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Just who is Dean Stark?
March 13, 2002 9:20 PM   Subscribe

Just who is Dean Stark? A legend of usenet? Some kind of monster? Or perhaps the victim of a huge conspiracy? The answer may shock you...
posted by Settle (25 comments total)

 
or I could care less.
posted by eyeballkid at 9:27 PM on March 13, 2002


I don't get it. Please 'splain. Thank you.
posted by ColdChef at 9:28 PM on March 13, 2002


It isn't that interesting. There is a long dramatic story behind this...humiliation. Basically a bunch of geek types in the mid nineties decided they all hated this one guy...and long story short, a long, dramatic battle ensued. It is amazing to note the lengths bored geeks will go to for the sake of humiliation. Also amazing to note that they were in their 20s or 30s and were working for Apple/Netscape.

The full FAQ is here, if you're really interested...which you oughtn't be:
http://groups.google.com/groups?q=kim+bach+harrison+page+tristan&hl=en&ie=ISO-8859-1&oe=ISO-8859-1&selm=199910101903.MAA19300%40sirius.infonex.com&rnum=4
posted by Settle at 9:33 PM on March 13, 2002


if you're really interested...which you oughtn't be:

Fantastic material for a Front Page MetaFilter post!!!!
posted by eyeballkid at 9:38 PM on March 13, 2002


I suppose it's kind of funny to see a simple joke taken to a ridiculous extreme (a la AYBABTU). It seems to be the way geeks ARE. Humour through excess. Ah well, Usenet is an interesting cultural phenomenon.
posted by Succa at 9:40 PM on March 13, 2002


The disturbing bit is that this is _hateful_...the AYBABTU (the resonance and horror of which are diffused by acyronym) phenomena was just confusing and catchy.
posted by Settle at 9:43 PM on March 13, 2002


yeah, it really sucked and i had to change my name. thanks a lot for bringing back the memories. *runs off crying*
posted by Dean King at 9:45 PM on March 13, 2002


There's a much better explanation from Dean Stark himself. I can't help but feel bad for the poor guy.

(And for what it's worth, I think this IS a good front page post and would be even better if folks like Eyeballkid wouldn't ridicule the poster and would instead take it to MetaTalk.)
posted by waxpancake at 10:00 PM on March 13, 2002


AYBABTU?
forgive my ignorance, but help me out here.
posted by milkman at 10:04 PM on March 13, 2002


oh god...it stands for..
*ll y**r b*s* *r* b*l*ng t* *s...all your...base..you know the rest.
posted by Settle at 10:08 PM on March 13, 2002


Which reminds me, this affair had a disturbing techno soundtrack as well!

http://www.alcyone.com/pants/MUSIC/

This is pretty amazing and quite disturbing. Stark gets harrassed via his answering machine. Stark uploads clips of this to back up his case on usenet. Guilty party dls them and remixes them. Quite sinister.
posted by Settle at 10:17 PM on March 13, 2002


waxy: Why? It was an obscure reference to an obscure Usenet poster. So far, half the posts on this thread are pretty much "what the hell" type posts. Why take it to MeTa?
posted by eyeballkid at 10:39 PM on March 13, 2002


{not to mention the fact that the original link has no supporting explanation. it's a google group search for fuck's sake}
posted by eyeballkid at 10:41 PM on March 13, 2002


WHAT!!!?!?!?!? CATS?!?!?! FUCK!!! He sut ep us the abomb. All your base is belingi to us. Quick, cat set up us the bomb, launch the fucking zig, this is bad news Charlie!!! Welcome gentleman, your word is my command, if you say something, like for instance "All your base belong to you", then, shit matey! you've got it made, and it belong to me.

From teh clavdivs + vulgarity cschool of life
posted by EngineBeak at 10:52 PM on March 13, 2002


escuse. "Claudius" I m mistaking in the roman aplapbedt. Fuckshit, it's from the clavdivs + profanity + liquor, school of live (par nietzhsc) For Claudius (fukshit!) is abstaineter (In on line matters, of the least.) & I think kt this frec is a wash, though I didn't look any link. I am crashing now, overall. This does not count towards my total. Lcavdivs, man, sometimes you are out of it, never you're snide, but sometimes you're out of it, sometimes in with dite
posted by EngineBeak at 10:55 PM on March 13, 2002


Settle: A worthy post, but is posting something so USENET-geekish to MetaFilter a good idea? It's like mentioning IRC on a Yahoo chatroom, hardly anyone will know what you're on about.

Besides, I'm not so sure on the real theory. Dean Stark claims he had a girlfriend, and that that girlfriend got her new boyfriend to carry out the attacks. Er, geeks with girlfriends? I think not! Unless she was ugly. (Endearing reference to a recent Rosie O'Donnell thread.)
posted by wackybrit at 12:53 AM on March 14, 2002


all your base what? i don't get it. i just got my puter this week! pls. splain.
posted by billybob at 12:56 AM on March 14, 2002


Billybob - try this on your new puter. Oh and it's not pls. splain but Hope! Administrator! we say around here. Enjoy! ;)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 3:48 AM on March 14, 2002


Oh god looks like the next generation of computer users are already being exposed to the all your base virus.

Anyway this is my first thread, so cut me some slack. I had to do some *serious digging* for this link...it really is amazing what you can find in the usenet archives.
posted by Settle at 5:13 AM on March 14, 2002


oh no....i didn't fall off the cabbage truck yesterday. thanks settle, for the warning.
posted by billybob at 6:25 AM on March 14, 2002


AYBABTU....ok. so that was very funny.
But forgive my naivite here -- what's the big deal? Why is it any more significant than a million other funny Flash jokes?
Why can't we SPELL OUT WHAT IT MEANS?

Let's let the world be our judge:
What's more embarassing: me somehow not knowing about this, or all of your secretive geeky snarky beating around the bush?
posted by milkman at 6:42 AM on March 14, 2002


Hey billybob - there are no viruses on my link. It's an entertaining animation which explores the "AYBABTU" meme.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 6:51 AM on March 14, 2002


milkman: Why is it any more significant than a million other funny Flash jokes?

Factor X. There was no real reason for it to be so spectacularly successful and that is precisely why it was so well loved... up to a point. Here's a MeFi thread from when the meme was still relatively young. The massive overexposure that followed has largely succeeded (as you note) in turning the whole thing into the meme that dare not speak its name.
posted by MUD at 8:52 AM on March 14, 2002


Well put, MUD. All of this raises a question about Internet memes, and the fact that the term gained cultural traction during the rise of the Web: what if the whole phenomenon of the contentless meme (AYBABTU, Mahir, etc.) are fundamentally dependent on the newness of the medium -- I always thought that the appeal of AYBABTU was not merely its insideness, but the whole thrill of "spreading" this inside joke around the Web. (Note that while to many MeFites the Internet might seem plenty old as a concept by now, I still think of it as culturally "immature").

This is the kind of appeal that only comes with a medium that still feels new, experimental, and mysterious itself. It's like the business of sending people to that page with the what’s-wrong-with-this picture joke -- such things are funny now because of the unfamiliarity of the technology: on some level most of us don’t expect the picture to do anything but be a picture. How long will that last?

I wonder if the fad for jokes, pranks, and the sense of “cool” that comes with these circulating memes will come in time to be seen as specific to the age of the Internet’s infancy, the late 80s to the early Oughts. Once being “connected” via this medium is no more remarkable than watching television, perhaps the use of the medium’s circulatory properties will no longer seem so fascinating.
posted by BT at 11:15 AM on March 14, 2002


ok miguel....i must be more trusting. have to make that a new year resolution....thanks, billybob.
posted by billybob at 1:35 PM on March 14, 2002


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