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Posts Tagged ‘Internet hoax’

Here in the mysterious offices of The Curmudgeon, we have investigated many a murder and suspicious death, though seldom do we have photographic evidence of the crime.  But that’s just what Google’s Street View got when photographing a street in Britain.  The picture was posted on the Internet as part of the service and raised some eyebrows…and the dead. Seems the image was of ten-year-old Azura Beebeejaun who was ‘playing dead’ outside her home in Middle Road, Worcester.

Unaware that it was a game of Possum, locals became so concerned over the image that they called the Internet firm and the local newspaper.  The picture had actually been taken the previous summer.  The girl said, “I didn’t know anything about the Google Street View car (recording me). I fell over while I was playing with my friend and thought it would be funny to play dead.”  Well, it is funny Azura, wish I had done it myself.

The Google Street View service offers 360-degree views of streets, allowing users to see the actual streets in a neighborhood.  Google uses cars fitted with panoramic camera’s on their roofs to capture the images.  I always wondered how they did it.  I thought it was camera toting leprechauns, but no such luck.  If it were, we’d get some mighty interesting pictures.  Leprechauns are kind of cheeky, you know.  You might get a little Peeping Tom action, or in this case, Google Oogling.

A youth worker acquainted with Azura said, “I just wish she was that quiet all the time.” A Google spokesoogler said, “This is why we have put in place tools so that if people see what they believe to be inappropriate, they can report them to us using the simple reporting tool and the images will be quickly removed or further blurring applied.”

It’s not the first controversy Google has encountered over the service.  Last year British users complained about invasion of privacy, forcing Google to remove hundreds of photographs.  Germany launched an inquiry into whether Google had their special “oogle view” cars adapted to also map internet connections in homes around the world to help it sell adverts, using the signals which spill from inside homes on to the street.   This information lets Google send mobile phone users adverts for
nearby restaurants, shops and other services through its Google Maps application, collecting a fee every time a user clicks on an advert.

As a result of that inquiry, Australia, South Korea, France, Germany, Canada and America launched investigations after Street View cars collected private data sent from the unprotected home wi-fi
connections.    Ooooo, Google, you’re such naughty, naughty boys!  I had no idea you would resort to such sneaky business!

I’ve filed my own lawsuit…for not initiating Leprechaunic Oogle View.

(Some information for the story came from The Daily Mail, United Kingdom.)

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The Accidental Tourist.  The photo that started it all.

The Accidental Tourist. The photo that started it all.

Here in the animated but not photoshopped offices of Curmudgeon, I have been checking up on past and current Internet memes.  For those that don’t know, a meme (pronounced meem) is something – a saying, an image, a recording, whatever – that catches people’s fancy and spreads like a virus, in this case on the Internet, which is what makes it an Internet meme.

At the Concorde crash.

At the Concorde crash.

So I came across the info that The 911 Tourist Guy’s real name is now known to the masses.  I’m not sure where I was when this information came out.  It was probably when I was living in a beach house on the native side of Freeport, Bahamas, fishing from my boat and drinking at the Conch Cafe, right on the ocean, no walls, wicker ceiling fans, the works, a place Hemingway would have loved.  Anyway, the start of  The Tourist Guy meme was that picture you see right up top, a man, supposedly a tourist, snapped atop the World Trade Center seconds before the plane hit.

It was sent around by email with this touching note:

“Fw: Different Perspective on the New York Tragedy

At the Hindenberg

At the Hindenberg

Attached is a picture that was taken of a tourist atop the World Trade Center Tower, the first to be struck by a terrorist attack. This camera was found but the subject in the picture had not yet been located.

Makes you see things from a very different position. Please share this and find any way you can to help Americans not to be victims in the future of such cowardly attacks.”

Almost immediately, Snopes pronounced the whole thing an Internet hoax while the Internet pronounced it funny.  So the clones began, many of which are posted here and some of which are actually funny and clever.

It has long been our way – us humans that is, I can’t speak for you – to cope with tragedy by making  jokes, and these are no different.  People need to laugh after something like that.  Laughter is a great medicine.  Laughter cures hurt.

At the Titanic.

At the Titanic.

It wasn’t long before the first poseur stepped forward.  He had no evidence.  Couldn’t produce the original photo.  He was pronounced a fraud by whoever pronounces these people frauds.  Soon after, another man was fingered by his friends, and he had the evidence.  He was a  Hungarian named Peter (last name withheld.)   He didn’t want people to misunderstand him, he said.  Didn’t  know it would become so popular, he said.   Didn’t know he would obtain Internet infamy, he said.

At last it can be told:  His name is Peter Guzli, a 25 year old guy living in Hungary, still trying to cope with his unexpected fame.  How’s that infamy thing going for you, Peter?

Next time, I’m going to write about the disgusting meme, Two Girls and a Cup.  YOU DON’T WANT TO READ IT!

At Godzilla's rampage.

At Godzilla's rampage.

At the assassination of John. F. Kennedy.

At the assassination of John. F. Kennedy.

At the blowing up of the White House - Independence Day.

At the blowing up of the White House - Independence Day.

At the assassination of Lincoln.

At the assassination of Lincoln.

At the eruption of Mount St. Helens

At the eruption of Mount St. Helens

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