Sunday, August 18, 2019

Here's another plagiarism website:

A few days ago it published an article titled "There's Only One Surviving Blockbuster Left on Planet Earth"
The text was copied from a Gizmodo article from March 5, 2019, titled "There's Only One Surviving Blockbuster Left on Planet Earth"
I didn't see any ads on the DailyAmericanBuzz article, but there was this annoying "Mailchimp" pop-up:

When I tried clicking the "x", a new tab opened up.  The tab went to this URL...
Then it redirected here...
After I'd closed the new tab, I was able to click the "x" and close the Mailchimp pop-up.

I wonder if that's a genuine Mailchimp pop-up?  It seems kind of strange that Mailchimp would have a feature that makes a new tab open in your browser when you trying clicking the "x."

There are a handful of Reddit accounts posting links to
You can tell something is "off" with these accounts.  They'll post a bunch of links to legitimate news sites like and and, but then they'll sneak in a submission to a URL such as and it sticks out like a sore thumb.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

The Maddux Mystery

I went to YouTube to look for footage of Greg Maddux's 76-pitch game against the Cubs from July 22, 1997.  Here's what I found, courtesy of the official MLB YouTube account:

What is this abbreviated garbage?  The clips shows you just nine pitches.  NINE!  I want to see all 76 pitches.  Also, the description for the YouTube video says:
7/22/97: Greg Maddux throws a complete game with just 76 pitches against the Cubs, leading the Braves to a 3-2 victory
The final score of the game was 4-1.  So whoever wrote the description wasn't paying attention.

Curiously, the TV announcer says Maddux threw 78 pitches.  I would guess the TV announcer lost track of the number of pitches, but I can't be sure without watching the full game.  (And why does the announcer say "one hit, no runs."  That's not correct.) has a clip of the game, but the description says Maddux threw 77 pitches: also says Maddux threw 77 pitches during the game:
And an AP write-up of the game says Maddux threw 78 pitches:
Will we every TRULY know how many pitches Greg Maddux threw during that game?  No, not until someone posts footage of the full game.

Friday, August 16, 2019 is another site that steals content. 

Here is an article from a few days ago titled "Disney CEO Confirms X-Men, Fantastic Four, and Deadpool Are Now All Part of Marvel Studios"

The text is copied from an article:

Oddly enough, I didn't see any ads on when I opened the article in an incognito window.  Although I did get a MailChimp pop-up saying "Subscribe to our mailing list."  That's unusual.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

/u/AwkwardTheTurtle suspended permanently

[UPDATE 8/19:  AwkwardTheTurtle's account was later un-suspended.]

Reddit powermod /u/AwkwardTheTurtle has been permanently suspended from Reddit:

Here's a larger version of the exchange that led to the suspension:

As you can see, a Reddit user named /u/42turds was acting like a sea lion and complaining about the incivility found in one of Turtle's subreddits.  Turtle got pissed and called 42turds a "deranged fascist nazi piece of shit."  And that led to the suspension. 

AwkwardTheTurtle is a moderator for 2,000+ subreddits, including /r/Art, /r/LifeProTips, and /r/TwoXChromosomes.  He also moderates /r/AgainstHateSubreddits and /r/StopAdvertisingboth of which were created with the goal of eliminating "hate speech" on Reddit.  And of course, the AHS crew have had their sights set on /r/The_Donald for a long time.

I once wrote in the DefaultMods Slack that, if the far-right wants to win the 2020 election, they need to drive AwkwardTheTurtle off of Reddit.  It was a joke, obviously, but it was one of those jokes with an element of truth.  We've all read that Politico article about "The Great Meme War."  If Trump's followers want him to win reelection, they need to control the tone of the internet.  And how do you control the tone of the internet?  With memes, of course!  You can find Trump supporters on most social media platforms, but /r/The_Donald is where many of the popular Trump memes are incubated.

Step 1:  Drive /u/AwkwardTheTurtle off of Reddit. 
Step 2:  Secure the safety of The_Donald.
Step 3:  Post spicy memes.
Step 4:  Win reelection.

Is this truly the end of AwkwardTheTurtle?  There was already one false alarm a few weeks ago, when Reddit administrators accidentally banned AwkwardTheTurtle's account.  (Apparently an admin pressed a wrong button.)  And the term "suspension" seems to leave open the possibility that the decision could be overturned down the line.

In the meantime, Reddit user /u/Awkward_The_Turtle has already been added as a moderator for /r/AgainstHateSubreddits.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Bad info out of El Paso

There was a shooting in El Paso on Saturday.  Reporter Mike Ikahihifo, who has a verified checkmark on Twitter, at one point tweeted out:
UPDATE: El Paso police says this was gang related terroism. KFOX14 reports.
He later deleted the tweet, but you can see the archive here:

It doesn't seem like the shooting was gang-related at all.  The suspect was identified as 21-year-old Patrick Crusius, and he posted a damn manifesto online.  I don't know how many times Ikahihifo's tweet was shared.  I saw it in my timeline after Tim Pool retweeted it.  (And I believe Tim Pool later un-retweeted it.)

Doesn't it seem like a problem when reporters are accidentally sharing misinformation about a shooting?  I don't mean that the misinformation itself is a problem.  (There will ALWAYS be misinformation during a chaotic situation.)  Rather, the problem is that people can latch onto the words of a checkmarked reporter and spread that misinformation around.  It gives people a free pass to spread faulty information.

Does that make sense?  What I'm trying to say is there's a loophole.  You could share misinformation from a trusted source without being accused yourself of spreading misinformation.  It would give you an out.     

Here's another tweet from Drunken Peasant Memsᵀᴹ, claiming the shooter was somebody named Scotty Mendez:

I think this was deliberate misinformation--a troll, as they say.  But Drunken Peasant Memsᵀᴹ isn't a recognized reporter with a verified Twitter checkmark, so it's not the same style of misinformation.  Nobody is gonna take Drunken Peasant Memsᵀᴹ's tweet at face value and then amplify it in the same way they might amplify Ikahihifo's tweet.

Sunday, August 4, 2019 is another site that plagiarizes content while displaying ads.

Here is a post from August 2 titled "Hiker scares off prowling cougar by blasting Metallica"

Here is the original article from August 1 from, titled "Hiker scares off prowling cougar by blasting Metallica"

TheReporterToday copied the entire article and then included a hyperlink at the end saying "Click here to read entire article."  Except, like I said, TheReporterToday already pasted the entire article.  It's not like they only copied a blurb.

The ads are those "Ads by Amazon" boxes.

I saw a Reddit user named /u/PaulaRodriguesBarros sharing links to TheReporterToday:

Not very sophisticated overall.

Friday, August 2, 2019

Kamala and Russian bots?

Is Kamala Harris being targeted by Russian bots on Twitter?

Ugh, that sounds like the beginning of a Snopes/Politifact article.  Regardless, I was surprised by the tone of this CNN article by Dough-knee O'Sullivan:

The point of the article is skepticism.  Skepticism about taking claims at face value.  The article also says Harris spoke on a radio show called The Breakfast Club, which is a show I've never heard--but apparently it's a place for politicians to gripe about foreign influence campaigns.

I also stumbled onto this Daily Beast article titled "The Kremlin’s Strategy for the 2020 U.S. Election: Secure the Base, Split the Opposition."

I'm hesitant to read it, because it seems like the type of article that might make me go crazy.  I skimmed it.  Maybe I'll return to it later, after the election.