Ron Paul

Ron Paul Angers Some Fans By Using the Law–International Law, No Less–to Try to Get RonPaul.com Domain Name

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Recently retired Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) is being mocked as a hypocrite by those who live to mock him (such as Gawker) and attacked for turning his back on his own principles by some disillusioned fans, because he wants the current users of the the domain name RonPaul.com to give it to him.

What's more, he is willing to follow the procedures set by the governing body of Internet domain names, the procedures the domain name owners agreed to as part of their ownership of the name, to get it back when they informed Paul they wanted $250,000 for the name and its accompanying mailing list.

The lament of the current owners. Excerpt:

On May 1st, 2008 we launched a grassroots website at RonPaul.com that became one of the most popular resources dedicated exclusively to Ron Paul and his ideas. Like thousands of fellow Ron Paul supporters, we put our lives on hold and invested 5 years of hard work into Ron Paul, RonPaul.com and Ron Paul 2012. Looking back, we are very happy with what we were able to achieve with unlimited enthusiasm and limited financial resources.

Last month, after Ron Paul expressed regret on the Alex Jones show over not owningRonPaul.com…dozens of supporters urged us to contact Ron Paul to work out a deal….

The value we put on the deal was $250k; we are getting our mailing list appraised right now but we are confident it is easily worth more than $250k all by itself. Claims that we tried to sell Ron Paul "his name" for $250k or even $800k are completely untrue…

Their letter to Paul includes this offer:

That would include a copy of our 170,000 strong RonPaul.com email list; these supporters proactively signed up for our email updates, they expect and welcome frequent communications, and they are completely "untapped" in terms of donations. This means that you (and/or Campaign For Liberty) could easily make back the purchase price in a matter of days. Only you can put this list to its best possible use, which is why we'd include it as a free bonus with RonPaul.com.

Paul's letter to the World Intellectual Property Center Arbitration and Mediation Center, which argues that Paul has a legitimate, though non-registered, trademark in his name through his long time use of it in commerce, such as book sales.

It also argues the owners of the domain name took it in bad faith with the purpose of selling it, using as evidence two offers the RonPaul.com folk made to Paul to sell, one for $848,000 then the current offer of $250,000 plus throwing in RonPaul.org for free, though the actual offer in my reading is they are offering him RonPaul.org for free irrespective of him paying for RonPaul.com.

There is a point that the legal filings and press reports leave ambiguous, and my attempts to get clarification from the RonPaul.com folk has so far failed, but I'll update it as I learn more: while they write as if they are the domain name owners, they also say they didn't start operation until 2008, and the filings indicate the domain name has been registered since 2001 and that the respondents in his case are leasing it to a "third party for a fee."

The Gawker headline tries to get contemptuous laffs out of "Ron Paul Calls on United Nations (Which He Doesn't Believe In) to Confiscate RonPaul.com."

The RonPaul.com folks also play that card:

Instead of responding to our offer, making a counter offer, or even accepting our FREE gift of RonPaul.org, Ron Paul went to the United Nations and is trying to use its legal process related to domain name disputes to actively deport us from our domain names without compensation.

Below is a copy of Ron Paul's complaint and our original offer to Ron Paul. We have 20 days to prepare a response and we are tentatively looking for a lawyer to represent us in this case.

Hopefully it won't have to come to that!

What in the world is going on? ….now Ron Paul, the Internet grassroots candidate, who was at the right place at the right time to lead the rEVOLution, attacks his own grassroots supporters through an agency of the United Nations to deport them from their own domain names after 5 years of nothing but unlimited, unconditional support on our part?

The "United Nations" part is pure bad faith obfuscation to make Paul look bad in the (pretty irrelevant in this case) Court of Public Opinion. Paul is using the only procedure for redress his has, the procedure that the owners agreed to when they registered the name. It is not unlibertarian to use set agreed-on procedures for arbitration in property rights disputes.

What's really at issue (if anything is….) is using existing law –or on a higher level of abstraction, any existing government provided amenity at all–as a libertarian. It certainly delights non-libertarians to think all libertarians must eschew all the services the government has abrogated arrogated to itself to avoid hypocrisy, and refuse to try to get any return on the taxes mulcted from the libertarian, but few libertarians have felt the same. (Anarcho-Austrian economist Walter Block boldly argues that if you are using government largess in part to spread an anti-government message, you are more entitled to the government cash than a non-libertarian.) There is also the question, controversial among libertarians, as to whether a name is something one can even have a property right in. But control of a domain name in practice assuredly is.

I think evidence indicates Paul is likely mistaken on the facts–the history of the use of RonPaul.com could easily make an objective observer decide that their actions don't obviously provide the requisite "bad faith" for Paul to win. They ran this website for years which in practice promoted his candidacy and his ideas (and yes, sell some stuff), not just to make a quick buck selling it to him. They are offering to sell it to him because he declared that he wanted it.

Ought they, as true fans, give him what he asks for? Ought he, as a believer in property rights, recognize they have established lawful and proper ownership? Hell if I know and not up to me to decide. But there is nothing more sinister or hypocritical at stake than the usual problem of a libertarian in a statist world. And while I'm not a domain name law expert, it strikes me that the ICANN system of establishment of rights by the cyber equivalent of homesteading and then agreement to neutral arbitration about controversies is closer to the dream world of libertarian property ownership establishment and adjudication than anything else in this fallen world, and there is nothing inherently shameful in using it.

If you want to dig deep into the law and practice as it stands of celebrities and "cybersquatting," try here,here, and here. Excerpt from the last, from lawyer with the strangely appropriate to this controversy name Shelley Liberto:

Any person who registers a domain name that consists of the name of another living person, or a name substantially and confusingly similar thereto, without that person's consent, with the specific intent to profit from such name by selling the domain name for financial gain to that person or any third party, shall be liable in a civil action by such person.

…..In order to find liability, a plaintiff would have to prove that the registration of the domain name was made "with the specific intent to profit from such name by selling the domain name." The registrant's own "subjective intent" to profit from the sale of the domain name must be proved….

The violation of a person's individual name as opposed to a trademark also draws less penalty than an act of cybersquatting on someone's trademark. With respect to an individual's name, the aggrieved individual is entitled to an injunction ordering cancellation or transfer of the domain name, as well as costs and attorneys' fees. In the case of trademark cybersquatting, the plaintiff would be entitled to defendant's profits and up to three times provable damages. 

It is by no means cut and dried that Paul will win. Consider the case of Tupac, as discussed in a journal article from the Santa Clara Computer and High Technology Law Journal on cybersquatting:

In  The Estate of Tupac Shakur v. R.J. Barranco, the Panel sought to determine whether the domain names <tupac.net>  and<tupac.com>  were  registered  and  being  used  by  the  Respondent, Barranco,  in bad faith. Despite an obvious lack of trademark rights, Barranco  was,  nonetheless,  found  to  have  legitimate  rights  in  the domain  names  because  he  operated  a fan  site  with  information  on Tupac  Shakur,  offered  vanity  email  addresses  and  hosted advertisements  linking  to  officially  licensed  Tupac  Shakur merchandise. Even  though  the  Panel  found  that  the  common  law  trademark rights  in  'Tupac'  and  the  disputed  domain  names  were  "patently identical,"  "[t]he  evidence  clearly  establishe[d]  that  the Respondent does have some [legitimate]  rights" in the domain name.

Barranco,"for multiple years  extended  his time, money and effort providing  at no charge  a web site where he,  other fans  and the general  public may obtain  a variety  of possibly interesting  information  on Tupac Shakur, his music, poetry  and movies. The Panel found  it important  that the  site was  a free  forum where  fans  could discuss  the former  artist and  also  found  it  "significant  that  [Barranco's]  sites  have  clearly indicated an obvious link to the  'official  site,'  expressly disclaim[ing]any affiliation  or representation  of that site."  

…The  Panel  held  that  Barranco's  fan  site  was  not  operating  forcommercial  gain or with the intent to divert customers  or tarnish the 'Tupac'  mark.  Further, the Panel stated that holding otherwise would permit  "persons  in  the  position  of this  Claimant  to  unjustly  enrich themselves  by  confiscating  the  work  of  fans  and  admirers  in establishing  a web  site  supporting  their  favorite  artists  without  any opportunity  for  compensation." The  Panel  stated  that  the  entire dispute  was  a  result  of  "the  neglect  and/or  inattention  of  the Claimant,"  because  it failed to register the domain;  transfer  was thus refused based on the legitimate rights of Barranco.

From that same article, on the evidentiary hurdles Paul's challenge must clear:

The  bad  faith  element  attracts  the  most  attention,  as  Paragraph4(b)  of  the  UDRP [Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy]  is  dedicated  to  clarifying  what  constitutes registration  and use in bad faith.  Most cases  of 'true'  cybersquatting involve  "circumstances  indicating  that  [the  registrant  has]  acquired the domain primarily for the purpose  of selling, renting, or otherwise transferring the domain registration…  for valuable  consideration  in excess  of… documented  out-of-pocket  costs." Bad faith may also be shown when  a domain name is registered  "in  order to prevent the owner of the trademark  or service mark from reflecting the mark in a corresponding  domain" or "for the purpose of disrupting the business of a  competitor." Finally, attempts  to attract, for  commercial  gain, Internet  users  to  a particular  web  site  "by  creating  a  likelihood  of confusion  with  the  complainant's  mark  as  the source,  sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement"  also  constitute  evidence  of bad  faith  use and registration.

Discussion about this whole dispute from TechDirt, LewRockwell.com, the Daily Paul here and here, and Ron Paul Forums.

NEXT: Four Loko Agrees to Change Can Labeling

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  1. Like thousands of fellow Ron Paul supporters, we put our lives on hold and invested 5 years of hard work into Ron Paul, RonPaul.com and Ron Paul 2012.

    Maybe you shouldn’t have done that without getting his permission, to forestall the not-exactly-remote possibility that he might not be 100% on board with your use of his name, both politically and commercially?

    1. That’s not really the standard, though, is it?

      1. Its what you should do if you don’t want to get dragged into a high-profile fight down the road because you’re making beaucoup bucks off of somebody’s name without their permission.

        1. I don’t see any evidence that they’re making money off his name.

          1. What about the selling of the domain to the person the site is about? That doesn’t count as “making money off his name”?

            1. As Doherty notes, they have held the domain name for 12 years and never tried to sell it to him until he said he wanted it.

              1. Doherty? Who shills his stupid book every post? And will probably do so for the next 12 years. I’d be more impressed if Doherty started writing more about Rand, actually.

                1. Doherty…who shills his stupid book

                  You’ve read it, then? Was it really “stupid”? It has been my opinion for some time now that Doherty is one of the last real libertarians working here. And what’s wrong with capitalism (“shilling” a product)? Isn’t “free markets” one of the cornerstones of this place?

          2. I don’t see any evidence that they’re making money off his name.

            No?

            http://www.ronpaul.com/ron-paul-store/

            1. All the stuff there is produced and sold by Zazzle, which pays a pittance to content creators. That’s probably barely enough to keep the site running.

              1. Still, commercial activity.

                My point, really, is that if I had a client come to me and say “Hey, we want to open a couple of websites using this other guy’s name, because we think he’s really cool and shit, and it’ll be mostly political, but we might sell some stuff,” well, the very first thing I would ask thim is “Do you have his permission? In writing?”

                If they say no, I’d probably tell them not to be too surprised if he decides to shut them down, because they’re using his name without his permission.

                This ain’t rocket science. The legalities and ins-and-outs of ICANN, well, I’m no expert on who might eke out a technical victory here, but c’mon. A little common sense, perhaps?

                1. So you don’t know the laws and regulations about Internet naming rights, yet you would give them advice on the matter anyway?

                  I’m sure you’re a great hospital lawyer, but when it comes to matters outside your area of expertise you probably should lose the “I’m a lawyer and if I had a client…” stuff. Especially if you’re going to claim no expertise afterward.

                  From what we see in this article, it looks like RP has an uphill battle in trying to “shut them down” as you say.

  2. Criticize Ron Paul for not doing enough to protect what is being published in his name; criticize Ron Paul for trying too hard to protect what is being published in his name.

    Maybe there’s just a committed core of people who will find any reason to criticize Ron Paul.

    1. What about the committed core of people who will find any reason to criticize the people that criticize Ron Paul?

      1. I like your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter, provided you have no idea who is writing the articles for it.

        1. FUCK MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.

          1. So YOU’RE writing his newsletters now. good to know.

      2. I’m not PaulTard, but really it’s one or the other. Two years from now when ronpaul.com is taken over by Slappy and starts talking about how the brave White Race is the only thing holding back the Illiterate Brown Hoard, the same people hating on him for this will turn around and hate on him for not stopping that without blinking an eye.

        1. *horde* fucking homos

          1. I’m impressed they could make a horde, seeing as how homos can’t procreate.

            So I guess those religious conservative vapors about them recruiting amongst our youth weren’t all that far-fetched!

            1. Gay adoption panic!

              1. KULTUR WARRRRZ!

            2. This reminds me of a response I heard to the “gays can’t procreate so they shouldn’t marry” argument:

              “Gay sex may not lead to babies, but by god we keep trying”

        2. If he gives slappy permission to publish that tripe in his name, in return for slappy paying him some serious money for his name….then yes, I will hate on him for that.

          1. …and, when the jig is up and the media finds out, protects slappy’s identity…

        3. And the method by which he does either of those doesn’t factor into the reason for criticism at all, SF? That isn’t to say that I care all that much about his use of international law for an issue unrelated to U.S. law (I assume), but there IS room for both when the method used is part of the criticism.

          1. I don’t like the method either. He should have just bought it or left them alone and disvowed that they have anything to do with him.

            Not that the disavowel would silence the howls if ronpaul.com is sold to a porn site or starts spewing dickhosteian race drivel.

            1. I agree with you on this. I think his actions are a poor move. I don’t think they contradict his past words on the U.N. and international law, but I don’t think them using a domain with the words/name “Ron Paul” means he has an exclusive right to it and I don’t think their actions were fraudulent (if it wasn’t fraudulent, then the assertion of maliciousness doesn’t matter here). He should’ve just paid up or left it alone.

    2. Unless there’s evidence of RonPaul.com insinuating that 90% of blacks are fleet-footed criminals and stating that MLK was a gay pedophile, or perhaps suggesting that people who fight for America deserve to die at the hands of crazy people after coming home, the publications where RP has authorized (and profited from) the use of his name are actually more offensive than the ones he hasn’t.

    3. Criticize Ron Paul for not doing enough to protect what is being published in his name; criticize Ron Paul for trying too hard to protect what is being published in his name.

      I don’t think the latter is the actual criticism, though. He isn’t doing this to protect what’s being published at the domain, he’s doing it to get control of the domain itself.

      I generally like what Ron Paul has to say. His moronic tweet about Chris Kyle and this episode aren’t among the things I like, but he’s still way on the positive side of the ledger.

    4. No, there is just a committed core of people who have created a new political ideology that revolves around finding any reason to criticize Libertarianism, Ron Paul is just one of their major talking points.

  3. Ought they, as true fans, give him what he asks for?

    For free? No.

    Ought he, as a believer in property rights, recognize they have established lawful and proper ownership?

    Yes, this is the main problem with this. Ron Paul is not respecting the site owner’s property rights.

    Hell if I know and not up to me to decide.

    You would have a strong opinion on this matter if it were someone else besides Ron Paul. Something tells me you think Paul is wrong here, but you’re experience a bout of cognitive dissonance, so your stated opinion becomes more muted.

    Any person who registers a domain name that consists of the name of another living person, or a name substantially and confusingly similar thereto, without that person’s consent, with the specific intent to profit from such name by selling the domain name for financial gain to that person or any third party, shall be liable in a civil action by such person.

    What the hell is libertarian about that?

    1. What is libertarian about fraud?

      1. No one who runs the site ever claimed to be Ron Paul. I believe they even had a disclaimer at the bottom of the site saying as much, ie Ron Paul does not run this site and is not affiliated with it.

        1. So it’s kind of like the opposite of “What’s My Line”:

          Panelist A: “I an NOT Ron Paul.”
          Panelist B: “I am NOT Ron Paul.”
          Panelist Ron Paul: “I am NOT Ron Paul.”

          Announcer: “Kitty Carlisle – you have the first question!”

        2. You’re not using the new libertarian definition of fraud, which is “something I don’t like but can’t justify banning under the NAP”.

          1. Using someone else’s name and likeness to set up a website that generates revenue by selling stuff with that person’s name on it may be legal, but I find it completely unethical, fraudulent even.

            1. I don’t think the mere use of the name is fraudulent, they weren’t representing themselves as him or his legal representatives. I don’t think the use of the name is inherently unethical either.

            2. But who’s being defrauded? The people buying the shirts are getting what they order.

            3. You can set up a website to sell t-shirts with images of MLK or Ghandi on it. Is that fraudulent?

    2. Domain names aren’t property. Like IP and EM spectrum they’re to be used for the benefit of the community. We do treat them in a property-ish manner in that they can be bought and sold etc, because this usually IS how the community is served well, but there are exceptions.

      1. Domain names aren’t property. Like IP and EM spectrum they’re to be used for the benefit of the community.

        Ah, maybe land and housing should treated this way too.

        1. To some extent they are with eminent domain.

          1. Your land/house first, thanks.

            1. Don’t have any. But yeah, there need to be very tough restrictions on when ED can be used. Perhaps the state should have to pay double the market value as well. The illusion of land property rights is important for stability and prosperity.

    3. Terms and conditions agreed to upon registration. It’s in the contract. You can’t voluntarily sign something that is legally binding and then play dumb later on. I think this is a terrible PR move on Ron Paul’s part, but I also think the site owners are being trollish. In the end, who cares? Nobody really wins here.

      1. Right. RP has a lot more to lose in this fight, too. It’s not like RonPaul.com was running hit jobs on him.

        1. Right. It’s the definition of cutting off your nose to spite your face.

      2. I didn’t think they were playing dumb. They were willing to transfer the domain name to Ron paul, just not for free.

        1. The funny thing is, they made their offer backwards. They offered him the site for 250k and they would throw in the mailing list for free.

          They should have offered him the site for free, and then offered the mailing list for 250k.

  4. About this passage, “It certainly delights non-libertarians to think all libertarians must eschew all the services the government has abrogated to itself to avoid hypocrisy,…”

    You mean “arrogated to itself.” Abrogate?arrogate. In fact, their meanings are almost exactly opposite. To abrogate is to unilaterally nullify or cancel a law. To arrogate is to presume the right to do something without any authority or legal basis. See? To confuse them is to reverse the meaning of your sentence.

    1. You are of course correct and the entry has been corrected.

  5. Looking back, we are very happy with what we were able to achieve

    Not that it’s relevant to the legal and ethical considerations in this case but what, exactly, did they achieve? Most libertarians I know believe that America has never been in worse shape and that, despite the so-called rEVOLution, the country continues on its inexorable march toward statism. Paul failed at every attempt at the presidency, and now he’s out of office altogether (not that he’ll necessarily be less effective out of office than in).

    Few Americans took Paul seriously when he was a congressman. FOX News Republicans merely tolerated him while the left and center mocked him relentlessly. His hardcore libertarian supporters remain, of course, too few in number to matter. How will any of this change–with or without the use and disposal of RonPaul.com–now that he’s a freelancer?

  6. I’ll take things I don’t give a shit about for a thousand Alex.

    1. “Not much a fan of the ladies, are you Trebeck?”

  7. Hey, Ron Paul doesn’t believe in federal reserve money either, but he uses that, too!

    1. And he gives interviews over the radio, thus recognizing the federal takeover of the airwaves!

      And he drives *roads* to his interviews and campaign appearances.

      He’s, like, the worst hypocrite in the history of the universe!

      1. RRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAADDDDDZZZZZZZZZZ!

        Why don’t you just move to Somalia you dirty anarcho-libertine!!1!1

  8. Did Ron Paul start this suit 5 years ago? No?

    Well, he must have started it when it’s e-mail list of supporters was out there drumming up more support for him and his causes, right? No?

    Hmmm.

    Ah, he must be the only person in the world named Ron Paul, yes? Nope, not that either.

    Seems like Mr. Paul was perfectly happy with this site when it was helping him, but now that he’s out of office it’s an asset(built by other people) that he wants.

    And he heads to statists to take it for him–possibly using laws he once disparaged.

    Sure, this can be spun as him using the only options available–but why does he need it at all? And why not accept the private offer–you know, the one that turns the whole thing over to him without giving the statists any bit of it?

    1. Yes, this is the best possible result, and if the initial price was too high, why not negotiate further? This is a terrible move on RP’s part, no doubt.

    2. You should read the Lew Rockwell link. It’s nothing but an unabashed “Everything Ron Paul does is pure and good, and this is no exception!”

    3. And he heads to statists to take it for him–possibly using laws he once disparaged.

      I don’t recall him disparaging the laws about cybersquatting.

      But, it doesn’t look like he’s got much of a case here. To claim they signed up for the domain intending to sell it back to him at a markup is ridiculous. It’s been 12 years.

  9. Sometimes man, you jsut gotta roll with it dude.

    http://www.Anon-Tools.da.bz

    1. So….no hope for a return by LimpoSimpo? At least I hope you disposed of that creepy waamin bot.

      1. I fucking hated that unoriginal hack waamin.

    2. Words to live by, Colour-Bot.

  10. Where’s Max to tell everyone to suck Ron Pual’s(sic) cock?

    1. Max has been lost in the mists of time.

    2. Max finally got the boot put to him after he shitted up one too many RIP threads.

      1. Was that a while ago (in internet years)? Because I don’t even remember the guy.

        1. Approx 2 years ago or so. Now Dan T., whatever happened to Dan T.?

          1. Arrested for marijuana DUI and teetering on the edge of divorce.

        2. Was that a while ago (in internet years)?

          Max/Morris/Edward/Lefiti (and a few other handle) was active until about a month after registration. He really only popped up on Ron Paul threads (this one would have made him jizz in his pants) and either copy-pasta’d the same lame arguments or showed up to tell us to “suck Ron Paul’s dick” or increasingly unimaginative variations on the same theme.

          1. He also experimented for a couple of months with attacking Jacob Sullum using weird and esoteric (to me) talmudic arguments.

            1. Nothing gets us like the Talmud. We’re all part of the vast Jewish conspiracy, you know (though those of us in the know realize it’s really the Irish).

  11. I’ve handled one of these types of disputes for a respondent. Insinuating that he is going to the UN is bullshit.

    I think this is a bad PR move but it is his only recourse if he doesn’t want to pay.

    His Complaint looks like a standard boiler plate that covers all the typical arguments. The respondants will have a similar type response and the arbitrators will just decide for themselves which parts are bullshit. It’s a fairly simple process.

  12. Check it out (article from 2007):

    http://www.wweek.com/portland/…..round.html

    The other Ron Paul who once owned the domain tried to sell it to the famous Ron Paul, who scoffed. That’s when the supporters bought it.

    Ron Paul (the famous one) is wrong in principle and will lose this case.

    Maybe the domain owners should donate it back to the original Ron Paul just to be bastards.

    1. Maybe the domain owners should donate it back to the original Ron Paul just to be bastards.

      Ok, they would be a pretty sweet move.

      I’m a DNS anarchist. I think should Paul should lose this. But people who are “mad” at him for this or calling him a hypocrite have an obvious axe to grind.

      1. s/they/that/

        dambit

      2. actually with 5 minutes of research I have to walk that back a little bit.

        Paul is asking a ICANN “when somebody asks for ronpaul.com can you tell them this IP instead of the one you are doing now?”

        If they tell him to screw off, I’m ok with that, but he doesn’t “deserve” that answer in any deep moral sense, and he isn’t engaged in any hypocrisy at all just by asking the question.

  13. This is a dickhead move by Ron Paul. If you don’t like the current site owner’s offer to sell, make a counteroffer. If they turn you down, either take their offer or start your own site. Using lawyers to try to take this site away from the legitimate owners is roughly the equivalent of using eminent domain to grab some land from one private owner to transfer to another private owner.

    Ron Paul deserves to get smacked around a bit for doing this, and hopefully will lose the case.

    1. Using lawyers to try to take this site away from the legitimate owners is roughly the equivalent of using eminent domain to grab some land from one private owner to transfer to another private owner

      no it’s not. It’s the equivalent of changing the phone book entry for the line that says “Ron Paul” to the phone number of somebody actually named Ron Paul, instead of some group of Ron Paul fan boys.

      And all Ron Paul is doing is asking the people that print the phone book to live up to their own rules (by his reading) of how they resolve disputed entries in the phone book. No guns have been pointed at anybody, at least not yet.

      1. Except the Web isn’t a phone book.

        1. If my aunt had balls she’d be my uncle.

          1. Are you sure she doesn’t?

            1. Last time I checked, I smelled no balls.

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