Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Jonathan Coulton a rip-off artist?


I'm curious about this. Anyone have anymore information?

Listening to the Code Monkey mp3 is pretty incriminating. I fancy myself a google ninja and I could find nothing about this site or the guy mentioned. I'm going to start searching for some of his songs next.

EDIT: So Erine Wade is/was from Moosup, CT according to the link. Coulton hails from Colchester, CT. Moosup is a village in Plainfield, CT.

Here's a mapping courtesy of Google:

35 miles. Don't know CT that well so I'm not sure how often someone would make that drive.

This Ernie Wade guy was 7 years older than Coulton.

Anyway, the whole thing could be a hoax. I c.b.a do to any more research than that and I don't have anymore source material since the original link was a tweet.

EDIT2: Site exceeded bandwidth so no way to verify email link. Agreeing with @danco that it's a hoax. *puts tinfoil hat back on the shelf*


Anonymous said...

It's obviously a hoax. The email link doesn't even go anywhere.

lusis said...

Fair enough on that aspect. I wasn't interested enough in it to go beyond what little bit I did. Certainly not enough to send someone an email ;)

Side note. Looks like poor Ernie won't be remembered as he's exceeded his bandwidth limitations ;)

Todd J. Eaton said...

So obviously fake and timely for April Fool's Day. I suspect that not only is JoCo behind this but many of his popular web-celeb pod/vidcasting fans are also in on the joke. I've heard so many "I can't believe he would steal.." comments from some of his biggest and most vocal supporters that there's no way they could possibly be real. It's pranking meets the Twitter era.

Nice try though.

blackfeathers said...


the site pages are dated fairly recently.

all the images on the site have a recent date -give or take, march 30, 2009.

the images were taken with a canon powershot sd750 -a fairly new camera.

the image of the garage sign looks photoshopped to me. the meta data shows it was taken by a polaroid i633 camera with a copyright of 2007 (fairly recent).

i found the image of the garage at hubersgarage.com as well.

i performed your standard whois. note the creation date:

Domain Name.......... hubersgarage.com
Creation Date........ 2009-03-01
Registration Date.... 2009-03-01
Expiry Date.......... 2010-03-01
Organisation Name.... Bruce Huber
Organisation Address. P O Box 99800
Organisation Address.
Organisation Address. EmeryVille
Organisation Address. 94662
Organisation Address. CA
Organisation Address. US

Admin Name........... PrivateRegContact Admin
Admin Address........ P O Box 99800
Admin Address........
Admin Address........ EmeryVille
Admin Address........ 94662
Admin Address........ CA
Admin Address........ US
Admin Email.......... contact@myprivateregistration.com
Admin Phone.......... +1.5105952002
Admin Fax............

Tech Name............ PrivateRegContact TECH
Tech Address......... P O Box 99800
Tech Address.........
Tech Address......... EmeryVille
Tech Address......... 94662
Tech Address......... CA
Tech Address......... US
Tech Email........... contact@myprivateregistration.com
Tech Phone........... +1.5105952002
Tech Fax.............
Name Server.......... yns1.yahoo.com
Name Server.......... yns2.yahoo.com

and the website has the following contact info:
517 North Main St., Moosup, CT 06354 (860) 564-8340
i won't call the number but since it's publicly listed, anyone can ask some details -like if they know someone named rob or ernie wade.

the mp3 was encoded in lame 3.97.

all the binaries hint at being created recently.

anyone know the years tdk made d60 and d90 cassette tapes?

this all looks very arg-ish to me.

John said...

If you look at the picture of the tapes, you can see a song called ‘moons go round’. Pluto and Charon are the only known planets or dwarf planets that orbit one another. Thus Coulton’s song, “I am your Moon”. Coulton’s song was created because of Pluto’s declassification in 2006. Thus Mr. Wade could not have created this song in 1997. So this is a fake.

lusis said...

@blackfeathers - I actually thought about checking the EXIF data on the photos when I was feeding my son tonight.

@John Good catch on the song title w.r.t Pluto.

blackfeathers said...

yes, same here. the site being down is why not much ground was covered.

lastly, i forgot to mention previously that ernie wade's rocketmail email's signup date is march 2009. since it's his cousin, it still would it make sense to use your dead cousin's name for your email username?

lusis said...

Well the dates on account and page creations actually fit with the tone of the page. The guy mentions getting help setting up a "sight" to host the information. If someone were computer illiterate and asking me for advise, I'd go the same route. Rocketmail wouldn't have been my first choice though.

As to picking the name, again the tone is that he was really close to his "cousin" so I could see it. I have family members who use email addresses named after the first grandkid. My aunt uses "nealsnana@whatever" because he grandma name is "nana" and the first grandkid was "neal".

But the EXIF data is the most incriminating. I'm solidly in the hoax/early April Fools camp at this point but the more interesting part is the detective work people did.

blackfeathers said...

this is the church:


there is contact info on that page. the whois dates back to 2004.

i am unfamiliar with the area but satellite imagery doesn't show a cemetery:

David said...


JoCo himself plugged this on his blog this morning. If this was some real issue, I cannot imagine he would even mention it the day it comes out.

And besides, it's April friggin' 1st, and this is Google. I'd gladly put down money this is a great big geek in-joke, especially if his web-kin are playing along (knowingly or not).

If we're lucky, we'll get yet another wonderful JoCo song out of this...!

blackfeathers said...

yes we know it's an april fools.

we're showing the level & depth of the effort put into the hoax.

ernie wade's voice sounds like jonathan coulton singing badly on purpose. perhaps that's the new song for today? lol