Motorola, could you please tell your viral marketer to get out of our comments?

In John's post about Steve Jobs' purported tantrum, a commenter "MGOODE08" made this remark:

I'm so glad my boss isn't like that! I'm working with Motorola right now, and became a huge fan of the Krave ( I especially like the full touch screen display and html web browser. It's awesome!

On the 14th, he made this comment:

Oh man this looks awesome! I hope they release a version for the Krave by Motorola. Ever since I started working with Motorola I have became a huge fan of the phone ( With a full list of features, like a full touch screen, I can't stop obsessing over it.

"M Goode" loves this phone so much that he posted this at GigaOm:

This is a very good idea. I think it could be applied to any phones with a similar format. Ever since I started working with Motorola I have become a huge fan of the Krave. It has some of the same features, and I think a built in micropayment system would be great. It’s a fairly new phone, so if you haven’t seen it yet it’s online at I wonder if they will jump on the bandwagon when/if a micropayment system is implemented.

When he's not on tech sites, though, "M Goode" loves to relax with a good game:

I wish this game would get released for a mobile gaming platform, especially the Krave. I have been a fan of this franchise since it’s first release, and would love to have it on a cell phone, especially the krave. Ever since I started working with Motorola, I have become a huge fan of the krave. Has anyone else seen it?( It’s so loaded with features, most important of which is the full touch screen layout. It’s DEFINITELY worth checking out.

He's also really into the indie gaming scene:

I can’t wait to see this on a mobile phone platform! it would be so cool to see ti on a Krave! Has anyone else seen it? ( It’s a flip phone with a touch screen, 2 MP camera, full html browser and bluetooth functionality. Definitely worth checking out.

But uh oh! He might be considering switching from a Krave to the new Nokia:

My favorite phone right now is the Krave by Motorola. I became a huge fan of the Krave once I started working with Motorola. You can check out the full spec list online at It’s definitely strong competition with it’s full touch screen

(He is also apparently working for Cirque Du Soleil, but we'll let them pass for the moment because I love acrobats.)

"Follow the money," they say, but in this case we don't have to, because all we have to do is follow the link. Motorola, if you could be so kind as to tell your viral marketer to fuck right off we'd sure appreciate it. Perhaps you could spend the money instead on making your phones something that people actually want to buy.

P.S., I love our readers. Check out the replies they immediately started making:

I'm so glad my boss isn't like that! I'm working for Burger King right now, and became a huge fan of the Mushroom and Swiss Steakhouse Burger. I especially like the cheese and mushrooms. It's awesome!

I'm so glad my boss isn't like that! I'm working for a pimp on the corner of wellwood and barrington and became a huge fan of Allie and her turrid backstroke technique. I especially like the pop and rock. It's awesome!

I'm so glad my boss isn't like that! I'm working with Cryptozoologia right now, and became a huge fan of the Trepanasaurus ( Trepanasaurus). I especially like the way that, after the dinosaur-anteater hybrid rips off the top of a person's head with its sharp teeth, it can suck out its victim's brain with its nose. It's awesome!

Join the Conversation


  1. I’m so glad my boss isn’t like that. I’m working at BBtv right now, and I became a huge fan of-


  2. What If … It’s actually the Singularity and we’re bullying it moments after its nascence?


  3. …Personally, I Krave the day that he takes that phone with him to the bath, and electrocutes himself. Either that, or he’s forced to rush to the ER in order to have that Krave surgically removed because that gerbil is ringing up one hell of a long distance bill.

    Marketers are scum, and viral marketers are the worst.

  4. Look Joel, I brought the Krave to the cuddle party and everyone loved it. Then again everyone loved that herb infused rag as well.

  5. Yes, Michael hasn’t been as aggressive with the Cirque account- only 7 or so posts on that.

    Acrobats are cool, but Criss Angel kind of bothers me.

  6. I’m so glad my boss isn’t like that! I’m working for Bill O’Reilly right now, and became a huge fan of the Culture Wars. I especially like the way he loofahs my falafel. It’s awesome!

  7. I wonder what it’s like for the people who write those comments when they get called out like this. Do they get freaked out by being called out, or are they aware that there are plenty of stupid people out there who will keep falling for this stuff. How exactly does one live with himself when a significant portion of his work revolves around manufacturing shoddy BS that can be so easily mocked? Will MGOODE decide that BoingBoing is too smart for him and move on, or is it enough that we’ve all had the * inserted into our brains in one more place?

    * That brand he was talking about but I shouldn’t acknowledge the “no bad press” effect without also trying to counteract it so iPhone, Blackberry, do you really need another cell phone? maybe that money could be given to someone worse off than you or used to pay off some debt. Maybe you spend so much time working to have things that you don’t spend enough time with the friends and family that are really important to you. A new phone isn’t going to change your life that much anyway.

  8. It’s one thing if the viral marketing is…u know, good.. Involving some sort of media, well done video, good song, something like that. Not that it’s respectable in that case, but at least it’s not quite so effing stupid.
    I’m not sure what percentage of the population falls into my category, but when I see bad or shoddily done advertising, I hold it against the company producing the product or service. While they may have built more brand awareness in my mind, for the next week, they’ve just lowered their chance that I’ll consider them a legitimate option when I buy a new phone a year or a year and a half from now.
    Lesson to huge corporation…negative associations last longer.

  9. why does Motorola want to be associated with viral marketing ticks? Don’t they value their brand? Or is it a deliberate act of war? What should the reply be?

  10. I notice MGOODE08’s profile reads “No friends yet.” Anybody want to bet it stays that way for a LONG time?

  11. This is just to post

    I have eaten
    the plums
    that were in
    the icebox

    and which
    I hope will soon
    be on
    the Krave (

    worth checking out
    so loaded with features
    and so awesome.

    (Look, somebody was going to do it. Might as well be me.)

  12. I have promoted my own stuff here and on other blogs, too, but I try not to be a dick about it.

    Here’s a hypothetical situation. What if he offered full disclosure in every post? As in “I work for Motorola and think our phones are better.” Would that have been OK?

  13. I heard that the Motorola Krave ( is loaded with DRM, secretly forwards all your calls to Homeland Security, emits radiation that causes Global Warming, has a goatse screensaver that is not user-configurable, and covertly signals TSA goons to strip search you. Plus, every time you use it an anime fairy dies.

    It’s awesome!

  14. #10: It’s just like any other kind of sales. Hell, if the people running the astroturf companies were smart, they’d find a way of tracking where the traffic comes from – each “marketer” would use a specific set of url-embedded codes, and get a bonus based on the amount of traffic they generate. It can’t possibly cost more than cold-calling, and could easily be contracted out to India or China, although they’d have to be quite picky about quality of English.

    #21: LOL!

  15. Shall we up the ante?

    … Do I dare to eat a peach?
    I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach.
    I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.

    Always with a Krave in reach.

    A phone so awesome I have to preach.

    That’s WC Williams and TS Eliot. Can I get a Dickinson? Or Yeats – Yeats would be good.

    And yeah I know that last line sucked. You try rhyming while your boss is in the room.

  16. @ #5

    Nah, people who generalise so sweepingly tend to be scum. (Oh whoops, was I generalising too? Maybe I *am* scum.)

  17. Fumbling and fumbling in the sickening mire,
    the market cannot hear the marketer:
    things fall apart, cellphones are not sold –
    a mediocre handset is loosed upon the world,
    the astroturf tide is loosed, and everywhere
    the bloggers’ innocence is drowned.
    The posts lack information, and what’s worse,
    are full of passionate intensity.

    Surely some revelation is at hand;
    Surely the next Krave model is at hand.
    The next Krave model! Hardly are those words out
    When a vast image out of astroturf heaven
    Troubles my sight . . .

  18. Turning and turning in the widening gyre,
    The falcon can not hear the falconer.

    Reception falls apart; he should have used a Krave!
    Its full touch screen is loosed upon the world.
    The HTML web browser is loosed, and everywhere
    Intelligent commentary by actual human beings is drowned.

  19. @ chroma:

    “What if he offered full disclosure in every post? As in ‘I work for Motorola and think our phones are better.’ Would that have been OK?”

    Better if he’d said, “I work for an astroturfing firm that works for Motorola,” or maybe somewhat more believably, “I work for some guy I met at a coffeeshop who works for an astroturfing firm who works for Motorola.”

  20. What if the guy actually works for Nokia and is just trying to make Moto look like crap? I find it almost impossible to believe that Moto would hire someone (or something – the comments are incredibly bot-like) to undertake such a retarded campaign.

  21. Of Krave the sharpest function,
    That, just as we discern,
    The Excellence defies us;
    Securest gathered then
    The fruit perverse to plucking,
    But leaning to the sight
    With the ecstatic limit
    Of unobtained Delight

    I had to do so little modification and yet it seems so right.

  22. The thing that always gets me about viral marketers is how they think they will get away with it. Anyone can spend a few minutes on Google and out them because everything on the net is illuminated. And those that realize what’s going on will tell the ones that don’t and then everyone knows. With that in mind ‘viral marketing’ in the original sense is doomed to fail.

    So take this advice Motorola – instead of paying that guy, just buy some ad space on BoingBoing. That’s money better spent.

  23. Funnily enough, M Goode has been repeatedly banned for Motorola spamming at BB prime under various guises.

  24. Ok this guy is sick – he posted this in the Gamer Girls forum. I’d bet mr. Goode is in his forties and just finished reading ‘Viral marketing for dummies’:

    Had a dream about the Motorola Krave ( I dreamed that I was a proud new owner of the krave and ninjas invaded my bedroom to heist it. Out of nowhere I became a third degree black belt and thwarted the botched robbery attempt with my new martial arts skills, and breathed a sigh of relief as I grasped the krave and called my bff using the full touch screen keypad and speakerphone, only to wake up to realize I don’t own one myself. A sad sad day.

    Oh and btw his other alias is djilla.

    I’ve noticed a trend in the increase of humor sites content is taken from cell phone videos. With technology making it easier to capture moments like this, I have my sites set on the krave as my next choice in cell phones. Since i’m currently working with motorola, I get the jump on the latest technology and the krave is probably the best choice for anyone launching their own comedy site. check it out for yourself at .com/. Let the comedy begin!

  25. Somewhere, M. Goode is laughing with glee and sending bonus request forms to Motorola, now that we have an entire post dedicated to this and several poems extolling the virtues of the Krave.

    Viral marketing only goes viral once it turns into a poetry meme on BoingBoing.

  26. you said Is
    there anything which
    is dead or alive more beautiful
    than a Krave,to have in your fingers
    (trembling ever so little)?
    Looking into
    your screen Nothing,i said,except the
    air of plastic smelling of never and forever.

    ….and through the glass which moved as
    if a hand is touched by a
    moved as though
    fingers touch a girl’s
    Do you believe in Motorola,the wind
    said to the rain
    I am too busy with
    my iPhone to believe,the rain answered

  27. Oh freddled Motorola,
    Thy full touch screens displays are to me
    As plurdled gabbleblotchits
    On a lurgid bee
    That mordiously hath bitled out
    Its earted jurtles
    Into a rancid festering viral marketing scheme
    Now the jurpling slayjid bloggers
    Are slurping hagrilly up the axlegrurts
    And living glupules frart and slipulate
    Like jowling meated liverslime
    Krave, I implore thee, my foonting turlingdromes
    And hooptiously drangle me
    With crinkly bindlewurdles,
    Or else I shall rend thee in the HTML web browser with my blurglecruncheon
    See if I don’t.

    well it didn’t make sense before I got to it, maybe someone can do a better job with this one.

  28. I’m so glad my blog isn’t like that! I’m posting comments on Boing Boing right now, and became a huge fan of the Moderation Policy ( I especially like the way astroturfers are boiled up and eaten for breakfast, their bones used by the moderators and commentors to pick their teeth with. It’s awesome!

  29. What is with the phone names now, anyway? The Krave? I saw a commercial for one last night that was called the Rant. Boyfriend and I looked at each other and cracked up. Rant? Like, Razr is kind of cool, sounds steely and sharp and sleek. iPhone, well, they could hardly have called it anything else — nothing else says “phone made by Apple” so succinctly. Blackberry, fine. But Rant and Krave? Sounds like some kind of dumb comedy duo.

  30. I’m so glad my boss isn’t like that–mainly because I don’t have a boss!

    The late Jim Baen was doing this in the mid-1980s, not only on The Source and other commercial services, but on BBSs around the country, as well.

  31. I’m so glad my boss isn’t like that!I’m working for myself outing viral marketers and I’v e become a big fan of Micheal Good ( the way he’s all over the place posting crap about the Motorola Krave and all, he’s awsome.

  32. From Motorola’s sleep I fell into the Krave,
    And I hunched at its convenient touchscreen till my gnarled fingers froze.
    Six miles from Starbucks, loosed from the dream of easy money,
    I woke to blogs’ snark and the nightmare moderators.
    When I was banned they washed me out of the comments with a hose.

  33. I’m so glad my boss isn’t like that! Because if he was that kind of a Kraven pukebag, I’d have to decapitate him and put his head on a spike. Hell, I might do it anyway. Especially if I ever found out he owned a Motorola product, which as we all know are tools of the Devil.

  34. Make no mistake, this is a critical battleground. You have acres of fertile ground ready to plant market visibility for young folks with high disposable income, and these guys want it.

    As we write, chubby men in suits are gathered under fluorescent lights consuming weak coffee with stale doughnuts, getting the shit scared out of them by internet “gurus” with powerpoint presentations about marketing through online community building. They have to web2.0 (it’s a verb) their website. They have to comment on Boing Boing with back links, and they have to use the word awesome.

    And guess what? The presentation always finishes with the cover of the “gurus” new book.

    And there’s the rub. Whether this kind of strategy actually sells phones or not, a bunch of people make money selling anxiety about it.

  35. I have actually worked for motorola, and most of their products although well intentioned, are horrible to use. They’ve been riding on the success of the Razr for years, and haven’t come up with anything better.

    Not sure i’ve seen the krave phone, is it the same as the ruby?

  36. In the early days of the blogs I was at a meeting with a bunch of communications pros and pr folks. They were trying to get a handle on blogs and bloggers. One of the old PR guys said, “What’s going to stop some company from giving these blogger’s 100 bucks and say, “Go around and talk up our products”?

    I said nothing. There were also some Flogs (fakeblogs) before there were blog spam comments and to up the Google ranks, blog farms.And of course some companies did just that with various degrees of skill. I find the whole viral marketing, when it is inauthentic, really distasteful.

    Someone asked above about the various permutations of this activity, like “What if they disclosed” or “What if it is the competition?”

    I don’t mind full disclosure. It’s honest, if they really want to make an impact be a member of a community so your comments aren’t drive-by. (Why am I giving them advice?) If they are really really smart they will be honest about the product. Not enough companies understand that pretending that their product is perfect is a mistake. Acknowledge the flaws. I think people appreciate it. But I think that people in charge of marketing can’t get sign off on that kind of marketing. “You want us to DIS our own product?” “Just the really crappy stuff that you don’t like either, trust me, if we acknowledge the crappy stuff and focus on the good stuff we will do better than to say our crap smells like flowers.”

    I’ve read a lot about these viral marketing companies and campaigns and I think the reason that they bug me so much is the sense of using people’s trust to trick them into buying something. It’s a cheap trick and it really turns me off when it is discovered.

    I do like good advertising, especially funny stuff and clever video is fine.

    I think people today are sophisticated to understand meta advertising jokes and they are also sophisticated to get angry when they they have been tricked.

  37. Get yer Motorolin’
    On the (information) superhighway
    Gotta do some spammin’
    Born to be reviled

    I’m so glad my boss isn’t like that. We play foosball at work. Hey, I fell in love with Ubuntu, but I’m kraving some falafel right now.

    Dear Motorola: it’s worse than wasting your money. You’re buying negative publicity. Fire the idiot who conceived this nonsense.

  38. The several models of Motorola phones that work provided with Nextel had awful sound quality no matter how good the signal was. I tried many models and had work pay extra to get a Blackberry on Nextel instead. The fact that the Blackberry had significantly better voice quality indicates that it was a problem with the codec commonly used in Motorola phones and not the Nextel network (which has its own set of issues, like missed calls and delayed voicemail).

    If you have trouble understanding people with a Motorola phone, try a Blackberry or iPhone.

  39. ZippySpincycle,

    How singular. A parody of Randall Jarrell? Wow. You must have a fifty-year-old anthology at hand.

    Your grandfather’s?

  40. PTRourke@30, Jornin@45, and all others here who crafted up some literary allusion: Those were full of tasty win!

    Anon@61: I thought you were still doing lyrics as I read that with the song in my head. So, I’ll finish it for you. (It’s about time we went low-brow.)


    Get yer Motorolin’
    On the (information) superhighway
    Gotta do some spammin’
    on whatever blog comes our way.

    I’m so glad my boss isn’t like that.
    We play foosball at work. Hey!
    I fell in love with Ubuntu, man and
    I just love this Krave

    I like hypin’ typin’
    Total ‘turfin blunder
    Racin’ with the mods here
    And the quotas that I’m under

    Yeah Darlin’ go make it happen
    The whole world is a marketing race
    Fire off nonsequitor endorsements, babe
    And let them fill cyberspace

    Born to be reviled
    Born to be reviled

    Like a true corporate child
    We were born, born to be reviled
    With ‘turf so high
    I’m always gonna lie

    Born to be reviled
    Born to be reviled

  41. I’m so glad my boss isn’t like that! I’m self employed and… you know, actually that’s just what I’m like a lot of the time.
    Never mind.

  42. Ugh. Motorola. Of course they’d have to pay someone to spooge that much about one of their products. My favorite comment in any code that I’ve written is:

    /* And this, dear reader, is why we don’t let the engineers design the user interface. If you need any further proof, just look at any Motorola product */

    (Yes, there is a WTF in the vicinity of that comment, but it’s just a tongue-in-cheek printf… Since it was an internal test rig, I didn’t feel guilty about it. And yes, I was working for a competitor of Motorola at the time, why do you ask?)

  43. (once like a jerk)

    if strangers post
    life begins-
    not poor not rich
    (only a krave)
    kind neither
    nor cruel
    (only awesome)
    i not not you
    not possible;
    only truthful
    if strangers(who
    started working for

    (and so to dork)

  44. You know given that Motorola has at least SOME technical expertise, maybe MGoode really IS a bot/webcrawler. A human could’ve setup the login accounts on the websites, and all they have to do is scan BB for anything marginally relevant.

  45. I’m so glad Joel Johnson is like that! I work for a small non-profit organisation, and I’ve become a huge fan of pretending to work while I suppress laughter at various BoingBoing Gadgets posts. ( It’s awesome.

  46. in a middle of a room
    stands a suicide
    sniffing a Paper rose
    smiling to a self

    “somewhere it is Spring and sometimes
    people are in real:imagine
    somewhere real flowers,but
    I can’t imagine real flowers for if I

    could,they would somehow
    not Be real”
    (so he asks
    smiling)”but for Motorolla

    always my new job
    astroturf your blog”
    The is krave

    “& everything is easier
    than I had guessed full sized touch screen
    could be;even remembering the way I
    wished,for a mobile platform port

    (a moon swims out of a cloud
    a clock strikes midnight
    a finger pulls a trigger
    a bird flies into a mirror)

  47. What I don’t get is that he’s not working FOR motorola, he’s working WITH them? Like working with them to reduce the number of noise complaints at their end of the cul-de-sac? Or they both tem atthe same daiye spa? Is it full disclosure, in a winking way? I, M. Goode, viral marketeer, amd working WITH motorola on this great subtle new viral scheme?
    Wussup with that?

  48. Well, it worked. For one thing, I was made aware that the Krave existed and actually ended up checking it out.

    All in all, it was a success.

    It would be even better if all the blogs complained about him (and post links to his comments with the URL prominently displayed).

  49. Since I was working with Motorola, I fell in love with… Trust me, you will fall in love with crave too.

  50. Depressingly, MGoode’s tireless marketroidinating has succeeded – I had not heard of this phone until today.

  51. Much have I traveled in the realms of blogs
    And many goodly sites and comments seen;
    With many whizzy cellphones have I been
    Which hacks in fealty to Apple hold.
    Oft of one hot KRAVE I had been told
    That old Motorola plugged so virally
    Yet never did I breathe its pure serene
    Till I heard MGOODE08 speak out loud and bold:
    Then I felt like some watcher of c|net
    When a new gadget blinks into his ken;
    Or like stout Mossberg when with eagle eyes
    He dissed the brick-like KRAVE and its touchscreen
    So like a desperate bling’d-out pile of spoodge
    Unsellable, except by subterfuge.

  52. Buddy66, “The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner” is a classic. I recognized it immediately, and I’m no one’s grandmother. I also ID’d all the WWI poems in the Boing Boing competition, and I’m definitely not old enough to remember their first publication.

  53. Takuan, I’ll tell you right now that I’m not good with titles. Text, I remember. What it’s called is more mutable.

    Om @81: The first poetry contest is over. But as we established, any poems previously written in other threads were eligible to be re-posted in the contest thread. Therefore, assuming that they fit the theme, any thread-appropriate poems posted here or in other BB/BBTV/BBG/Offworld comments will likewise be eligible for later contests.

    For that matter, does it say anywhere in the moderation guidelines that comments may not be written out as dialogue and stage directions, scholarly backmatter, or double crostics? It does not.

  54. Oh wow, we’ve been getting spam from the same guy (or same campaign at least) for a month or so now. I usually just edit ‘krave’ for ‘GENERIC MOTOROLA PHONE #X163-9’ or something. It makes for good laughs!

    -Nahu from Dark Diamond

  55. poetry improves the tone of the joint, keeps out the riff raff. Next: Bilksongs: people should post in audio files of their own voices lifted in ribald song. Plenty of precedent, Dark Lords help us, extra points for musical accompaniment. (is “bilksong OK?, anybody coined anything better? – folk-filk-bilk…)

  56. OK, turns out there’s an “Acker Bilk”. AND a “John Bolk”… screw it, I’m keeping “bilk song”).

  57. Wow, M Goode! I feel like going out and buying an exorbitantly expensive touchscreen phone right now! Thanks for the informative and on-topic comments.
    Oh, wait. That’s unadulterated loathing and irritation I’m feeling. Pardon me, I got a little confused. What I actually meant to say is thanks for reinforcing my dislike of Motorola mobile devices and obnoxious marketing attempts.

  58. Takuan,
    Forgot most of the lyrics for “Bang Bang Lulu” years ago, or I’d take you upon it.

    So Jarrell’s sad little gem is now a classic? Damn, turn your back for a few minutes and the kids grow up. There is a line of his from another poem that I KNEW would make it: “Men wash their hands in blood as best they can.” Did it?

  59. I’d hate to think so, but it must be considered, that this is a smear campaign on those particular brands in the style of the old political trick of ringing people in the night with an automated message promoting their opponent.

    In that case, following the link =/= following the money.

  60. Usonia@73: The reason he always phrased it as “working WITH Motorola” is that he’s not an employee, he’s an Independent Contractor ™. Piecework for pennies a comment.

  61. Can I just mention that I used to have a Motorola phone and the thing was designed so that the volume button was on the outside, so sometimes if something was pressing up against it in my backpack it would just beep really loudly with every step I took. I would never buy another Motorola phone again.

  62. here ya go Buddy:

    Bang Bang Lulu

    Lulu had two boyfriends, both of them were rich
    One was the son of a baker, the other was the son of a …

    Behind the refrigerator lies a piece of glass
    Johnny tried to get it and fell upon his …

    Ask me nor more questions, I’ll tell me o more lies
    The boys are in the bathroom, pulling down their…

    Flies in the buttermilk, shoo fly shoo
    Flies in the buttermilk, shoo
    Flies in the buttermilk, shoo fly shoo
    And that’s the end of Lululu

    Also sung with a chorus of:
    Bang bang Lulu, Lulu bang bang
    Who’s gonna bang for Lulu
    When Lulu’s gone away

    Or with a chorus of
    I yi yi yi, in China they do it for chili
    Here comes another verse that’s worse than the other verse
    So waltz me around again Willie

    Note: bang bang was really gang bang, I’m told, but at that age
    who knew that bang meant anything but a loud noise, so we sang
    bang bang.”

  63. or maybe this’ll inspire ya;
    There was a young sailor
    Who looked through the glass,
    And spied a fair mermaid
    With scales on her island
    Where seagulls
    Fly over their nests
    She combed the long hair
    That hung over her shoulders
    And caused her
    To tickle and itch.
    The sailor cried out
    “There’s a beautiful mermaid,”
    A-sitting out
    There on the rocks,
    The crew came around
    A-grabbing their glasses
    And crowded four deep
    To the rail,
    All eager to share
    In this fine piece of news.
    Which the captain soon
    Heard from the watch.
    He tied down the wheel
    And he reached for his crackers
    And cheese which
    He kept near the door.
    In case he might someday
    Encounter a mermaid.
    He knew he must
    Use all his wits
    Crying “Throw out a line.
    We’ll lasso her flippers.”
    And then we will
    Certainly find
    If mermaids are better
    Before or be brave
    My good fellows.”
    The captain then said.
    “With fortune we’ll break
    Through her mermaiden head-
    -ing to starboard
    They tacked with dispatch.
    And caught that fair mermaid
    Just under her elbows
    And hustled her
    Down below decks,
    And each took a turn
    At her feminine setting
    Her free at the end
    Of the farce,
    She splashed in the waves,
    Falling flat on her after
    A while one man
    Noticed some scabs,
    Soon they broke out with the pox
    And the scratching
    With fury,
    Cursing with spleen,
    This song may be dull
    But it’s certainly clean.

  64. I wonder if he works with “arobjones” who commented on my site on a Barack Obama post with the name “SadFacedMcCain”:

    I guess that’s a perk of being the President-Elect. I work with Motorola and one great thing about it is getting to know all of the great phones they put out. The Krave is one of them and it’s design is really new age…


  65. Buddy66, for once I feel compelled to say “I’m not THAT young” instead of “I’m not THAT old.” Which I guess is pretty much the definition of middle-aged.

    I first came across “The Death of the Ball-Turret Gunner” in an anthology in high school, in the late 1970’s. I’d always been an aviation nut, and Jarrell’s “sad little gem” (yes!) was a helpful counterpoint to the plastic models of B-17’s and B-24’s I was always building–and a good precursor to discovering Catch-22 shortly afterward.

  66. “Death of the Ball Turret Gunner” has been taught in schools for at least thirty years; if that doesn’t qualify as canon, I don’t know what does.

  67. Two phones diverged in an online thread,
    And sorry I could not purchase both
    And be one gadgeteer, long I read
    And considered one as far the data led
    To where it lay painted in Astroturf;

    Then took the other, just as awesome,
    And having perhaps the better claim,
    Because the ads were far less frothsome;
    Though as for that the posting there
    Had touted them really about the same.

  68. Dear Lisa, as I write this, I am very sad. Our president has been overthrown and [gruff man voice] replaced by the benevolent general Krave. All hail Krave and his glorious new regime! Sincerely, Little Girl.

  69. I think it’s awesome that PTRourke and Clifton wrote simultaneous pastiches of the same poem.

    In re astroturf and guerrilla marketing: It doesn’t bother me when registered BB users with a comment history theorize that this might be a clever campaign by one of Motorola’s competitors. However, given that this thread is a fairly high-profile PR disaster for the Motorola/Krave campaign — and I hope the innocent Anonymi won’t take this personally — I’m a little uneasy when comments to that effect come in anonymously.

    Reflex @34:

    What if the guy actually works for Nokia and is just trying to make Moto look like crap? I find it almost impossible to believe that Moto would hire someone (or something – the comments are incredibly bot-like) to undertake such a retarded campaign.

    Believe it.

    I’ve been tracking this subject for years now — the whole astroturf/paid commenting/comment spam/fake letters to the editor/pass-along emails/Wikipedia tampering/guerrilla marketing/viral marketing nexus — and the commercial marketing end of it has produced a long string of disastrously clueless campaigns. It’s a staple of online business journalism:

    Examining Viral Marketing Disasters.
    Lame and Lamer: 10 Dumbest Viral Marketing Campaigns.
    Five Worst-Executed Viral Marketing Campaigns.
    Motrin. Sony PSP. Vonage. Nokia.

    To name but a few.

    When marketers and/or PR flacks and/or corporate execs who don’t know what they’re doing launch “viral marketing campaigns,” the results can be painful. The canonical example is Wal-Mart. Their early astroturf projects were like watching an elephant with an inner-ear problem learning to rollerskate, and their later efforts haven’t been much better. Wal-Mart’s got a real knack for bad PR. Their characteristic maneuver is to announce that they’ve now seen the light, they understand the importance of honesty and transparency, and that they’re giving up lying, deception, and their whole paranoid, adversarial corporate style — just in time for their next astroturfing scandal to break.

    Basic search strings for this: edelman wal-mart, wal-mart “new yorker”, and wal-mart edelman gawker. Useful addenda: hub,, “working families for wal-mart”, “wal-marting across america”, flog, check out blog, SCLC, “deborah shank”, and greenwashing. For the gritty details, read

    (Why do I have it in for Wal-Mart? Look at some older Boing Boing comment threads on stories about Wal-Mart. See if you can spot the patterns.)

    On a lighter note: this was an as-it-happens I wrote when a movie called The Science of Sleep set up a promotional fake LJ community which quickly turned into a PR disaster. On the political front, this is a note on McCain’s campaign, which repeatedly got caught doing stuff like astroturfing, soliciting comment spam, and having volunteers write fraudulent letters to the editor.

    Kieran @27:

    Hell, if the people running the astroturf companies were smart, they’d find a way of tracking where the traffic comes from – each “marketer” would use a specific set of url-embedded codes, and get a bonus based on the amount of traffic they generate. It can’t possibly cost more than cold-calling, and could easily be contracted out to India or China, although they’d have to be quite picky about quality of English.

    The only thing that saves us from being drowned in commercial astroturf is that it costs more than straight advertising. People who can dash off one facile, appropriate, natural-sounding comment after another can get better-paying jobs doing something else. Cheaper workers can’t maintain both tone and output, and will eventually slip up. It doesn’t take many datapoints to reveal the existence of a deliberately deceptive campaign, at which point massive fail.

    The bad actors to watch out for are the campaigns that can afford good people. Corporate image campaigns can have fat budgets. Political campaigns can exploit their volunteers. Long-term disinformation campaigns use a small number of good writers, and target their efforts.

    Every moderator I know hates this crap.

  70. What is even happening in this thread?! WOW!

    Nothing beats the Trepanasaurus, though. I’m sad to discover it was purely the invention of boingboing user Secret_Life_of_Plants. I was hoping for some additional lulz via google. I thought it was a real crypto!

  71. Further sightings of this guy:

    Japanese scientists cloning mammoths remind him of Krave.

    Tanya’s Tasty Tips on the Fox News health blog are the kind of information he keeps track of via Krave.

    Need Sarah Palin Lookalike ASAP for Adult Film causes him to muse lubriciously about Sarah Palin’s hands caressing the Krave’s HUGE touch screen.

    He thinks 5 State Skits That Should Be Movies would be awesome to see streaming over his Krave.

    The Hands-on/Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix evokes nostalgia in him for the old days of game arcades, leading him to wish that more nostalgic game titles could be developed for portable devices, like his Krave.

    This guy is having to write at top speed on a wide range of subjects, so his internal censors are turned off. What do you want to bet that if we collected enough of these messages, we could reconstruct a map of his life?

  72. There once was a man with Motorola
    Who decided that blogs he would troll-a
    He pulled out his Krave
    And thought he would rave
    But they called him a ‘turfing ass-hole-a

    There once was a guy called MGoode
    Who figured that ‘turfing, he should
    He pandered his boss
    Who’d be reading his dross
    And the rest of us could go suck wood

    There once were some PDA snobs
    Who lived just to cut down Steve Jobs
    And though they were kraven
    Money they’d be savin’
    Their phone was from Calvin & Hobbs

  73. I have to deep down, in my heart of hearts, believe that this is someone whose sole purpose is to give Motorola a bad (worse) name. There is no way Motorola could have possibly hired someone so inane, confoundedly over-obvious and completely outright stupid.

  74. Hey Boingers,
    My name is MGOODE08, and I market to every single one of you. All of you are bright, with-it, early adopters who spend every second of their day looking at the bleeding age of the gadget world. You are everything fun in the world. Honestly, how do you deal with all the enjoyment you get? I mean, I know it’s fun getting the latest and greatest, but you all take to a whole new level. That’s even better than masturbating with cyber-sex toys.

    Don’t be a stranger. Just hit me with your best shot. My product line is pretty much perfect. It will answer phones, surf the Web for you, and do email. What other phone could you want, other than “open-source but crappily-made G1s”? I also get market Cirque du Soleil, I’ve got a ringing hot phone (I just flicked a page on its internet browser; It was SO krave).
    You are all good-guy geeks who should just buy some of my stuff for yourselves. Thanks for listening.
    Pic Related: It’s me and my phone.

  75. Beyond that they are limited just to BB (and it’s his in part to do with as he wants), Corey’s posts about the serialization of that novel and a lot of the early Little Brother posts have almost the same tone or style as the Krave posts. Same repetition (copy/paste) of phrases and links, etc.

    Just sayin’ (as they say)

  76. The cirque du soleil comment looked awfully familiar to some fishy cirque du soleil comments that had been posted no a forum I frequent, so I looked to google, and man, more astroturfing. I suspect this was done by M Goode’s “associate” who “got to see the show”

  77. Hey #95 (Takuan)

    When we were younger (eight or nine) it wasn’t Lulu, it was Miss Lucy, as in:

    Miss Lucy has a steamboat, the steamboat had a bell,
    Miss Lucy went to heaven and the steamboat went to

    Hello operator, please give me number 9,
    and if you disconnect me I will shove it up your

    Behind the fridgerator, there is a piece of glass,
    and if you dare to step on it it’ll go right up your

    ask me no more questions, tell me no more lies,
    the boys are in the bathroom pulling down their

    flies are in the country, bees are in the park,
    boys n girls are kissing in the d-a-r-k d-a-r-k d-a-r-k dark-dark-dark.

    Amazing the complexities we went thru trying to get away with cursing and talking “dirty”. I can’t wait to hear the version my 4 yr old learns when he’s older. Like…6

  78. Nice going- you guys just made it viral.
    watch the sales roll in now
    Once again, the stupidity of the average blog commenter amazes me

  79. “Marketers are scum, and viral marketers are the worst.”

    Not entirely true or a fair assessment. This guy just doesn’t know how to do his job properly.

  80. Poisonedv: The kind of people who will respond positively to this kind of thing are the kind of people who would respond to SPAM. There’s no helping them. Meanwhile, we’ve been having a lot of fun at their expense. Sorry that was lost on you.

    For the few that respond favorably, I’ll bet that, among the readers and posters here, the product has become so infamous because of this tactic that we would never consider buying or evangelizing one, going forward. You look and see only idiots and I look and respect the intelligence of this community enough to enjoy furthering the new meme without worrying about the few who might be duped by this extra exposure into participating with them by driving sales. To my view, they have lost far more than they had hoped to gain, at least among intelligent people, many of whom drive the hi-tech industry.

    Motorola’s brand has been tarnished in my eyes and I will think twice before buying any of their products from now on, just as I have never given any of my hard earned cash to Bill Gates. What they may have gained in the short term may not prove to be anything lasting because of such chicanery. I hope that in the future, the effect of our fun at their expense and the mud on their face from this becoming a meme may make them think twice about employing such tactics. Imho, this is pure win.

  81. Phikus, it’s my belief that we get swayed by this kind of astroturf all the time. Except what we usually see is astroturf generated directly by the creators of the product as opposed to a hired marketing turfer.

    A lot of people with a blog, a smaller market product, an indie game, and so forth HAVE to do this kind of thing so that others know about their offering. They have to give links, they have to use key words to help get web searches to respond. Probably not everyone does it consciously, but it happens – a lot.

    And I’m not saying it’s bad, but I really do believe that BB is a fairly good example of a site that games the internet as it were, not unlike Motorola. About any site that mentions their own name and product, or includes links in posts to other posts or other sites is doing this. They all want to be linked to, get found by web searches and mentioned in other blogs.

    But what they are NOT doing is trying to “trick” anyone with hired mercenary sincerity or belief. And that’s the big difference between BB and Motorola.

    So what’s a term for astroturf when it’s sincerely created by the owners of the product, versus astroturf generated by third parties for pay?

  82. “astroturf” by definition cannot be generated by someone under their own roof. Why is this so hard to understand?

  83. Holtt: Takuan answered that question, but maybe I can shed further light on the subject.

    If BB Gadgets featured a review of the Krave and MGoode signed on with full disclosure, providing some helpful insight pointing out cool features or whatever, that would be one thing, but the approach of pasting the same text into as many quasi- or downright un-related topics as possible is pure SPAM. It does nothing to participate in a discussion productively.

    Imagine if you had a friend who, in every context in which you are socializing with them, worked in a scripted product promoting blurb right out of a commercial. It might be amusing at first, but within an hour or two of hanging out with this person, it would get tiresome. If someone’s opinion is shaped by who’s paying them to evangelize their product (I swear this is the next step: astroturfing the meatspace. All they need is a way to verify it to their bosses, like a little floating camera-bot that can snap a shot of the audience being ‘turfed) then it is not going to be trusted or enjoyed.

    Conversely, if you are having a discussion about certain products with friends, and someone says: “Hey, I’m a marketing rep / contractor for (insert company here), and so I am biased, but I really like the (insert product related to the discussion at hand here) and here’s why…” and they aren’t just reciting a script, interactively answering questions and honestly comparing and contrasting similar products, then this is real grass that you can run through your fingers.

    Put another way, it is the difference between someone talking with you and someone talking at you, ascribing dollar signs on you for listening all the while.

    If we get to this point in my lifetime I want a scrambler that distorts my image in a 10′ radius around me.

  84. Phkus, regarding MeatSpace ‘turfing: been done! They’re called StreetSnitches

    Naomi Klein talks about it in No Logo:

    “Besides, even if there was a lost indigenous tribe of cool a few years back, rest assured that it no longer exists. It turns out that the prevailing legalized forms of youth stalking are only the tip of the iceberg: the Sputnik vision for the future of hip marketing is for companies to hire armies of Sputnik spawns —young “street promoters,” “Net promoters” and “street distributors” who will hype brands one-on-one on the street, in the clubs and on-line. “Use the magic of peer-to-peer distribution — it worked in the freestyle sport cultures, mainly because the promoters were their friends…. Street promoting will survive as the only true means of personally ‘spreading the word.'” So all arrows point to more jobs for the ballooning industry of “street snitches,” certified representatives of their demographic who will happily become walking infomercials for Nike, Reebok and Levi’s.”

    “By fall 1998 it had already started to happen with the Korean car manufacturer Daewoo hiring two thousand college students on two hundred campuses to talk up the cars to their friends. Similarly, Anheuser-Busch keeps troops of U.S. college frat boys and “Bud Girls” on its payroll to promote Budweiser beer at campus parties and bars.’ The vision is both horrifying and hilarious: a world of glorified diary trespassers and professional eavesdroppers, part of a spy-vs.-spy corporate-fuelled youth culture stalking itself, whose members will videotape one another’s haircuts and chat about their corporate keepers’ cool new products in their grassroots newsgroups.”

  85. Genocide in Darfur?

    That reminds me of the new Krave by Motorala, which I am a huge fan of. I love this thing! Its got text messages, picture sending and a full touch screen!

  86. Really hard information to collect the details..I am also Using the Landline,Mobile Phone..I got my Nokia Mobile Last Month it has many features..I never saw it in other Mobiles..I used the site mobileunlocksolutions for the Unlocking process.

  87. Very nice to read this article. Thanks for sharing this informations. Like the same unlocking a nokia is very easy. U can get the free unlock codes from unlock free

  88. Hi, I was just farting around Boing Boing Gadgets, enjoying the fine work over there. I think it is the finest example of science & technology towards the 21’st century.

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