people constantly assuming that other users (e.g., "Look, here are two people who agree; they must be dhoyts!"). It seems some people are hurt by this revelation, so I hope this thread is cathartic and assuages that pain. Once it is over, though, I hope we are going to tie a bow on this and say good riddance to bad rubbish.

I think this was an isolated incident of someone who seem to have way too much time on their hands. But I am inclined to think there aren't any other people doing this. I can't see how we can operate if we assume otherwise--that this is a common problem.

Perhaps there is some merit in doing away with usernames in toto and just be a community of interest instead of personalities.

this isn't (and shouldn't be) about teams at all, yet posters like dios (whom i neglected to mention initially) didn't say "huh. that kinda sucks."

What the hell is your point? I know I shouldn't waste my time responding to you because you are on my list of people to ignore. But I am getting tired of my name being brought up in abstentia, and I don't see anyone defending me on what should be obvious, so I will address it once:

Did it ever occur to you that I don't think it is a big deal and that has nothing to do with "teams"? That I don't even consider myself to be on a team, much less one with dhoyt? He is meaningless to me. As you are. I say good riddance that a sockpuppet was banned, but as far as the loss of the personality of dhoyt, I could care less. I really can't see why anyone either would care. Yet, you have performed a neat trick: you make it about teams and then you suggest that I am making it about teams by not admitting that he was on my team and suggesting that I should have behaved as if I thought he was. (That's enough to make my head hurt this morning). Honestly, what in the hell did you expect me to do? Flagellate myself? Disown every comment I ever made because someone who may have said the same thing as me on a couple of occasions turned out to be an oddball? Is that what you expect? You are nuttier than dhoyt is, if you do. You need to get some perspective if you think dhoyt *Really Mattered* enough for us to be even discussing him. I don't think he does.
posted by dios at 7:53 AM on November 16, 2005


contrary to the characterizations of some that he (and others) are somehow reveling in it
posted by Hat Maui at 4:04 AM PST on November 16 [!]


Contrary to the claims of some?

Ha Ha! Look at what he is saying about himself. Oook at him grasp at straws--he still hasn't thought it thorugh. He ain't no Hannibal Lecter. He's a pantywaist's Lee Harvey Oswald. Evil genius, my ass. This cracks me up !

Man, it's the classic meltdown after all ! By proxy !
You can't make this stuff up ! Man, now I am writing to This American Life !

Thanks, dhoyt ! I feel tons better !

This is comedy gold !

Break out the party hats !

Na Na Na Hey Hey.....
posted by y2karl at 9:08 PM PST on November 15 [!]

Not that I necessarily blame y2karl. Dhoyt was/is an asshole; no doubt about it. But don't pretend like people are just making stuff up.
posted by Stauf at 7:59 AM on November 16, 2005


It is common knowledge that Kwantsar is a shared #mefi sockpuppet, right?
posted by jojopizza at 8:08 AM on November 16, 2005


COBRA!, that is exactly how I thought about dhoyt. And, to me, the loss of that type of voice is one of the real tragedies of this situation (although I guess it's questionable whether there was ever such a voice to "lose"). I think MetaFilter needs users who try to diffuse the echo chamber, but aren't really on the "other side." Another user who I thought served this function well was thedevildancedlightly (although there was a whole 'nother sockpuppet issue there, iirc).
posted by pardonyou? at 8:08 AM on November 16, 2005


I'm halfway there with you, dios. I don't agree that dhoyt is necessarily the only puppeteer. But I do agree that the potential damage of everyone McCarthying eachother is worse than the potential damage of everyone continuing to behave as if there are no more sockpuppets. We need to continue as if this had never happened, or every disagreement is going to turn into dhoytanoia.

As for getting rid of usernames entirely: No. nononononononononononono. I've only seen one board without any user names, and it is full of the most immature, evil, obnoxious stuff ever to be converted into binary. Admittedly, my sample pool is small, but in the absence of counterexamples, this seems to me like the easiest way to turn Mefi into something of almost Cthulhian horribleness.
posted by Bugbread at 8:09 AM on November 16, 2005


Mitheral is right, IP banning only encourages people to seek out proxies to confuse the admins. As would publishing an IP with each comment. If the IP isn't publicly available, the abuser is less likely to attempt to obscure it, making it easier for the eventual admin cleanup.

Of course a dedicated troll can use proxies from Day 1, but it's more work for less reward.
posted by sohcahtoa at 8:10 AM on November 16, 2005


Stauf, you are just making stuff up. That comment by y2karl was obviously sarcastic. A child could see that. For you to try and recast it as a serious comment is dishonest and amounts to making stuff up.

Honestly, it's just sad that even in this thread whose entire topic demonstrates how counter-productive the culture of feuding is... we still have people like you and dios and Krrlson who feel the need to step up in and get your licks in. I really wish mathowie would just step up and start handing out the timeouts. The difference between dhoyt and others here in this thread is only one of (minor) degree. You'd think it'd be enormously clear by now that such behavior is bad for everybody--but no. People refuse to grow up and insist on maintaining these idiotic feuds.
posted by nixerman at 8:13 AM on November 16, 2005


Dhoytanoia is a great word. Hard to type, but fun to say.

ultimately the solution to this problem is to get to know people instead of reacting to them. still working on that myself
posted by selfnoise at 8:13 AM on November 16, 2005


As for getting rid of usernames entirely: No. nononononononononononono. I've only seen one board without any user names, and it is full of the most immature, evil, obnoxious stuff ever to be converted into binary. Admittedly, my sample pool is small, but in the absence of counterexamples, this seems to me like the easiest way to turn Mefi into something of almost Cthulhian horribleness.
posted by bugbread at 8:09 AM PST on November 16


I hadn't thought of that issue. Good point. Strike that idea from my last comment. But I stand by the rest of it.
posted by dios at 8:14 AM on November 16, 2005


we still have people like you and dios and Krrlson who feel the need to step up in and get your licks in.
posted by nixerman at 8:13 AM PST on November 16


What in the heck are you referring to? Where did I try to "get my licks in?" You say that as if we all can't go read the thread and check for ourselves.
posted by dios at 8:17 AM on November 16, 2005


this isn't (and shouldn't be) about teams at all, yet posters like dios (whom i neglected to mention initially) and the other posters i referenced

So, in sum, it shouldn't be about teams but the other team keeps making it that way?
posted by yerfatma at 8:19 AM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


dios, re-read your initial comments in this thread. Your first reaction is to (1) attack y2karl ("you've been fretting about this...") (2) attempt to dismiss the whole issue ("In the end, who cares?") (3) insinuate that others mentioned in y2karl's post (e.g. amberglow) are just as bad as dhoyt. This is, to put it bluntly, disgusting behavior on your part. I bring it up because it's comments like these that are a major part of the problem.
posted by nixerman at 8:22 AM on November 16, 2005


it's just sad that even in this thread whose entire topic demonstrates how counter-productive the culture of feuding is... we still have people like you and dios and Krrlson who feel the need to step up in and get your licks in.
posted by yerfatma at 8:29 AM on November 16, 2005


mediareport: Agreed, but that would take a lot of time and have an emotional toll. Yech. A closer eye kept on users with multiple IDs is a simpler way to start

More or less emotional than this 400+ comment thread?

And it needn't take more time. If Matt can delegate moderation duties to jessamyn, he can surely find several other members who can do the same job. There are plenty people who have been around for 5 years +

As someone else noted, sock puppets aren't the real problem, it's what the sock puppets post.
posted by fire&wings at 8:30 AM on November 16, 2005


That comment by y2karl was obviously sarcastic.

It was? I think he was genuinely happy that dhoyt was digging his own grave further. Not that I blame him at this point.
posted by loquax at 8:31 AM on November 16, 2005


Re: IP banning...I think I included the qualification "when appropriate" because I agree that in many cases it wouldn't be. But look at the dhoyt case: presumably there's several years of stuff coming from the same domain (and probably IP range). And I think the (when appropriate) notification of admins is an important step because then one miscreant in an office could be known to elminate access to metafilter for everyone else. My argument isn't about retribution, it's pragmatic. Yes, those so motivated would turn to anonymous proxies, but that would still be one more hurdle they'd have to jump if they wanted to do such a thing.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:31 AM on November 16, 2005


bugbread: As for getting rid of usernames entirely: No. nononononononononononono. I've only seen one board without any user names, and it is full of the most immature, evil, obnoxious stuff ever to be converted into binary.

Really? Why would people do that when their real life actual name is attached to everything they say...
posted by Chuckles at 8:36 AM on November 16, 2005


dios, re-read your initial comments in this thread. Your first reaction is to (1) attack y2karl ("you've been fretting about this...")
posted by nixerman at 8:22 AM PST on November 16


I didn't attack karl. My point was that he has made numerous mentions of this, on Metafilter and Metachat over the past week ever since the last thread that I though resolved this. He has made omnious mentions about how "something big" is going to come out. So my thought was that something major was going to be posted, and I thought this was a let down because it doesn't expand on what we already knew from last week. It certainly wasn't an attack on the person of Karl, so I don't really see how that is "getting my licks in."

(2) attempt to dismiss the whole issue ("In the end, who cares?")

That's a statement of my opinion: I don't think this is a big deal. How is that "getting my licks in"? I just think the issue should be sockpuppets in general; dhoyt seems like a dead issue, in my opinion. So differences of opinion are "getting licks in?"

(3) insinuate that others mentioned in y2karl's post (e.g. amberglow) are just as bad as dhoyt.

No, I berated amberglow for his behavior vis-a-vis languagehat which had nothing to do with karl's post (and I'm not the only one). The person I alluded to as a sockpuppet in karl's post was Hat Maui, because I have always thought he was someone's else sock puppet: why would a new user pick that name? So it seemed odd to me that he would make a post about how a sock puppet was being played on us and refer to someone who seems to be one. It seemed odd to me because I thought the focus of this kind of post, given the hand-wringing about it-was that all sock puppets are bad. Again, I don't see how this is "getting my licks in." Maybe you and I haven't different versions of what this means. Unlike other people, I didn't castigate karl for having too much time on his hand or being OCD or whatever. I only addressed the substance of the post... but you call that "getting my licks in."

I bring it up because it's comments like these that are a major part of the problem.

Wow. Well, my apologies if those comments seem so beyond the pale. I certainly didn't think of any of them being "getting my licks in."
posted by dios at 8:36 AM on November 16, 2005


nixerman, how does that qualify as sarcasm? What's the point he's making with it (the "sarcasm")? If I'm wrong then fine, I'll admit it, but I'm still not seeing it. Put simply, I'm not trying to "recast" anything, regardless of what you accuse me of.

we still have people like you and dios and Krrlson who feel the need to step up in and get your licks in.

Get my licks in? What the hell? I responded to a comment that I felt was disingenuous. Sheesh. Oh and you forgot to include amberglow in your little list of people "getting licks in".
posted by Stauf at 8:38 AM on November 16, 2005


Nixerman:

I can see how (1) (attacking other posters) and (3) (once again, attacking other posters) is a major part of the problem. I don't see how (2) (dismissing the issue) is a major part of the problem. The problem is with sockpuppet use to play folks against eachother. Dismissing the problem, or saying the issue is important, does not affect people playing folks against eachother.

But, in reference to dios' question, "who cares?", I'd like to point out JuiceCake's very accurate response:

juiceCake : "Reading the comments in the thread helps to answer questions you might ask about the issue brought up in the thread. Try starting from the top down. You'll discover that a few people do. Really. It's in this very thread!"

I know what dios means is "we shouldn't care", but, dios, if that's what you mean, you should say it and provide reasons, not just toss out the snark. And you know I say this as someone without a particular bone to pick with you, and who thinks/says the same thing to all kinds of folks, from every political background (though not that often, because if I told everyone who snarked "stop snarking", I'd wear out a keyboard every week).
posted by Bugbread at 8:39 AM on November 16, 2005


You're a sockpuppet!
No, you're a sockpuppet!
You're sockpuppet hurt my feelings!
Well your sockpuppet's grammar sucks!
Neener!
Nader!
Libral Commie bastard!
Neo-con shitmitten!


It is common knowledge that Kwantsar is a shared #mefi sockpuppet, right?

No. Might I suggest a section on the MeFi wiki regarding 'fun' & cabal-tastic sockpuppets as well as an explaination of dhoyting?

It might help purge the puss out of this asspimple of an event. Or not. But quite frankly, I'm starting to see sockpuppets everywhere...

Because as far as I'm concerned, you're all sockpuppets for the voices in my head. Bwahahahaha!

Shit. I think I just said that out loud...

posted by romakimmy at 8:41 AM on November 16, 2005


"dios, re-read your initial comments in this thread."

I just re-read his comments and I honestly don't see what you're seeing. I think you and others should seriously consider the possibility that your dislike of dios is notably affecting your judgment. (1) is not an attack; (2) is a very mild statement of a sentiment that others here are stating more forcefully; and (3) I don't see at all. Dios only gets hot under the collar and goes over the line in his zeal to defend languagehat from amberglow's indisputable swipe.

Several people have in this thread recently mentioned that to assume everyone is likely dishonest as dhoyt is would be completely unworkable and would be poisonous. Well, I wish more people would consider the possibility that assuming the worst of people you don't agree with, especially imagining all their sinister motives, also is poisonous. It's a similar situation in that there will be people for whom these assumptions are true. But it won't be true for most and assuming it is affects more people than just oneself.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:44 AM on November 16, 2005


It is common knowledge that Kwantsar is a shared #mefi sockpuppet, right?

Wrong.
posted by Kwantsar at 8:45 AM on November 16, 2005


bugbread, I appreciate the sentiment, and I understand juiceCake's point that apparently people do care. I made the all-too-common mistake of posting to a thread too early and assuming that other people had the same knowledge I have. See, I had thought that this was resolved last week. And after seeing numerous comments that already made this point, I thought the emphasis of this post on dhoyt was misplaced. As I have said numerous times, I thought the post should be "all sockpuppets are bad." That seems to be an important issue to flesh out. So, to restate it, yet again: the issue of importance should be on sockpuppets in general (with perhaps a subpoint being, if we don't address them then dhoyt happens) rather than emphasizing on what appears to be a resolved issue that dhoyt was behaving wrong and got banned.

I see that people do, in fact, seem to find this information deeply important (though I really don't understand why). So my comment of "who cares", while poorly worded, doesn't change the overall point of my initial post which is that the emphasis should be on the problem that allowed this and dhoyt should only be a cautionary example on that issue.
posted by dios at 8:46 AM on November 16, 2005


Chuckles : "Really? Why would people do that when their real life actual name is attached to everything they say..."

Whoa, I just realized there are two ways to parse dios' suggestion. I thought he meant "No identifying information". That is, no user names, no real names, no IP addresses, no nothing. 2ch.net, Japan's biggest (in the sense of "bigger than anything that exists in the English speaking internet by orders of magnitude") forum site does this. (I think there's a unique random signifier for each IP address in each thread, so if you post something in a thread, it calls you "a75bGn" anytime you post in the thread, but that doesn't carry over to other threads) In my opinion, 2ch.net produces some wonderful stuff, but it's the greatest source of evil in Japanese culture. The place is fucking poisonous.

But you parsed it "No more handles, real names only". I hadn't thought of that interpretation. I personally like it (I'm pretty open about who I am, as I'm the only bugbread on the internet, and it's not very hard at all to find out who I am in RL), but I'm sure there are a lot of folks who would be concerned about employers reading their contributions to some topics. It's not a bad idea in case of a worst-case scenario (dhoyts popping up like mushrooms in MeFi and threatening to destroy the place), but it's a medicine with some pretty drastic side effects, so it's far, far too early for the benefits to outweigh the drawbacks.
posted by Bugbread at 8:47 AM on November 16, 2005


So, in sum, it shouldn't be about teams but the other team keeps making it that way?

no, as i said, certain other posters keep making it that way. if they're a "team," well, i guess it's just a case of the shoe fitting.

He is meaningless to me. As you are.

garsh, when you followed that statement with a lengthy paragraph about me, i'm getting a mixed message. do you care about me or not, dios? i need to know before continuing my day.
posted by Hat Maui at 8:48 AM on November 16, 2005


Does this really have to turn into yet another dios-bashing thread? There are already several other threads devoted solely to that apparently necessary exercise.
posted by pardonyou? at 8:49 AM on November 16, 2005


There we all were , standing in a crowded trendy bar in Glasgow , little islands of Meta nerds all clutching their bunches of flowers and books of love poetry in Klingon , we looked like an explosion in the Beechgrove Garden.
There are a lot of broken hearted Scots guys hurting today , please spare a thought for us.


Spare a thought for you? She turned up after you all left the meetup and she and I ended the night making sweet, acrobatic love on the swings in Kelvingrove Park.

Er, yeah.

This is all quite a turn up for the books.
posted by jack_mo at 8:50 AM on November 16, 2005


The question we need to answer now is this:

Will we let the actions of "dhoyt" undermine our future trust in each other, and thus undermine the community, or will we use this moment to become a better, stronger community?

There are whispers already in this thread of using this to stick one to other users. Let's not go there.

Let the feuds fall, let our gripes go by the wayside, and engage each other in sincere conversation and argument. It's still possible, if we let it be so.
posted by rocketman at 8:50 AM on November 16, 2005


The person I alluded to as a sockpuppet in karl's post was Hat Maui, because I have always thought he was someone's else sock puppet: why would a new user pick that name?

wow, that's some stunning logic there. in the name of justice, i demand you refund every billable hour for which you've ever been paid as a lawyer (don't fear for dios' well-being; if his time on metafilter is any clue, shouldn't be more than a couple hundred bucks).
posted by Hat Maui at 8:52 AM on November 16, 2005


The emphasis should be on the problem that allowed this and dhoyt should only be a cautionary example on that issue.

Let me explicate a little further on this point. If you read karl's thread, it isn't simply a statement of the fact that it occurred. It seems much more a justification or defense or re-argument of a thread from last week and the information provided is shown as confirmation of karl's arguments. Thus, the post seems to be about karl saying "see, I was right all along about dhoyt." And that is the point I was referring to with the "who cares" comment. The issue should be sock puppets in general. I don't see the point of focusing on dhoyt in general, and karl's explanation of how he found it out in specific.
posted by dios at 8:53 AM on November 16, 2005


But I do agree that the potential damage of everyone McCarthying eachother is worse than the potential damage of everyone continuing to behave as if there are no more sockpuppets.

But look, history shows us that McCarthying is an inevitable result of puppetry. Just look at poor Edgar Bergen!
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 8:55 AM on November 16, 2005


dios : "See, I had thought that this was resolved last week."

My memory is weak, and I don't feel like scanning through everything (yes, I know, that's my failing, noone else's), but from what I can recall, the dhoyt thing was worked through last week in emails (I found out from y2karl by email), but not on MeFi proper.

Oh, and on my analysis of (1), (2), (3), I didn't mean to imply that you were actually guilty of doing what was alleged in (1), (2), and (3). I just meant that, even had you done what was said, (2) wouldn't have been part of the problem. My writing was sloppy, though, so it made it seem like I was defacto accepting that you had actually done 1, 2, and 3. Sorry.

dios : "I thought the post should be 'all sockpuppets are bad.' That seems to be an important issue to flesh out."

I'm a little conflicted about this. First, in the event that that topic is necessary, one could always start a topic on it. But, realistically, that just means that there would be a big fight about starting a topic that's already tangentially under discussion. Second, I suppose that you could be saying this post should be about that, but in that case, what's done is done, and probably emailing y2karl would be more productive than discussing it with everyone (it's not like it's a pattern of behaviour, policy change, or other topic requiring roundtable discussion). But, third, I may just be setting the bar too high, and taking it too seriously. And, fourth, the discussion of whether all sock-puppets are bad is a thread occassionally surfacing in this discussion, but the fact that it only surfaces occassionally would seem to indicate that there isn't a lot of disagreement, that obvious-humour sockpuppets (Pot & Kettle) are not truly bad (some people may dislike them, so they're bad like brussel sprouts, but not bad like arsenic), while stealth troll sockpuppets (dhoytjen) are truly bad (bad like arsenic).

So, if you want to pitch in your ideas on that, that's groovy, but I'd say just do so, and don't complain about y2karl not having made the topic you wanted him to make.
posted by Bugbread at 8:59 AM on November 16, 2005


dios: Did it ever occur to you that I don't think it is a big deal and that has nothing to do with "teams"?

Yes, i'm sure it occurred to everyone who read the several posts in which you made that opinion abundantly clear.
posted by lodurr at 8:59 AM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


It seems much more a justification or defense or re-argument of a thread from last week

It is a justification of the thread from last week.

and the information provided is shown as confirmation of karl's arguments.

It is a confirmation of karl's arguments.

Thus, the post seems to be about karl saying "see, I was right all along about dhoyt."

He was right all along about dhoyt.

And that is the point I was referring to with the "who cares" comment.

kthxbye
posted by Armitage Shanks at 9:00 AM on November 16, 2005


rocketman : "Will we let the actions of 'dhoyt' undermine our future trust in each other, and thus undermine the community, or will we use this moment to become a better, stronger community?"

I, personally, will do neither. Not that idea 2 isn't a great idea, but I don't know what this could do that would help me make the community stronger.

I've always known that there may be subterfuge and puppetry. I've always thought those were bad. I've also always thought that treating everyone with suspicion was not healthy. "Hope for the best, expect the worst". So this doesn't come as a shock, but that doesn't mean I think it's unimportant. This doesn't change my opinions or philosophy, so it will neither undermine my trust, not help me improve the community. (Note: I'm not trying to convince anyone of anything regarding that. It's just my personal anecdotal answer.)
posted by Bugbread at 9:05 AM on November 16, 2005


It drove people away from the site in droves.

*raise hand*

I wouldn't know dhoyt from a hole in the ground (I would get aggravated at PP, but that's no great shakes), and I've popped back in from time to time, but if dhoyt was a major contributor to the atmosphere of psychotic roiling and hate that envelops this site (which, full disclosure, has sucked me in on more than one occasion), then he played a major part in making Metafilter less enjoyable for me.

After reading his confession, about trolling a site for five years to get his kicks, all it really confirms is that one invests into an online enterprise at their peril, because basic assumptions about how humans will behave get thrown out the window.

There are a number of strong personalities that only get expression here. I would imagine people like dios, y2karl, amberglow, and ParisParamus would be a lot more milquetoast in real life. It's too easy to take the text at face value. What gets forgotten is that these personae that we all wear -- not just dhoyt/jenleigh, but everyone -- are just extensions of something else in us, and for a lot of users that something is not kind.

I know you all like your little perpetual dramafest, but that's exactly what drives people away from here. Right now the dominant voices in this community are intense, highly rational personalities that seem to thrive on conflict. It's a much messier Glass Bead Game, and you all love playing it, but it leaves no room for someone to contribute who doesn't have a particular axe to grind. The atmosphere -- which, back in my hoary day, was a welcoming cool blue air -- has long since been dominated by rancor, pettiness, and an obsessive pedanticness that is discouraging, as clouded and gray as Metatalk.

I suppose what I'm saying is: I am hopeful that a major cancer has been excised from the site. But dhoyt's not the only one who gets off on this. I would like it very much if Metafilter was, once more, a site that brought out the best in people, rather than the worst.
posted by solistrato at 9:06 AM on November 16, 2005


... also, I think it should be clear that if dios is another "dhoyt" SP, things are far, far stranger than the fabric of reality can tolerate, at least for one day. dios is much more active than any of the "dhoyt" SPs, or than all of them put together. And anyway, I'm pretty sure I remember people saying they'd meetup'd with him.

So let's just kill this whole 'dios is a sP' thing, OK? It's another example of the assholery we should be consciosly attending to.

On prev, bugbread: "Hope for the best, expect the worst".

What are you trying to do, here -- make sense or something? Perish the thought!
posted by lodurr at 9:08 AM on November 16, 2005


rocketman: Will we let the actions of "dhoyt" undermine our future trust in each other, and thus undermine the community, or will we use this moment to become a better, stronger community?

Spoken like a true Madison hippie, you hippie.
posted by UKnowForKids at 9:08 AM on November 16, 2005


I hate patchouli and bongos.
posted by rocketman at 9:11 AM on November 16, 2005


solistrato : "Right now the dominant voices in this community are intense, highly rational personalities that seem to thrive on conflict...The atmosphere -- which, back in my hoary day, was a welcoming cool blue air -- has long since been dominated by rancor, pettiness, and an obsessive pedanticness that is discouraging, as clouded and gray as Metatalk."

I see myself in your comments (the bold parts), and I apologize. It isn't my intention to drive folks away. I don't really know what to say. I try to be fair, but my personality is my personality. I suppose the way to fix things would be to go away, but I'm not selfless enough to do so.
posted by Bugbread at 9:12 AM on November 16, 2005


Matt should lower the ban-hammer on the twenty-five most-frequent posters. See how the place changes. It would be a great experiment.

You realize, right, that you're number 8?
posted by delmoi at 9:25 AM on November 16, 2005


"Matt should lower the ban-hammer on the twenty-five most-frequent posters."

Matt is number 22. ^_^
posted by Bugbread at 9:31 AM on November 16, 2005


And AlexReynolds/Rothko is TWO of the top ten. That's a lot of posting!
posted by sciurus at 9:31 AM on November 16, 2005


MATHOWIE BANS SELF!
Snark at 11.
posted by languagehat at 9:36 AM on November 16, 2005


sciurus : "And AlexReynolds/Rothko is TWO of the top ten. That's a lot of posting!"

If you combine his numbers, his contribution index is 12.41, which puts him at number 2, above me and below amberglow.
posted by Bugbread at 9:37 AM on November 16, 2005


Woohoo! I would avoid the ban hammer!
posted by dios at 9:38 AM on November 16, 2005


#14 and rising, baby!!
posted by Balisong at 9:41 AM on November 16, 2005


Shame on all of you. I am an avid follower of the art of puppetry, though not a puppeteer myself. I was searching on Google for a discussion of the subject of puppetry, and I came across this site. I skimmed this page, and after seeing numerous mentions of sock puppets, I excitedly paid a fee and signed up for a membership, so that I could participate. Upon returning and reading this page more closely, I realized that you people are discussing false usernames, and that this discussion isn't about puppetry at all. You should come up with a new term for creating a false username, so that people with a genuine interest in the noble practice of puppetry aren't drawn into your sick little world under false pretenses.

P.S. I think bugbread is actually dios
posted by ND¢ at 9:49 AM on November 16, 2005


ND¢ registered on my birthday. I can only conclude that ND¢ is actually me, many years younger.
posted by Bugbread at 9:50 AM on November 16, 2005


bugbread: But you parsed it "No more handles, real names only". I hadn't thought of that interpretation. I personally like it (I'm pretty open about who I am, as I'm the only bugbread on the internet, and it's not very hard at all to find out who I am in RL), but I'm sure there are a lot of folks who would be concerned about employers reading their contributions to some topics. It's not a bad idea in case of a worst-case scenario (dhoyts popping up like mushrooms in MeFi and threatening to destroy the place), but it's a medicine with some pretty drastic side effects, so it's far, far too early for the benefits to outweigh the drawbacks.


I have to admit, I thought of both interpretations at pretty much the same time, but I decided to make my point anyway. I completely agree with the points you raise! In particular, I'm sure you are right that it isn't time for such a drastic step. I do appreciate the fact that a lot of users here are 'real people' though, and I think encouraging that without committing to it as policy would be a good idea.
posted by Chuckles at 9:56 AM on November 16, 2005


Maybe there are actually no conservative posters on this site, and it really is an echo chamber, like they allege!
posted by advil at 9:59 AM on November 16, 2005


Re: bugbread's comment about not being surprised when people are dishonest. As I said in my my AskMe question on the topic, I am truly, honestly baffled by people lying. I mean, I'm a smart guy and I understand a lot of things, but this sort of dishonesty is an example of something I acknowledge as being true but in a very real sense can't understand that it's true.

I do understand Big Lying for a specific purpose. That makes sense to me. I don't do it, but I am willing to consider doing it. It's comprehensible. But casual, unnecessary lying of the type that, apparently, a great number of people engage regularly? I can't get my head around it.

And for that reason, no matter how much you or anyone else will urge me to expect this sort of thing, I cannot. I don't think I'm the only person that's this way; and if those of you on the other side of this fence can't understand those of us on this side, at least you can acknowledge that we exist. I simply don't understand and thus cannot expect people to just make up shit about themselves and other things.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 9:59 AM on November 16, 2005


Kwantsar, beyond just your username suggesting that you're part of the (formerly quonsar-worshipping) #mefi crew, your account had an email address that was a shared account, password known to many.

I'm certainly not as obsessive a researcher as y2karl, but I've seen other posts accusing you of being a #mefi sock puppet, and given the facts, and nature of your posts, I think it's quite likely.
posted by jojopizza at 10:15 AM on November 16, 2005


advil : "Maybe there are actually no conservative posters on this site, and it really is an echo chamber, like they allege!"

Or maybe dhoyt was the only leftie poster, and all the rest of us are rightie posters taking the piss.

Ethereal Bligh : "if those of you on the other side of this fence can't understand those of us on this side, at least you can acknowledge that we exist."

I acknowledge your existence. I'm surprised (no, super MEGA surprised) to find that you're one of those folks; you always struck me as the type who realizes these things but doesn't partake in them (like a psychologist who researches serial killers).
posted by Bugbread at 10:24 AM on November 16, 2005


big ups to krrlson/kwantsar/justgary for feeling persecuted and acting all defensive!
posted by Hat Maui


Exactly what are you talking about? Persecuted? Defensive? I rarely understand anything you write, and I'm use to you throwing in my name when you get into one of your 'attack' modes. I mean, that's what you do. (NOW I'm being defensive and feeling persecuted, see the difference?)

My only comments in this thread were that for some people, this isn't a big deal. We all latch on to the community at different levels. For me, it doesn't matter if you're mathowie. I read it for the links.

My other pointed out clevershark's blatant hypocrisy.

Not sure what your problem is with either of those comments, since I know you hate that "team" concept so much.
posted by justgary at 10:28 AM on November 16, 2005


I'm just like you EB (except, you know, for all the words).
posted by Catfry at 10:28 AM on November 16, 2005


Ethereal Bligh writes "And I think the (when appropriate) notification of admins is an important step because then one miscreant in an office could be known to elminate access to metafilter for everyone else."

Is alerting the guys workplace of a MetaFilter transgression really where we want to go?

In response to It is common knowledge that Kwantsar is a shared #mefi sockpuppet, right? Kwantsar writes "Wrong."

Which is wrong? The common knowledge part or the shared sockpuppet part?
posted by Mitheral at 10:30 AM on November 16, 2005


Wow.
posted by jokeefe at 10:33 AM on November 16, 2005


The person I alluded to as a sockpuppet in karl's post was Hat Maui, because I have always thought he was someone's else sock puppet: why would a new user pick that name?
posted by dios at 8:36 AM PST on November 16


What the fuck? Why would a new user pick "five fresh fish" or "Optimus Chyme" or "amberglow" or like, uh, "dios"?

You make no sense sometimes.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 10:39 AM on November 16, 2005


I mean just.... well.

I'm not surprised, but I am contemptuous. Of dhoyt's supposedly apology, mostly. People who fuck with the trust or good intentions of others for amusement are despicable.

I've never understood why someone would make a SP account other than for comedy reasons, such as Pot and Kettle. What's the point, aside from a brief and false sense of power?

Like solistrato, this all makes me feel very alienated from this place.
posted by jokeefe at 10:43 AM on November 16, 2005


"...as the type who realizes these things"

I do realize it. I just don't feel it. It's a part of my model of other human beings that I include because I'm forced to, not because it feels organically necessary. And so, in a way, even when I expect it I'm still surprised.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:44 AM on November 16, 2005


"What the fuck? Why would a new user pick 'five fresh fish'"...etc.

You do understand that "Hat Maui" is qualitatively different from any of the names you mention, don't you? Well, maybe not. But it is. Your failure to make sense of dios is indeed your failure, not his. Please consider that possibility in the future.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:50 AM on November 16, 2005


I'd like to state for the record that there are absolutely no #mefi sockpuppets at this point in time.
posted by cortex at 10:50 AM on November 16, 2005


I didn't see your comment until now, stuaf, so here's my response.

dhoyt had just written that it was all some grand spoof on his part.

Matt bought into it.

That was what I was reacting to.

dhoyt explained it was all some game he was playing that he really wasn't into but just grew like Topsy.. I don't agree with that. I think he fell into it over time because dhoyt had an enormous emotional involvement in his grudges--he attacked people, he tracked people, he kept bringing up their names in thread after thread where they had made no comment whatsoever and that is why I did not like dhoyt. It was always personal for him, Finally, he made up jenleigh as part of his need for revenge. And then he made that little highsignal callout because he just couldn't let it go. That's how I see it.

dhoyt knows it looks pretty sick and was trying to spin it into him being some guy in an office pulling wings off flies for his friends amusement. Like he was some evil genius instead of some craven little sicko. And Matt bought into it. That pissed me off. So I responded on the spot. In heat.

yerfatma asked upthread why I wrote in such an impersonal tone most of the time. Well, because people are waiting to hop on anything I write, take a quote out of context and brandish that as proof of whatever they want to prove at the time. And repost it later and later and later.
That's why I quote things rather than write comments, that's why I try to go over everything I post with a fine tooth comb.

I made that comment about the classic meltdown because it was--although banned, he responded by proxy to paint himself in the most flattering light left. He has an ego--he cores what people think about him, so he tried to make it all out to be like it was a game for him. He wanted to portray himself as the bored but extremely clever dilettante who put it altogether in a few idle moments and forgot to take it down. He wasn't. He was a guy who desperately needed to get even. He was a beady eyed grudge holder.

I am glad dhoyt is gone, yes. He was, in my opinion, a real asshole. He just couldn't let it go. Am I gleeful that he is gone ? No. Not at all. I am just glad he is gone.
posted by y2karl at 10:50 AM on November 16, 2005


Thanks, y2karl. Well, I guess that about wraps things up here. I think we can close the thread now.
posted by Balisong at 11:02 AM on November 16, 2005


Maybe I'm missing something - why is "Hat Maui" different?
posted by loquax at 11:04 AM on November 16, 2005


Maybe I'm missing something - why is "Hat Maui" different?
posted by loquax at 11:04 AM PST on November 16


Hat Maui is an obvious play on Matt Haughey. Why would a new user to this website feel comfortable in, (a) riffing off the admin's name, and (b) being a outspoken vitriolic user with a name that is a riff off the admins. Quite simply, no new user to this website would do that. (And, at one point, Hat Maui's user page self-identified as a sockpuppet).
posted by dios at 11:08 AM on November 16, 2005


Oh. Right. Yeah, I totally got that, I was just wondering if everyone else did.

Never mind.
posted by loquax at 11:15 AM on November 16, 2005



I will repeat that I think no name accounts should be banned, myself. If everyone had to give up a a name and an email, things might tone down. If no name accounts are allowed, no name members shouldn't be able to do some things--like make MetaTalk callouts of other members.


On another note, languagehat's first name is Steve, as some of us know. And now that we all know, Steve, is it OK if dios and the guys refer to you as steve from now on ? Hmm ?
posted by y2karl at 11:25 AM on November 16, 2005


interesting point dios. The only problem is that many people on this site are lurkers long before they are members. I knew about Matt long before I was knighted and became rks404.

I totally didn't see the Hat Maui play on words until pointed out though.
posted by rks404 at 11:30 AM on November 16, 2005


Steve, is it OK if dios and the guys refer to you as steve from now on ? Hmm ?

I don't get it. Is it supposed to be pointed? Menacing? Lame?

My real name is on my account and there's an email you can reach me at. None of which would stop me from being a prick, as I think I have firmly established over time.
posted by yerfatma at 11:30 AM on November 16, 2005


Count me in as one of the folks who never noticed the Hat Maui reference until dios' comment.

EB: Thanks for the clarification. I'm a little surprised that, because you can't feel why people lie, you can't expect it, but that's a lot less surprising than my first interpretation.
posted by Bugbread at 11:33 AM on November 16, 2005


Call me Ishmael.
posted by UKnowForKids at 11:34 AM on November 16, 2005


(And I don't get the "Can we call you Steve" reference either. Y'all are quite welcome to call me Mike, if you want, but don't be surprised if I sometimes misinterpret you as talking to some other Mike)
posted by Bugbread at 11:36 AM on November 16, 2005


(And I don't get the "Can we call you Steve" reference either. Y'all are quite welcome to call me Mike, if you want, but don't be surprised if I sometimes misinterpret you as talking to some other Mike)

Back in the day, Steve@ had a campaign of calling Foldy "Keith" that just managed to confuse the fuck out of me because I briefly thought he was going after me.

FIRST NAME ABUSE KILLS!
posted by COBRA! at 11:39 AM on November 16, 2005


y'all can call me jon all you like, just don't insert an "h," please. My name is usually right in front of you, so to do so makes me doubt your intelligence or at least your eyesight.
posted by jonmc at 11:46 AM on November 16, 2005


Why would a new user to this website feel comfortable in, (a) riffing off the admin's name,

Because people lurk; I've seen similar usernames elsewhere.

and (b) being a outspoken vitriolic user with a name that is a riff off the admins.

He is outspoken, but rarely vitriolic. And what? If you have a name that riffs off of an admin's, you should logically be meek and mild? If I called myself A Mess of Gin I'd be no less likely to get into it with you or anyone else.

If he self-identified as an SP, that's one thing, but don't try to pretend like you're some sort of fucking Sherlock, homes.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 11:50 AM on November 16, 2005


Is this freak show thread going to hit 500? That's what I want to know.
posted by UKnowForKids at 11:55 AM on November 16, 2005


And (last comment, I swear), for what it's worth, dhoyt was anti-batshitinsane. I feel vindicated.
posted by UKnowForKids at 12:00 PM on November 16, 2005


dios: Quite simply, no new user to this website would do that.

Um. Yeah. Right. That makes sense.

No, wait: It's really dumb. How in the world would you know that "no new user would do that"? I'm sorry, dios, but there's just no part of your reasoning on that which makes any sense whatever.

It's analogous to saying "Why would any new visitor to someone's home feel comfortable referring to the owner by his or her first name?" Or, "Why would any new citizen make fun of the President?"

Damn. It's a good thing you're an attorney and not a cop.
posted by lodurr at 12:04 PM on November 16, 2005


I love you all so much.

LOVE

LOVE

LOVE

LOVE

LOVE

etc.
posted by rocketman at 12:15 PM on November 16, 2005


Kwantsar, beyond just your username suggesting that you're part of the (formerly quonsar-worshipping) #mefi crew, your account had an email address that was a shared account, password known to many.

My username at once mocks and pays homage to quonsar. Plenty of people outside of #mefi are familiar with quonsar, y'know? Furthermore, I directed to a shared email account because I could think of no reason I should ever want to read and keep confidential any email sent to me as a result of my participation on this website.

Which is wrong? The common knowledge part or the shared sockpuppet part?


The shared sockpuppet part, thanks. I am one man.
posted by Kwantsar at 12:18 PM on November 16, 2005


at one point, Hat Maui's user page self-identified as a sockpuppet


don't try to pretend like you're some sort of fucking Sherlock, homes

It's a good thing you're an attorney and not a cop.

This is why I come to Metafilter.
posted by event at 12:19 PM on November 16, 2005


y2karl: I understand what you're reacting to, and, really, I don't blame you. So no explanation necessary. I just felt it was unfair for Hat Maui to charactarize anyone here as if they were just pulling stuff out of their ass.

Oh, and comment #487; come on guys just a little more.
posted by Stauf at 12:23 PM on November 16, 2005


Matt's a better person than I am -- he hasn't shut down the site, and I might have. I didn't know what to think last night, but I'm rather annoyed by this whole mess now. I'm with scody, except the absol-freaking-lutley part (ma'am, if you're fucking going to fucking swear, just fucking do it. ;) )

Err, Metafilter is his primary source of income. This doesn't really damage the site, (most visitors don't even read the comments, much less know anything about the metadrama) although dhoyt's needling over the years didn't help it at all.

It's like a chain reaction. People get into a fight and then other people get involved and then the fight gets bigger and bigger. Some people cool down quickly, and others don't. Not too many fights, and you'll have fewer flameouts. Enough cool heads and there's not too much damage.

But dhoyt not only kept poking and prodding, trying to get things started, he actually created, whole of the cloth fake people, fake hotheads to amplify arguments and acrimony. That's the damage he did to this site.

The fights, etc, don't bother me, but I know they bother other people so I try to avoid them, defuse them, and so on. Dhoyt was doing the exact opposite. He wasn't trying to destroy the site, he probably thought of it has some invulnerable thing, but it's not. We all have to work together to make the site work.

My problem here, and my ongoing problem with Life in These United States circa 2005, is the desperate need to see everyone as On the Team or part of The Other Side. It's a hell of a way to never get to know anyone. I'd say, "Let me know how that works out," but that would require some sort of interpersonal communication. And that's hard to do when your one setting is Screed.

yerfatma: you know, I never had that big of a problem with either Jenleigh or dhoyt. Maybe I just didn't see enough of them in the threads before, but they seemed OK to me. In my mind, people who act like dicks raise my ire regardless of their political viewpoints. There liberals on this site that I've flamed, and there are conservatives that I've not flamed.

But what dhoyt did was incredibly dickish. I mean, pretending to become friends with Asparagirl as jenleigh? Dhoyt was treating people on this site like pawns, playing 'human chess' (his term) with people in order to, I don't know, score points and boot off people who disagreed with him (I don't believe he was ever a liberal, his 'confession' was just more BS).

The other thing that's weird, there is a real person named Jennifer Leigh, or Jennifer Hoyt who lives in same town as the real Darren Hoyt. He was using real people's names from his local community to fuck around on Metafilter.

On the plus side, I just came up with a cool idea for a novel :P


As for getting rid of usernames entirely: No. nononononononononononono. I've only seen one board without any user names, and it is full of the most immature, evil, obnoxious stuff ever to be converted into binary.


-- was it that Slashdot-like site back in the day? I can't remember the name, but it had these crazy write-in polls.
posted by delmoi at 12:23 PM on November 16, 2005


Hat Maui is an obvious play on Matt Haughey.

See, not only did I not get this, I've been reading it as Hot Maui since he first showed up. It is pretty unusually self-aware and aggressive for a nick, now that I get it. Which doesn't prove anything, of course, but it's certainly interesting.

And dios' jumping-to of his conclusion was not stupid, it was just presumptuous (and not even that, if the self-identification as a sockpuppet is true). Now, say, concluding that Hat Maui must have been a sockpuppet because it started with an H or something, that would be stupid. Y'all try not to be such jerks, okay?

And delmoi, sorry, but I've already got dibs.
posted by cortex at 12:46 PM on November 16, 2005


I am a little puzzled by the outrage being displayed here.

Was it not dead obvious that dhoyt and jenleigh were trolls?

Why would anyone get emotionally invested in anything a troll offers? How the hell could you allow dhoyt or jenleigh to become so meaningful to your lives/online experience that you are hurt by their scam?
posted by five fresh fish at 12:52 PM on November 16, 2005


See, not only did I not get this, I've been reading it as Hot Maui since he first showed up. - cortex

Me too.
posted by raedyn at 12:52 PM on November 16, 2005


By the way, I only recently noticed (like a month or so ago) that "Hat Maui" was a riff on Matthowie. If he's spelled it Hattmawie I might have noticed sooner.

A mess of gin. Heh.
posted by delmoi at 12:55 PM on November 16, 2005


bugbread writes "Count me in as one of the folks who never noticed the Hat Maui reference until dios' comment."

Me neither but this kind of stuff happens to me all the time because I see handles as a shaping of characters rather than listening to them in my mind. IE: bugbread is a visual identifier with no link in my mind to the phonetics of bug and bread.
posted by Mitheral at 1:01 PM on November 16, 2005


I don't get it. Is it supposed to be pointed? Menacing? Lame?

I don't particularly like it when a decidedly unfriendly no name refers to me or addresses me if we were on a first name basis. It really annoyed me when dhoyt did that because I thought he was doing it just to personallly be a prick. Which was probably likely--he really worked at being a prick to people.

He really was a prick. I hope that at some point we can safely arrive at a consensus on that.
posted by y2karl at 1:05 PM on November 16, 2005


Was it not dead obvious that dhoyt and jenleigh were trolls?

Not to me. Not at all. Take a look at jenleigh's 47 front page posts, and explain to me how it's "dead obvious" that she "she" was just a troll? Even today -- knowing what we now all know -- I'd say that her "her" posts were uncommonly well-crafted and thought provoking.
posted by pardonyou? at 1:07 PM on November 16, 2005


delmoi : "was it that Slashdot-like site back in the day?"

Nope. Japanese site (2ch.net), crazy huge.
posted by Bugbread at 1:08 PM on November 16, 2005


Whenever I see bugbread I think of those D&D monsters... Bugbears, or whatever.
posted by selfnoise at 1:09 PM on November 16, 2005


He was using real people's names from his local community family to fuck around on Metafilter.

fff:
troll, no. a lunatic, yes.
but look at the jenleigh's muslim threads: filled with people defending the disgustingly dishonest posts in the name of "fairness" or "we're not a liberal echo chamber".
that's what I'm most upset about. unable to make friends being the fascist, racist fuck he really is, dhoyt created a persona who was 1) female 2) living in Europe, to make his little screeds against islam more subtle. (I'll bet his next sock puppet would have been a black guy posting from South Central.)
AND PEOPLE BOUGHT IT. it's populist politics 101 and it scares the crap out of me.
posted by mr.marx at 1:10 PM on November 16, 2005


five fresh fish, different people invest differing amounts of trust and emotional expectation in online interactions and in those on Metafilter specifically.

I've learned to be less involved with what's on the screen than I was five years ago, and five years before that, and so I see this whole dhoyt thing as kind of awful (and impressive) but I'm not personally hurt by it. But that's me. I have no trouble understanding the more personal and emotional reaction many people are having.

Is it wise to get emotionally involved with online avatars? Probably not. But the same thing goes for real-life relationships, from simple friends to life-long commitments, no? The degree of chance is greater online, but in either case people in general are driven to interact by their desire to connect in some way to the other end of the interaction.
posted by cortex at 1:11 PM on November 16, 2005


Me neither but this kind of stuff happens to me all the time because I see handles as a shaping of characters rather than listening to them in my mind. IE: bugbread is a visual identifier with no link in my mind to the phonetics of bug and bread.
posted by Mitheral at 1:01 PM PST on November 16


See, I am the opposite. Everything is... "spoken" in my mind. I think I have mentioned this before. When I read and when I type, it is auditory. I read it outloud in my head. When I type, I speak the words and my fingers act as transcribers as if I was dictating to them (which is why I so often mix up homonyms when I type---my fingers "here" a different word. I also leave out words because my fingers don't keep up with my mouth.) But that is interesting that you are so visual and I am so auditory. Was it the same for you in school? Taking notes did nothing for me or reading the black board did nothing. To remember it, I have to hear the speaker say it. And when I see a user name, I subconsciously read it outloud in my head.

Thanks for letting me share.
posted by dios at 1:16 PM on November 16, 2005


lodurr writes "No, wait: It's really dumb."

No it isn't. I can understand why you might disagree with the reasoning, but although I've not put any thought into whose SP Hat Maui might be, I've always assumed that the account was a second account of some sort for someone who had posted here before, for exactly the same reasons that dios presented. I've not felt any particular way about HM, but I do think that it would be the unusual newbie user who would feel assured enough to choose that name. More than just alluding to a familiarity with the site, it suggests a teasing of #1 akin to the Matt Haughey's Baby SP, and that just seems like something a veteran would be more comfortable with than a newbie.
posted by OmieWise at 1:22 PM on November 16, 2005


dhoyt (in abstentia) writes "Weirdly enough, until now I'd always assumed MeFi was made up of quite a few users operating a handful of accounts for the same reason: to watch the weirdness which ensued."

This is the strangest part of dhoyt's response. Creepy, even.
posted by OmieWise at 1:23 PM on November 16, 2005


pardonyou? "well crafted" but "thought provoking"?

You mean, like a stopped clock reads the right time twice a day?
posted by gsb at 1:24 PM on November 16, 2005


terrapin-Let it lie. That user made some real contributions.
posted by OmieWise at 1:24 PM on November 16, 2005


By the way I should just point out that the other account that looked like it might be another dhoyt sock puppet wasn't. It was just dhoyt imitating another user. This is good news.
posted by dodgygeezer at 1:31 PM on November 16, 2005


unable to make friends being the fascist, racist fuck he really is

the word fascist is thrown around way too easily. (i'm not defending dhoyt, just saying that if we overuse that word, it loses all meaning. And i don't want that since it's an important word to have around.)
posted by jonmc at 1:32 PM on November 16, 2005


jonmc writes "the word fascist is thrown around way too easily. (i'm not defending dhoyt, just saying that if we overuse that word, it loses all meaning. And i don't want that since it's an important word to have around.)"

Amen
posted by OmieWise at 1:34 PM on November 16, 2005


ok, just racist then.
posted by mr.marx at 1:58 PM on November 16, 2005


Thanks for letting me share.
posted by dios at 1:16 PM PST on November 16


I feel your pain (",)
posted by dash_slot- at 2:00 PM on November 16, 2005


Mathowie's always had a self-deprecating, amenable character, to my mind. Many lurkers will have appreciated this and chosen the name in affection.

Add to this that it's quite a subtle play on the name - I, like many others it seems - didn't spot it until after many sightings.

It is of course a possible SP: so what? I don't see HM as a troublemaker of any sort. It isn't SP's by themselves which are the problem, it's members behaviour.
posted by dash_slot- at 2:09 PM on November 16, 2005


ok, just racist then

In the message bardic forwarded, dhoyt wrote:

As for the comments I've made over time, some are literal, many are just for provocation, and the political stuff is anathema to almost everything I believe -- anyone who browsed the highsignal blog could probably have guessed that.

highsignal.blogspot.com seems to be gone, but here's the Google cache from earlier in the year. I'd say it reads like something from smack in the middle of the MeFi demographic. Maybe that was yet another sort of game, or maybe it really did reflect his real opinions. Either way, I still can't imagine why he'd use his original account (with his name as his username, even) as the one for his obnoxious troll persona.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 2:10 PM on November 16, 2005


Well, maybe not many will have...chosen the name...as there's only 1 mathowie, there's only 1 Hat Maui, too. Thank god: things could easily get a little confusing if a new member wanted to spoof his name.
posted by dash_slot- at 2:12 PM on November 16, 2005


*makes tasty pancakes for everyone*
*adds a pinch of languagehat*
posted by Sibrax at 2:24 PM on November 16, 2005


"Count me in as one of the folks who never noticed the Hat Maui reference until dios' comment."

Me, too! And I read it as "Hot" as well. What's wrong with us? Well, beside the obvious...

posted by deborah at 2:31 PM on November 16, 2005


For a ridiculously long MetaTalk thread, this discussion has remained remarkably civil. (On the scale of humongous MetaTalk threads, at least).
posted by raedyn at 2:32 PM on November 16, 2005


Steve, is it OK if dios and the guys refer to you as steve from now on ? Hmm ?

I don't get it. Is it supposed to be pointed? Menacing? Lame? —yerfatma

I don't particularly like it when a decidedly unfriendly no name refers to me or addresses me if we were on a first name basis.


But, Karl, why pick on me? I completely fail to understand what this is about. You really did sound like you were attacking me, and I can't think what I might have done to deserve it. Other than not be tasty enough. And Sibrax seems to like the flavor, so I don't think it's that.
posted by languagehat at 2:32 PM on November 16, 2005


This is the strangest part of dhoyt's response. Creepy, even.

He was spinning when he posted that via bardic. I think he just threw that out there along with a bunch of other stuff. If you look at what he wrote, it just doesn't make much sense. He was grasping at straws, writing sentences. It's improvised damage control.

Idly amusing himself at work for the entertainment of his coworkers ?

I just can't see an office full of people breathlessly awaiting the next episode of dhoyt sticks it to rothko. I mean, c'mon, have you ever had to try to explain to someone in the room with you why you just laughed out loud at something you read here ?

And go through his comments--the comment from the Beslan thread is not the only time he lost it. I remember the time matteo said something nice about jenleigh in a MetaTalk thread and man, dhoyt got there so fast to stick it to matteo that you could smell burning rubber. He was so into his grudge matches.

I don't think he could explain why he did what he did. I don't think he has even bothered to look at it squarely yet.

Man, if you read some of the desperate emails he--and she--wrote the day I was putting it together. His story just kept changing. The one thing that stayed the same was he did not want people here figuring it out. So, don't trust his 'explanation'--he is still lying to himself. How could he tell anyone else the truth ?
posted by y2karl at 2:36 PM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


THIS WEBSITE KILLS FACISTS
YMMV

posted by yerfatma at 2:36 PM on November 16, 2005


If everyone had to give up a a name and an email, things might tone down.
Only if you have some way of validating thier actual identity. I can list my name as Ivan Peter Freely and that doesn't identify me any more than leaving the name field blank does.

Not that I disagree - it would be interesting how the tone would change if people may be called to account as themselves for something they said as .
posted by dg at 2:39 PM on November 16, 2005


Of course, that should be "as <user>." Idiot.
posted by dg at 2:40 PM on November 16, 2005


DG, a possible approach is to make all payments by credit card/debit card only, meaning that Matt would have access to their real names. You could still use a sister's credit card, but that's a bigger hurdle than now. Another drawback is that it would cut out folks who don't have credit card/debit cards, and those who don't want to use them for online transactions.
posted by Bugbread at 2:43 PM on November 16, 2005


OK, if we're going to out ourselves, and use first names, you can all just call me Sally.

Sally Bong.
posted by Balisong at 2:44 PM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


Sorry "make all payments" = "make all new user signup payments".
And I suppose a 1 cent charge could be levied for all existing users, just for verification.

But, again, this is strong medicine with strong side-effects, and we haven't reached that point yet.
posted by Bugbread at 2:45 PM on November 16, 2005


You really did sound like you were attacking me, and I can't think what I might have done to deserve it.

Yeah, but was I ? No, but that didn't stop you from jumping to a conclusion about it. Or making a comment about it. Hmm, it's easy to misunderstand things on the internet.

But, as long as we are on the topic, would you feel if people addressed you by your real life first name here ? I don't particularly like it, myself. And you ? I just brought up your name because you said once that you and Mr. No Name have corresponded. Yours just happened to be the first first name that came to mind when I wanted to drop the hint.
posted by y2karl at 2:46 PM on November 16, 2005


And that not liking to be called by my first name is inclusive, languagehat. Or can I just call you Steve from now on ?
posted by y2karl at 2:51 PM on November 16, 2005


dash_slot- writes "as there's only 1 mathowie"

bugbread writes "a possible approach is to make all payments by credit card/debit card only, meaning that Matt would have access to their real names."

Two things I can see wrong with this, 1) gift cards don't have names attached and 2) I bet we already have several complete name collisions here. My school has dozens and it is a smaller population than MF.
posted by Mitheral at 2:55 PM on November 16, 2005


y2karl : "Yeah, but was I ? No, but that didn't stop you from jumping to a conclusion about it. Or making a comment about it. Hmm, it's easy to misunderstand things on the internet."

y2karl,

I dunno what happened in this conversation bubble with lh, but he hasn't done anything wrong. You said something which sounded like an attack, but which didn't make much sense. A few folks asked you what was up. You said you didn't like people you disliked calling you by your first name. He didn't jump to a conclusion, he was led to a conclusion. And, yeah, he commented on it, or, rather, in typical (good) languagehat way, he asked why you were leading him to that conclusion. Not "fuck you too!", but "Why are you picking on me?" Turns out that he was led to the conclusion in err: You don't like people referring to you by your first name, you asked him in such a way that it seemed like it was intended to be table-turning, but it turns out that it was just that his name was the first to jump to mind.

That's all groovy. Just don't accuse him of jumping to conclusions (as opposed to reaching incorrect conclusions).
posted by Bugbread at 2:56 PM on November 16, 2005


Mitheral : "2) I bet we already have several complete name collisions here"

MichaelBrucia47 representin'!!

But, yeah. As I say, it's not a recommended system, just a possible solution with its own problems.
posted by Bugbread at 2:58 PM on November 16, 2005


y2karl excuse me but for your own good I think you should move on. Change the subject of your thoughts. You seem quite traumatized by someone who is not worth your continuing anguish.
Turn on some music, read a book. Eat an apple. The sun is shining in Portland; is it shining wherever you are in Washington? Go outside, take a walk.
You sound like someone who approaches obsession. Do yourself a favor and resolutely put this behind you.
posted by Cranberry at 2:58 PM on November 16, 2005


Good Christ: if you don't like people using your first name, y2karl, don't put your name in your handle. Like, say . . . languagehat.
posted by yerfatma at 3:02 PM on November 16, 2005


Yours just happened to be the first first name that came to mind when I wanted to drop the hint.

Well, that wasn't a very good idea, was it? Why not simply say "I don't like being called by my first name" instead of "Steve, is it OK if dios and the guys refer to you as steve from now on ? Hmm ?" Read what bugbread so thoughtfully said. And Cranberry has a point too.
posted by languagehat at 3:02 PM on November 16, 2005


Mitheral : "2) I bet we already have several complete name collisions here"

But, yeah. As I say, it's not a recommended system, just a possible solution with its own problems.


There may be name collisions, so use name+credit card number instead.
posted by event at 3:04 PM on November 16, 2005


sorry, languagehat, for being a grouch on the second but you called me by my first name just after I explained I didn't like it.

On another note--on dhoyt's blog:

For example--Marine-led offensive killed friends and foreign fighters, Iraqi leaders say. So, Is the US Recruiting for the Insurgency? See also Guantánamo Comes to Define U.S. to Muslims. Consider, too, The rising economic cost of the Iraq war--a war, which is, according to more than one, A War That Cannot Be Won.

dhoyt reposting my posts. That is too rich.
posted by y2karl at 3:06 PM on November 16, 2005


I phase between amazed and outraged at this, but what's the most disturbing to me is looking at jenleigh's posting history and reading some of "her" responses in AskMe. There's one in a question about puberty where "she" talks about the physical characteristics of "her" finance. There's something almost fundamentally wrong with that- to fabricate a person and then fabricate a life experience to offer advice to someone's personal question feels almost like a violation of some sorts. This shit is sociopathic.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 3:17 PM on November 16, 2005


The sun is shining in Portland

It is? Goddammit, I work in a freakin' basement**. I preferred to assume it was pouring and I wasn't missing anything.

There may be name collisions, so use name+credit card number instead.

I'm thinking name, credit card, SSN, debit PIN. I'll be happy to review these for any suspicious data.

sorry, languagehat, for being a grouch on the second but you called me by my first name just after I explained I didn't like it.

I'm glad you guys figured that out. In languagehat's further defense, "karl" is the majority of your nick and you are definitely the highest-profile "karl" in the room, so it may have been a completely innocent event, no more personal in nature than the use of "XQASDFASDF" for, uh, XWHATEVER.

**and I do in fact have a red stapler.
posted by cortex at 3:25 PM on November 16, 2005


I just brought up your name because you said once that you and Mr. No Name have corresponded. Yours just happened to be the first first name that came to mind when I wanted to drop the hint.
posted by y2karl at 2:46 PM PST on November 16


Why not simply say "I don't like being called by my first name" instead of "Steve, is it OK if dios and the guys refer to you as steve from now on ?
posted by y2karl at 2:46 PM PST on November 16


Am I the Mr. No Name? It is because I called you karl that you fired a barb at languagehat? You do realize that karl is your username. If you username was y2rhett, I would probably be calling you rhett. Regardless, if you are upset about it, why did you ask me directly? Or e-mail me? I think you will find that I would have respected your wish if that really bothers you.

And the Mr. No Name comment? Are you angry because you don't know my real name? Well, if you ever bothered to e-mail me in a respectful manner, there are a plethora of people here who can attest to the fact that I usually sign my emails with my name. But one thing is for certain: I'm not ever publishing my name on this website, to satisfy you or anyone else.

I really don't know what you are so upset about on this.
posted by dios at 3:25 PM on November 16, 2005


On preview: XQUZYPHYR, of course.
posted by cortex at 3:25 PM on November 16, 2005


I phase between amazed and outraged at this

I am not impressed. you enjoy being outraged and do it whenever possible.

This whole thing is ridiculous and embarassing, but "outraged," and "sociopathic?" This is some schmuck who got caught screwing with people's heads on a blog. He got caught and now he's booted. I shudder at how you'd react if someone pee-peed on your toilet seat.
posted by jonmc at 3:30 PM on November 16, 2005


Dios: If you aren't sure if you're Mr. No Name, ask. Then, if it turns out it's you, then flame on. But wait for that answer, because if y2karl meant someone else by "Mr. No Name", your post above is going to look really, really stupid.
posted by Bugbread at 3:31 PM on November 16, 2005


I agree with jonmc. Dhoyt's got a lousy sense of fun, but this is hardly what I'd call sociopathic. It's more garden level "being a dick", but with a very long attention span. A sociopath would have tried to do one hell of a lot more damage.
posted by Bugbread at 3:32 PM on November 16, 2005


y2karl: But, as long as we are on the topic, would you feel if people addressed you by your real life first name here ? I don't particularly like it, myself.

Jesus christ, dude, your first name is in your screen name. Are you really this insane?
posted by xmutex at 3:37 PM on November 16, 2005


Good point bugbread. That's what I get for getting lost in the discussion!

This is just getting funny. At this point, I'm not even sure I know what the discussion is about any more! Comments this far past 100 are usually just mindless pictures and drivel intended to increate post counts. This thing is fairly consistently a dialogue, although trying to keep track of what thread we are on is difficult. I'm fixing to leave, and I shudder to think what will be here tomorrow when I return! Will there still be a discussion? Do people still have thoughts which have not been given birth? How long can bugbread remain even-keeled? I'm convinced there must be some point where you finally break down and start threatening physical abuse and uttering absurdities. I just wonder what the magic number is of comments is.
posted by dios at 3:40 PM on November 16, 2005


I'm a little baffled as well. I call you karl all the time and you've never given me any shit about it, and you're not a man to mince words.
posted by jonmc at 3:41 PM on November 16, 2005


Jesus christ, dude, your first name is in your screen name. Are you really this insane?
posted by xmutex at 3:37 PM PST on November 16


Seriously. You can call me by any variation of my username - Chyme, OC, Opt, and I suggest Optimus Whine if you're a butthead - and it doesn't really faze me. To ask that you not be called by anything but your full username is weird and unprecedented. Please tell me I'm mistaken.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 3:46 PM on November 16, 2005


dios : "How long can bugbread remain even-keeled? I'm convinced there must be some point where you finally break down and start threatening physical abuse and uttering absurdities. I just wonder what the magic number is of comments is."

I'm like spectacularly neutral on this issue. A class 5 hurricane would have to spring out of my monitor and hit me to make my keel tilt, and I'm pretty sure my current shitty graphics card can't render a hurricane that strong (note to self: making analogies to shitty graphics cards means its probably time to go buy that new graphics card you've been wanting).

If you mean "lose his shit anywhere on Mefi", then, yeah, I've done it a few times. I recall a thread where I was trying to ask a non-loaded question that kept getting taken as an attack as one of them.
posted by Bugbread at 3:56 PM on November 16, 2005


(Here's me losing it. And, on reflection, the whole gang is there! y2karl, dios, and special guest dhoyt. AND, as a bonus, it's about calling people by their real names. Holy fuck, I'd forgotten that was what the topic was about. Serendipity!)
posted by Bugbread at 4:02 PM on November 16, 2005


I am so going to laugh my ass off it if it turns out y2karl is also a dhoyt alias.

Gahd, I hope y2karl is a dhoyt alias.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:04 PM on November 16, 2005


(Note: I linked to the correct comment, but the link somehow skips to a different comment in the thread, maybe because of inline images. The losing-it comment is the one a few comments down that contains the ever insightful and heavily researched sentence: "AAAARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!")
posted by Bugbread at 4:05 PM on November 16, 2005


"There may be name collisions, so use name+credit card number instead."
And expiration date. Daddy needs a new pair of shoes.

(I'm only on here under a pseudonym because Paypal/MeFi managed to bone, like, three different combinations based on my real name. I figured "fuck it" after that. But something I think helps with a real community is when people are friendly enough to call each other by their first names, especially when those first names aren't their SNs. On the other hand, I remember calling Decani "Jack" as a sort of generic name only to be surprised by him being offended. It turned out that Jack was his name, and he felt like I had made the argument personal.That was weird, and I instantly felt like a dick even though I hadn't meant to do it.)
posted by klangklangston at 4:06 PM on November 16, 2005




On the whole, I wish people would use y2karl. No, jonmc, I don't mind it so much when people who I know and with whom I am on good terms address me by my first name. But I don't like it when it's from when it's people with whom I am not on good terms. That sometimes it irritates me. As I explained, I was grouchy and I have apologized. I really need to get something to eat.
posted by y2karl at 4:06 PM on November 16, 2005


I certianly hope nobody chooses the username "asswrangler", because that will be my generic catchall name for everybody here from now on.

Sally Bong.
posted by Balisong at 4:16 PM on November 16, 2005


It takes two to tango. dhoyt put an amazing amount of energy into getting his kicks around here because there were always lots of people happy to feed the troll.

I'd like to think that maybe things will get more civil without the four-headed agitator. But then I see that this thread is full of personal attacks in all directions. The "look Mom, he hit me first!" routine got old and tired a long time ago.

We need less foaming at the mouth in general, and more people who follow languagehat's example and simply don't get suckered into trading insults.
posted by fuzz at 4:19 PM on November 16, 2005


ANYBODY CALLING ME PINK GETS A KNIFE IN THE GUT OF THEIR CHOICE.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 4:24 PM on November 16, 2005


y2karl: 'karl' is the obvious shortening of your username the same way 'jon' is the shortening of jonmc, lhat for langaugehat and maybe 'bug' for bugbread. Getting upset about people calling you karl is really silly. I usually use 'y2' because I remember you complaining about people calling you karl in the past, but you can't expect people to know that it bugs you in general.

By the way, I probably shouldn't mention this, but credit card verification only goes by initial. You can use any name you like as long as the first letter of the first and last name are the same. Some cards also allow you to use throwaway numbers that can only be charged once.
posted by delmoi at 4:25 PM on November 16, 2005


Anyone that calls me 'gary' is asking for trouble.
posted by justgary at 4:30 PM on November 16, 2005


I am not impressed.

I have shat myself in utter surprise.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:32 PM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


Well, not his example in this thread.

Upon his entry, amberglow took a shot at languagehat for being dhoyt's champion and then languagehat reacted strongly and fired back and then dios used that for an excuse to unload on amberglow, who then fired off some more. No moral high ground there--no one broke the chain. Everyone could claim acquaintance with being accused unfairly as an excuse to provide another bad example.

dash_slot had it right when he noted everyone has gotten meaner of late. Everyone could use a helping of the guy whispering Remember Caesar, you are only human.
posted by y2karl at 4:34 PM on November 16, 2005


Everybody on a pedestal, that is.
posted by y2karl at 4:43 PM on November 16, 2005


Dhoyt's got a lousy sense of fun, but this is hardly what I'd call sociopathic. It's more garden level "being a dick", but with a very long attention span. A sociopath would have tried to do one hell of a lot more damage.

Pretending to be a woman, then pretending to have a fiance, then pretending the fiance has had a physical issue comparative to a real user's real-life physical issue in the context of asking for advice about it isn't potentially damaging? And creating multiple identities to attempt to discredit other people in a community isn't a sign of anti-social behavior? I simply disagree.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:45 PM on November 16, 2005


ANYBODY CALLING ME PINK GETS A KNIFE IN THE GUT OF THEIR CHOICE.

Well then, Pink, I choose dhoyt's gut.

*ducks*
posted by scody at 4:47 PM on November 16, 2005


I am not impressed.

"I have shat myself in utter surprise."
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:32 PM PST on November 16 [!]

~snort~
That gave me the first genuine giggle of the thread. Cheers mate!
posted by dash_slot- at 4:47 PM on November 16, 2005


Scody: I'm gonna need bus fare. And a pinwheel.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 4:53 PM on November 16, 2005


*starts counting change for the bus*
*dashes to toy store for pinwheel*
Whee! Hooray for fun!

posted by scody at 4:58 PM on November 16, 2005


LOVE
posted by rocketman at 4:59 PM on November 16, 2005


y2karl, I called you Karl because you had just called me Steve. If you couldn't figure that out, you weren't trying very hard. And I remind you that you have a history of backhanding people who hadn't done anything to you. It isn't much fun. I appreciate your apology, and I trust it won't happen again.

No, jonmc, I don't mind it so much when people who I know and with whom I am on good terms address me by my first name. But I don't like it when it's from when it's people with whom I am not on good terms. That sometimes it irritates me.


If we're not on good terms, that was the first I'd heard of it.
posted by languagehat at 5:31 PM on November 16, 2005


love
posted by rocketman at 5:35 PM on November 16, 2005


He slipped up here June 25 then September 25. I find this whole thing mind boggling simply because of the amount of time spent maintaining the deception.
posted by tellurian at 5:39 PM on November 16, 2005


tellurian, can you explain the slip-up? Does the later thread (as dhoyt) reference in first-person a detail from the earlier thread (as highsignal) ?
posted by cortex at 5:47 PM on November 16, 2005


cortex: I think he calls it a slip just because both accounts (which are both dhoyt) make an AskMe post about recording sound.

Not really much of a slip-up.
posted by xmutex at 5:56 PM on November 16, 2005


can we get back to the real subject, me, for a second?

dios' logic is quite convoluted, and he presumes an awful lot. sure, i referred to myself as a sock puppet when i signed up, as part of the dumb joke that i considered "Hat Maui" to be. i still do, in fact. how my doing so is somehow evidence that i'm someone's sock puppet -- i just don't follow that. maybe it takes the special skills a lawyer possesses. i wouldn't know -- i'm a law-school dropout.

i've always been a fan of spoonerisms, and i regularly "poke smot" and "bide my rike" and so forth. so it just came from that. as for whether it was a haughty username for a newb to choose, that's just ridiculous. i read the site for 18 months before the signups opened (i was always absent during the few times in the intervening period they opened) and was quite aware of the personalities and general tenor of the site before i joined.

what fascinates me the most, i guess, is that lot of you missed what i felt was a fairly obvious reference/joke. in fact, i almost changed my mind about registering as "Hat Maui" because i felt i'd surely be mocked for making such a dumb joke with my username.

i can assure you, i'm nobody's sock puppet. of course, you'll have to take my word for it, since i prefer to remain anonymous.
posted by Hat Maui at 6:01 PM on November 16, 2005


Kirth Gerson: And like gsb, I find it very interesting to note who's in the "no big deal, it's the Internet" camp. I don't think it's a coincidence that those people are mostly the ones you'd expect to say similar things about lying politicians, or abusing prisoners, or corporate greed. Some of us expect people to behave better. Some don't care if they don't. This thread is a good barometer of who's in which camp.

Easy with your generalizations, there, champ. I was unmoved because I've willfully avoided as much partisan bickering as possible. That has no implication whatsoever about my political beliefs; and it's some sloppy thought on your part that says it must. Personally, I think a lot of these political threads generate more heat than light; they're also frequently antagonistic, pointless, wasteful, annoying, and a bit embarrassing. It's like watching your relatives get drunk and start profane arguments with each other.

Also, there is a difference between skepticism, cynicism, and indifference. You seem to have conflated them in your rush to dismiss people you think aren't outraged enough.
posted by Tuwa at 6:11 PM on November 16, 2005


*acts all nervous*

Hey everyone, I haven't piped up in this thread yet although I've been reading it for days. I'm one of the folks who come here for the links, but I read comments and Meta and chirp in once in awhile. Thanks for the detective work everyone and for posting this y2karl.

Anyone know the record for the most comments in a Meta thread?

Carry on everyone.

*shuffles out*
posted by marxchivist at 6:11 PM on November 16, 2005


OmieWise: "Let it lie. That user made some real contributions."

But, I use Safari.

Ok, okay, I promise I will drop it.
posted by terrapin at 6:19 PM on November 16, 2005


bugbread writes "A sociopath would have tried to do one hell of a lot more damage."

I'm feeling a little Inigo Montoya here. A sociopath isn't going out of his way to hurt others, he just does what ever makes him feel good. If it hurts others, oh well. If it means completely ignoring others that's OK too. Which seems to describe hoyt to a T.
posted by Mitheral at 6:35 PM on November 16, 2005


Is anyone still reading down here; does it pay to comment? FWIW, I think what dhoyt did was bad, but I do not really think of sock puppets in general as bad. dhoyt's crime was to create an online persona, sock puppets or no, which was nothing but a big troll from one end to the other. When he created his sock puppets he still could not be himself, hence jenleigh. Using sock puppet accounts to argue for you, to incite other members and to generally be obnoxious is wrong. If dhoyt had been the contrarian, but had been principled about it, without the baiting and goading of others, then fine. I have no problem with a devil's advocate when they argue issues. However, arguing for the sake of arguing, and primarily to incite others is juvenile. I would also have no problem if dhoyt had just created accounts to present a different side of himself, in a civil fashion and without the dishonesty of trying to support the other accounts. If someone is not using them to make it seem like a group opinion is forming around their main account, if they are not using them to be a jerk while avoiding the bad press that brings on their main account and when they generally don't f*** with the community, so what?
posted by caddis at 7:08 PM on November 16, 2005


tellurian, can you explain the slip-up?
Yeah.. on June 25 as highsignal he describes his equipment (Mackie 1402 board direct into an Audigy Platinum card) and gets a recommendation from abcde to get an M-Audio. Then on September 25 as dhoyt describes the same equipment and links back to the June thread saying he had the card recommended.
posted by tellurian at 7:22 PM on November 16, 2005


Hi dhoyt! So watcha think now?
posted by stirfry at 7:25 PM on November 16, 2005


y2karl, I called you Karl because you had just called me Steve. If we're not on good terms, that was the first I'd heard of it.

I see that now but I wasn't reading very closely at the time. I was tired of the dios disparagement barrage and in an iriritable mood and I used your name as an example. The remark, as I explained above, was not directed at you but I express my regrets you chose to think I was besmirching your good name, which, as I have explained above, was used only as an example. It was silly of me to bring it up at all, even without, as I explained above, I only used your name as an example, and I hope I have addressed it to your satisfaction that, although I used your name as an example, I was making a rhetorical remark and not actually addressing you.
posted by y2karl at 7:28 PM on November 16, 2005


I was tired and cranky and it was a now pointless nit to pick in the first place. I will not make a big deal about how people address me in the future.
posted by y2karl at 7:38 PM on November 16, 2005


I have shat myself in utter surprise.

I'll mail you some Depends.

Seriously, you don't even have a dog in this fight. Are you trying to impress us with your indignation?

What dhoyt did was garden-variety assholedom. I can only assume you have a very low standard for psychopathy. You must have led a sheltered existence.
posted by jonmc at 8:03 PM on November 16, 2005


Crikey, I can not believe the silly amount of emotion some of you put into this! dhoyt and jenleigh were asshole personalities before we knew all this, and whoever the real-life dude behind the aliases will remain an asshole to his dying day. Nothing has changed.

Nothing except the welcome relief of their absence, that is. Be glad and be good in MeFi, so we can leave this past behind us. In all our ways, we can be less dhoyt.

It's all good in the end.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:15 PM on November 16, 2005


I see that now but I wasn't reading very closely at the time. I was tired of the dios disparagement barrage and in an iriritable mood and I used your name as an example. The remark, as I explained above, was not directed at you but I express my regrets you chose to think I was besmirching your good name, which, as I have explained above, was used only as an example. It was silly of me to bring it up at all, even without, as I explained above, I only used your name as an example, and I hope I have addressed it to your satisfaction that, although I used your name as an example, I was making a rhetorical remark and not actually addressing you.

So it's safe to say you have some issues?
posted by xmutex at 8:46 PM on November 16, 2005


I think he got into this step by step until it collapsed on him like a house of cards. Garden variety assholeism is sometimes known as human folly. People make mistakes. Nobody is doomed to be an asshole until their dying day. And the links to the personal AskMeta stuff-- man, that makes me wish I hadn't made this post. That was uncalled for, unnecessary.
posted by y2karl at 8:49 PM on November 16, 2005


This place is like West Side Story sometimes.

Matt, I would like to suggest that you clone MeFi. Grandfather-in everyone who has posted in the past month. Reserve all names that have been used within the past, that should cover most everyone that uses a name cross-web. Charge five bucks for everyone else.

Move all political threads to the new background colour (I think something rust-orangey would go well). Do not let any of them remain on MeFi.

You will have a much happier userbase. I think MePo will quickly become an community of its own right, and MeFi will evolve to something else. I think there's a very good chance MeFi will spawn another community for you a few years later.

question: how many of you came from The Well? Citadel? Fido? WWIV? Underground BBS scene? how many of your are virgins to this single-thread, sequential-only, 'pub'-style discussion?
posted by five fresh fish at 8:54 PM on November 16, 2005


It drove people away from the site in droves.

*raises hand*


Me too.

I don't come here as much as I used to -- partially because I have more demands on my time than I used to, and this place can usually be a fascinating three-hour timesink -- but lately I've thought about stopping by, then realized I'm going to have to wade through knee-deep assholish behavior, and well, it doesn't sound like as fun a prospect all of a sudden.

I think of myself, with some angry exceptions, as a fairly reasonable person who cares about rational debate. But the extremes, as always get the most attention. I understand that that's how it works -- Pat Robertson gets more attention than Robert Schiller, Jesse Jackson gets more attention than Julian Bond or Kweisi Mfume, and so on -- but it's frankly frustrating to feel like I have to kick over a rhetorical chair to make a comment that someone will respond to.

And I don't want this to sound like an attention-whore I'll-take-my-marbles-and-go-home flameout, because it isn't. This site is still great, and it's a real community that I feel like I'm a part of. All I'm saying, I guess, is that it's starting to feel like that party you've been invited to -- you're pretty sure you're going to have a good time, but you know you're absolutely going to have to deal with or avoid a few outright and utter jerks. Even though you know a lot of people there will be great, and you're going to meet some nifty people you didn't know before, you still dread going on some level. And I don't want to dread visiting this place, because it's a community I care about.
posted by Vidiot at 9:22 PM on November 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


question: how many of you came from The Well? Citadel? Fido? WWIV? Underground BBS scene? how many of your are virgins to this single-thread, sequential-only, 'pub'-style discussion?

Dude I was coding WWIV 4.20 hacks before you were in diapers, sonny.
posted by xmutex at 9:31 PM on November 16, 2005


Gosh, I've been very carefully sure to write "y2karl" when I address, um, y2karl, ever since he went batshit insane when I addressed him as "karl" last year. It's really awkward for me, though, because like dios I "hear" everything I read and write and "y2karl" is just way too many syllables for a "something, name, something" construction. Anyway, that username almost demands that you think of "y2karl" as "karl". If someone chose the username "3bob", we'd automatically think "bob". "Jonmc" is "jon".

I'm really surprised that anyone missed the point of the username "Hat Maui". Huh.

I seriously doubt that dhoyt is clinically sociopathic, but if we loosen the definition up a little bit I think it's apt because a sociopath is someone who acts pathologically with regard to socialization. And dhoyt certainly did that, I think.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 9:45 PM on November 16, 2005


dodgygeezer: Imagine if I came here and said "Listen everyone, mediareport is another dhoyt sock puppet" - you'd be pretty pissed off and with good reason.

That's hardly what I suggested you should do. Here's what you should have said: "The accounts that dhoyt used at Metachat all used the same IP addresses, which match the IP addresses used by another account at Metachat - mediareport. It looks like either 1) dhoyt has been imitating mediareport without permission at MeCha or 2) mediareport is another dhoyt sock puppet. I've emailed mediareport to clarify and will post his/her reply."

At the very least, you could have emailed the user in question and then posted the IP info. In my opinion, either would have been better than the overly coy approach you used above.

It was just dhoyt imitating another user. This is good news.

Well, now that all's clear to you, I hope you've at least posted the relevant user name at MetaChat, so folks there will have full info about the deception that's been played on them.
posted by mediareport at 10:13 PM on November 16, 2005


(and I kept reading it as "Hat Maul"...as in Darth. Go figure.)
posted by Vidiot at 10:15 PM on November 16, 2005


dhoyt and jenleigh were asshole personalities before we knew all this, and whoever the real-life dude behind the aliases will remain an asshole to his dying day. Nothing has changed.

badfish!
posted by interrobang at 10:29 PM on November 16, 2005


really? damn.

oh, double-da…ang!
posted by five fresh fish at 10:57 PM on November 16, 2005


I started off all "woah, shit" but at this point it's more "oh well. Fuck him/her/it and lets see if there is anything cool on the front page".
posted by longbaugh at 1:46 AM on November 17, 2005


dhoyt was banned? Fuck, there goes my "People Who Link To Me" count.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 11:33 AM PST on November 15 [!]



There, there, hon. I just added you.
posted by konolia at 3:30 AM on November 17, 2005




Brian = Dhoyt
posted by Dreamghost at 3:57 AM on November 17, 2005


What dhoyt did was garden-variety assholedom. I can only assume you have a very low standard for psychopathy.

Somewhere out there is an ancient Yahoo mail account Mayor Curley and I shared for a series of Amazon reviews. It contains a two-week-long exchange of emails with a woman re: our trollish review of Sylvia Plath. The final email begins "I'm writing back against the advice of my friends . . . "

We are all potential trolls. It's just a question of free time.
posted by yerfatma at 4:10 AM on November 17, 2005


XQUZYPHYR : "Pretending to be a woman, then pretending to have a fiance, then pretending the fiance has had a physical issue comparative to a real user's real-life physical issue in the context of asking for advice about it isn't potentially damaging? And creating multiple identities to attempt to discredit other people in a community isn't a sign of anti-social behavior? I simply disagree.

Well, we're in agreement that we disagree with whomever said that, but if you think that's what I'm saying, you're reading me wrong. I agree that pretending those things is potentially damaging, and that using multiple identities to discredit others is antisocial. I just meant that a blatant sociopath wouldn't settle for potential damage, but instead shoot for real damage, and that dhoyt's being plenty anti-social, but I think it falls short of clearly being sociopathy (see last paragraph below).

Hat Maui: "i referred to myself as a sock puppet when i signed up...i still do, in fact. how my doing so is somehow evidence that i'm someone's sock puppet -- i just don't follow that."

I have no opinion regarding whether you are or are not a sock puppet, but I am surprised that you don't understand how you saying something about yourself could be interpreted as something about yourself being true. For example, I think jonmc's name is jon, because he says it's jon. Do you think that's a surprising conclusion for me to make, and that I must be a lawyer to make that conclusion? If so, do you realize that probably 99% of the people you have met or ever will meet, by your logic, must be lawyers? Sure, it's no rock-solid evidence by any means, but it is a straw for the camel's back.

Mitheral : A sociopath isn't going out of his way to hurt others, he just does what ever makes him feel good. If it hurts others, oh well. If it means completely ignoring others that's OK too.

Ok, that's a good point. I should amend what I said to from "dhoyt isn't a sociopath, just a dick" to "dhoyt might be a sociopath, or just a dick, and we don't have enough information to declare it either way".
posted by Bugbread at 4:11 AM on November 17, 2005


Omiewise: A charge or an argument can be plausible while the premises are wacky. If you accept the premises, the reasoning makes sense -- but the premise "no new user would riff on the admin's name" just makes no sense at all. That premise was really central to dios's argument about the hat_maui SP.

That's all i'm saying. It's quite clear that's all I'm saying. It's always been quite clear that's all I'm saying. After the implausible premises are rejected, all that's left is that hat_maui self-identified as an SP. And as I think about it now, if h_m is riffing on matthowie, then it would make sense for him/her to say "I'm a sock-puppet", now, wouldn't it? Kind of helps to set up the joke, doesn't it?
posted by lodurr at 4:24 AM on November 17, 2005


Easy with your generalizations, there, champ. I was unmoved because I've willfully avoided as much partisan bickering as possible. That has no implication whatsoever about my political beliefs; and it's some sloppy thought on your part that says it must.

posted by Tuwa at 6:11 PM PST on November 16

What generalizations, slim? Did you miss that word "mostly" in my post? Nowhere did I say anything about what political beliefs anyone "must" have. What I did was look at who is saying, "No big deal" and correlating those names to what I remember of their stances on some other issues. You weren't one of them, because I don't have any memory of anything you've said. Nobody's making you put that shoe on, but if it fits . . .
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:26 AM on November 17, 2005


Seriously, you don't even have a dog in this fight. Are you trying to impress us with your indignation? What dhoyt did was garden-variety assholedom. I can only assume you have a very low standard for psychopathy. You must have led a sheltered existence.

I've had a dog in this fight since August 9, 2002 when I became a member of this community. And dhoyt has trolled me and my threads so yeah, I have the right to have an opinion. That my thoughts and comments have once again not met the muster of your superior intellect is par for the course.

As for "sheltered lifestyle" is there any chance you yourself could find a hobby other than sniping my comments to make pointless contrarian swipes and juvenile little insults at me? Honestly, what the hell is wrong with you? This thread went 24 hours and 500 comments with people leaving their opinions about the issue and dhoyt but as soon as I showed up you felt, once again, the need to be a dick to someone. Okay, I get it jonmc, you don't like me. I think you're an asshole too. Now fuck off.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:32 AM on November 17, 2005


This is the thread that keeps on giving.

What a wickid web we weave for each other...
posted by Dreamghost at 4:49 AM on November 17, 2005


lodurr writes "but the premise 'no new user would riff on the admin's name' just makes no sense at all."

I disagree. Perhaps it's because I've always felt the same as dios in this matter, not that it would never happen, but that it's much more likely to be a veteran user than a newbie. That premise makes sense to me, but obviously, it need not hold. Hat Maui has said it isn't so, and, of course, I believe him. That may obviate the argument but doesn't vitiate the premise.
posted by OmieWise at 5:24 AM on November 17, 2005


That may obviate the argument but doesn't vitiate the premise.

OK, this whole thread has been worth it for that line. I plan to steal it shamelessly whenever it seems called for.
posted by languagehat at 6:08 AM on November 17, 2005


OmieWise: The problem with that premise is that it's negated the first time someone says that they don't think it's valid. The very premise is that "people wouldn't do x"; as soon as people say "um, well, I'd do x", the premise is demonstrated not to hold.

Regardless of hat_maui's assertion one way or the other, the premise can be demonstrated not to hold by virtue of the fact that a bunch of people have stated here that they don't think it makes sense.
posted by lodurr at 6:26 AM on November 17, 2005


I am the walrus.

SHUT THE FUCK UP DONNY!
posted by tr33hggr at 6:31 AM on November 17, 2005


This thread went 24 hours and 500 comments with people leaving their opinions about the issue and dhoyt but as soon as I showed up you felt, once again, the need to be a dick to someone.

No, you made a ridiculously overstated comment and I felt the need to respond to that.

Okay, I get it jonmc, you don't like me. I think you're an asshole too. Now fuck off.

Of course I'm an asshole. The difference is, I know I'm an asshole, yet you still think you're a white knight riding in to save the universe. Hubris, smugness, and prissy self-righteousness annoy me and I'll puncture them even in people I otherwise like. I'm certainly not going to spare you.
posted by jonmc at 6:32 AM on November 17, 2005


Metafilter: We are all potential trolls. It's just a question of free time.
posted by shoepal at 6:40 AM on November 17, 2005


dash_slot had it right when he noted everyone has gotten meaner of late. - y2karl

I don't know about "everyone" there's a still a lot of users that are reasonable. There's a lot of users that don't dive into MetaTalk and/or the contentious political threads. There's a lot of former users who, for whatever reason, have stopped posting. I think the meanness has gotten louder, sure. But I don't think it's universal.
posted by raedyn at 6:44 AM on November 17, 2005


...you made a ridiculously overstated comment...yet you still think you're a white knight riding in to save the universe. ..

Ridiculously overstated comments go both ways.
posted by amberglow at 7:03 AM on November 17, 2005


Honestly, what the hell is wrong with [jonmc]?

I dunno, but if someone diagnoses it, let me know. I'm suffering from an acute case of it too.
posted by yerfatma at 7:04 AM on November 17, 2005


amber, I'm actually kind of glad you responded, since you make a good counterexample. We disagree at least as much as me and XQ, but you have a sense of humor about both yourself and your politics, and you're capable of giving it a rest. I could rattle of a long list of people who I've brawled with (languagehat, mr grimm, alex/rothko, matteo) who don't irritate me anywhere near as much as XQ.
posted by jonmc at 7:09 AM on November 17, 2005


I had a puncture in my Hubris once, but fortunately it was just a slow leak and I was able to patch it with a tube of Maudlin Self Pity.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 7:17 AM on November 17, 2005


XQUZ is just as capable as the rest of us, and doesn't deserve that overgeneralization. He's a fully rounded human being with all sorts of interests like the rest of us.

He's no more white knight than anyone else--i'm sure i'm more of one, honestly.
posted by amberglow at 7:19 AM on November 17, 2005


if someone could get both y2karl and dhoyt/jenleigh on tape, it would make an incredible metafilter podcast.
posted by afu at 8:10 AM on November 17, 2005


It'd be podcastic!
posted by cortex at 9:17 AM on November 17, 2005


LOVE!
posted by rocketman at 9:51 AM on November 17, 2005


I have no opinion regarding whether you are or are not a sock puppet, but I am surprised that you don't understand how you saying something about yourself could be interpreted as something about yourself being true. For example, I think jonmc's name is jon, because he says it's jon. Do you think that's a surprising conclusion for me to make, and that I must be a lawyer to make that conclusion?

that's either stunningly obtuse or appallingly disingenuous.

the reference on my user page is to "sock puppet number one." my username refers to the username of user number one, aka mathowie.

clearly, i'm not mathowie's sockpuppet, so what do you make of the statement on my user page in that light? it's a fucking joke, ________*.

i'll allow again, as i have before, that it's not particularly funny. but if "Hat Maui" truly was a sock puppet account, why would the controller of that account, me, advertise it as such? with your wheels now spinning, i'm sure you can come up with some crazy bugbreadian "logic" why i might do that, but spare us, please. clearly, there are more advantages to sockpuppetry if people don't think you are one.

*insert pejorative of your choice here

on preview: jonmc is awesome*

*actually, no he isn't
posted by Hat Maui at 10:30 AM on November 17, 2005


if someone could get both y2karl and dhoyt/jenleigh on tape, it would make an incredible metafilter podcast.

As noted above, I actually have been thinking about pitching the whole saga to This American Life. The dhoyt and jenleigh saga would be a great story for them, I think.

I've done this in the past--I worked in Amazon's warehouse for the Christmas rush in 2000 and there were so many surreal aspects to it that I got the bright idea--Christmas + surreal + This American Life--and fired off an email on a break, and, long story short, ended up getting interviewed by Ira Glass for a possible Chistmas show segment. But, ahem, they never got around to using it. Amazon is one of their sponsors, they only had so much time and, well, I didn't give the greatest interview. I had a few too many drinks to screw up my courage and Ira and I did not quite click because of it. My bad.

I don't know how many here have read Quartermass's paper. When I read it, a person whose comments here I could not stand--David Dark--came across in three dimensions when I read his explanations. I still couldn't stand his comments but at least I got to see how he saw himself.

I, for one, would like to hear dhoyt explain--my advice: stay sober!--to an experienced interviewer what the hell he was doing. I would be more than willing to do the same. I hope more from here would be willing to do so as well.

And another thing, apart from the having it handed to me on a platter in 10450, I didn't look up any of the stuff here until after I found out about dhoyt being jenleigh.

I walked through jenleigh's posts and found the links I put up above in a matter of minutes. It took no effort. Then I put up the details I did to try to get people to look at what he had done. However, I didn't look at the AskMe stuff. I wish I had.

But I knew Hat Maui was going to make a post. I wrote Matt and told him this and said I might post about it instead. I thought Hat Maui might be a bit more partisan about it because of his encounters with jenleigh. Matt didn't write back, which all things considered, I find perfectly understandable. People reacted to the news according to how they felt about the principals.

What dhoyt did bothered me for a long time. I piped up about it on a number of occasions. I got called names over it, told I was being obsessive, that I was holding a grudge. I was--I was holding a grudge against someone who was holding a hell of a lot more grudges than I ever did, who got into it with far more people than I ever got into it with, and who was pursued these personal fights with far more people for far too long.

I expected to get slimed for it here by the usual suspects. So, it went. The usual suspects seemed to choose sides here over how they felt about me, first, and who dhoyt carried on his feuds with, second. The enemy of my enemy is my friend. That seems to be the rule that overrules everything else for a lot of folks.
posted by y2karl at 10:46 AM on November 17, 2005


that's either stunningly obtuse or appallingly disingenuous.

Or neither. Your joke, which you admit yourself is not all that funny*, might not even come across as a joke to someone in a different context. It could be taken at face value. And it certainly prompts the sock-puppet question a lot more directly than, say, not referencing sock-puppets on your user page.

Look, it's obvious right here an now that you meant it as a joke. And the joke makes sense, when it's understood. But people might not have gotten the joke, and to those people you have a user page declaring you to be a sock-puppet. You can say all the nasty things you want about the ability of those folks to appreciate your sense of humor, but declaring them obtuse or disingenuous is out of line.

*it did make me giggle once I got it, though. Once I parsed it. I'm going to make the arrogant claim here that I'm not a particularly stupid person. Remember, I've been reading your nick as "Hot Maui" all this time, and like Mitheral I don't necessary parse usernames phonetically so much as memorize them as abstract symbols.
posted by cortex at 10:49 AM on November 17, 2005


told I was being obsessive

I have no idea how people would come to that conclusion.
posted by justgary at 11:01 AM on November 17, 2005


Anyone have a link to Quatermass's paper?
posted by Armitage Shanks at 11:02 AM on November 17, 2005


I was just looking for that too, Armitage Shanks. Quartermass's profile says it will be ready in one more month, but I don't know when the page was last updated.

Hmmm, it would be nice to know when a user's profile was last updated.
posted by terrapin at 11:07 AM on November 17, 2005


First, as for linking usernames to IP addresses, I'm using somebody else's computer and ISP hookup to access my Metafilter account under my own login name. I'm really not somebody else pretending to be "davy", which should be obvious to those who know my style. Unless you're going to force all Mefites to do Metafilter using only one machine forever binding to IP addresses is a stupid iea, even if Quonsar did think of it.

"Davy's attitude is what makes Kaycees and dhoyts possible—it's not at all the answer to the problem. It is the problem."

Please allow me to introduce myself
I'm a man of wealth and taste


Yegads people, is this thread STILL going on? No way am I going to try to read all these zillions of comments (unless JuiceCake pays me by the word).

Anyway, I do feel kinda sorry for those people who feel suckered, but I'm still with bugread and Eideteker on this (or vice versa): I too am a little surprised at some of your reactions. Some of you act like he was engaged to you for six months, took you to Paris (at your expense), got you to pose for "just for me" pr0n pictures, and then left you pregnant and with crabs, warts AND herpes. Besides, I remember that some of you advised me, when I complained about being aggressively piled-upon, to "Grow some skin!"; what happened, forgot to take your own advice?

At the very least, don't start getting on me as your website Satan, "the epitome of all that's wrong with Metafilter": I have never represented myself as anything other than who I see myself to be, for better or worse and whether anbody likes it or not, so I will not take the rap for your hypergullibility. Then too a lot of you easily-betrayed folk decided long ago that I was a troll when you thought dhoyt was real, so all this is just so cute.

At any event, this dhoyt character is geting too much attention. If y'all must keep this thread going it's about time you diverted it being all about me, ME, ME!!!
posted by davy at 11:26 AM on November 17, 2005


Oh, Daaavy!
/goliath
posted by jonmc at 11:29 AM on November 17, 2005


Cute, nmc.

You don't mind if I call you nmc, right?
posted by cortex at 11:35 AM on November 17, 2005


jonmc: Hubris, smugness, and prissy self-righteousness annoy me and I'll puncture them even in people I otherwise like. I'm certainly not going to spare you.

Such a vast deposit of irony, I'm surprised BHP Billiton hasn't staked claim on you.
posted by five fresh fish at 11:45 AM on November 17, 2005


*smirk*
posted by terrapin at 11:59 AM on November 17, 2005


Who told you about the herpes?
posted by languagehat at 11:59 AM on November 17, 2005


If y'all must keep this thread going it's about time you diverted it being all about me, ME, ME!!!

Do something interesting.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 12:17 PM on November 17, 2005


pssst i heard davy was a cock-muppet
posted by cortex at 12:34 PM on November 17, 2005


Is this thread available in printed book form from CafePress yet? It'd make a great Christmas gift. Maybe ka--- y2karl could autograph them.
posted by xmutex at 12:42 PM on November 17, 2005


We could have four separate versions made, each with a foreword by the same author.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 12:50 PM on November 17, 2005


54,364 words so far. That's a healthy book.
posted by cortex at 1:08 PM on November 17, 2005


Also, for anyone coming in late, a brief summary of the thread, with an assist by Microsoft Word:


Post the ironies.
dhoyt was jenleigh?
Plus jenleigh == dhoyt?
dhoyt was jenleigh?
dhoyt was jenleigh?
Alas, dhoyt.
He's dhoyt!
-Dhoyt

Thanks, dhoyt !
-dhoyt

^_^
dhoyt reposting my posts.
LOVE
love
Hi dhoyt!

Brian = Dhoyt
posted by y2karl
posted by cortex at 1:17 PM on November 17, 2005


You know, I would have had made my user name Karl, had it not already been squatted on by dhoyt. y2karl, my second choice, was my email name before I joined. It was what I called myself the night I called Art Bell when Terence McKenna was on.

So, I'm thinking about asking Matt to change to karl now. Or maybe not. I will just act as if I did.
posted by y2karl at 1:51 PM on November 17, 2005


davy writes "this dhoyt character is geting too much attention. If y'all must keep this thread going it's about time you diverted it being all about me, ME, ME!!!"

We'll need something to get us started. Have you considered a big, loud, volumous flame out?
posted by Mitheral at 1:52 PM on November 17, 2005


volumous?
posted by cortex at 2:03 PM on November 17, 2005


cortex: LOL.
posted by delmoi at 2:13 PM on November 17, 2005


cortex: my LOL was directed at your ms word summary, I can't belive people are still actively posting.
posted by delmoi at 2:14 PM on November 17, 2005


LOL accepted. I find myself wishing for a MeFi API for more interesting text summary and analysis than the manual per-thread cut-and-paste-and-edit method employed here.

And pony requests are best made at the bottom of slowly-festering drama threads.
posted by cortex at 2:21 PM on November 17, 2005


cortex writes "volumous?"

Always a pioneer, I'm apparently riding the breaking wave of a new word (google now gets 20K+hits), those more stodgy writers of English may prefer voluminous (though only if you pronounce it with a silent "n").

I'm glad matt didn't plug the plug on this thread, now that we've had a day or two to cool interesting views are being put forth.
posted by Mitheral at 2:24 PM on November 17, 2005


Ha! I actually checkout that "wave"-linked post whilst vetting your courageous and iconoclastic word choice.
posted by cortex at 2:36 PM on November 17, 2005


Hat Maui : "clearly, i'm not mathowie's sockpuppet, so what do you make of the statement on my user page in that light? it's a fucking joke, ________*."

Hat, relax, I'm not arguing that you are or aren't a sockpuppet. I'm just saying that it isn't bizarre to parse what you said that way. Sure, you call yourself "sock puppet number one", obviously playing at being mathowie's sock puppet, but, well, the joke isn't that funny, and can be parsed two ways: "I am [joke]matt's sock puppet[/joke]", or "I am [joke]matt's[/joke] sock puppet". Theatrical Matriarch's joke was along the same lines: it being AR's sock puppet was a joke, but it being a sock puppet itself was not a joke, just common knowledge.

Hat Maui : "why would the controller of that account, me, advertise it as such? with your wheels now spinning, i'm sure you can come up with some crazy bugbreadian 'logic' why i might do that, but spare us, please."

Make up your mind. Either ask the question, or don't, but don't ask the question and then ask us not to answer.

I'll skip the logic about why you would do it, then, and just point out that it isn't that unusual. Pot, Kettle, Theatrical Matriarch, and various others have done it. So if you want to know possible reasons people might think that's what you did, and you don't want me to answer, go ask other people who've done it.
posted by Bugbread at 2:38 PM on November 17, 2005


"I actually checkout"?
posted by cortex at 2:38 PM on November 17, 2005


it isn't that unusual. Pot, Kettle, Theatrical Matriarch, and various others have done it. - bugbread

After various memorable moments people have created an account in honour. Example: the account that was (at first) signing all posts "Todd Loken" the username was "tlok" or something like that. In response, someone rushed out and bought Todd Loken on a lark. Someone bought $5 socks. Immediately someone (same person? different person?) bought $10 socks and $15 socks. There was a "zombie Theatrical Martrial" At various times there have been many more sock puppet accounts that were blatantly obvious as such.

These are just off the top of my head. Geez, there's been a lot of them. I wonder if they're all the same two or so people, or are there dozens of MeFites wil socks? And how many am I forgetting?
posted by raedyn at 3:03 PM on November 17, 2005


Metafilter: i heard davy was a cock-muppet
posted by amberglow at 3:21 PM on November 17, 2005


Someone bought $5 socks. Immediately someone (same person? different person?) bought $10 socks

$5 Worth of Sex and $10 Worth of Sex were me, then someone else did $15 Worth of Sox and five dollars worth of thank you cake. Happened towards the end of this. I've used $10 once more in a thread on sockpuppets, because I couldn't remember the password for $5, and that was that.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 3:34 PM on November 17, 2005


So, I'm thinking about asking Matt to change to karl now. Or maybe not. I will just act as if I did.

You realize the dilemma this puts us in if we can't call you by your first name?
posted by xmutex at 3:52 PM on November 17, 2005


You know, I would have had made my user name Karl, had it not already been squatted on by dhoyt

What?

So, I'm thinking about asking Matt to change to karl now. Or maybe not. I will just act as if I did.
posted by y2karl at 1:51 PM PST on November 17


Do we still have to call you y2karl or is there another, even longer name you'd prefer?

If I were to buy a sock puppet I think I would call him johnny0afhajkshe-ifajsnjn4802kljdsafansken and insist that I be called by my full name.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 3:53 PM on November 17, 2005


Goddammit xmutex.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 3:53 PM on November 17, 2005


I think it's about time me and yous took this outside, OC.
posted by xmutex at 4:14 PM on November 17, 2005


"You realize the dilemma this puts us in if we can't call you by your first name?"

Maybe that's his aim?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:16 PM on November 17, 2005


Well, my aim is to keep this bathroom clean.
posted by cortex at 4:24 PM on November 17, 2005


Yu may address me by name. Just sayin'.

S. Has there been any srt of cnsensus reached in this mammth thread?
posted by ABCDEFGHIJKLMNPQRSTUVWXYZ at 4:50 PM on November 17, 2005


Someone is getting very close to claiming their user-number 30000 sockpuppet named "30000".
posted by cortex at 4:55 PM on November 17, 2005


"Andre 30000" would be better.
posted by scody at 5:05 PM on November 17, 2005


$5 Worth of Sex and $10 Worth of Sex were me, then someone else did $15 Worth of Sox and five dollars worth of thank you cake. Happened towards the end of this. I've used $10 once more in a thread on sockpuppets, because I couldn't remember the password for $5, and that was that. - PinkStainlessTail

Thanks for clearing up my foggy and incorrect memory of how that went down, PinkStainlessTail. Is it you, or is it ThePinkSuperhero that's particular about being called by your entire handle? I would like to respect the wishes of whomever made the request, but as demonstrated here, my memory gets the gist of things, but not all the details.
posted by raedyn at 5:51 PM on November 17, 2005


If it was either of us, it was ThePinkSuperhero. I'm fine with Pink, PST, Hey Adolph, Get the Hell Away from My Mother, whatev...
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 6:06 PM on November 17, 2005


Maybe that's his aim?

No, it was a silly snit. I was just going on record that I won't repeat that particular one again. I'm letting it go. From now on, I promise to try to get plenty of sleep, eat regular meals and stay away from the blue and gray when real life stuff is upsetting me.
posted by y2karl at 8:10 PM on November 17, 2005


Hey, do you think "jenleigh" was referring to the real dhoyt's nipples here? Arg, I get ThePinkSuperhero and Hey Adolph, Get the Hell Away from My Mother mixed up all the time.
posted by Stauf at 8:15 PM on November 17, 2005


I'm just waiting for an opportunity to ask for a report from ThePinkSuperhero.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:38 PM on November 17, 2005


Stauf: WHOA, WEIRD!
(On some level, I kinda wish that Dhoyt was unbanned, but his access was limited to this thread, so that he could be asked things like that. I doubt that "Hey, were those your nipples you were talking about?" would be a productive email to send him now.)
posted by klangklangston at 8:46 PM on November 17, 2005


C'mon, people. We need just four more comments and then Matt can close thread.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:04 PM on November 17, 2005


I forgot my bike lamp the other day!
posted by Jamie Farr at 1:23 AM on November 18, 2005


True story!
posted by Jamie Farr at 1:23 AM on November 18, 2005


But I don't drink grain alcohol.
posted by Jamie Farr at 1:25 AM on November 18, 2005


We should praise dhoyt for all the revenue his sockpuppetry has raised for MetaFilter. Thanks to this thread, Matt will be able to pay off the loans he took out to buy himself a healthy, white baby.
posted by Kwanzaar at 1:26 AM on November 18, 2005



posted by Jamie Farr at 1:26 AM on November 18, 2005


Will Kwanzaar be the first user account permanently banned after one comment?
posted by caddis at 4:25 AM on November 18, 2005


Stay tuned...
posted by raedyn at 4:59 AM on November 18, 2005


It is common knowledge that Kwanzaar is a shared #mofo sockpuppet, right?
posted by If I Had An Anus at 5:21 AM on November 18, 2005


Common, yes. Knowledge, not so much.
posted by cortex at 5:35 AM on November 18, 2005


Kirth Gerson: Did you miss that word "mostly" in my post? Nowhere did I say anything about what political beliefs anyone "must" have. What I did was look at who is saying, "No big deal" and correlating those names to what I remember of their stances on some other issues. You weren't one of them, because I don't have any memory of anything you've said.

Fair enough. You're right I took issue with it, and you're right I didn't necessarily have to. As you were.
posted by Tuwa at 10:16 AM on November 18, 2005


Only 673 posts? You slackers!
posted by five fresh fish at 7:27 PM on November 18, 2005


Keep up the good fight.
posted by Krrrlson at 8:18 PM on November 18, 2005


Rage, rage against the dying of the thread.
posted by cortex at 11:22 PM on November 18, 2005


I am God! Send me money!
posted by davy at 9:56 AM on November 19, 2005


I hear that if we get to 700 comments, no one will ever read the thread again.
posted by klangklangston at 11:03 AM on November 19, 2005


I made it to the end of the thread. Do I win £5?
posted by MrMustard at 11:22 AM on November 19, 2005


No. Go home, and don't ever let me catch you here again.
posted by rocketman at 10:33 PM on November 19, 2005


You know, I would have had made my user name Karl, had it not already been squatted on by dhoyt

What?


Behold:

Karl

Thar it be. Somewhere in the early dhoyt MetaTalk comments, he acknowledges it as his account and that he had it closed. Look it up--I know it's there.

There was a thread deleted long ago, back when Steve_At_Linnwood was cyber-stalking Fold_And_Mutilate. S@L was taunting F&M by calling him by his first name. I got on his case about it in thread, a flamefest ensued, and then Karl jumped in and went at it as well and also called F&M by his first name, as dhoyt had a mighty dislike For F&M. I had no idea of who Karl was at the time.

I actually emailed Matt about the thread and he said he'd already told S@L to knock it off in regards to his cyber-stalking of F@M, as S@L found a picture of Foldy at the website of the place he worked and made typically crappy S@L photoshop of it and posted it an inline image of it in a thread, an act for which he was roundly condemned at the time. So Matt wrote back, said he had emailed S@L and Karl and told them to knock it off and deleted that thread.

I believe this was sometime in 2002 or so, back when S@L was gracing us more of his commentary. Anyway, when dhoyt later announced that the Karl account was his, my ears naturally popped up. "So, that's why Karl was being such a fucker to Fold_And_Mutilate in that since deleted thread..." was my thought. Actually, it was more like "Aha!" So I know you can find that admission if you look for it. I won't waste my time doing it, however.

I thought of that Karl account when I found out about the dhoyt sockpuppets. I wonder if it is closed, for that matter.

That thread was where I got my now former aversion to being called by my first name, I realize now. I always found it insulting when dhoyt addressed me so, as I did above with an attack poodle above. But who, knows, maybe it was an expression of warm friendship on both their parts.

My brother is dying of cancer and will be gone in a matter of days. I have been distracted, not quite right in my mind and very depressed and have come here sometimes for escape. But I let myself get a little too emotionally invested in this place at the same time for reasons that might seem obvious to some.

That fact is offered here as well as an explanation of a blow up of mine elsewhere in MetaTalk where people were discussing a separate page for political stuff. One person there who knew about my situation with my brother used me for an example when talking about his particular bright idea.

If I were in a similar position, knowing a member was dealing with a situation such as mine, I would like to think I would not personalize any bright idea of mine by using that particular member as an example at that time. It was a tacky thing to do, by my lights, so it seemed like a stab in the back. But tastes differ. At any rate, I apologized to all in that thread, apart from one. So let it be said, so let it be written down.
posted by y2karl at 10:18 AM on November 20, 2005


Lame ass punk(s), good detective worl, y2karl.
posted by fenriq at 1:26 PM on November 20, 2005


worl? work, damn.
posted by fenriq at 1:27 PM on November 20, 2005


Sorry to hear about your brother, y2karl. That's hard.
posted by cortex at 1:57 PM on November 20, 2005


y2karl, God bless you, and God bless your brother. I hope you find strength in yourself and in this situation. There are very, very many here who you can consider friend.

It's funny. I look forward to your posts here like a kid waiting for Santa. You educate and you please us with creative, and thought provoking stuff. However, the man behind this amazing stream of MeFi goodness remains a bit of a mystery. Perhaps as it should. You, your brother, and your family are in our thoughts and our prayers. I hope you can find some strength from the love of your many MeFi friends.
posted by caddis at 5:50 PM on November 20, 2005


What caddis said. I wish you strength, y2karl.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 6:27 AM on November 21, 2005


heh.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 3:12 PM on November 21, 2005


I'm really sorry about your brother, y2karl.
posted by scody at 5:09 PM on November 21, 2005


I appreciate the thoughts, I really do but hey, don't let me kill the thread. Go back to being frivolous if you so choose--it's like a funeral parlor in here.

On topic, I was thinking about how I got email from jenleigh--and dhoyt--and gave 'her' some disinterested advice. I said that 'she' was being treated rough because 'she' was really nasty to people in her comments when she started. That was my opinion, too.

And,heh, jenleigh/dhoyt was always making with the rhetorical questions that were such a dhoyt/dhoyt feature. 'She' was always asking me why I was so sarcastic and condescending to 'her'. Jeez, consider the fuckin' source. I never bothered to answer.

That's why dios is treated the way he is, in my opinion. He really went after the people he hated openly in the beginning. I still remember his first well deserved timeout with heartfelt schadenfreude. That was one of my sweetest moments here.

Scroll up for his meltdown and see why he deserved tht timeout. Man, you think I lost it here--there's the real deal. Man, I forgot how much he flew off the handle in that thread.

Half the names I see taking a swing at me are very familiar--but from run ins maybe two or three years ago. So, take my advice--never get into it with anyone here if you can help it. They'll show up with a torch and a pitchfork every chance they get. Or it seems sometimes. dhoyt was one--but, man, he had a list of people he hated two pages long. That's what got under my skin about him. His list of peole he kept going after by name--even in threads in whihc they never made appearance. That's why I think he dug himself into the hole he did. He was trying to get even.

So, let that be a lesson. If dios pushes your buttons--ignore him. Never respond. That's the sweetest revenge. It's hard to do sometimes but it can be managed. I did it there with him, if not here.

Man, that thread was something else--vacapinta hit the bullseye on Ethereal Bligh, Larry C and justgary said some kind things--as did the boss himself. Ah, the memories...

OK, carry on.
posted by y2karl at 9:39 PM on November 21, 2005


"vacapinta hit the bullseye on Ethereal Bligh"

Not really.

Again, I'm very sorry about your brother and I realize this is a very difficult time for you. Don't feel totally alone in this (assuming you don't have an SO or other family there with you) and be aware that there's certainly dozens of mefites who would help any way they can.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:25 PM on November 21, 2005


cannot hold

posted by cortex at 9:41 AM on November 22, 2005


Don't forget: there's always bowling. Even if Ballard isn't Paris.

Y2Karl: a criminal mind turned to good.

This sort of stuff just makes my head spin....
posted by warbaby at 8:55 AM on November 25, 2005


Wow. You miss the most amazing shit when you spend three weeks without internet access.

And then you spend 3 hours reading one goddam thread just to catch up...
posted by dersins at 3:39 AM on November 27, 2005


does anyone read the posts down here?
posted by UKnowForKids at 2:00 PM on November 28, 2005


occasionally.
posted by raedyn at 2:11 PM on November 28, 2005


This is still open?
posted by interrobang at 5:53 PM on November 28, 2005


Just now, after reading cortex's comment a bazillion times, do I finally, suddenly, get it. I thought there was a missing graphic or something.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:54 PM on November 28, 2005


I guess that answers that question.
posted by Eideteker at 6:58 PM on November 28, 2005


Just now, after reading cortex's comment a bazillion times, do I finally, suddenly, get it.

Damn. That took me a lot of looks, too. *Golf clap* to cortex, then...
posted by Cyrano at 6:44 PM on November 29, 2005


My condolences y2karl. The detective work is good and worthy, and you've been pretty upstanding in this thread, especially considering. My thoughts are with you.

Maybe you could be a little more generous with dios, maybe he has some shit going on too -- hating the man in the mirror and all that. On your good days, I suspect you two would get along famously. On your bad ones too, like matching evil with evil. It's when good and bad collide...

Anyway, take care. I always hated dhoyt and I'm glad he's gone. Well poisoners are not to be tolerated. You did a good thing.
posted by dness2 at 8:01 AM on November 30, 2005


I just wanted to be comment 700. I have no comment.
posted by shoepal at 9:29 AM on November 30, 2005


Petulant golf-claps are the fuel on which this machine runs, baby.
posted by cortex at 10:25 AM on November 30, 2005


You know, someday I hope that someone writes an opera called MetaFilter. The only problem is that each act would take about six weeks to perform. But the costumes would be totally bitchin'!
posted by fenriq at 4:44 PM on December 5, 2005


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