Exposing Richard Silverstein: The Day After

Wednesday evening Seattle time, DouchebloggerTM Richard Silverstein went to bed a content man, having just revealed my real name and identity to the world.*  

On Thursday morning Seattle time, DouchebloggerTM Richard Silverstein woke up, perhaps brushed his teeth, and learned after going online that he was a laughing stock. The blogger, who is regularly cited by mainstream publications as a source of secret information about Israel, had been taken in by a couple of mails from an “anonymous source”, an obviously fake Facebook profile, and his desire to do me harm.

The question for him was how to respond. Taking down his post would remove the evidence of his shoddy fact-checking, leaving an indelible stain on his credibility, but at the same time would vindicate my stated belief that this would be his likely course of action. Besides, the post had already been spread far and wide.

No, he could not do that.

Instead, Silverstein tried to turn this around and make this all about me using a fake Facebook account!

http://www.richardsilverstein.com/tikun_olam/2011/12/29/the-sad-case-of-aussie-dave/

Yesterday, I reported in a post that I believed I had exposed the real identity of Aussie Dave, author of the Israellycool blog.  It appears that he invented a fake identity in order to perpetrate a hoax on me.  It boggles the mind that he went to the immense amount of trouble he did to perpetrate this hoax.  It tells you how much free time he has on his hands to engage in all the subterfuge that was necessary to fool me.  It tells you precious little about me, but quite a lot about him.

Dave thinks he’s a genius because I fooled me.  What he doesn’t realize is that in his blog post, he proudly admits that he created a hoax Facebook account for a non-existent person using the photo of a real person, a clear violation of Facebook rules.  Here’s how he bragged about it:

David Loeb is a fake name. The photo in the Facebook profile I set up is of basketballer Jordan Farmar…I used his photo deliberately…

I included in the profile my supposed address (Beit Shemesh)…as well as the URL of this blog to connect David Loeb to it.

I’ve reported him to Facebook for doing this.  I hope there will be repercussions and that he doesn’t have a real Facebook account.  If he does, perhaps Facebook will express its displeasure with idiots like him exploiting company for his own tomfoolish purposes.

Dave moans in his post that I not only violated his privacy by posting what he wanted me to believe was his home address, but that I potentially endangered him.  Which is funny because he doesn’t mention that he not only published my home address and phone number, but my wife’s employer and her work phone.  UPDATE: He’s now claiming that commenters at his site published links to my private information, which is also a lie since the actual information (not links) is still there as clear as day.  I have a screenshot and know the link as well but prefer not allowing others to access it freely.  He also lied when he claimed that he hadn’t pubished the information.  Blogger have the ability to publish or not publish comments.  We all make those choices.  When someone writes a comment and you publish it, you’ve taken responsibility for doing so.  Except if you’re Aussie Dave, then you haven’t taken responsibility for anything.

He and his allies are trying to embarrass Jillian York, a staffer at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, who correctly warned me that his Facebook account appeared to be fake.  They’re claiming that I exposed the private details of an individual in violation of EFF guidelines and that York is somehow guilty of violating her employer’s mission statement calling for protection of the privacy of bloggers.  This is yet more nonsense since Aussie Dave created a publicly accessible Facebook account to which anyone had access and which displayed his alleged address for anyone to see.  Not only that, but the account is fake as is virtually all the information in it.

Dave of course doesn’t mention the recent incident when he hoaxed himself, seeking to believe that my brother had been arrested for being a welfare cheat.  The only truth to his fantasy was that someone with my extremely common last name had been arrested for such a crime.  He created an entire post in which he gleefully, hopefully speculated that the perpetrator might be my brother.  He even searched through my online photo galleries, finding a photo of my brother-in-law and speculating that because he had the same first name as the welfare cheat that they might be the same person.  They weren’t.  Not a word from Dave about this violation of the privacy of my brother-in-law, a totally innocent party in his charade.

There’s a larger point here as far as I’m concerned.  It’s that doing what I do is complicated because I have to trust my sources and go with my gut about their credibility.  Yes, I can do some elementary research to determine their credibility.  But in the end, you have to decide whether or not to take a jump.  Usually, the times when I’ve been hoaxed are when I decide to trust people I’ve never dealt with before and whose bona fides aren’t clear.  That’s what happened in this case.

I’ve said before that I’ve made mistakes in trusting a few hoaxsters (luckily only two as far as I know).  Luckily those mistakes have been few.  Now we can add this one to the previous ones.  When you report stories that I do, there is always the chance that you will make mistakes.  Some will involve discrete points in an overall story.  Others will be larger and more serious errors.  I’ve never claimed to be perfect.  In fact, I think conceding mistakes shows readers that you are human and have nothing to hide.

Dave wrote in his post that he believed I would take down my earlier post exposing him because I would be embarrassed.  Not at all and I certainly won’t.  Both because I want readers to know that I’m transparent; and because I want people to see what he has done and judge him for it.  I want people to understand the pains that the pro-Israel Islamophobic blog world takes to smear its opponents.  And the nastiness of their methods and outcomes.  Aussie Dave now has the distinction of being the James O’Keefe of the pro-Israel Islamophobic blog world.  He and all his supporters may be proud of his methods of lying and deception.

Allow me to address some of Silverstein’s claims:

  • The Dave Loeb Facebook account was disposable, created solely to set up this “sting.” I couldn’t care less that it has been removed from Facebook.
  • I did not go to an “immense amount of trouble he did to perpetrate this hoax” at all. It took all of 20 minutes to create the fake Facebook profile with one friend (!), perhaps 5 minutes to capture the screenshot and upload it to my blog, and my contact spent no more than that corresponding with Silverstein. An hour’s worth of work at most.
  • There was really not that much “subterfuge necessary to fool” Silverstein. Just one email and a Facebook profile with a clearly fake photo and only one friend. I am actually surprised he fell for it so easily, which just goes to show you the extent of his fact-checking of sources.
  • I reiterate that I have never myself posted his contact details. Commenters have linked to places on the web where he has, and at least one commenter (like in the previous post) has posted the details. I see no need to delete these comments since Silverstein is not anonymous and has posted these details himself. Furthermore, the commenters have not expressed any desire to harm him, which I would utterly condemn.
  • Nor have I published his wife’s employer’s phone number. I have linked to her LinkedIn profile.
  • Jillian York is director for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, an organization dedicated to protecting free speech online and protecting the rights of bloggers to remain anonymous. One would think someone in her capacity would discourage Silverstein from undermining my online privacy. Instead, she expressed her pleasure at the idea of me being outed. While her excuse was the information was public anyway, the following tweet speaks volumes.

 

Given we have never convered previous to this, one can only assume she feels this way due to my politics. In any event, I suggest you read this post

  • My post on Silverstein’s possible familial connection to a scammer in Seattle was not me “hoaxing myself”, but rather conjecture. As I stated at the time, even if  there was no such connection, the post still illustrated how the anti-Israel crowd fabricate in order to pursue their antisemitic or anti-Israel agendas. Just as Silverstein’s exposure of my “identity” did.    

Silverstein can try to spin this any way he likes, but at the end of the day, he clearly demonstrated that his “scoops” are not characterized by even the most basic of fact-checking, but rather a strong desire to pursue his anti-Israel agenda.

Update: Anti-Israel blogger Max Blumenthal has joined Silverstein’s cheer squad – about 12 hours after his “exposure” of me was already shown to be bunk.

He may want to re-evaluate his rankings.

And here I was thinking Blumenthal, as repugnant as his views are, was somewhat internet savvy.

* Granted, I am just a blogger and not exactly a Head of State, but I have been threatened on many occasions and hence need to be careful about protecting my privacy online

About Aussie Dave

An Aussie immigrant to Israel, Aussie Dave is founder of Israellycool, one of the world's most popular pro-Israel blogs (and the one you are currently reading) He is a happy family man, and a lover of steak, Australian sports and girlie drinks

comments

  • http:myrightword.blogspot.com Yisrael Medad

    Amazing that Silverstein has disproved the “smart Jews” myth. How disappointed we all are. I haven’t had so much fun since he banned me from commenting at his blog after I too successfully took on all his antisemitic and anti-Zionist commentators.

  • http://www.tundratabloids.com KGS

    I believe that the “doucheblogger” is now reduced to grasping at straws in a farcical display of *ss saving. The question is, what will he do now in the wake of his significantly reduced relevancy?

  • http://none Mark

    I guess Richie boy doesn’t realize the old saying when a fool is someone who does things over and over.And Richie just keeps on giving people laughs

  • DanS.

    With so much shit in the world, it constantly boggles my mind how bloggers/tweeters/facebookers piss on each other. Tell the egos to take a break and just report verifiable news and facts. kids….. go figure!

    • yuval

      because that’s what the internet is for? but gosh darn it when someone exposes a blogger who is often quoted in NEWSPAPERS as the fraud that he is, that’s not serious enough for you – pathetic troll got hurt too much and is trying to appear serious.

  • Benjamin H.

    Damn. Being the narcissistic little tool that he is, he tries to spin the fact that he relied on a completely unknown source giving him transparently fake information for a petty cause. The fact that he still considers himself a journalist after such a blatant failure of journalistic norms makes him more pathetic.

  • http://render64.wordpress.com Render64

    “When someone writes a comment and you publish it, you’ve taken responsibility for doing so.”

    Ah, the Charles Johnson defense. Which apparently is only valid for the left.

    So is Dickie responsible for every comment left on his outhouse of a blog? Are Foreign Policy and Stephen Walt responsible for every comment in his little cesspool?

    Inquiring minds might like to know if Dickie is nearly as upset with Alina Malinovskaya of RT for dumping Dickie’s email address in public? “Happy Holidays from RT!”

    RETURN
    FIRE
    WITH
    FIRE,
    R

    • Steven

      Hey Render!

      Happy New Year. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/ambrosineshitrit ambrosine shitrit

    Oh dear.

    Now, this is my real name. I am a “shitrit”, I am fully Jewish, I am a daughter of a Cohen, .I do live in london with my daughter. I am married to an Israeli for my sins.

    I am a voice over artiste. All my family are in Israel.

    Now what gets me, is “anonymity”. I do not understand it. It doesnt sit well with me. When people attack behind “anonymous” photos, and tweets.

    Please understand that although, one may feel safe in different guises, the police in the UK & the US have authority to get information from Twitter Inc.

    I just dont see a problem in blogging or tweeting about issues in a “normal” guise.

    I do worry that those who hide in secrecy are doing far more damage than those who are open about their identity.

    Anyway, my view, keep up the good work Mr OZ

    • STV

      People have been attacked, have nearly been killed over fairly innocuous cartoons in small Danish circulations (a number of people actually did die in the arb world). Theo Van Gogh was murdered because he made a small film that brought forward some legitimate criticisms of islam.

      The fact is we live in a world where you can be murdered for simply being a Jew in the wrong place let alone an Israeli who speaks up for his nation and promotes the positive influence of Israel in the world whilst simultaneously hitting back at the lies and distortions in the arab world.

      Living in the UK you should know that there are many places there where it wouldn’t be safe to share pro-Israel views.

      If anonymity gives Dave the room to carry on doing the good work he does and getting out a good message then that should be respected by everyone.

      (I think) That Dick should be ashamed of himself but in all likelihood he will continue to simply ride rough-shod over the truth and will still be poisoning the world for a while yet, although hopefully with little to no attention being paid to him.

    • Yonatan

      Ambrosine just because you don’t understand why people need anonymity doesn’t give you the right to breach it….which you know you have and you encourage some to do it with people you don’t like….Maybe you think you might be getting back at them for some slight against you or something?

      But you don’t seem to get that most of these bloggers couldn’t give a rat’s a** about their own safety…It’s their families and kids that have the right to privacy and safety no matter what feelings these bloggers rile up in our community and when their privacy is breached the safety of their families is at risk.

      Read this blurb from EFF (yeah, same place Jillian C. York works, the same JCY who peed her pants with glee about AD being ‘outed’ and the same JCY who has ‘outed’ other Jews.)

      Anyway here it is: “Many people don’t want the things they say online to be connected with their offline identities. They may be concerned about political or economic retribution harassment or even threats to their lives. Whistleblowers report news that companies and governments would prefer to suppress; human rights workers struggle against repressive governments; parents try to create a safe way for children to explore; victims of domestic violence attempt to rebuild their lives where abusers cannot follow. “

      I’d broadcast my name address number and jock size if I could but that would lead my wife’s abusive exhusband straight to her door and to our kids. And you and other people have called women like her cowards for not having their real name up there in lights even tho protecting their family is the most honourable thing… Other fellas may have kids in the house or have credible threats against them….You don’t have a right to know why people are anonymous or pseudonymous. Just accept that they are…even if you don’t like them.

      Doesn’t matter if people are scummy, left wing, right wing, Jews or Goy, in Galut or Israel or in fear of real threats on their life or just in fear of being fired from the boss if they’re ‘outed’….respect people’s right to safety and privacy even if you have no privacy or safety concerns yourself.

    • A F

      ambrosine wrote: “Now what gets me, is “anonymity”. I do not understand it. It doesnt sit well with me. When people attack behind “anonymous” photos, and tweets. ”

      That may be your own personal feelings on the matter and I can understand it, but this issue actually is not about Aussie Dave being anonymous but about someone ELSE trying to violate HIS privacy, NOT because Aussie Dave is actually dangerous or even nasty (he’s not) but purely because Silverstein and his cheerleaders HATE (and there is no other word for it) his viewpoint.
      The other main issue here is that Silverstein does not even do a cursory check of his sources and thus is completely unreliable.
      A while back Aussie Dave pointed out here that he was taken in by an April Fool’s joke article. The article made a joke about displaying projected advertising at the Kotel. Yet, he initially took it seriously and when someone pointed out it was a joke he then tried to spin his gullibility on the matter.

    • Joe

      Ms. Shitrit, I’ve been involved in political demos for 25 to 30 years (I was taken along as a child on SWP demos). In those 25 years of adult demos, I never experienced death threats. Until 2 years ago when I started to attend demos in London about defending Israel.

      Interpol surveys over the past 10 years show that literally ALL of terrorist violence across europe is perpetrated by muslims and their left-wing allies (and the muslims are a small part of those terrorist attacks). When I first read about these overwhelmingly left-wing terrorist statistics, I doubted the truth of it. But on reading it, it made me feel sick and ashamed that I’d been aligned with the left all my adult life. The left and muslims have been proven in general (these statistics) and in particular (the death threats I’ve received) to see no boundary between verbal discourse and political violence. THAT is why anonymity should be protected.

      And, of course, if it comes down to someone who the left/muslims approve of, then they get anonymity protected. I’ve been interviewed by mainstream media who refuse to take the interview further without my real name. Yet if it is some “dissident” in a controversy where the media takes their side, they have no problem saying “this person has to speak anonymously to protect them”.

      If you don’t believe my stories about death threats, then position yourself and an Israeli flag along Whitehall the next time the Free Gaza rabble have their demo. And be prepared to see how the police will not offer you any protection, even if you draw to their attention that people have said they are going to kill you.

  • http://anneinpt.wordpress.com anneinpt

    I have been shticking myself in laughter over this whole kerfuffle, and here you have delighted us with yet another thread.

    I would take off my hat to you if I didn’t go with kisui rosh. :-). Your entire hoax and takedown have been masterful, and excellent entertainment!

  • Michael

    What an amazing gift Aussie Dave :D Thank you so much. I was aware that those people were just plain idiots, but it has turned out that they are idiots of epic proportions.

  • Ben

    Can’t help laughing at the idiocy of miss twat, Jillian York. You did not give out “your” information to anyone but rather “mistakenly” left your name exposed. Without the email to Richard and going the extra mile to gather your “information” he would have had nothing to expose you with. It’s clear as day that what he did was to endanger you by exposing your personal information to your enemies and the fact that Jillian York condones his behavior is proof enough that she would only support the anonymity of those she deems worthy. This is the typical modus operandi of the terror loving, anti-semitic crowd. Keep up the good work Dave.

  • Running Bull

    I still love that *everything* about the FB was fake and easily confirmed to be so.

    Google Search by Image would have matched the picture to Jordan Farmar. Google Maps would have shown the address was that of a school. The friends were 1.

    *Any* effort to verify *anything* would have shown it to be fake. And yet, clearly *no* effort was undertaken. His “bones” led him to the “truth.”

    I don’t think there’s any point to keep attacking him on your blog. From now on, you ought to just call out any time a ‘respectable’ publication refers to him – and ask your readers to get retractions issued. He can blog in his own playground with his own ignorant friends – so long as the unknowing masses aren’t hoodwinked by his oh-so-reliable ‘bones.’

  • soloman4israel

    you can never be safe enough.
    i was a small child when i first felt the hate against me
    being an israeli jew i was was fair game for a non jewish
    female to stab me in the back,in the idf we expect abuse and trust me i/we got plenty of it from those we tried to help and protect as well as others and this continued in my many years of service and has not/ever changed.
    i have been sent/worked in some of the most dangerous places and have been as safe as i made things for my-self
    some-times you have no choice.
    when i had the chance to work within europe i told my family dont worry it’s a lot safer but i knew it rearly wasn’t because the wrong place at the wrong time is/can be deadly,even the right place and the wrong people by chance being there is/can be deadly,and what do you hear a lot of the time i’m going to kill you and your family,even though they have no idea if you have any,so i will say it only takes one mad man just one and thats it.
    i have not only been stabbed, had various objects thrown at me,come into very close quaters with various explosive devices,shot at and been wounded more than once.i have had years of threats and it only takes one to try/carry out his/their threats.
    and my family name is soloman.

  • http://www.thejidf.org JIDF

    I think it’s important to note that what was said to from the JIDF account you was quite a long time ago, and taken out of context. As you noted in your Tweet, you and the JIDF are now “good.” However, some people just reading this now, and not knowing the full context of our history, might not realize this with that relatively random screencap thrown in.

    It’s old news that many associated with the JIDF work pseudo-anonymously. We work to protect the privacy, safety, security, and right to anonymous free speech of all bloggers, especially pro-Israel/Jewish ones (being that we are a pro-Israel Jewish defense organization).

  • Sam

    I love this. I’m sure you’ve noticed how Douchebag likes to throw around Yiddish words to show his “Jew” cred. In fact, it shows him for the ghetto KAPO fraud that he is.

  • yuval

    What you did to Richard ‘I have connections in the Martian military high council’ is basically a kick to the back of the hand. At first it doesn’t appear to have much influence on a fight but the first reaction is to cradle the hand against the chest and swear (optional) so really the other guy is disabled. He may claim that it didn’t count since you never hit the body mass but in reality he just lost.
    In other words this was brilliant, peripheral yet crippling.

  • http://shimonafromthepalace.wordpress.com Shimona

    Despicable Dicky actually has the nerve to try and schnorr money from his readers on the grounds that he needs it to fund his “research”. One of his recent posts was a plea for financial support.

    http://www.richardsilverstein.com/tikun_olam/2011/11/15/support-tikun-olam-3/#comments

    Questioned by a reader (Nikki) as to why he needs financial support to maintain a blog when it’s perfectly possible to do so for free (as so many of us do) he claimed it was necessary to fund his research, phone calls to his sources, etc. As you have so amusingly proved – he does no real research – and never has. But the most telling piece of information to come from his pathetic attempt at schnorr is his admission that this is his life’s work (“A full-time job” as he calls it).

  • Morris Katz

    Next to Silvershmuck, Shmarya Rosenberg, another self-absorbed lefty blogger, actually comes across as reasonable.

  • Berpel

    Hey my good friend from down under.
    Absolutely fantastic work on behalf of all of us Jews around the world.
    We need to stick together during these times, and stand up to the Richard
    Silversteins of our generation.

    LOL and kol hakavod

  • http://www.facebook.com/ambrosineshitrit ambrosine shitrit

    yonatan, got a photo of yourself? or a name ? seems you like to criticize me, but still you are anonymous?

    • Yonatan

      Lol. Asking for my full name and pic…on this thread about Aussie Dave seeking privacy for his family and Silverstein then breaching Aussie Dave’s privacy and potentially endangering Aussies Dave’s family…

      Asking for my full name and pic even after I explained the threats to my wife and kid’s lives…is hilarious.

      Cheers Ambrosine. You saved me any trouble proving what you are.

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  • brad

    Richard Silverstein is pure scum. A mentally ill, sick, kapo nutcase whose sole purpose on this planet is to try to make people hate Israel.

    That’s why gutter scum like Max Blumenthal like him. And the Mondoweiss garage.

    These people are evil. They’re on the side of neo-nazis and islamic fundamentalists.

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