Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Subversive Consumerism: An Organic Distribution Platform



In 2007, we started covering the first US presidential election in history that required the candidates and the media to engage voters online with digital content and social media. Digital content changed the world at that time. Online engagement leading up to the 2008 election of Barack Obama forecasted the results earlier and better than traditional polling and pundits. As a result, digital content strategies are assumed for all political campaigns and mass movements. The revolution happened so quickly. In a blink of an eye, digital, social and mobile strategies were the new status quo.

By 2008, it was overwhelmingly clear to us at Viralroots that our experiment and thesis had moved way beyond discussion. It was reality. We returned to our day jobs and pursued other projects and experiments.

Recently, I've reengaged Viralroots as a platform to discuss the impact of digital content in arenas other than election politics. Specifically, the impact on branding and marketing.

I believe that high value content is coming from unusual places at this time. Digital content is prerequisite in all marketing and distribution strategies, but it also must share an ecosystem with diverse user generated content, piracy and re-posts. As a result, there is a lot of noise, which creates a huge discoverability problem.

There's amazing professional and user-generated content on the web. And there's even great content either distributed, curated or generated by brands. But making sure people get to see the best content across all of these categories is tricky. Yet somehow, some of it breaks through, finds a tipping point and zoom, that's why we started talking.

But, this is not 2007.

Discovery solutions seem to be emerging from the least likely of places, such as 4chan, a place where brand skepticism and subversive action can inadvertently drive mainstream awareness for otherwise poorly performing, low impact, marketing campaigns.



You should know what this is.

The image is from the AXE Space Challenge. A peer-vote-driven contest for a chance at space travel. The face in the picture belongs to Christopher Poole, aka Moot, aka the founder of 4chan. The people of 4chan, on an ordinary day, have nothing good to say about AXE or any other consumer goods.

The contest was doing fine as of yesterday morning. The first place contestant had a few thousand votes.

Then 4chan decided to send Moot to space.

Last night, Moot had 400,000 votes.

The contestant behind him had 40,000.

The votes were not all legit. Earned by scripts moving votes through proxy servers, true to 4chan fashion. But man, what a story.

Moot has since been removed from the competition.

Just one example.

It's places like 4chan, sorta the sleeping giants of viralroots rumblings, that have an unprecedented, untested capacity to prove disruptive in the content game.

But, probably to the utter confusion, fear and paranoia of brands, it looks like what makes them disruptive might also make them a ticket for success. In the example above, a small community drove a massive feedback loop, bolstering awareness on Facebook and across the web. If not for them, I'd never be plugging AXE. Yet, here I am.

Can brands learn to play nice and forge relationships with niche communities and organic content distribution?

It seems to have worked for AXE, but there's no doubt it worked by accident.

The lesson is still the same:


We're way past subversive marketing.

Prepare for subversive consumerism as a platform for organic distribution.

Turns out, your content does not actually have to be native if it invokes mischief in the right group of people.

This is scary stuff. It requires letting go of a huge amount of power.

It requires you to question why consumers like your content.

Furthermore, it may require you to stop caring why consumers like your content, so long as they do.

Here's my perspective. We started writing Viralroots in 2007. We stayed on topic. More than 75% of our articles are tagged, Viral Politics. What's our most blogged about, most linked to, most trafficked article of all time? The one about Dennis Kucinich's sexy wife.

Turns out, sex sells. And if it got me one more reader, who cares?

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Breaking News vs. Breaking Press vs. Editorial Content



or, Blogging from your toilet 101: A Rant

As I make my way through my soon-to-be-deceased Google Reader list, I find myself especially annoyed this morning by how many repeat blog posts I'm seeing.

There are far too many blogs falling back on the, in-case-you-don't-look-out-your-window-or-watch-cnn-or-read-drudge-or-the-times-or-deadline-here's-some-breaking-news paradigm.

And they leave it at that.

These stories often don't get further opinion or insight on their way down the food chain.

They just tumble on down.

Don't get me wrong, I'm sure I've been guilty of this in the past. It used to make sense when everything was traditional media and certainly someone had to migrate it to the web. (I remember when we used to actually scan pieces of paper for text and images.) But that's all changed.

In my opinion, the big changes started when the "official press release" marketing machine got thrown out of whack by the Internet.

Once upon a time, we used to rely on daily trade publications to read placements masquerading as breaking news. You gotta give Nikki Finke credit for this one. She took a game that, in the entertainment world, was OWNED by daily publications Variety and THR and proved she could scoop their printed breaks on a blog, hours if not days earlier.

Her success, in my mind, defined the news-breaking paradigm that blogs can serve. They're not CNN. They're not KCAL 9. Meaning, blogs will never bring you live transcription of supreme court hearings or a helicopter shot of a police chase. But they can successfully sift the noisy deal-making, publicity and marketing machines of an industry, and find news there before official press releases break.

This is a massively powerful function. It subverted the way corporations communicated. And it now drives an entire derivatives market of lesser bloggers repeating high value content, like scooped press.

This is actually one of the many reasons the death of Reader breaks my heart. The ability to consolidate news sources and consume them in chronological order sheds a huge a mount of light on who broke a story and who's regurgitating it. Furthermore, who's regurgitating it in a timely manner and who might be adding valuable insight.

In a world were my time is valuable and I need to consume information as efficiently as possible, Reader helps me identify low-value content and either skip it or remove it from my list.

So, breaking news like Bank-Robber-on-PCP-Speeds-Down-405 breaking news doesn't seem to be a good plan for your average friendly neighborhood blogger.

Scooping official announcements seems to be a surgical craft, owned by digital operations who have emerged from or replaced legacy print operations. And merely repeating this information can drive traffic, but  you're not generating valuable content.

This leaves editorial.

Editorial is the space in content that you get to fill with personality that separates you from other blogs and other bloggers. This is the space where you can make your content valuable by making it uniquely yours.

If you want to successfully blog from your toilet or a Starbucks or a Starbucks toilet, please stop creating low-value content.

If I've seen it already, it has no value.

I don't care if you're a movie blog and the information is movie-related, so you want to share it.

If I've already seen it, it doesn't make me think you publish a lot.

It makes me think you publish too much and you're not contributing value to the conversation.

I guarantee you, if you're blogging in a niche, there is demand for amazing original content. This sounds pretty basic, but if you look at my Reader list, doing this well is still the realm of a small handful of key players in any given niche.

For instance, io9 and Geekologie are some of my favorite nerd reads. The two blogs cannot possibly be more different. io9 provides a well edited magazine-type experience. As much science as sci-fi. Extremely well written and detailed, original content that appeals to my interests and always sheds new light on a topic, even if it's about something familiar.

On the other hand, Geekologie is quick. Snappy. Image-driven. But GW's commentary is funny. It's brief, but it shines and it's distinctly him.

In my mind, both these blogs are premium offerings within the nerd niche and are equally important components in my reading list.

My interest in them is not story breaking ability, but quality and presentation. Valuable editorial content. From them, I know it's a good read. I know I want to read their next articles. I know I want to share their stories with friends.

There's a real value proposition going on with both these blogs.

Regurgitating breaking news in a large field like entertainment seems like a better recipe for traffic, but that's not how you're going to keep an audience over time. It's not a feasible business model to push from your toilet.

Making it onto my Reader list is half the battle.

You also have to keep me on.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The End Of Google Reader Is Better than A Financing Round For Feedly

Google broke my heart three days ago, announcing the end of Google Reader. The service will go offline July 1st. Almost immediately, articles suggesting alternative news readers started sweeping the blogosphere. One particular service, Feedly has come up a lot, for having form and function very similar to the Google Reader experience. It turns out, this is the best possible news for Feedly. Their blog states that "more than 500,000 Google Reader users have joined the feedly community over the last 48 hours." Google shutting down Reader has literally put Feedly on the map.

So here's my question: Why would Google shut down Reader in the first place?

Google cites a loyal following, but it has declined. But the Feedly story seems to suggest differently. And Google does keep a fair amount of legacy offerings up and running. A "loyal following" seems like all an app like Reader would need to remain a legacy product.

I can't help but think this is about something else. And I suspect that something might be advertising.

RSS was never mainstream. It's a geek tool. It's barebones. It's down and dirty. It's great for collecting the sources you trust to one place, moving through information fast, focusing on what you care about, and ignoring what you don't.

Ironically, I just described Facebook and Twitter.

And maybe that's the issue. Google Reader takes content, (I mean real content. Articles, studies, white papers, not single sentences and photos of your nephew.) dislodges it from its advertising and hey-stay-a-little-longer filled home, and presents it as-is.

In today's world, that seems like an awful lot of great content and hard work to give away for free with very minimal, easy to skip, advertising.

My guess is there's a solution in the works that keeps aggrogated content married to advertising in a more effective way than Reader.


Monday, March 18, 2013

Google Glass: Why the Stop-The-Cyborgs Fuss is Too-Little-Too-Late


Google Glass

Pop Quiz:

How many surveillance devices are within three feet of you right now?

Here's my answer:

-One web-connected camera pointing directly at my face.
-Four additional web-connected cameras, two on my phone, two on my tablet.
-Three web-connected microphones.
-Two GPS devices.
-Two cellular triangulation trackers.
-Three often static IP addresses.
-One web browser that can be identified as completely unique from anyone else, using Java.
-Two web browsers that deliver and have been delivering endless behavior to Google since 2008.

Shall we expand the scope of the question to within fifteen feet?

-An additional six web connected devices, all tansfering data through the same static IP address, but with unique MAC addresses.
-A relatively sophisticated bit of spycraft consumers refer to as the Microsoft X-Box Kinect.
-An electrical grid smart meter that delivers real-time energy usage, not only the utility company but also to me, or anyone with my credentials, over the web.

And if we were to reel the scope of this question to only within inches one's body, there's RFID in our wallets and on our keychains.

And if we were to expand the scope of the question to outisde of fifty feet, there's neighbors with their own prized collection of corporate spytech. There's traffic cameras, parking enforcement vehicles equipt with license plate readers, and on, and on...

I think I've made my point.

Today, we are surrounded by endless instruments for individually identifying, gathering and storing information. These tools are accessible to hackers, jealous lovers, private investagators, concerned parents, major corporations and, of course, the government.

So:

2013.
Just coming around to stopping the cyborgs?

After decades of technology capable of compromising privacy, the Stop The Cyborgs movement was finally created earlier this month.

Recent headlines linked to with sensational panic by Drudge.

This is all a result of hivemind logic deciding that Google Glass is somehow more insidious than anything we've seen thus far.

What a fabulous destraction from the spytech already all around us.

Let's focus on the one device that one wears on their face. The one device that is overt, obvious and public. The very intention of the device is to collect and augment information from the world around us, and hopefully do something with that information to make our days a little easier.

Let's completely ignore all the covert and insideous devices that hide within the gadgets we've welcomed into our lives over the past several decades.

Courtesy of Stop The Cyborgs, the following exchange with a Google spokesperson:

A Google spokesperson responds: 
“It is still very early days for Glass, and we expect that as with other new technologies, such as cell phones, behaviors and social norms will develop over time.” 
Stop the cyborgs reply:
"We couldn’t agree more. These early days are our opportunity to proactively shape the social norms and technological development through public debate, politics and individual action rather than passively accepting and adapting to new technology."
Anyone pretending that we are somehow in the "early days" of the surveillance security discussion has zero grip on the last three decades of computer technology and takes for granted the technology that is already within three feet of us.

You know what's great about Google Glass?

You know when you're staring right at it!

It practically screams, "Hi, I'm a camera! Behave like you're in front of a camera!"

My smartphone's design offers nothing of the sort. Just ask my girlfriend.

So, does it need a blinking light?

Well, that depends. If the freedom to ignorantly assume a camera is not recording, in spite its obvious presence, is a basic human right, then I guess it needs a blinking light.

But in this world, that's staggeringly shortsighted logic to rely on.

It's right up there with not looking both ways when you cross the street, since, duh, pedestrians have the right-of-way. If a car hits you, it's their fault! So they should look, not you! It's a totally weak argument if you end up dead, and it's a totally week argument for assuming a right to privacy.

In 2009, Eric Schmidt, in an interview with Maria Bartiromo, famously said the following:

"If you have something that you don’t want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place."
Most people find this notion abhorrent. A violation of a basic human right to privacy.

Believe what you want, but your beliefs do not change the reality of the statement. This has been the reality of our world for quite sometime. It is not a new reality forged by Google Glass. And it is not a reality that will be going away anytime soon.

You can fight it all you want. You can lead debates, make bumperstickers and fight for initiatives to unwind it. You can even become a cybernetic bigot if it floats your boat.

But what I would not suggest is allowing yourself to be consumed by the distraction of wearable devices like Google Glass while ignoring the reality and capability of what's already in our pockets, on our desks and staring at us in our living rooms.

Because that position is too little too late.

That position is like arguing with the driver over right-of-way as you lie bleeding in the intersection.

These are real:


They have been for quite some time. 

Who knows, they could have kindly walked you back to your dorm room. The rest of the details are fuzzy.


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Veronica Mars Goes Over-The-Top: Today, the studio is crowds. Tomorrow, it's brands.


Netflix showed us with HOUSE OF CARDS that if you trust the talent and give them enough money, they can create premium content anywhere. We no longer live in a world where must-see-TV can only be produced, and more importantly, distributed by studios and networks. Moving forward, we'll continue to see premium content emerging from distribution-driven models, but replicating quality and reach is only half the equation. I don't mean this in a bad way. I think it's extremely important that Netflix is putting their money where their mouth is, effectively saying, hey we tap talent like you, we spend like you, we get to "jog" with you. Anything short of that would have given them excuses to make in the face of a potential failure. But we only had Canadian actors, for instance. (For example, see Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn.)

The Veronica Mars movie funded on Kickstarter, will hopefully reveal the second half, in my opinion the more important half, of the equation. I'll pose it as a question. What is the real cost of ninety minutes of content created by premium talent using premium technology, but working for ownership in the negative instead of upfront fees? Based on this campaign, as well as financial models and budgets I deal with on my day-to-day, the answer is somewhere right around here: $2,000,000. The campaign does state that obviously all proceeds over $2million will go into the budget, which I'm sure they'll be happy to have. Again, I know for a fact that this number is feasible providing you leverage the correct talent. (I'll probably write more about that in the future.) To be fair, Warner Bros. does own the underlying IP and they're hard pressed to give up ownership. Sources tell me they may pony up production funds (in addition to a domestic limited theatrical release, no doubt to leverage oversea sales (and likely canabilize a digital window)), which would no doubt contribute to fees, but the model can work just the same with ownership pooled for talent.

Now, it's speculated that HOUSE OF CARDS came in at around $3.8million per episode, on the cheap end. And going forward, the same speculation suggests Netflix will continue pushing budgets around $4million per episode for future shows.

So, the implication here is that it's quite easy to spend a 100% premium between fees and production costs if given the opportunity.

But what happens if you're not given the opportunity?

Tighter budgets and back-end compensation seem to suggest an emerging model for digital content that might just allow creators and consumers to have their cake and eat it too: Greater numbers of niche shows/films/experiences of premium quality created on smaller budgets, reaching pre-engaged audiences on different-sized screens.

Engaged, niche audiences. Low production costs. Premium IP.

Which brings us to our... third half...

Brands want in.

They don't all know it yet, but some are coming around.

Edelman nabs a Machinima content programmer.

Conglams are leveraging their brands across networks. Conde Nast launches a digital network programmed by its biggest brands.

The brand play makes perfect sense. We're talking marketing budgets in the billions, especially in automotive and consumer electronics. Why just spend it on commercials? They're expensive. They air a few times. Sometimes they're cool, but with time, they always become invisible. Here's an opportunity to build content libraries. Products unto themselves. Consumable. Re-consumable. They garner empathy and fans. Serialized or episodic, you can track engagement.

So simple, right?

Here's (some) of the reluctance: But what about GRPs? 

I have this conversation all the time. Brands love their GRPs.

I'm always talking to engineers on the analytics side. I usually like to scream at them. It goes something like this:

What the fuck? Your network has upwards of 500 user touch-points. Why is your latest, greatest product a GRP solution? It doesn't make sense! Why don't brands use these touch points? If the brand is the content instead of just the interstitial, they'll understand, won't they? Who gives a shit about GRP? It's a Furry Convention Time Travel show, not a fucking billboard on the way home from work! And that 250k buy from The Tampon Company that's rendering 75% on ustream? Those views are in front of a drunk college girl showing her tits to stoners, you don't need GRP to know you're completely missing! Please tell me why you do this!

I always get the same answer. It's a version of this:

You are absolutely right. But you're going to have to wait for some very stubborn people in some very important positions to either retire or die. It's just the way the world works.

I don't want to wait for people to die! It's 2013, we just cured HIV! That could take forever!

I want brands, no more precisely, I want agencies that represent brands to get their heads out of their asses and start taking risks on content and metrics in a meaningful way so that I never have to see a tampon commercial ever again and my wife never needs to see a sportscar commerical ever again.

Okay, go support Veronica Mars on Kickstarter. Seriously. It was like the best show ever.

FAKEGRIMLOCK: THE WORLD IS CAN'T

About six or seven years ago, I saw philosopher/futurist/warrior Richard Thieme speak at defCON. I discussed how a generation had emerged that identified more strongly with its online presence than its real life presence. At the time, I found this insight incredibly profound. It was an evocative message, which in my mind, best communicated the notion that sitting in front of a computer screen, for some people, results in more cozy interactions than say, sharing a lunch table. 

Presently, FAKE GRIMLOCK reminds me, fuck, that defCON talk was a long time ago. Not only has the line completely blurred, not for a fringe but for most people. And furthermore, it might only be that agency we find on the internet that will ever give us the psychic tools to tolerate individuality, failure and success, the fringe and the every day, in real life. 

Monday, October 1, 2012

Wi-Fi Zombie Apocalypse

or

Can A Distributed Network Of Lone-Wolf Amateur Entrepreneurs Crowd-Fund Starbucks And Turn A Profit Before Exhausting Social Welfare Safety Nets?

I have recently found myself without an office. This blows. Why? Because with it I have lost my innocence. I'm no longer sheltered from the frightening reality of Wi-Fi Zombies. Turns out, Starbucks has undergone a massive transformation through this great recession. Once an overpriced coffee shop, they've emerged an overpopulated Hooverville, wreaking of bacon and toilet smells to boot.

This is not hyperbole. I'm sitting between two homeless guys who have very obviously moved in. One has some sort of art thing going on. The other has either invented a new form of math or is schizophrenic. No matter. They both have laptops and Starbucks cups, which makes them fully documented citizens in this place. Turns out, it's those same two things, and ONLY those two things, that make me a fully documented citizen here also. Despite this being my first... time.

So, imagine you're you. You stroll on in to Starbucks, go through the motions. You know 'em: Dart your eyes, assess the line, search for power-outlet-adjacent seating, check if the bathroom is free. You glance past me without missing a beat.

I'm babbling to myself, coffee stains on my shirt, slamming my keyboard.

Steer clear, he's one of them.

If I ask you a question, you'll pretend you're in a stare, in deep concentration, listening to your headphones, something. Anything, so you don't have to acknowledge the lunatic. Cuz that might open a veritable Pandora's box of inappropriate conversation, sexual advances and assumed association with said lunatic by your fellow Wi-Fi zombies.

But wait, I'm one of you!

Now turn the tables. I look up from my coffee-stained macBook. I say, "Excuse me, I'm supposed to meet a friend at the Starbucks near Robertson. I'm new at this, but by my approximation, there are six of them. Would you say this is accepted as the correct one?"

You quickly press the button on your EarPod and pretend to be in deep conversation as you stare off into the mass-produced pop-art hanging on the wall.

Yikes, you're one of them.

"Who is this lunatic?" I ask myself. As if I didn't just ask a reasonable question pertaining to Wi-Fi zombie culture? This one must be damaged, I think. Or escaped from the laughing academy? Perhaps a trust-fund schizophrenic with that coffee-stained shirt and fancy iPhone 5?

I've read about this.

One has been living in the alley for years. He screams, "fuck" all night until he can't any more, but he only smokes Nat Shermans. He'll fight you if you offer him anything but.

He's one of us, too. Deal with it.

And that's where it gets really confusing. Look at you, you smug upstanding member of society with your good Wi-Fi zombie manners, macBook and debit card. The screamer enters on rollerskates and mutters, "cunt" under his breath with impressive restraint.

You shake your head in disgust as he moves toward the cashier with his Platinum American Express card. There goes the neighborhood, you say. His patronage isn't welcome here. Where's his macBook? He doesn't even have a cup!

He buys sixteen danishes and a blueberry scone on his AMEX. He stuffs the scone in his bicycle shorts, call the trashcan a "Hajji" and leaves.

"Can you believe this guy?" you say, as you get up to ask the barista to refill your ice water.

I quickly look away, careful not to make eye contact.


Thursday, June 21, 2012

Why Reddit is Irrelevant: Aggregators vs. Good ol' Fashion BBSs


Marlowe here. You're probably wondering why I'm updating a blog I haven't touched since the presidential election. Easy answer is, we proved our thesis and I didn't have another one. Then this video emerged and it gave me something to talk about.

Tuesday night I could not sleep. I found my way to 4chan, onto a channel which may not be discussed by name when not on said channel. It's against the rules. What can I say, kids are silly. Anyway, the thread that was blowing up (or, a shitstorm, as they say) was about a video discovered on Facebook of some absolutely evil children making their bus monitor cry by insulting her.

By the time I got to the thread, contributors had already determined not only that the victim is the lovely Karen Klein, but they had figured out the names, addresses, phone numbers and even credit card numbers of all the culpable kids and their proud parents. They also had the contact information for all relevant law enforcement, school and district employees. A letter writing campaign to the principal was in full force. Templates were being tweaked and shared. Emails being sent to the media, local and national. Endless pizza deliveries, magazine subscriptions and box bombs were being sent to the homes of the perps. The full on campaign was being waged through multiple threads, IRC channels and pastebin dumps. 

Interest piqued, I began to do some digging on my own. And save for the video uploaded to you youtube, I found absolutely nothing. No one tweeting about it. Nothing on local news sites. Nothing on blogs. Nothing on Reddit. Nothing. 

Once again, 4chan succeeded at something very special that only can happen on 4chan. They scooped the planet on the type of news story, ELDERLY LADY BULLIED ON SCHOOL BUS BY STUDENTS, that news magazine anchors could only pray for before going to sleep at night. 

Cut to the next morning. The story finally broke by what seems to be 9:00AM EST. Picked up on Reddit, local news outfits, youtube trolls copying the video and reuploading it to attract hits, The Huffington Post, even a crowdfunding campaign to get Karen a dream vacation. (At nearly $400,000 on day two, it seems she might be retiring.) 

What was absent from all this eight-hours-too-late breaking news, you ask? Any reference to 4chan. 

It is the above events that has pulled me back to Viralroots after a three year abandonment. 

This is the story that will define my new thesis. 

It is the story of an absolutely tremendous, diverse and misunderstood community that not only constantly scoops global news, mass movements and mainstream memes, it creates them. And what's its big secret? The contributors don't even care. For several reasons, this community is, by definition, so realtime, it just can't help but succeed better and faster than anything else. I attribute this success to one key thing: Action versus feedback.

Bulletin Board Systems such as 4chan's imageboard require interaction and contribution to keep ideas alive. In other words, creating things worth writing about is not just a plus in this community, it is a requirement. Action is what keeps any given post alive, giving it a chance to go viral.

On Reddit, Facebook and Digg, all that's required is to "like" or "thumbs up" something for it to earn extended reach. The problem with this is, you can "like" something a billion times, but in the end, you haven't actually created anything. It's a passive, observer culture that can just as easily be exploited by self-promoters as it can be by legitimately organic movements. There is no collaboration or innovation. It is just a remarkably lazy way of consuming traditional media that has been pre-filtered by your peers.

4chan is different. In any given topic channel, there are 15 pages to hold threads. Each new thread bumps the very last thread into oblivion. The last thread "404s," it ceases to exist. Each time someone contributes to a thread, it bumps it up back to the top. Spam fails within minutes. Self promotion fails within minutes. Poorly veiled appeals for others to contribute content fail within minutes. Attempts to steal content from Reddit or 9gag is briefly shot down as being outdated, always with racial and homophobic name-calling, and then it fails. The only thing that lasts is action. What ultimately results from a successful thread is a nearly endless feedback loop of individuals around the globe latching onto ideas and not just liking them, but loving them enough to be invested, to take action and to report back on that action.

It is this collaborative doing, as opposed to passive liking, that resulted in the action that set off the shitstorm that is dictating the fate of Karen Klein and the fate of those pissant kids. When all is said and done, it looks like Ms. Klein is going on the vacation of a lifetime, and those kids are going on a vacation to juvy.

And credit will never go where credit is due. By the time the story breaks in the mainstream news cycle, that collaborative thread that got it all done in the middle of the night, has 404'd by the next morning. Gone like it never even existed. It's ancient history on 4chan, any rehashings inevitably met with racist & homophobic insults, because the anonymous community of 4chan is already on to the next one.