damnum absque injuria

May 15, 2011

Nitecruzer Is a Prick

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 8:05 pm

Whose posting privileges on all Google fora (beginning with this one) should be revoked forthwith. If, however, he finds this post or my comments on Google fora and finds a way to get me shut out of my own GMail account, consisting of my first name (Jeff) followed by my middle initial (W) and my surname (Bishop) followed by the usual Google Mail domain, I shall give him credit for being a more resourceful prick than previously thought.

11 Responses to “Nitecruzer Is a Prick”

  1. Dustin Says:

    It seems like Nitecruzr has an easier time locating people who criticize him to his face in those forums.

    Given that he, or someone, or something somehow simultaneously flagged 8 people who criticized Nitecruzer.

    I like the theory that Google’s claim that Nitecruzr didn’t delete any comments is just a weaselly description, because what Nitecruzr may have done was flag those accounts as spam, which causes a process to occur that happens to delete the comments and screw up the accounts.

    It’s already plain that Google was not being straight when it said Nitecruzr didn’t delete comments. I know you say this isn’t proven, but the timing of the deletions suggests someone was trying to help Nitecruzr, keeping some of his mocking comments up, deleting them in time to replace with a more updated mockery, and deleting any criticism of nitecruzr as soon as it’s found.

  2. Xrlq Says:

    Start with the thread itself. This was a support thread, not an open forum for mocking or criticizing anybody. Althouse came into the thread behaving like an ass, with thinly veiled implications that she should get special treatment because her blog is soooo much more important than those of the little people. Nitecruzr put her in her place, first in mostly polite way, then progressively impolite as the thread continued and a gang of trolls, led by Patterico, joined the fray. Brett, the only known (or reasonably suspected) Google employee, was very polite and very helpful from the moment he was brought in to solve the problem, but no one else who posted to that thread comes out looking very good. Not Ann, not Nitecruzr, and certainly not the trolls who shouldn’t have been posting there at all.

    Now, on to the deletions. Given that inappropriate and unhelpful comments were posted, is appropriate that someone deleted them. It’s pointless to speculate whether that someone was or was not Nitecruzr himself. If it was Nitecruzr, good on him for having second thoughts about his own intemperate remarks and deleting them as well as the inappropriate comments of others. If it wasn’t, good on someone else for stepping in and providing the adult supervision they all could have used from the start. But Patterico’s goofy fantasy about Nitecruzr having done so just to “cover is tracks” is just that, a goofy fantasy.

    Third, on to the “unusual activity on your account” that Google detected, which Patterico and his brothers in trolldom write off as pretextual. Yes it is possible that Nitecruzr or some other moderator triggered that by marking their spam as, well, spam. If so, perhaps Google should fine-tune its algorithm for detecting unusual activity, as posting spammy goodness to unrelated threads is indication that you are a prick, not that you are hijacking someone else’s account. OTOH, it should be stepped up on another level, e.g., to ban you from posting to Google help forums for 30 days or what not. But it’s a strange thing for the troll to get too exercised about. But there’s also an even more innocent (from Google and Nitecruzr’s perspective) explanation that Patterico ignores entirely, namely that a known troll, whom he caught red handed spoofing his Gmail address on other web sites, might have attempted to access his real Gmail account as well. That the same hacker-troll may have stalked the other eight (or however many) non-hacker trolls in the same thread and attempted to hijack their accounts makes a hell of a lot more sense to me than P’s goofy theory that Google locked him out of his email account just so they can make obscene phone calls to his cell phone in the middle of the night, but Patterico brushes that theory aside simply because (in his words, not mine) “I had already considered that theory and rejected it.” Well, then.

    Stick around high profile blogs like Patterico’s for a while, and eventually you’ll learn the script. First, a story breaks, and as is often the case with a new story, precious few actual facts are known about it. That inconvenient truth (sorta like Al Gore’s inconvenient truth, except that this one really is both inconvenient and true) doesn’t prevent the blogger from eagerly “scooping” the story by reporting as quasi-fact a theory formed at the initial stages as to what “really” must have happened. Then, as actual information slowly trickles in, all new information that can be spun as support for the original theory is so spun, while all other new information is simply ignored or explained away, often with accompanying insults to whoever alerted the blogger to the news he didn’t want to hear. Radley Balko does this all the time; just ask Patterico. Patterico does this all the time, just ask Radley Balko. They’ll both back me up on this, and they’ll both be right. It’s like arguing with religionists who made up their own minds about religion a long time ago, but expect the unbeliever to be wowed by whatever new events get portrayed as “proof” their religion was right after all – even while pooh-poohing all other events as proof that God “works in mysterious ways” or is “testing our faith,” with no possible events ever registering as evidence that God may not be real after all, or even that the believer could possibly be following the wrong version of him.

    But don’t take my word for this. After all, I’m just a pro-Blogger “troll.” So rabidly pro-Blogger, I might add, that I joined Dean Esmay’s jihad and helped moved dozens of bloggers’ blogs away from that godawful site eight years ago (including Patterico’s own, from a hospital bed). A crafty troll I am, but a troll nonetheless.

  3. Patterico Says:

    “Start with the thread itself. This was a support thread, not an open forum for mocking or criticizing anybody. Althouse came into the thread behaving like an ass, with thinly veiled implications that she should get special treatment because her blog is soooo much more important than those of the little people. Nitecruzr put her in her place, first in mostly polite way, then progressively impolite as the thread continued and a gang of trolls, led by Patterico, joined the fray.”

    Hahahahahahahahahahaha.

    Yeah, I led the gang of trolls. I wasn’t even on the thread, dude. Here’s why I said you have been acting like a troll: because, despite the fact that I like you personally and that you have indeed done a lot for me, you came crashing into my thread lobbing insults left and right, while demonstrating yourself to be totally ignorant of the facts. I don’t even get past the first couple of lines of your comment before I see the above howler, which shows you NEVER EVEN READ THE COMMENT THREAD AT ISSUE. (Or, you read it in such a hasty and sloppy manner that you thought I was on it. When I never was.)

    You have gone around talking, very rudely, about how I have made stuff up and have engaged in wild fantasies. Meanwhile, you simply haven’t bothered to acquaint yourself with the basic facts.

    “That the same hacker-troll may have stalked the other eight (or however many) non-hacker trolls in the same thread and attempted to hijack their accounts makes a hell of a lot more sense to me than P’s goofy theory that Google locked him out of his email account just so they can make obscene phone calls to his cell phone in the middle of the night . . .”

    Sure. Because for some weird reason, anything that supports Google makes more sense to you than the simplest interpretations of the evidence. First, you’re not telling the truth about what I think happened, but we’ll just chalk that up to sarcasm. If you did bother to honestly characterize my theory it would be harder (impossible, actually) to dismiss as paranoid, wild, or silly. But you would have to know the facts first, and you don’t, as I just showed. Second, if a hacker broke into 8 other people’s accounts, you’d think there would be the tiniest smidgin of evidence that that happened. My Yahoo account was hijacked and my address book was spammed, for example — and I learned of this when numerous people wrote me about it. There is zero evidence that the other 8 had any unusual activity — and I know this, because I asked.

    You’re just totally impervious to logic on this one. And to anyone who actually did pay attention to the facts, as you demonstrably did not, you’re embarrassing yourself. Whether you will ever realize this is another question. I doubt it.
    Patterico´s last blog post ..Mediscaring Reaches Ridiculous Depths

  4. Xrlq Says:

    Sure, I’m the one impervious to logic here, for thinking something simple and straightforward is more likely to have happened than the mass conspiracy theories you’re spinning. That’s what the birthers say, that’s what the “racers” say, that’s what the 9/11 truthers say, it’s what all conspiracy theorists say. They’re never the ones being illogical; the rest of us are just in “denial.” Which, technically speaking, is actually true: each of you is saying something stupid and irrational, which I, in turn, I am denying.

    Obviously, I haven’t been following this phony scandal nearly as closely as you have been spinning it, for the simple reason that it is a bogus story and isn’t worth even the time I have expended on it. That said, I certainly have paid enough attention to both types of facts, to wit:

    1. Actual facts, e.g., that Althouse’s blog was briefly mischaracterized as a splog, or that some off-topic, unhelpful and/or rude comments to a help thread were deleted.
    2. Unsubstantiated allegations you characterize as “facts,” e.g., Nitecruzr deleted his own comments to “cover his tracks,” and that he and Google had nothing better to do than conspire to trick nine people into giving their cell phone numbers by falsely claiming to have detected unusual activity on their accounts.

    It is kinda fun, in a perverse way, watching both types of “facts” shift as needed to keep one version or another of the original theory alive. First your GMail account supposedly got hacked by Google itself (or by Nitecruzr, who you were assuming worked for Google even thogh he never claimed to, and implicitly claimed not to by consistently referring to them in the third person) because Nitecruzr-Google, Inc. has nothing better to do than harass people who Nitecruzr on the net. So I tested the theory by criticizing Nitecruzr on the net, complete with all the info your dark overlord friend would have needed to know which GMail account to attack next. Surprise of all surprises, nothing happened, so rather than admit your theory was weak, you rationalized that I had conducted a “worthless experiment” by posting my criticism to a blog, because now Nitecruzr-Google only goes after people who abuse their forums, not people who criticize them elsewhere on the net. That wasn’t consistent with my recollection of your original story of being “locked out” of your own account for criticizing him on a blog, but rather than wading a second time through multiple rambling posts and thousands of comments, I committed the ultimate trolling offense of giving you the benefit of the doubt, and assuming you had participated alongside the trolls and attributed your “lockout” to that. So, at your suggestion, I conducted a second experiment of actually posting troll comments to a real, live Nitecruzr thread. Not just any Nitecruzr thread, mind you, but the specific one you had hand-picked as “the best” for testing your pet theory. So I did, and Scot did as well. Nitecruzr must have seen the comments by now, but to date, no one at Nitecruzr-Google, Inc. has taken any action against either Scott’s account or mine (though frankly, some action should have been taken since both of our comments were out of place, inappropriate and trollish in every real sense of the word). So now are you admitting your theory was wrong? Of course not! I might just as well expect all the nuts who think the rapture is coming on Saturday to convert to atheism on Sunday. Religions don’t work that way.

    Sure. Because for some weird reason, anything that supports Google makes more sense to you than the simplest interpretations of the evidence.

    Yes, for some weird I think a huge corporation like Google deals with real security threats every day (or hour, or minute) and frankly has better things to do with its time and corporate resources than to stage a series of phony security incidents just to con one blogger and eight trolls into giving them cell phone numbers you haven’t even identified Google’s supposed use for (other than the innocent use, proffered by Google itself, which you simply ignored, namely that an authorization code has to get to you somehow, and SMS is the fastest way to do it when the email account itself cannot be trusted). Sorry to burst any bubbles, but at the end of the day, you really are not that important to Google. Yes, you are vain but no, Carly wasn’t really singing about you.

    If you did bother to honestly characterize my theory it would be harder (impossible, actually) to dismiss as paranoid, wild, or silly.

    Try me. Of course you think it’s all my fault, not yours, that your crazy theory evolves through a series of rambling entries with shifting theories over everything except the end conclusion that Google is evil in general but especially evil to you, Althouse and eight trolls (I refer, of course, to the classic definition of trolls, not to your brand-new one that seems to cover anyone and everyone who doesn’t think you crap ice cream). This makes the details of the theory a bit tough to pin down, so how about trying a different tack and putting together one self-contained entry which, in 500 words or less, coherently and succinctly summarizes exactly what your theory is, and why it is more credible than the alternative theory that someone having nothing to do with Google (but presumably someone following Althouse and the help support thread) really did engage in suspicious activities directed at the accounts, and Google simply did what Google always does (and frankly should do) under the circumstances). Then it will be much easier for skeptics like me to explain precisely why your theory is so paranoid, wild and/or silly – or, in the unlikely event it proves to be none of these, to concede as much.

    Second, if a hacker broke into 8 other peoples accounts, you’d think there would be the tiniest smidgin of evidence that that happened.

    Of course I would expect such evidence to exist, but I’d have to be pretty dim to expect it to be waiting for me in my inbox, my outbox or any folder I as the end user have ready access to. Of course I’d check all these places anyway, but would frankly be surprised if anything turned up, as it would mean my account was breached by some sort of “Rain-Man” smart enough to crack my code, yet too dumb to scrape my account without advertising to me that he had done so. I’m sure “Rain-Men” exist, as do braggarts who hack in just to tell their victims that they have, but I’d expect both groups to be the exception rather than the rule. Most of us are either too dumb to make it in in the first place, or too smart to do something that stupid once we are in. Or both.

    By your logic, my account must not have been compromised, either, because whoever broke in last week knew what he was doing and didn’t leave anything for me to find. Sure, he may have left an IP address, which Google has since provided to me, but only if you trust Google to tell you the truth when they warn you about unusual activity on your account. If you think they make these incidents up, coming up with a fake IP address on top of that would be child’s play. So by your logic, such as it is, my account wasn’t breached after all; Nitecruzr-Google, Inc. must have just made it up to punish me for not paying attention the Althouse non-affair.

    Further, unlike my case, Google never actually said that someone had broken into your accounts, only that it had detected “unusual activity” which in turn triggered the security measures. What if maybe, just maybe, the theory you casually “considered … and rejected” was in fact the correct one, and some lone hacker with no connection to Nitecruzr-Google, Inc. – let’s call him Torquemada – really did attempt to break into all 9 accounts. None of these attempts were successful, but they sure as hell were suspicious, particularly since they all came from a single IP address during a short period of time, thereby triggering GMail’s heightened security measures for all nine accounts targeted by the attack. Since he never actually made it in, of course you weren’t going to find anything new or unusual in your folders. What the hell would you, as the end users, expect to find under those circumstances?

    My Yahoo account was hijacked and my address book was spammed, for example — and I learned of this when numerous people wrote me about it.

    So? Some hackers are very good at covering their tracks, while others suck at it and others still don’t even try. The Yahoo spam probably fell into the third category, being a bot that targets every account it can break into. This could not be more different than a case like the instant one, where one individual (or a very small group of individuals) appears to have carefully targeted a small number of accounts. Even Mrs. Ex, who knows nothing about computers, managed to help herself to my private data two years ago. The breach didn’t arouse Google’s suspicion, as it came from a trusted IP (my own home, and probably my own computer to boot). Nothing unusual in the inbox, no reason to look at the outbox. I never would have learned of the breach at all if she hadn’t committed a bush league error in the process. So if she had been smart enough to delete individual messages instead of entire threads, and to actually delete from the trash what was instead left for me to find two weeks later, then I guess that breach wouldn’t have happened, either.

    There is zero evidence that the other 8 had any unusual activity — and I know this, because I asked.

    Asked who? A Google administrator who would have access to whatever suspicious activity triggered the alerts? Or the users themselves, thereby proving nothing (except, of course, that Rain Man was not the culprit)?

  5. Patterico Says:

    Sure, I’m the one impervious to logic here, for thinking something simple and straightforward is more likely to have happened than the mass conspiracy theories you’re spinning.  That’s what the birthers say, that’s what the “racers” say, that’s what the 9/11 truthers say, it’s what all conspiracy theorists say.  They’re never the ones being illogical; the rest of us are just in “denial.”  Which, technically speaking, is actually true: each of you is saying something stupid and irrational, which I, in turn, I am denying.

    Obviously, I haven’t been following this phony scandal nearly as closely as you have been spinning it …

    Buried in that tendentious comment is the most accurate thing you have said to date regarding this affair: you don’t know the facts. I’m not just talking details, either. You don’t even understand my basic argument, which assumes no conspiracy and never has, but rather alleges that Google granted a moderator overly broad powers, which he abused — and that Google needs to pay more attention to how it interfaces with customers. Oh my God, what a wild conspiracy theory that is!

    Your lack of knowledge hasn’t dissuaded you from rushing in and issuing insults right and left, cheerfully distorting the facts in every comment, and comparing our reasonable theory to every ridiculous conspiracy theory under the sun.

    If you’re ever ready to debate what I’m actually arguing, rather than your distorted version of it, let me know. It would require you to learn the facts first and comment second. Until then, I consider it a waste of time to argue with someone who so fundamentally misunderstands my argument that he thinks I led the charge to comment at the Althouse support thread; or thinks I have ever argued that nitecruzr conspired with Google to do anything; or who repeatedly argues that 2+2=5 and anyone who disagrees is a conspiracy theorist.

  6. Xrlq Says:

    You don’t even understand my basic argument, which assumes no conspiracy and never has, but rather alleges that Google granted a moderator overly broad powers, which he abused — and that Google needs to pay more attention to how it interfaces with customers. Oh my God, what a wild conspiracy theory that is!

    Right, ‘cuz we all know your whole beef with Nitecruzr was that some guy was rude on the Internet. Oh wait, I almost forgot, that wasn’t your characterization of the event but Beldar’s, which you proceeded to deride rather than endorse. Of course, we both know your objection to Nitecruzr wasn’t just how he “interfaced” with Blogger customers, but how he supposedly disabled 9 people’s GMail accounts to retaliate for their troll comments to one thread or another, all the while exerting superuser powers Google itself maintains TCs do not have.

    So yes, I’d call that a conspiracy theory, unless you think the Google spokesman who described TCs’ powers was actually Nitecruzr himself in drag. Even then you’d still need co-conspirators in the GMail division to write the code that falsely claims to have detected suspicious activity anytime a TC exercises the broad powers non-conspiring Google programmers don’t even know they have – but whose non-conspiratorial code nevertheless has to properly interface with their own for GMail to function at all. And let’s not forget all that psychobabble about cell phone numbers; how many more Google programmers must be in on the conspiracy to secretly collect cell phone numbers by pretextually asking for cell or voice phone numbers whenever Google either detects suspicious activity or falsely claims to have done so because a TC has exercised a power TCs aren’t officially supposed to have at all?

    So no, I don’t call anyone who disagrees with me a conspiracy theorist. I call anyone who advances a theory that depends on implausibly large groups of individuals having conspired a conspiracy theorist.

  7. Xrlq Says:

    And don’t forget, not only Nitecruzr but every other TC would be in on the conspiracy, as all would have to keep secret the fact that they hold these awful powers Google publicly maintains they do not have. I’m sure it’s no different than joining Fight Club, where the first rule is do not talk about Fight Club.

  8. Patterico Says:

    “Of course, we both know your objection to Nitecruzr wasn’t just how he ‘interfaced’ with Blogger customers, but how he supposedly disabled 9 people’s GMail accounts to retaliate for their troll comments to one thread or another, all the while exerting superuser powers Google itself maintains TCs do not have.”

    Or, put another way, my objection is that Google granted a moderator overly broad powers, which he abused — and that Google needs to pay more attention to how it interfaces with customers. (The broad power being the power to disable people’s Gmail accounts.)

    Maybe that’s why I said precisely that:

    You don’t even understand my basic argument, which assumes no conspiracy and never has, but rather alleges that Google granted a moderator overly broad powers, which he abused — and that Google needs to pay more attention to how it interfaces with customers. Oh my God, what a wild conspiracy theory that is!

    See, this is a nice example of your argumentation style with respect to this issue. You persistently argue/assert/imply that people have said something different than they have said. For example, above, I said a and b:

    a = Google granted a moderator overly broad powers, which he abused

    b = Google needs to pay more attention to how it interfaces with customers

    Then you come along and imply I never said a, by saying: we both know that your argument is not just b, but also [a rewriting of a]:

    Of course, we both know your objection to Nitecruzr wasn’t just how he “interfaced” with Blogger customers [point b], but how he supposedly disabled 9 people’s GMail accounts to retaliate for their troll comments to one thread or another [point a, rewritten], all the while exerting superuser powers Google itself maintains TCs do not have.

    Why you imply I never argued a, when I did with crystal clarity, I cannot begin to understand.

    That leaves the incredible baffling question: how in the world could a Google spokesperson have possibly taken on my theory?

    So yes, I’d call that a conspiracy theory, unless you think the Google spokesman who described TCs’ powers was actually Nitecruzr himself in drag.

    Yes, that's certainly the only logical explanation for why a Google spokesperson might say nitecruzr has powers he doesn't really have! Oh, wait — I just thought of a way simpler one: the spokesperson is as familiar with the facts as you are. Here's another: the spokesperson is not nitecruzr in drag, but is trying to cover up his errors.

    Even then you’d still need co-conspirators in the GMail division to write the code that falsely claims to have detected suspicious activity anytime a TC exercises the broad powers non-conspiring Google programmers don’t even know they have – but whose non-conspiratorial code nevertheless has to properly interface with their own for GMail to function at all.

    This is babble to me. If you know the precise mechanism by which accounts are flagged, don’t be coy. Tell us what it is. Until you do, any jabbering about false code is meaningless. In another thread, you asserted that people might have been able to cause accounts to be locked by simply clicking a “report abuse” button in a forum thread. In truth, I have no idea whether that is possible or not. If it is, it is, again, a Google problem — as I don’t think Gmail users think their accounts can/should be locked up simply because they tell some rude idiot who is suggesting that a clearly non-spam blog is spam that, in fact, the non-spam blog is not spam. The point is, the mass lockout among at least 9 of about 15 critics is too stunning a percentage to be easily explained as coincidence — especially when coupled with nitecruzr’s rudeness and dishonesty, and his admission that he deleted comments . . . all of which make it that much more likely that he is the one behind the flagging of the accounts.

    This still boils down to one moderator abusing privileges he should not have had. That said, it is a moderator who was given those privileges BY GOOGLE, at a place where GOOGLE TELLS PEOPLE TO GO WHEN THEY “WRITE US” — and thus this is a Google issue and not a mere “dude on the Internet being rude” issue.

    But then, I have said all these things repeatedly already. So why would you pay attention to what I am saying now when you so blithely and consistently ignored it before?
    Patterico´s last blog post ..Mediscaring Reaches Ridiculous Depths

  9. Patterico Says:

    “And don’t forget, not only Nitecruzr but every other TC would be in on the conspiracy, as all would have to keep secret the fact that they hold these awful powers Google publicly maintains they do not have. I’m sure it’s no different than joining Fight Club, where the first rule is do not talk about Fight Club.”

    Every time a spokesperson for my office publicly says something I know is inaccurate, I always rush out and tell the press, as does every person in my office. If we don’t, then that would be a conspiracy of 1000 lawyers to remain silent about the company spokesperson’s inaccuracy.

    Or, it would just be 1000 lawyers with no particular upside in correcting the corporate spokesperson publicly, and plenty of downside.

    Not that this is a real life example, of course. If there were a real life example of our spokesperson getting something wrong — and I assure you I know of no such thing! — I wouldn’t be using this example as a hypo.
    Patterico´s last blog post ..Mediscaring Reaches Ridiculous Depths

  10. McGehee Says:

    Patterico and Charles Johnson have got to be drinking the same water.

  11. Steel Turman Says:

    Paging Dan Reihl, Dan Reihl to the white courtesy telephone, please.

    Patterico can’t help himself …

    … he likes to stir up shit.

    Blog wars is what drives his traffic.

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