Posts by Russell Brown

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  • Hard News: RNC 2016: A literal shitshow, in reply to nzlemming,

    It’s useful but not omniscient. Also, many sites put up a robot.txt file prohibiting it crawling them.

    Not the site in question though, which has been crawled for 14 years. The now-deleted McIver profile is the only one I could find which has been archived only once, yesterday. Would a spike in general searches for her name prompt the Wayback machine to crawl a page on the site it had previously ignored? I'm puzzled about why it would ignore her profile given the many mentions of her name in relation to Trump's books.

    I guess another explanation is that both the Facebook page and the speaker profile were created by fast-moving trolls. Which doesn't explain why the Facebook page seems to have been created before the explanation was published.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: RNC 2016: A literal shitshow, in reply to Graeme Edgeler,

    Are you suggesting that Trump does his own writing, or that someone other than Meredith McIver is his ghost writer?

    I don't know!

    But the Trump campaign's explanation was dubious (and contradicts the explanation given by multiple campaign sources to the New York Times) and the other stuff is odd too.

    I guess I'm applying Trump's Razor as defined by Josh Marshall: choose the most absurd explanation consistent with known facts.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: RNC 2016: A literal shitshow, in reply to Dylan Reeve,

    Nope that’s the archive’s date (see, it’s in the archive.org page URL too).

    Yes, someone answered that question for me on twitter. Was just about to update.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: RNC 2016: A literal shitshow,

    The top of the bio on the now-deleted speaker profile both suggests it’s been there since the first season of The Apprentice and sounds a lot like the whole John Miller thing:

    Meredith McIver is a close associate to the world famous real estate titan and recent TV Impresario Donald Trump.

    Ms. McIver co-authored the best-selling book, “Trump: How to Get Rich,” which reveals the secrets of his success. Over the years, everyone has urged Trump to write on this subject, but it wasn’t until NBC and executive producer Mark Burnett asked him to star in “The Apprentice” that he realized just how hungry people are to learn how great personal wealth is created and first-class businesses are run. Thousands applied to be Trump’s apprentice, and millions have been watching the program, making it the highest rated debut of the season.

    https://web.archive.org/web/20160720191823/https://www.allamericanspeakers.com/celebritytalentbios/Meredith+McIver

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: RNC 2016: A literal shitshow,

    Update: The Meredith McIver bio has now disappeared from the All American Speakers website.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: RNC 2016: A literal shitshow, in reply to Dylan Reeve,

    So if the Meredith McIver page was linked from news sites recently, then that might be why the Wayback machine has only just noticed it.

    I did wonder about that. But All American Speakers itself has been crawled by the Wayback Machine for the past 14 years and I can't find another speaker (I concentrated on the lowest-fee ones, figuring they'd be the most obscure) who has only been clocked once, yesterday.

    With the Simon and Schuster thing, sure, there's no doubt her name has been credited on the books going way back.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: RNC 2016: A literal shitshow,

    Okay … I thought I was going to get some work done today, but maybe not.

    As you may have heard on the news, the Trump campaign, having denied there was any plagiarism in Melania’s speech at all, has now found someone to dive under the bus: Trump ghostwriter Meredith McIver.

    Now, there is a Meredith McIver listed as an author on the site of Trump’s publisher as far back as 2007.

    But almost everything else about Meredith McIver on the internet has appeared in the past 24 hours. Her Facebook page, for example.

    And the All American Speakers bio page which is the almost exclusive source of detail in current news reports has been crawled once by the Internet Archive: on July 20, 2016.

    There is actually a precedent for such a thing. Trump finally admitted in May that he had been posing as his own spokespeople “John Miller” and “John Barron” as far back as the 1990s.

    There is a mention in this 2007 Guardian story in which the journalist Gaby Wood seems to have set eyes on someone called Meredith McIver. A couple of newspapers now say she’s a registered Democrat who lives on the Upper West Side.

    But if she does exist, why on earth, in the midst of a convention crisis, would she have been busying herself creating a new Facebook page and bios for her speaking services?

    It gets even more screwed-up, because if McIver exists, she’s mentioned nowhere in disclosures and the Trump campaign would thus seem to have broken campaign finance laws.

    Update: The Meredith McIver bio has now disappeared from the All American Speakers website.

    Update 2: The Facebook page was created six hours ago, about the same time the Trump campaign statement was released. Quick fake, imo. I think McIver exists, but that the explanation over how the plagiarism happened is full of holes.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: RNC 2016: A literal shitshow, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    who’s the live band there? – sounds like The Commodores!

    You should've heard them yesterday – they played David Bowie's 'Station to Station'. No, really, they did.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: RNC 2016: A literal shitshow, in reply to DeepRed,

    How long before they start blaming disgruntled migrants for conspiring to poison them?

    Logic would dictate that this has already happened.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Obama's Mana, in reply to Joe Boden,

    Just had an extended Twitter discussion with a local Berniebro who is convinced that the reason local rabbit-cullers are having trouble sourcing ammunition from the US is that it's being stockpiled in advance of Hillary's war plan.

    There have been US ammunition shortages on and off since 2008, but they're nothing to do with military procurement – it's domestic demand from Americans. Which has not, of course, prevented the flourishing of conspiracy theories about the DHS buying up all the bullets, etc, etc.

    It's remarkable how many of the Bernie-left's Hillary memes are only lightly adapted versions of long-running right-wing conspiracy theories.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 21207 posts Report Reply

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