Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week

Tag: hoax

The “New Paws” Hoax: How alt-right trolls piled on a disabled man to boost their failing careers.

by Patch O'Furr

A shocking accident.

In 2015 I met a furry who joined furmeets I organize in Northern California. He’s bright, enthusiastic and fun to host. It was a shock when he posted on Facebook about suffering an accident. There were graphic medical photos of extreme frostbite caused by dry ice.

Welp, I’m in the hospital with a life changing situation. It was my own damn fault. Been pushing myself so hard for so long, sleep deprived, pushing myself with arthritis in my wrists. Basically I fell asleep while icing my wrists last night. Woke up 6 hours later, hands were frozen. Went to the hospital, they care flighted me to a burn center in California. It was too late, damage had been done, it’s resulting in a bilateral hand amputation so things are about to get very interesting in my life. I’m doing ok, remaining optimistic. Honestly I’m anxious to get it over with and move on with my life.

To help with costs of hand amputations, one of his co-workers started a crowdfund. I shared it on Twitter, and added a light-hearted comment about helping him to get “new paws” with an article I wrote 6 years ago: Scaly, feathery alternative limbs leap the uncanny valley into the future of prosthetic design (2013). It was about improving the lives of amputees. Instead of hiding prosthetics, they can be featured, like transforming scars with cool tattoos.

I commented about “new paws” before I saw anyone else say it. The crowdfund was his co-workers idea. Those ideas didn’t come from him.

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The “fur died at Pulse” claim was a hoax for attention, and here’s how the troll did it.

by Patch O'Furr

After the shooting tragedy at Pulse in Orlando, claims came out that a fellow furry named “Kodakoda Coyote” was among the victims.  I thought, how sad… people need to hear.  I did basic checking and saw a FurAffinity account for that name.  There was no content but the name was 4 years old and not obviously recent. It was filling with comments of sympathy from other furs.

The original claims came from two places at the same time.  (1) A tweet from “SebastianLoFR” and (2) a Reddit comment from “Deg The Wolf“. Both seemed to be established accounts from separate people.

I took the bait like a dummy.  The “Kodakoda” story went out in record time for this site.  It got a lot of sharing. I doggedly repeated the two-source thing for a bit.  The sympathy came before I posted, but my article spread the hoax a little – thanks for taking me to school, all of you.

SebastianLoFR was called out for being shifty.  He put out an incredibly stupid cover story that he got “trolled” from a 4-hour-old account “EOStudlover”.  (Hmm, who made that?)  After a while, tweets and accounts were deleted.

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Anniversary of the New Jersey FurBQ Hoax – this bullshit cost $185,000.

by Patch O'Furr

Update: read to bottom for new details of the $185,000 cost!

Remember this sad thing? On May 26, 2012, the final New Jersey FurBQ was held for nearly 200 attendees.  It ended seven years of a party loved by a community of friends.  But it didn’t just die – it was killed with controversy and nasty headlines.  The truth was buried under biased and false reporting.

It’s a tale of intolerance and ridicule. Misinformation and dishonesty. Exploiting and scapegoating.  Shaming and moralizing against “offenses” like having fun and serving alcohol to adults over 21.  A fake sex scandal, that provoked our own anti-sex hysteria. Beneath it all, dirty town politics.

They said they had photos of two costumers doing “simulated” public sex. Everyone freaked out and pointed at each other – but it was a wild rumor. The accusations failed burden of proof.  Accusers are responsible to give evidence, but they failed to produce photos or even names, when harm made it critical to be fair.   I say if it happened, we’d at least know names.  If you’re a furry, you know how rumors go. Sure, evidence could have been held for confidentiality – but there’s no credibility for that. Photos didn’t just fail to exist – there were extra allegations of lying, a money incentive, and an unreasonable rush to judgement that was too perfectly provoked. It’s way past time to call it a HOAX. This may be the first headline to do it. (I found support from this DJ who was there.)
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