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Kaycee Nicole Hoax

Page history last edited by PBworks 13 years, 11 months ago

About the Kaycee Nicole hoax:

 

Kaycee Nicole started out as a created persona from a teenaged girl. It was probably an attempt to make herself look just a little better than life.

 

The really twisted part of this saga is that at some point, Kaycee's persona was taken over by the girl's mother, who eventually faked Kaycee's cancer and death.

 

It caused a lot of problems, because the people on the other end of the modem really believed Kaycee existed. They had emailed, read her journal and site, cried at learning of her 'illness' and grieved her death.

 

How utterly betrayed they were.

 

It's one thing to go online and not give your name, show your picture, not give your number out etc. It's okay to use a nickname or some other name you just like to have. Sometimes, under certain circumstances, it's okay to pretend you're something you're not, that's how kiddy porn sites get busted and shut down.

 

But headgaming people by pretending to be somebody dying of an illness, or some other really tragic thing that actually causes others to weep over your sad experience, when none of the such happened, 'slimy' doesn't go far enough in describing how low down that is.

 

Chain mail often does the same thing, only not quite to the extent as the Kaycee Nicole hoaxter did. It's just sick. Infuriating how social parasites can get away with so much.

 

Links from the Kaycee-Nicole Yahoogroup page:

 

Kaycee Nicole FAQ Detailed accounting of the affair from start to finish. If you're writing a story on Kaycee, start here. The Kuro5hin story is more detailed and accurate, though, and this FAQ has come under fire for taking conjecture and assumption as fact. http://rootnode.org/article.php?sid=26DanHartung

 

"Kaycee"/Swenson Family/Julie Photo Archive If you have more photos to add, please send them to caren@blueeyes.co.uk http://www.simplycaren.net/kcsimplycaren

 

CollegeClub Photo Album Photo Album belonging to Kaycee at CC.com http://www.collegeclub.com/f/d.asp?u=http%3A%2F%2Fphotos%2Ecollegeclub%2Ecom%2Fj%2FLogin%3FUser%3DKutebabe%40collegeclub%2Ecomsimplycaren

 

CollegeClub Terms of Use For reference. http://www.collegeclub.com/about_us/channelarticle.asp?id=42&article_id=34441DanHartung

 

Debbie's Final Post BWG has left her final blog post as the only remnant of the two weblogs he hosted. http://vanderwoning.com/living/mblog.shtmlDanHartung

 

Debbie's Return? No proof yet, but it does sound like something she could have written. Maybe she'll try to explain herself more in the future. http://livingcolours.blogspot.comDanHartung

 

Deconstructing Kaycee A psychologist's take http://psychcentral.com/blogs/kaycee.htmacridrabbit

 

Gracemont High School Girl's Basketball Team Photos of the Gracemont High School Girl's Basketball Team maintained by the Swensons. These photos helped track down the name of Julie Fullbright via the team roster. http://www.geocities.com/SunsetStrip/Frontrow/3838/gracemont/index.htmlnightngle

 

Halcyon's Kaycee Flash Last year, Halcyon created this little cartoon to introduce people to Kaycee. http://www.prehensile.com/loves/kaycee/kaycee.htmDanHartung

 

Host of Kaycee's Blog Apologizes Direct link to Randall van der Woning's apology. Randall goes by the moniker "bwg". http://www.vanderwoning.com/mess.shtmlDanHartung

 

KCsCoolMom page at College Club Debbie created this page in the persona of Kaycee's mother. http://home.collegeclub.com/KCsCoolMom/allstar.htmlDanHartung

 

Kaycee Geocities page Part of a site apparently set up by Kelli's father. Not linked to from main site. http://www.geocities.com/SunsetStrip/Frontrow/3838/kc.htmlDanHartung

 

Kaycee Nicole: Internet Hoax A list of links to articles and other resources, put together by About's Chatting Online Guide, Julie Martin. http://chatting.about.com/library/blkaycee.htmjournalistic...

 

Kaycee's College Club Page Original Webpage at College Club since ca. 1998 http://home.collegeclub.com/kutebabeDanHartung

 

Kaycee's Photo Double From the evidence, it appears that the photos passed off as Kaycee were of Gracemont basketball star Julie Fullbright. http://sports.snu.edu/players/Basketball/women/Julie_Fullbright/DanHartung

 

Kaycee: Faking Life and Death Online? An online community is devastated to find out that a friend they have followed for several months was not real, but a made up persona. Find out more about the story of Kaycee Nicole and how to keep yourself safe when pursuing online relationships. http://netconference.about.com/internet/netconference/library/weekly/aa052201a.htmKutebabe

 

(Kaycee) College Club Profile Sketchy personal information here. http://www.collegeclub.com/userprofile/asp_profiledetail.asp?CCSection=MatchU&userid=10000000260545DanHartung

 

Lies Online About's Chatting Online Guide, Julie Martin (not Fullbright), covers the story of Debbie's confession. http://chatting.about.com/library/weekly/aa052101a.htmjournalistic...

 

Lies Online II About's Chatting Online Guide, Julie Martin, shares some new answers. http://chatting.about.com/library/weekly/aa052301a.htmjournalistic...

 

MIRROR of many Kaycee sites Christine is compiling a mirror of whatever she can, before they're taken down. http://www.strangecat.org/kaycee/DanHartung

 

MIRROR: Logboy's Archive Includes mirrors of the MeFi threads, Debbie's final posting, as well as a chatroom. http://www.logboy.com/jr/main.aspDanHartung

 

MIRROR: SimplyCaren's collection of Kaycee images Some are mirrored from the various Kaycee websites, others come from third-party sources. The most complete collection of images of "Kaycee" or as we now suspect Julie Fullbright. http://www.simplycaren.net/kc/DanHartung

 

More pictures from Kaycee Some pictures of interiors and landscapes that are stored on Kaycee's MSN community page. http://content.communities.msn.com/isapi/fetch.dll?action=get_album&ID_Community=KCruisin&ID_Topic=1y6y6y6 DanHartung

 

Munchausen By Internet article Munchausen's syndrome (faking illness in self or others) in internet forums http://healtheoffice.com/munchausen_by_internet.htmDanHartung

 

New York Times article on College Club Quotes a Kaycee Swenson. Appeared to help establish her bona fides at the time. ("channel" free ride doesn't work.) http://www.nytimes.com/library/tech/00/08/circuits/articles/10dorm.htmlDanHartung

 

Possibly a photo Debbie From http://www.vanderwoning.ca/archives/2001may20.html#scam http://www.vanderwoning.ca/images/KCmom.jpgcaptcrackpipe

 

Swenson Family Page Switchboard page for Debbie Swenson and family. Only shows two children, Kelli and Bryan, who do match information given in "Kaycee's" blog. http://home.switchboard.com/swensonupdatesDanHartung

 

Tazwoman page at College Club Peter was an online friend of "Kaycee". Some high-quality pictures here. http://home.collegeclub.com/Tazwoman/DanHartung

 

the e-mail of kaycee nicole Collection of e-mail sent by kaycee during '98 through 2000, includes her collegeclub host application and many personal messages. http://www.mojofat.com/kayceepoorbob

 

Blog Post-Mortems Responses by various webloggers to the situation after it became clear Kaycee was a hoax.DaveNet: Faking a Death Online Dave Winer's response to the brouhaha. A concise summary of events. Compares public reaction with 1938 Halloween War of the Worlds broadcast. http://davenet.userland.com/2001/05/20/fakingADeathOnlineDanHartung

 

Deconstructing Kaycee John Grohol, net.personality in the psychology arena, analyzes the Kaycee creation ... and creator. http://psychcentral.com/blogs/kaycee.htmDanHartung

 

Derek Powazek post His perspective on online communities has been jolted by this situation. Several interesting additional posts by readers. http://www.powazek.com/zoom/log/archive/00000058.shtmlDanHartung

 

Halcyon Radio Show 5/23 Halcyon hosts an internet radio show every Wednesday. This is the first post-hoax show. Several of the people who were duped and who helped uncover the hoax call in. One hour; Windows Media Player required. http://img2.com/asx/firstluuuv05-23-01.asxDanHartung

 

Halcyon: Hoax John Styn was perhaps the most well-known of the online friends of "Kaycee". (He won a Webby.) His thoughts on the aftermath are here. Previous posts on Kaycee are also available in his archives. http://cockywrds.diaryland.com/010520_63.htmlDanHartung

 

Kaya, Kaycee and Me E-mail post-mortem between Jim "Kaya" Styn and Jimformation. http://www.jimformation.com/misc/kaya.htmDanHartung

 

Kristin Thomas: Tell me what hospital she's in One doubter explains why -- and why it matters that we trust each other online http://www.sperare.com/archives/may01/20may01.htmlDanHartung

 

More on Debbie Swenson Personal thoughts on the Kaycee hoax. http://bonni.net/blog/archives/00000025.htmlalicorna

 

Steven Den Beste: Trust Online Thoughts compiled after the hoax became clear. http://home.san.rr.com/denbeste/trust.htmlDanHartung

 

Tranquileye: The Kaycee Effect Reflections on the Kaycee hoax. http://tranquileye.com/kaycee/jamesapatten

 

Doubts and Discussions From September, 2000 there were scattered instances of skeptical posts. (Many times these were drowned out by people defending "Kaycee".) The final chorus of inquiry started with Kristin at Threewayaction, moved to Becky's blog, then when "Kaycee" died to Headspace, and acridrabbit posted the Headspace to Metafilter. The Metafilter discussion spawned a weekend-long investigation, which led to the exposure.

 

Becky Says entry on Kaycee. Becky first raised doubts about the Kaycee construct in February (!), three months before her "death". http://becky-says.diaryland.com/20010520.html DanHartung

 

Becky-Says Aftermath The explanation of why and how this all got started http://becky-says.diaryland.com/20010523.htmlanywherebeyond

 

Discussion on Beth/Xeney's forum The discussion spills over from the blogger world to the on-line journallers world. http://www.greenspun.com/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id=005H0yacridrabbit

 

Halcyon Board (9/2000) Cockybastard's discussion board introduced many people to Kaycee here. Doubts were posted (2nd page, end), and Kaycee was defended (3rd page, top: bwg). http://www.teacosy.net/ubb/Forum6/HTML/000018.htmlDanHartung

 

Headspace 5/17 Headspace raises questions in an elliptical, satirical format, suggesting BWG is the author of both weblogs. http://www.anywherebeyond.com/2001/0501/051701.htmlDanHartung

 

Headspace 5/18 Headspace admits previous post was about Kaycee and BWG, further detailing case. Sparked initial MeFi thread. http://www.anywherebeyond.com/2001/0501/051801.htmlDanHartung

 

Headspace 5/20 Final Headspace post on Kaycee, after brouhaha broke. http://www.anywherebeyond.com/2001/0501/052001.htmlDanHartung

 

Metafilter Thread #0 September, 2000 thread promoting Kaycee's blog. Skeptics and cynics abounded, even then: there was much acrimony. Perfectly illustrates the divisive effect of Munchausen by Internet (see that article) on a virtual community. http://www.metafilter.com/comments.mefi/3259DanHartung

 

Metafilter Thread #1 Does Kaycee Exist? Thread 285K http://www.metafilter.com/comments.mefi/7819DanHartung

 

Metafilter Thread #2 Kaycee Was a Hoax Thread, after BWG Posts Disclaimer 300K http://www.metafilter.com/comments.mefi/7841DanHartung

 

Metafilter Thread #3 BWG Removes Blog, Apologizes http://www.metafilter.com/comments.mefi/7856DanHartung

 

Threewayaction: November 2000 Skepticism Kristin posted some pointed opinions in the Threewayaction forum in November, during a conversation about the EverQuest guide-suicide hoax. http://www.threewayaction.com/ubb/Forum14/HTML/000041.htmlDanHartung

 

Wunderblog 5/18 Snarky journal-critiquer takes on the Kaycee situation. Helped focus attention on inconsistencies. Don't miss the comment threads. http://heliophobic.net/wunderblog/archives/00000097.shtmlDanHartung

 

Wunderblog 5/18 2 Follow-up anonymous e-mail posted. http://heliophobic.net/wunderblog/archives/00000100.shtmlDanHartung

 

Wunderblog 5/18 3 More snarky comments on people who were honestly mourning Kaycee. Links to other discussion boards. http://heliophobic.net/wunderblog/archives/00000101.shtmlDanHartung

 

Media Coverage Links to articles about the hoax A painful affair of the Internet heart MSNBC article about the hoax not 100% up to date, but good info on gift-giving aspects http://msnbc.com/news/576899.asp?cp1=1DanHartung

 

Australian IT: Tell Someone Who Cares Article about blogging. Mentions several Aussie blogs, brief mention of Kaycee at end. http://australianit.news.com.au/common/storyPage/0,3811,2032359^501,00.htmlDanHartung

 

Corriere della Sera "Sono malata grande truffa su I" Italian News Coverage; cred to MetaFilter http://www.corriere.it/Primo_Piano/Cronache/05_Maggio/24/truffa.shtmlanywherebeyond

 

Dan Gillmor: Did Kaycee Live, or Die? First professional journalist to address the story, in his weblog. Very brief. http://web.siliconvalley.com/content/sv/2001/05/20/opinion/dgillmor/weblog/index.htmDanHartung

 

Fox News Network: "Girl Alive and Well..." Focuses mostly on Julie and Debbie, similar to the Eagle's story http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,25662,00.htmlanywherebeyond

 

Fraude na Rede Brazilian coverage of the story, w/ links to the MeFi Faq http://www.no.com.br/servlets/newstorm.notitia.apresentacao.ServletDeNoticia?codigoDaNoticia=21877&dataDoJornal=atualanywherebeyond

 

Girl's illness was web hoax Regionally-circulating AP wire story. Also picked up by FOXNews.com. http://cjonline.com/stories/052601/kan_webhoax.shtmlDanHartung

 

Inside: Webloggers Cope With Death, Denial The first real press story. May 21 afternoon. http://www.inside.com/page/page_display?process=StoryInsideDope&sub_process=cda.story&process_right=com.inside.cda.insidedope.InsideDopeRight&article_id=31316DanHartung

 

Italia Online "Impossibile visualizzare la persona" More Italian coverage http://scanali:sc2k!@stage-canali.iol.it/societa/primopiano.htmlanywherebeyond

 

Kaycee's Story (Local TV Coverage) KWCH-TV interviews Debbie, Julie, and devastated online friend (no video here, sorry) http://www.kwch.com/MGBGK4ZN3NC.htmlDanHartung

 

Kaycee's tear-jerking 'blog' was all online bilge Australian I.T. magazine http://it.mycareer.com.au/news/2001/06/05/FFXU2YJ4JNC.htmlanywherebeyond

 

Kur05hin: The Life and Death of a False Warrior Very detailed and accurate in its timeline. Marred by some guffaws from the peanut gallery in the chat section. http://www.kuro5hin.org/?op=displaystory&sid=2001/5/22/11120/1650DanHartung

 

MSNBC Front Page exposure Screenshot of the MSNBC front page with Kaycee Hoax coverage http://www.openwire.com/collections/Refs/kaycee_msnbcfront.jpgfooljay

 

Medica Guardian - UK A well written piece about the hoax, and the problem of online identity verification http://www.mediaguardian.co.uk/mediaguardian/story/0,7558,497418,00.htmlnightngle

 

Minneapolis Star - Tribune Article Their take on the situation http://www.startribune.com/viewers/qview/cgi/qview.cgi?story=84240541&timmopussycat (Link messed up, no other link found to work.)

 

Netslaves: Kaycee Nicole Rests in Pieces Netslaves offers its wry take on the proceedings. http://www.netslaves.com/comments/990564969.shtmlDanHartung

 

New York Times Coverage We've hit the bigtime, boys. http://www.nytimes.com/2001/05/31/technology/31HOAX.htmltweebiscuit

 

Oklahoman: Victim puts face on hoax Story from Julie Fullbright's perspective (as the woman in the photos used to portray "Kaycee"). See other link for photo. http://www.oklahoman.com/cgi-bin/show_article?ID=690065&TP=getarticle DanHartung

 

Peabody Gazette Follow-up article about FBI investigation. Includes picture of Debbie with her son and Julie. http://www.peabodykansas.com/23hoax.htmlnightngle

 

Peabody, KS Newspaper article Hometown newspaper of the Swenson's. Includes quote from Debbie. http://www.peabodykansas.com/21nichole.htmljennak1202

 

RWC Activist "Life and death..." http://rwcactivist.com/main.cfm?include=detail&storyid=77891anywherebeyond

 

Seattle Post Intelligencer Same story as the NY Times http://seattlep-i.nwsource.com/national/25411_hoax31.shtmlanywherebeyond

 

Suck.Com "Hit and Run" Umm, pretty much what you'd expect from Suck http://www.suck.com/daily/2001/05/24/1.htmlanywherebeyond

 

The sad yet Untrue Story of Kaycee Jon Carroll defends Debbie and her creation http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2001/06/05/DD140021.DTLanywherebeyond

 

Web community fooled by cancer victim hoax Hong Kong paper writes about hoax; interviews BWG (van der Woning). Also, states BWG was going to fly to US from Hong Kong only days after Kaycee "died." USERID: metafilter PASS: filter http://technology.scmp.com/ZZZ71F5UTMC.htmljennak1202

 

Wichita Eagle: "Girl's Leukemia A Fraud..." Mostly about Julie and Debbie; comments on whether charges will be filed http://web.wichitaeagle.com/content/wichitaeagle/2001/05/25/kansas/0525hoax_txt.htmanywherebeyond

 

Wired News - "They Think They Feel Your Pain" a very good article exploring the Munchausen angle, mentions the "Kaycee" hoax and includes other similar cases. http://www.wirednews.com/news/medtech/0,1286,44245,00.htmlnightngle

 

Members Websites Miscellany Related, ancillary material. Brill's Parody Cover A parody of the Brill's content

cover with Matt Haughey. Pokes fun at the investigative zeal of the Metafilter community. http://www.hijinks.com/~mark/brills.htmlDanHartung

 

College Club Meltdown Live As the original business burned, some ex-employees fiddled. http://www.spies.com/~gus/ran/0006/cclive.htmDanHartung

 

See Summer Swing Dance An online tribute to Summer Brannin, a 21 year old cancer victim who went skyward in 1998. There's a charity record called Songs For Summer you can check out and be sure that a worthy cause (Free Arts For Abused Children) will benefit. If that's not relevant enough to be a link on this page, in a strange coincidence, she knew John Halcyon. http://www.thesummersite.comsongsforsummer

 

Other Hoaxes Stories about other instances of hoaxing or identity shifting.

 

A Rape in Cyberspace Seminal 1993 Julian Dibble piece in Village Voice about Mr. Bungle's virtual misbehavior on LambaMOO (an online game/community) http://www.levity.com/julian/bungle.htmlDanHartung

 

Anandtech Hoax A poster on Anandtech created a female persona out of curiosity, then "married" her, then "killed" her in a car accident. Questions were raised, and he could not sustain the charade. http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/6/19045.htmlDanHartung

 

Arbeit Mach Fraud: the Wilkomski Affair New Republic book review concerning the story of a man who wrote an acclaimed Holocaust-survivor account (Fragments) that was later proven to be completely fraudulent. It is still considered moving writing, but due in no small part to the efforts of Holocaust deniers, truthfulness is very important in this topic. http://www.tnr.com/043001/alter043001.htmlDanHartung

 

Ben Brown Played Ben writes of an instant-messaging friend who repeatedly set up, then blew off, meetings with him. http://benbrown.com/daily/cds.cgi?c=2000/05/03DanHartung

 

Identity and Deception in the Virtual Community Academic paper from the MIT Media Lab. http://smg.media.mit.edu/people/Judith/Identity/IdentityDeception.htmlDanHartung

 

Jessa Journal Faked An early online-journal predecessor: Jessa admits in 1996 that she faked her journal and persona. http://toybox.groovegarden.com/jessa/journal/nov96/truth.htmlDanHartung

 

Kysa Braswell - Uncovered An expose on a hoax concerning a beautiful deaf girl w/ brain cancer. http://www.ratatak.com/mod.php?mod=userpage&menu=1100&page_id=5friendlyfascist

 

Life, Death & EverQuest A guide gets fired, commits suicide, is mourned, and then turns out never to have existed http://www.salon.com/tech/feature/2000/11/21/virtual_suicide/index.htmlDanHartung

 

This American Life: Hoaxing Yourself Episode focusing on situations where people were so far into fake situations they believed it themselves. http://www.thislife.org/pages/descriptions/00/155.htmlDanHartung

 

oZ diary hoax Another online-journal predecessor: close to 2 year diary purportedly written by a woman under the pseudonym "Ophelia Z", but in reality imagined by Ryan Ozawa, founder of Open Pages webring/Diarist.net http://www.geocities.com/Athens/6666/Diary/diary.htmlbigfattycoon

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