• ‘Friends’… your new enemies

    by  • August 20, 2008 • Social & Anti • 52 Comments

    or how ‘closed’ may become the new ‘open’… (written: Aug. 20th 2008)

    I have a friend, who up until recently, was quite a good friend, but then something strange happened. His dark, mischievous sense of humor, which had always been one of the qualities that made him unique and often terribly funny, suddenly discovered a vehicle that offered him something akin to supernatural powers. Like the power to transform himself into anyone he wished, or to be multiple people at the same time. The power to gain the confidence and trust of strangers by morphing into the identity of their trusted friends.

    On top of this, he had the power to anonymously wreak social havoc, distress and disorder, only to then be able to disappear like a thief in the night.

    How did he obtain these supernatural powers? He signed up with Facebook, and slowly but surely became a Facebook “Troll”. Unfortunately, he is not alone. There are many individuals that exploit the unintended gaps within the fabric of sites like Facebook to impersonate and humiliate people that they don’t know.

    One alarming aspect of this phenomenon is that these people are able to conduct this activity only by making quasi-partners of legitimate web-sites and services like Facebook and GMail, which is often used to generate fake email addresses to qualify for additional user accounts on social networking sites.

    So, with human nature being what it is, one thing that we can depend on is that the trend will continue and there is very little that can be done about it. This then leads to the conclusion that in many ways the web has reached a point akin to what is known as the ‘tragedy of the commons’… meaning that the common area that became popular has now become too popular. So popular that in fact many of the benefits have been spoiled.

    Its clear that many people will regret profoundly, releasing their private pictures and personal details innocently on the web, because once released, often they may never be able to be completely retrieved.

    Which brings me to the idea of ‘open’ vs ‘closed’… Is it just me, or does the idea of a closed personal network to exchange information with friends seem so much more appealing than an open one?

    I think there is a huge area of opportunity here, to appeal to ‘non-consumers’ of open-networks. These would be networks that people used to conduct genuine conversations with real friends from the real world. They would not necessarily be exclusive of strangers, but rather protective of relationships. New acquaintances could be invited in based on genuine qualification, again, in the real world.

    My guess is that this period in the first decade of the 21st Century will be characterized by recollections of how so many people got burned by being ‘too open’.

    Post Script note: ~ To all those who might have visited here in relation to the imaginative piece of creative writing on the 27b/6 website, where David Thorne features a series of emails about Pie Graphs. Please note: the so called email conversation between David and myself was totally constructed by David. – Simple fact is:

    I am an accomplished designer, and don’t need David to make a pie-graph for me, FFS… LOL

    Anyway for the record, I asked Cory Doctorow (See BoingBoing: http://bit.ly/79TseB posted by Cory Doctorow! – who should have known better than to post this rubbish in the first place) to ask David which email address he had used to send these emails to. (because I can get a log from my ISP of all the emails I received on those days) – David’s answer to Cory came in the form of one of his fake emails with an expanded header from a ‘de Masi Jones’ email address. (where we both worked together in 2002/03) In other words, he is claiming that that he had received them from, and sent them to “Simon’s deMasi Jones email address”…  I left de Masi Jones 5 years ago. I resigned from deMasi Jones and went back to University and did a Master’s degree, then started Virtusoft. – My email account at deMasi Jones finished the day I left.

    –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –

    addendum:

    Mr. David Thorne chose to submit a comment to this article on the 20th of February 2009, at the previous Blogger URL for edgepolitics, but we decided not to publish his comment, at the time, due to its apparent self-incriminatory nature. However, we now publish a screen shot of that stored comment notification, taken today, Sunday 29th November 2009.

    david_comment

    –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –

    Note: an email with photos, from D.T. entitled: “real life trolling and the black eye consequences” is not included.

    This has been a Post Script to the ‘Friends, Your new Enemies’ article.

    We will now return to normal programming.

    52 Responses to ‘Friends’… your new enemies

    1. HS
      November 24, 2011 at 9:42 am

      Wow, 3 years later and your still getting traffic due to the piechart thing.
      I did find the piechart post funny but part of that has to do with believing that it is a real exchange between 2 people. As a pure piece of fictional satire it’s still funny but the thing that made it go viral was the assumption that you actually wrote some of it.

      I do find it strange that DT would completely fabricate it and put your name on it. You do mention you had a falling out so i guess he’s quite malicious. I’m sure he thinks it’s all hilarious (as his email to you shows). I did read somewhere that he has used past friends names on other things he’s done. What a toad he is to think he is finally getting the upperhand on everyone who has ever slighted him.

      As you mentioned on BB “David’s accusations only make sense because he is triggering a stereotyped meme of the ‘bad commercial guy, ripping off the designer…”
      It’s shame that the BoingBoing post has been completely removed by that douche Cory Doctorow. They should have updated the post with fresh info like they normally do. I had to find a copy at the waybackmachine
      http://web.archive.org/web/20091128060152/http://www.boingboing.net/2009/11/25/freelancer-vs-cheap.html

      Perhaps your initial response wasn’t as good as it could have been (‘tattooed knuckles”) after all people really do believe you actually wrote the stuff in the piechart. Most of your attempts at refuting the post come across as a lie.
      The ‘all the emails are fake’ response is just not enough.

      Secondly your very reasonable responses are fractured over the internet and there effectiveness is lost. A lot of people who type Simon Edhouse into google end up going to the 1st result ~ the poorly written, horribly designed post at bloggerheads.com.
      http://www.bloggerheads.com/archives/2009/11/simon_edhouse/

      Otherwise they might go to your naymz posting which is also unsatisfactory.
      This is the last place i visited and the information is reasonable but some of your really good responses are lost in the comments section.

      What i think you should do is write one definitive statement detailing the whole history of you and DT and post that here, Naymz, and bloggerheads.
      You naymz reponse may be truthful but it’s not convincing to
      to the believers. Your response must be clear, detailed, reasonable, and accurate if it is going to be effective.

      The other thing that is on people’s minds is why you haven’t attempted legal action? DT has had a book on the NY timese bestseller list so he can probably afford defamation costs now. If you don’t want to pursue legal action you should explain it in your definitive statement (in my opinion).

      David Thorne can be very funny at times. He has done quite well out of the viral piechart posting. But if you take into account the fake/edited responses then it is not nearly as funny. I think it’s sad people believe his stuff as if it is real. I think you can help the world a tiny bit by setting people straight about this. Write a statement and get it out there man.
      David Thorne is a talented guy and has worked out the way to send things ‘viral’ which is working well for him. However he can also be a massive butthurt a/hole who enjoys bullying people who did nothing except cross paths with him.

    2. November 24, 2011 at 10:17 pm

      Its true I didn’t handle the situation all that well at the time… Main reason, I was pretty much in shock that someone who I had been a loyal friend to for years, (and one who I had never “slighted”, more like the other way around) could have done what he had just done. The comment about tattoed knuckles was simply a way of letting people know something about that individual that may give them a clue to his personality. (in other words, he did indeed self-tattoo his knuckles as a teenager, all those who worked with him at DJ’s know that) – As for Bloggerheads… that guy is almost as bad. He proclaims he “hates liars” but did not check anything properly, or contact me for comment before he jumped on the band-waggon and swallowed all DT’s lies hook, line and sinker. – Incidentally… It’s no use assuming that guy will play fair in future, even though there is now mountains of evidence of the same kind of fake email conversations being perpetrated by DT, on other people. Also, I posted comments on the Bloggerheads site, outlining what exactly happened and Cory Doctorow’s role in covering his own ass, and avoiding exposing DT, when he had the facts revealed (Doctorow, I’m talking about here) . BUT… Mr. Bloggerheads refused to publish my comments on his site. – I always publish comments on my site unless they are overly abusive and/or clearly astro-turfing & sock-puppetry.

      As for why I didn’t sue DT… Its damn expensive to sue for defamation, and I was in the middle of two complex legal situations at the time. One assisting a client in a case against the Federal Government, and the other, a very difficult Family Law matter relating to my own children, so was relucutant to embark on more litigation. – I was also extremely busy, (and still am) …But my options are still open, although its difficult to pursue such action while he is living in the US.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *