Pointage, laughery and mockification aren’t the only things inspired by the inept activities of Team Kimberlin. They’ve inspired parody fiction as well. This episode of Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign first ran four years ago today.
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SOUND: Skype rings once.
JOHNNY: Johnny Atsign.
FRIDAY: (Telephone Filter) Johnny, it’s Joe Friday.
JOHNNY: Hey, Joe. How’s your part of the investigation going?
FRIDAY: (Telephone Filter) Liz just got back from the lab with the results.
JOHNNY: Uh, huh.
FRIDAY: (Telephone Filter) I think you’ll find them intriguing.
JOHNNY: Will I? I’ll come over and take a look.
MUSIC: Theme up and under.
ANNOUNCER: The Lickspittle Broadcasting System presents W. J. J. Hoge in the transcribed adventures of the man with the action-packed Twitter account, America’s fabulous free-lance Internet investigator …
JOHNNY: Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign!
MUSIC: Theme up to music out.
JOHNNY: The following is partial extract of the tweets sent and received during my investigation of The No Pings Only Matter.
THE GROUCH TWEETS: (SYNTH VOICE) A WordPress Engineer says they sent the pingback and email automatically.
JOHNNY: The Grouch wasn’t able to abide by a request to be left alone, so he wound up with yet another peace order issued against him. He was under a court order not to have any further contact with the victim. Of course, The Grouch being The Grouch, he found a way to contact the victim again. He wrote up a blog post and included a link back to the victim’s site.
Both The Grouch and his victim use WordPress as their blogging software, and the default setting for WordPress is to send and receive pingbacks when a link is created. That feature can be turned off at either end.
I contacted WordPress, and one of their engineers stepped me through the process of enabling and disabling pingbacks. I conducted a series of tests that demonstrated that when pingbacks are disabled, a live link does not result in a comment to the linked site or an email to the sites administrator.
There’s a theme that runs through most stories about independent investigators like me about tension between us and more official organizations. That isn’t true in my case; I try to get along. There were enough other angles to this case that I asked for some help from the Twitter Town Sheriff’s Office.
SOUND: Footsteps in hallway.
JOHNNY: It was just after 1 o’clock when I arrived at the Twitter Town Sheriff’s Office’s Internet Detail.
SOUND: Door opens.
SMITH: Good afternoon, Johnny. Come on in.
SOUND: Footsteps across room.
JOHNNY: Joe says you’ve got something for me.
SOUND: Chair pulled out.
SMITH: Yeah. The lab guys have finished the voiceprint analysis on that voicemail message. It’s a match with all the audio samples of his voice from his Internet radio programs.
JOHNNY: How good a match?
SMITH: In a couple of cases 100 percent.
JOHNNY: So clearly enough for a positive ID.
ANNOUNCER: I like long-sleeve t-shirts, and one of my favorites is the Hogewash! Res Judicata t-shirt. It’s exclusively available along with lots of other goodies at The Hogewash Store. Stop by today and spend some of your hard earned cash in support of Team Lickspittle. Or hit the Tip Jar. They’re both ways you can support the Team.
JOHNNY: How about that letter?
FRIDAY: The linguistic analysis that the lab guys ran shows it was likely written by The Grouch. The vocabulary, syntax, and such match very closely with his previous letters.
JOHNNY: Previous letters?
FRIDAY: Yes. We have his letters that he sent to the judges in The Bomber’s RICO case and that copyright lawsuit. We also have other correspondence related to the copyright suit. We even have the envelopes for most of that mail. The mail he sent to the U. S. District Court is postmarked from the same post office as the peace order letter.
JOHNNY: Sounds like The Grouch wrote that letter.
FRIDAY: The lab guys think so. I agree. He signed it, too.
FRIDAY: The signature is an original made with a ball-point pen. The motion used to form it was too smooth for it to be a tracing, but there’s enough unsteadiness to be consistent with the signer having a motor disease such as Parkinson’s.
SMITH: And they say it’s his voice on that voicemail.
JOHNNY: Put all that together with the pingbacks, the emails via WordPress and ReverbNation, the admission on Twitter of a call to NASA …
FRIDAY: Yeah. It’s a pretty tight case.
JOHNNY: OK. Thanks, guys. I’ll get the report out.
JOHNNY TWEETS: (SYNTH VOICE) @TheGrouch No pings only!
MUSIC: Theme up and under
ANNOUNCER: Now, here’s our star to tell you about next week’s intriguing episode of our story.
JOHNNY: Next time? When you pull on a loose thread, something will unravel. Join us, won’t you?
Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign!
MUSIC: Swell theme and under
ANNOUNCER: Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign, starring W. J. J. Hoge, is transcribed in Westminster. Be sure to join us next Monday, same time and URL, for the next exciting episode of Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign.
MUSIC: Theme up to music out.
ANNOUNCER: Johnny Atsign is a work of fiction. If anyone thinks it’s about him, he should read Proverbs 28:1.
Be sure to tune in every Friday at 6 pm Eastern Time for an episode of Blognet or Blogsmoke on alternating weeks. This is LBS, the Lickspittle Broadcasting System.
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