July 20, 2006

An Army of Greenwalds


Sock-puppeting is the dishonest and unethical practice of posting on web sites and blogs under assumed identities, often to praise or defend yourself.

L.A.Times columnist Michael Hiltzik lost his blog over it, as this practice clearly violated the Times ethics guidelines.

Now liberal blogger Glenn Greenwald stands accused of posting under at least three four five different identities other than his own, using the aliases "Ellison," "Wilson," "Sam Matthews," "Ryan," and "Thomas Ellers" to either flatter or defend himself across a host of conservative political blogs.

All of these identities are apparently tracked back to the same unique IP address in Montevideo, Brazil, where the best selling author of How Would a Patriot Act? lives as an apparent expatriate, fraud, and master sock-puppeteer .

For the details:

Shawn at The Sky is Red can take credit for noting that something was fishy, while Patterico (the man who caught Hiltzik) and Ace of Spades bring the pain.

Update: Greenwald denies the charges, saying in part:

I have never left a single comment at any other blog using any name other than my own, at least not since I began blogging. IP addresses signify the Internet account one uses, not any one individual. Those in the same household have the same IP address.

It must be a very large house.

Update 2: It seems Greenwald's sycophants aren't real big fans of these allegations being revealed.

Instead they'd rather change the subject by attacking the messenger with false charges of pedophilia, and international sources, and even pictures!


Update 3: Greenwald, as evidenced in the quote above, seems to be trying to lay the groundwork for the claim that someone else in his house left the comments, with the obvious insinuation that this boyfriend did so. How loyal.

But "Birkel," posting in the comments at Ace of Spades, seems to torpedo that avenue of retreat as well:

According to Patterico one of the comments including the allegation that the poster/puppet had E-mailed Gleen for his point of view.

If you live in the same house why would you E-mail somebody for their opinion? Does that make any sense?

No it doesn't.

It would make perfect sense, however, for someone building sock puppet identities.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at July 20, 2006 09:49 AM | TrackBack

Incredible. Glenn Greewald....he has to have other fake identities to pat himself on the back. What a coward.

Posted by: Specter at July 20, 2006 10:01 AM

Is this yet another example of the "fake but accurate" phenomenon? :-}

Posted by: tcobb at July 20, 2006 10:59 AM

"If you live in the same house why would you E-mail somebody for their opinion? Does that make any sense?"

Maybe this was while Greenwald was in New York. Glenn says in his post that he spends half his time in each country. So it is possible (in fact one might say its a fifty fifty chance) that this was Glenn's boyfriend wile Greenwald was in NY.

Posted by: tom in texas at July 20, 2006 01:57 PM

Well...if that is the case then his bf has multiple personalities. LOL

Posted by: Specter at July 20, 2006 03:03 PM

Oh, Lord, I don't want to sound like a GiGi defender, but...

The 'inside the house' email nonsense is still logically consistent with the 'my significant other did it' defense.

Why? If you were truly a syncophant attempting to provide cover for your housemate you would not want to relate a communication as mere pillow talk, then you would be too easily dismissed. Instead you dress it up as an email conversation between two emotionally detached individuals.

Regardless, GiGi needs to come clean. If he wants to blame it all on someone else in the household he needs to be very specific. As in 'I spoke to so-and-so and he fessed up.' It still stinks to high heaven but this is the only way he would ever retain a shred of credibility.

Because even then it's pretty damn embarassing.

Posted by: ThomasD at July 20, 2006 07:06 PM

tom in texas, if Greenwald was in NY would his IP address still register Montevideo, Brazil?

Posted by: Old Soldier at July 20, 2006 07:30 PM


I repeat -- Greenwald wasn't in New York all the time. By his own admission he spends half his time in America. One easy way to determine whether or not this "Wilson" or whichever imaganary friend was talking to him or not would be to check those same IP addresses. Greenwald essentially is claiming he has two computers -- Brazil and New York. This can be verified. First, has he posted under two IP addresses? If he only has one, than surely he is lying about living in two places. If all the false names come from his Brazilian account, but his New York IP address only contains comments from Greenwald himself, than his explanation of a crazed undercover Brazilian boyfriend posting under pseudonyms would have gained some small shred of credibility.

Posted by: Tom in Texas at July 20, 2006 11:04 PM

Apologies -- the previous comment was directed at Soldier.

Posted by: Tom in Texas at July 20, 2006 11:05 PM


Why don't you go down to Brazil and check it out for us. Tell us how many men Glenn is living with. Maybe you'll want to stay.

It's obvious that this is sock puppeting. So we come to a new term:

GiGing: v. meaning to be a sock puppet or to make use of sock puppets to enhance your ego.

Posted by: Specter at July 21, 2006 09:33 AM