Thank You For Taking My Slack

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Last night "Bob Dobbs" prank-called Ted Koppel, live, to deliver a peculiar set of blackout instructions. In a refreshing change from other recent media pranks, Howard Stern was never invoked.

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  1. I guess saying your name is Bob Dobbs gives you a better chance of getting through than claiming to be Eris Discordia.

  2. Gee, I didn’t realize Koppel was such a bonehead. Thank You, Jesse, and Thank You, Reason!

  3. Ted couldn’t tell this bullshitter from all the rest of them he talks to.

  4. There’s no one easier to bullshit than a bullshitter.

  5. It’s spelled “Bob” you goddamn pinks.

  6. I just couldn’t believe the audacity of it.

    And the fact that he had them convinced that he was a SOMEBODY.

    “I don’t think you’re listening to me Ted.” I think that was my favorite part.

  7. HA HA HA HA HA,
    Ever since 911 I can’t take the spewing heads during a major news event, so I missed this. Thank you for bringing it to me.

    Jesse you rock!

  8. Were there no funny prank calls from yesterday?

  9. This morning on CNN, the anchorwoman was chatting with a Con Edison representative who said the power would be back on in 3-5 hours. Then he said “Will you bang Howard Stern?”

    A “Con” indeed.

  10. When we hear the familiar “babba booey” we know the news is fake. But what happens when we don’t hear it? I especially liked the beauty and the beast in the subway tunnels reference.

    In order to be first, broadcast news doesn’t care if its wrong.

  11. Thank you for appreciating my call!

    You all have echoed many of my feelings. I despise live TV coverage and feel obligated to “reach out and touch someone”. It’s easy to get on. I figured the door would be closed thanks to all the disciples of Stern et al, but I just called the ABC number given out by directory assistance. I told them the reporter who was currently speaking had told me to call them. They transferred me several times, and after sitting on hold for an hour I was live with Ted. I don’t think he was catching on.

    I’m glad to see people were catching on to some of the more subtle comments. I mumbled that stuff so Koppel wouldn’t take notice. Lucky for me he wasn’t paying attention at all. The networks will do anything to get the scoop, including taking a risk with a caller with no credentials to back up his claims. Eris inspires me to fuck with the facade of modern media.

  12. There’s no “facade of modern media.” It’s simply human beings trying to communicate information to other human beings — in this case, during a time when information was crucial and important.

    You hindered that process. You got in the way. You didn’t provide some sort of useful service in the name of postmodernity; you’re just an asshole who hasn’t learned how to be a grown-up yet.

    In that sense, you’re no better than a computer hacker or a kid who dials 911 because it’s “funny”: You disrupt the important communication of adults. And because of that, you suck.

  13. Yeah, gee, really funny when people abuse the trust of other people. Hilarious.

  14. Anal? No, what’s anal is contorting oneself to come up with convoluted ways to justify abusing the trust of others.

  15. Seems to me that’s rather CREATIVE. Anal retentives have a hard time being creative.

  16. (Let’s do that again.)

    Seems to me that such contorted convolutions to earn a buck are rather the expressions of A CREATIVE MIND.

    This ? as opposed to the dull, static, lack of creativity (and imagination) on the part of anal retentives.

  17. This …

    “contorting oneself to come up with convoluted ways to justify abusing the trust of others”

    … was intended to apply to the poster “Bruce.” Not to the person who made the phone call.

    Anal retentiveness is a red herring in all this anyway, a red herring introduced by “Bruce.”

  18. That so, Chris! And how, pray tell, does “Bruce” abuse the trust of others?

  19. Calling it a “media culture” is simply a way of describing how you observe the bigger picture from a distance.

    In the simple context of two human beings interacting one-on-one — a guy named Bob and a guy named Ted Koppel — Bob acted like a jerk.

    He says he did it to “fuck with the facade of modern media.” That’s not what he did. What he did was abuse the trust of another human. It just happened to be in front of an audience. And because that audience exists — because there is what you call a “media culture” — you and others here seem to think it’s OK.

  20. Maybe ‘Chris’ isn’t his real name – could be Ted?

    Someone sounds a tad bit bitter…

  21. So the media doesn’t abuse the trust of other human beings — abuse our trust — when they “report” that gasoline tanks on trucks can explode spontaneously, and actually show you rigged video footage in the process!? (BOGUS STORY.)

    The media doesn’t abuse our trust when they “report” that army generals gassed thousands of innocent Vietnamese!? (BOGUS STORY.)

    The media doesn’t abuse our trust when they “report” that coalition troops point their guns at innocent Iraqis!? (BOGUS STORY.)

    On and on and on . . . Not to even mention how the New York Times abuses our trust, our how CNN abuses our trust, along with the entire network alphabet soup, including NPR.

    Give me a fricking break!

    With champions like “Bob” on the scene, the media gets exactly what it deserves once in a while. I only regret that the “Bobs” of the world don’t do this more often.

    THANK YOU, “BOB!”

  22. I have been waiting for two days for someone to make this most obvious of retorts. Congratulations, “spinfree.”

    However, you’re implying that what Bob did somehow mitigates or counteracts what you perceive to be an abuse of trust by the media. When in fact, at best he simply added another layer of mistrust to the whole scenario.

    ABC may abuse the trust of its viewers; Bob certainly abused the trust of ABC and viewers.

    What Bob did was wrong. It’s not to be applauded.

  23. Well, you only beat me to the punch by posting just before I was about to add a significant PS.

    And that is that at least “Bob” — during his spoofing — kept referring viewers/listeners to his website:
    http://www.thankyoufortakingmycall.com

    He did this several times throughout the prank — at least 3 times, if I counted correctly. So in that sense, Bob devised his own “retraction” of sorts. We were NOT deceived, because the minute we accessed his website, we could clearly see that it was a prank.

    The immediacy of such a “retraction” is important, laudible, and if I might say, all-American.

    However, can you say as much for the network alphabet soup? Is there EVER a retraction on their part from their scheming, sinister, bogus reportage? I can’t recall any. Only goes to show that their intentions are obviously TO DELIBERATELY DECEIVE.

    Contrast that to “Bob’s,” whose intentions are to deliberately make you laugh while having all his cards on the table.

  24. whose intentions are to deliberately make you laugh

    But of course, there was nothing intrinsically funny about the call itself. Removed from its context — the abuse of trust where we normally don’t see trust abused — it wouldn’t have made anyone “laugh” at all. Its context is the only thing that made it “funny.”

    Most of us adults would like our news delivered without bozos jumping in and getting in the way, thanks so much. If viewers wanted to watch a circus, we’d tune in to cartoons at that hour instead of Ted Koppel.

    I don’t like things that impede the flow of communication, or make the world spin less efficiently, or make life more confusing. Maybe you do. Maybe that’s why you liked Bob’s phone call, and why I thought it was disgusting. You actually want it to happen “more often.” You want the presentation of information by adults to other adults to turn into some kind of postmodern hall of mirrors.

    Talk about a facade of modern media.

    I’m sure Bob fancies himself as just hee-lar-ious. He’ll likely never understand why he not only isn’t funny, but is dangerous.

    As for his hawking the web site: It’s awfully generous to describe that as a “retraction.” Which is why it’s a good thing you kept quote marks around the word.

  25. Chris,

    You’re missing the point that the alleged human whose trust was abused was Ted Koppel. The whole point of this stunt was to demonstrate the humorless, non-critically thinking nature of the average media talking head, as represented by Koppel. The fact that Koppel was suckered by such a scam made “Bob’s” point.

  26. Hey, Chris, I tune in to ABC, NBC, CBS, and CNN all the time as a “viewer wanting to watch a circus.”

  27. “the abuse of trust where we normally don’t see trust abused –“ ??

    By WHICH media?

    You couldn’t be serious!

    (Either that, or you’re not writing from this planet.)

  28. Removed from its context, no form of humor would make us laugh at all. Context is the only thing that makes it funny. (Duh!)

  29. “Most of us adults would like our news delivered without bozos jumping in and getting in the way … I don’t like things that impede the flow of communication”

    Yup, Chris Ratchet, we definitely see the symptoms of sphincter muscle contractions here. But don’t worry, there is a cure (heh-heh.)

    By the way, you aren’t by chance related to a certain nurse we know, are you?

  30. I still think “Bob” was telling the truth.

  31. “Most of us adults would like our news delivered without bozos jumping in and getting in the way … I don’t like things that impede the flow of communication”

    Like network news bozos and prefab ideological filters?

    I heard this same prank retailed over the Chicago radio stations, and I just about crashed my car laughing at how stupid anyone could be, to believe that a website called thankyoufortakingmycall would be an outlet for emergency information. I didn’t even have to dial it up to know someone had pranked somebody in the incestuous media chain and it had spread like the virus it was.

    Gimme a break. If the Koppels of the world weren’t so puffed up with self-importance they might recognize a joke when it bites them on the ass.

  32. Good Lord, there are some comprehension problems around here.

    I didn’t say “Bruce” abuses the trust of others. I said he justifies it.

    Let’s replay this whole deal:

    * There was a post about “Bob” pranking Ted Koppel on national TV.
    * I wrote that such pranking abuses the trust of others.
    * “Bruce” responded by justifying the pranking, and calling me anal rententive.
    * I wrote that true anal-retentiveness was doing what Bruce did — justifying the pranking.

    You get it now? “Bob” abuses the trust of others; “Bruce” justifies it. Bruce and I were having a nice and simple “You are”/”No, you are!” moment, and you got yourself all confused.

  33. Chris,

    Yeah, I’m with you all the way, man. There is no such thing as media culture, just honest transfers of information from people who take important stuff, like, SERIOUSLY.

    Thank God we’ve got human beings in the media trying to communicate important information to us other humans about Shandra Levy, Robert Blake, Elizabeth Smart, Laci Peterson, Kobe Bryant, etc. And when we move from the human side of things to the “hard” news, thank God we’ve got video feed of a guy standing in front of a building to establish the proper atmosphere to tell us he has no new information. Let’s give thanks, too, for the foreign correspondents who write copy in their hotel rooms from government or U.S. embassy handouts, and for the majority of column inches taken up by material generated by corporate and government PR departments. It’s all just information changing hands.

    The corporate media whores are all about information. Because they CARE, you know. Just like the guy who says “Take your $50 off the dresser and get the hell out–I’m done wit ya” really loves you. Really.

  34. Anytime someone can stick a balloon on the prick that is Ted Koppel, I say buy that man (or woman) a round. Hell, buy ’em two!

  35. who’s ted kopple?

  36. Dear Recipient,

    Just as the title of this corriel has it, it comes your way via both Howard Stern and the Google search engine. First, Google’s Advanced Search option was selected. Second, “Howard Stern” was entered in the “with all the words” field; then, “Kobe Bryant” was entered in the “with the exact phrase” field. Third, the “20 results” option was selected, followed by clicking on “Google Search”. And that’s how I came across the website that references your e-mail address.

    Maybe, you might to repeat the same procedure for yourself just to determine the truth of the matter. Oh, yes, as for the “Kobe” note, here goes:

    The website, to which I contribute articles, has an interesting feature. If not encouraged, readers are allowed to append comments to those articles. For some unholy reason, I seem to attract more than my due share of derogatory comments. There is one comment I found rather striking. “Hello,” I thought to myself, “what’s this? … perhaps, snarl of a gutter snipe”.

    By the way, you may remember a previous courriel of mine. With it, I hoped to draw your attention to my article, dealing with the case of Kobe Bryant. Anyway, I was about to dismiss that particular comment as a pathetic imitation of some rap or hip-hop lyric. But then, I noticed the comment was at once both succinct and powerful, exactly the qualities of true poetry.

    Suddenly, my eyes were opened. And I saw my article in a vastly different light. If you would, please spare a moment or two to peruse that comment. Oh, yes, you’ll have to scroll down a bit, after clicking on this hyperlink: Kobe proved it.
    warm regards

    A Alexander “Bogey” Stella

    ——————————————————————————–

  37. Dear Recipient,

    Just as the title of this corriel has it, it comes your way via both Howard Stern and the Google search engine. First, Google’s Advanced Search option was selected. Second, “Howard Stern” was entered in the “with all the words” field; then, “Kobe Bryant” was entered in the “with the exact phrase” field. Third, the “20 results” option was selected, followed by clicking on “Google Search”. And that’s how I came across the website that references your e-mail address.

    Maybe, you might to repeat the same procedure for yourself just to determine the truth of the matter. Oh, yes, as for the “Kobe” note, here goes:

    The website, to which I contribute articles, has an interesting feature. If not encouraged, readers are allowed to append comments to those articles. For some unholy reason, I seem to attract more than my due share of derogatory comments. There is one comment I found rather striking. “Hello,” I thought to myself, “what’s this? … perhaps, snarl of a gutter snipe”.

    By the way, you may remember a previous courriel of mine. With it, I hoped to draw your attention to my article, dealing with the case of Kobe Bryant. Anyway, I was about to dismiss that particular comment as a pathetic imitation of some rap or hip-hop lyric. But then, I noticed the comment was at once both succinct and powerful, exactly the qualities of true poetry.

    Suddenly, my eyes were opened. And I saw my article in a vastly different light. If you would, please spare a moment or two to peruse that comment. Oh, yes, you’ll have to scroll down a bit, after clicking on this hyperlink: Kobe proved it.

    Oh, swell, likely enough, you’ll have to click on my name.
    warm regards

    A Alexander “Bogey” Stella

    ——————————————————————————–

  38. thanx to “Bob Dobbs” 🙂
    Sites Collection

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