Sunday, June 13, 2010

Justin Bieber syphilis: anatomy of an Internet smear campaign

Justin Biber victim of smear campaign
First, singer Justin Bieber does not have syphilis. Bieber is the unfortunate victim of an Internet smear campaign that started with an ugly Facebook page created a month ago, and where the creator wrote they hoped Justin Bieber died of syphilis.

Why? Apparently, the maker of the Facebook page had nothing better to do and believed it was funny. It's not funny at all; to harass Bieber in this way is against the law.   Because Bieber's a public figure, more liberties can be taken than with a normal person; Bieber has to prove intent to commit malice, let alone find the person who did it. That's the price of fame.

Second, the ugly smear engineers apparently used a February blog post with the title "Justin Bieber's Sweet 16 -- Possible Risk of Death" as the basis for "evidence" of the claim. Then the Facebook page surfaced stating the awful wish, and then a Twitter hashtag was created on Sunday that was simply #syphilis, and that became a trending topic on Twitter.

From that, a flurry of blog posts surfaced, some reporting Bieber had it, most others not, and still other bloggers asking if the rumor was true. It's not and it's sick.

Media observers will point to the need for better news verification, but the blogsphere did its job in evaluating and then rejecting the information. Remember, this is a complicated set of developments that has no obvious single person at fault. Assigning blame is hard to do, but Justin's fans are in the process of doing it.

Does Justin Bieber have a defamation of character case?  Yes.  It's obvious the people who did this intended to harm him.  But because the Facebook page does not state Bieber has syphilis, rather says that they wish he got it, the maker of the page can't be successfully prosecuted for defamation.  

In the end, Justin Bieber's best and least expensive course is to let his legion of fans protect him, and let the whole deal blow over.   There are people who aren't happy unless they make someone they perceive as "more important" than they are unhappy.  Why this is, I do not know, but the growth of the Internet has given rise to the work of this kind of sick person.

True Blood Season 3 opener winner by Suzannah B. Troy

I just watched the season opener and it's a winner. I can't wait for next week to find out what happens. As usual the acting is super but as usual I can't stand the gore.

Of course there was a lot of nudity and no big surprises except the additions of werewolves,  an ever expanding cast of excellent actors and an improved story line.  The story telling has regained some humor which made the season opener  so much more fun.

A note on the nudity.  It seems like the returning cast knew they were going to spend a lot of time naked and devoted the off season to working out and dieting.   I regretted not working out today and eating all those chips and salsa before watching this new installment.  Why do I want to go eat more chips and salsa now?

Brian Buckner wrote this episode and Daniel Minahan directed.

Here is the HBO link with expanded site catering to the huge fan base.

I really could not handle the last few episodes of last season, mostly closing my eyes but wanting to find out how the season would end.

One of my favorite characters is the teenage vampire played by Deborah Ann Woll.  Being an a teenager for eternity is a true nightmare.   By the way Deborah, a red hair beauty is a New Yorker!

HBO even has a live conversation fans can join in right now....enjoy!

By the way for "Eric" fans, The New York Post has a piece on  Swedish Alex Skarsgard and his famous acting family.   I instantly adored his Dad the first time I ever saw him in a father, like son.   He has some gorgeous brothers in the entertainment business as well.

Alan Ball continues to work his magic while addressing complex and politically issues he infuses in to the story line.

Season three  is going to be an exciting.  I hope not so gory although I hear otherwise and I hope some more humor and sweetness...

Angry, Violent, SF Luxor Cab Driver update

As readers of this space will recall, last week, Tuesday night, this video-blogger, after riding BART (San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit) to Embarcadero Station, encountered a cab driver who seemed quite upset that he got an African American passenger and not a white passenger.

When the cab driver realized I was the person who yelled "Hey taxi," after I got into the Luxor Cab #1046, CA License # 8L46060, the cab driver said "no it was the other guy." I said there was no other person who wanted a cab, and the person the cab driver pointed to wasn't the least interested in getting a cab; the White Guy in A Suit was texting on his iPhone.

Agitated, I said "I think you're just upset that it turned out to be this Black Guy and not that White Guy," to which, after turning on to Spear Street from Market Street, the cab driver said "Get out of the car." I activated my video camera; this is what happened:

As you can see, the cab driver committed an assault. Later in the week, I filed a complaint with the San Francisco Taxi Commission. My frank desire is to see that the cab driver is not allowed behind the wheel again. But what I did notice in the process of filing the complaint are two things, one bad and one good.

The bad is that if one does a search in Google, for " San Francisco Taxi Commission" the result that appears first has a "non-working" phone number, (415) 553-1447, according to the recording, which does not provide the new number. You have to do more searching to learn that the Taxi Commission is now a part of the San Francisco Transportation Authority.

The good news is once you do get the right number, 415-553-1115, the person who answers and takes your report is very patient and helpful. But again, the phone number is not one that's listed online; I found it completely by accident.

At first, I called 415-553-0123 at the San Francisco Police Department which is how I was directed to call 415-553-1115. The recording reports that the number belongs to Sgt. Charles Mahoney of The San Francisco Permits and Taxi Section, but on the weekdays, the number takes you to a person who can take your complaint.

Got that?

So the San Francisco Taxi Commission needs to change the webpage with the wrong number on it, and put the right number in its place.

The other small complaint I have is with YouTube account holder RatedR7180, who wrote: act like a little bitch. i live in SF. my fist will introduce itself to your face once you start rolling that video. face it. you're a cry baby.

When I first saw the comment I thought he was saying he wanted to hit me. So, I visited his YouTube channel but there was no real name or photo. People like that don't think and can be a menace to society; if I were to have hit the cab driver, then I would have been at fault as well. I have neither the desire or time to get into meaningless fights with psychotics; I'd rather have the guy arrested.

Fortunately the vast majority of people who bothered to comment or send an email seem mentally stable. People like RatedR7180 seem to forget that if the authorities wanted to find them, they could. Just ask the guy who threatened House Speaker Pelosi.

NYC round-up Albany to NYPD tickets by Suzannah B. Troy

Dear Blog Readers:

There is so much I have to report from New York City today.  I am so tired so please keep that in mind!

My YouTubes and blogging are my art.  Soho Journal picked up my YouTube questioning if Albany will actually have a historic shut-down and questioning if NYC will be thrown in to an official economic depression?

I have an amazing interview with a city council member, Dan Halloran that took over for Tony Avella when he completed his two terms on how NYC would be effected if Albany does not balance there 9.1 billion dollar budget crisis.

Today I posted two new YouTubes on Whole Earth Bakery and Kitchen which is part of an on going YouTube documentary I have been making about this Vegetarian health food store that existed way before the mega-store chain Whole Foods.  Whole Foods has two stores now in the Village and I had contacted them to please help Peter after his Mom died by literally taking the little store in to their new big store on Houston street, like Noah took 2 of each animal since our small businesses were sinking faster than the Titanic.  Needless to say, Whole Foods said no.

In the first YouTube we show talk about Mihoko Hakata, an deeply caring person devoted to research and work regarding a sustainable community where the community can define and cultivate what is important to the community.

She and her friends are working with people at Harvard University and I show you part of a letter that she submitted to a professor.  Also very moving is the art work she made so long ago of Peter and his Mom, Filomenia Silvestri who died at age 94 knowing her business she started with her son in 1978 would not be evicted and the community fought and won a small battle for this much loved Mother and Son small business dedicated to Mother Earth.

In the next YouTube You will see a community activist named Paul who tells us yet again how he help Peter fight eviction raising 800 dollars Peter so desperately needed.  This YouTube is short and superb and I mention the devastating long effects of the horrific oil spill in contrast to deed's like Paul's which I believe have long range positive effects.

Lastly I interview Karen who is part of another YouTube documentaries series of mine.  She has a table with flea market items and she worked outside of Love Saves the Day until they were forced to close.

In this YouTube she talks about the NYPD traffic division being out of control and apparently this is a hot topic with New Yorkers.

What do all of the above topics have  in common?

They are all about the people of New York being screwed for a lack of a better word.

No wonder Mike Bloomberg and the city hand out free condoms that say NYC on them!

World Cup Soccer 2010: Ghana beats Serbia; Germany clobbers Australia

Thomas Muller of Germany
Ghana's victory over Serbia 1-0 in World Cup Soccer play and on a penalty kick has signaled Africa's growth as a Soccer power.

Ghana's Black Star Team was the talk of World Cup Soccer until Germany opened Group D play with what can only be called sheer, utter, and total destruction of Australia 4-0.

But before we look at Germany's awesome display of powerful athletic dominance, we have to look back at Ghana's win over Serbia.

Ghana's win had observers talking about how South Africa was the perfect choice to showcase Africa's rise in The World Cup. With South Africa's tie with Mexico on Saturday and Ghana's win, Africa has just one loss (Algeria to Slovenia and that was just 1-0) among the six African teams in The World Cup as of this writing. Moreover, there are 53 teams in Africa, so the six in the World Cup have emerged from a very large and competitive field. Indeed, Ghana's play and South Africa's surprising win damaged bracket predictions, and created a wide open race.

Until Germany beat Australia.

It wasn't just that Germany beat Australia, Germany took Australia apart for the World to see. Germany's win was so complete, a FIFA poll reported that 86 percent picked Germany to win it all.

This space thinks it's too early to crown Germany the winner of The World Cup. There are a lot of matches left and we're just getting started. The star: Thomas Muller. This blogger is a casual fan of Soccer, but I don't have to be a rocket scientist to tell who the dominant player was: Thomas Muller.

Muller was a man playing with boys who could not keep the ball away from him or get it from him. It was, at points, silly. Muller scored a goal and made the assist on another, in addition to his between goals play.

Germany's Thomas Muller's the one to watch in the World Cup. But, again, there's a lot of match play to go.

Stay tuned.

Nikky Raney: Expectations for the week

I would like to at the start of every week post a list of what is in store for this week's blog entries for It gives people something to look forward to.

Nikky Raney for 6/13 - 6/20

-I will be meeting with the band Till We Die (close friends, I designed their soon to be EP cover), and I will record this interview with my Macbook Pro's built in web cam. So I will be reporting and posting interviews, etc. on this band. This band is going to make it big, and they already have made it so far. So, be excited for the "EXCLUSIVE" footage of my interview with Till We Die.

- My take on the way Tila writes her blog entries (humorous).

- Comparing specific magazines to one another, regarding their credibility & audience.

- Humorous Tila Tequila videos & hopefully an interview with the folks at Tila's Rot Spot.

-Sex Tapes. I just want to blog about my view on celebrity sex tapes.

- Maybe a movie review on "Get Him To The Greek," because I liked that movie.

-Another Tila video. I would like you to read HERE my disclaimer on the reason why I am posting about Tila in the first place. I posted the following on The Future of Journalism regarding my coverage of the "MOGUL" :

"Tila Tequila divulgence and revelations will be reported on I am working with Tila Rot Spot & people who know her personally. I am not trying to do sensationalist blogging or some strange investigative reporting piece. What I am trying to do is take all the pieces of the puzzle - what she has stated (proof from her blog posts, videos, tweets), and the proof from other publications, interviews, videos, posts. I will make sure that there is credibility behind every interview that I do and every potentially defamatory statement will be backed up with a credible source - I say this in regards to what the interviewees may say about her. I am not trying to attack her in any way, but I think the lies she has told and the way she presents herself as a role model for teenagers is unacceptable. The reason she gets away with all the lies is because the big news outlets do not have a reason to cover her, and if I worked for CNN, Newsweek, etc. I definitely wouldn't pay any time writing about her. Hell, I don't even think Fox would. But I am going to spend the time to go back down memory lane and show every claim she has made, and see the flaws and cracks within the stories. The claims made previously that have been proven lies. And I think that once and for all there needs to be all of her lies exposed and everything put on the table. I want to show it in a way that there is no way Miss Tila can argue or try to defend herself, because I will purely use facts. All of that will be done with Zennie. This blog is strictly Journalism related."

My very close friend Josh Grattan will begin reporting and blogging for I am hoping that we will do some collaborative work, but he will also be blogging on his own. I think his blog posts will focus on music (Eminem), movies (The Karate Kid), and Poker (online vs. live). Grattan will also be featured in many of my upcoming videos.

That's all I have for now. It's my mom's birthday so don't expect anything too soon.

Nikky Raney
E-mail me:

Megan Fox, please keep your mouth open and talking

Superstar actress Megan Fox interviewed for Interview Magazine said "I do feel like, if anything, I've sort of made it worse...So I have sort of aided the media in printing these misconceptions, which I regret. I've just come to the realization at this point that if I don't feel like sharing, then I'm just not going to share." Megan Fox, that's a mistake; take a page from the Rush Limbaugh broadcasting book and be yourself.

This space doesn't agree with a lot of what Rush says, but the reason he pulls down a near-half-billion contract from Clear Channel is that he's outspoken. People will respond to you and respect you if they know you're being genuine. Plus, it's good media and it's good for you. By being yourself, you empower a number of young women to be more confident. Take the way you stood up to Michael Bey when you said that Transformers was a special effects movie:

Michael Bey said you had a lot of growing up to do, but I think being direct and not nasty in the process shows that you have grown up. Don't worry about Bey.

What was even better was your Rolling Stones Interview, where you let it all hang out about men, sex, and it seemed everything else. Hey, you made a lot of money for media people like those at The Rolling Stones, and this video-blogger. Don't stop now! This video was fun for me to do:

Megan Fox, most men are scared of powerful vaginas. Most of the people who've interviewed you are male. You sound like you're caving in to their view. Please. Don't give in to them.

World Cup Soccer England v. USA; Dress for Success SF a success

A blog round up of observations on World Cup Soccer England v. USA , World Cup Soccer Mexico and South Africa, and Dress for Success San Francisco, after two days of much needed rest for this over-stressed video-blogger.

As a note, this space on has drawn 7.7 million visitors since November of 2009. The greatest number of visitors was 2.2 million in December of 2009, thanks to the Tiger Woods Scandal.

It's the greatest proof yet that my combination of trend blogging and writing with respect to search specifications rather than journalistic style works to gain quality, engaged traffic to a news site. I believe if my way were the standard approach for the entire website, the San Francisco Chronicle could overtake the New York Times and The Huffington Post in unique visitor traffic.

Moreover, I've determined it's totally impossible to change search specs to fit classic the journalist writing style without wrecking search efficiency. So, don't wish for a change that will never come. What's cool is that I'm continuously refining the approach and can do even better, if I want to. Now, back to the topics.

World Cup Soccer England v. USA

In the best display yet of Soccer's popularity in America, 20,000 people went to San Francisco's AT&T Park to see World Cup Soccer England v. USA. In a contest that it seemed England could run away with, the USA played timely defense, and managed to tie England. The last America score was a dramatic near-stop that the English goalie managed to let get away from him, sending the stadium crowd into a frenzy. Video on Sunday.

World Cup Soccer Mexico and South Africa

The World Cup Soccer match between Mexico and South Africa ended in a shocking draw, 1-1, sending cheers and yelps around South Africa. South Africa was not expected to play well, even as the home team. Perhaps many underestimated South Africa's desire to repeat Invictus before an even larger World stage?

Dress for Success, a success

Thursday, Dress for Success held it's annual fashion show and auction at The San Francisco City Club and to raise money for an organization with a hell-of-a great cause: helping women who are trying to get back on their feet by providing them with clothes for work.

It was an excellent, exciting, and tear-jerking event attended by about 300 people. Seeing the women and cute kids modeling clothes just brought the house down. The Board of Directors of Dress for Success and Event producers Andrew Freeman and Executive Director Renee Surcouf, really did a great job Thursday.

More later; I'm back in action after a break.