Illinois: Blags-to-Riches FAIL

(Chicago, IL) The ongoing investigation of Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich took a startling turn today, when it was revealed that his original intention was to “sell” Senator Barack Obama’s Senate seat to a prominent blogger, thereby creating the first “virtual senator” in American history.

Blagojevich Corruption Probe“I was jealous, OK?” snapped the Governor, when confronted about the Blags-to-Riches scheme. “Obama had so much success with social media, that I figured I’d one-up him by sending – well, sort of sending – the first virtual legislator to Washington.

“Who cares about Illinois? This is about legacy, man!”

Rumors circulated that Blago had narrowed his choices down to well-known liberal blogger Arianna Huffington, and Instapundit’s conservative Glenn Reynolds. Bidding was fierce for the seat, including Arianna’s Lear Jet, a llama farm, and the entire University of Tennessee system (excluding the football them, as that might be a conflict of interest with the Fighting Illini).

The scheme unravelled when spurned blogger Andrew Sullivan leaked word of the bidding after his PayPal account was maxed out and his candidacy fell by the wayside.

Informed by the Chicago Tribune (whose bid was also thwarted by a chapter 11 filing) that nominating a candidate from another state that would only cast votes via Twitter might actually be against the rules, the Governor looked back blankly and said, “Rules? You mean there are rules?”

(Previous StickyFigure spoofs)

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Social Media Museum has Bloggers all A-Twitter!

(Austin, TX) Today marks the opening of the long-awaited Social Media Museum (SoMeMe), a new mecca for worldwide networkers to come and gawk at really wOOty stuff that has fed into the historic Soc Med revolution.

conniereece1Curator Connie Reece, resplendent in a new pink-on-pink outfit financed by the Republican National Committee, cut a symbolic pink boa to mark the grand opening. Thousands of bloggers and tweeters attended virtually by watching a video stream from Jay Ehret‘s pate-mounted camera phone.

“This is a dream come true!” gushed Connie, fumbling with her smartphone to try to text message iJustine about the event. Matt Dickman quickly took over that task, with his patented “two-fisted Blackberry” technique, uploading a live HD podcast. “I can’t thank all the contributing bloggers enough, especially CB Whittemore, who picked out the carpet and cleaned the bathrooms, and Director Tom Clifford, who wore that cool beret, played 70′s rock tunes, and directed us while we did the work!”

“Wait ’til everyone sees what we’ve got here! In the Welcome Center, we have a continuous 45-second loop of Guy Kawasaki answering the question, ‘What is a blog?’, just the thing for nOObs stumbling in here with their postage stamps and FAX machines. Plus, we have a ‘Guess that blogger?’ Shel game for those who aren’t yet immersed in our superstar A-list rockstars.”

A continuous feed of Wine Library TV runs in the restrooms, with Gary Vaynerchuk bringing the thunder 24/7 to a captive audience. “And check this out over here!” Connie beamed. “It’s the Ike Pigott Personal Brand Exhibit, where visitors can assemble their own faux personal brand on-line and walk out with a keepsake avatar!”

soc-med-museumSpeaking of personal branding, the kids have not been neglected. In the Dan Schawbel Personal Branding nursery, young ones are schooled in the art of establishing their Generation-whatever brand right from the get-go, while toddler care in the Jibber-Jobber-Jr. room was designed by Jason Alba to help the little ones start planning their careers right away, complete with a complimentary on-line profile.

“And I’m so proud of ‘Shannon’s Slapshooters’, our special chick-blogger room featuring inspirational video-casts by Shannon Paul, Amanda Gravel, Beth Harte, Charissa Cowart, Lucretia Pruitt, and other luminaries of the fairer gender. We tried to get a wax statue of Arianna Huffington in here, but had to settle for the Ann Handley padded bench recliner.”

John Moore’s Brand Autopsy room promises to be a big draw, where John (and other guest bloggers) will dissect the branding and marketing efforts of various hapless organizations as a special hourly feature. In addition, Robert Scoble‘s upcoming trip to Mars to throw a blanket over the formerly-tweeting Phoenix explorer and mount a super-secret Nokia Nscoble camera phone on its robotic arm will be prominently featured, along with a 3-d hologram of the immortal Matt Bacak.

The Ancient History wing will feature such kewl exhibits as Jason Calcanis‘ blog, a life-sized Fail Whale, Mack Collier‘s modem (oh, wait – that’s contemporary), and a stuffed Pownce.

fail-whale-tshirtA final stop for visitors will be the Armano Blogger Wear and Hat shop, where the latest soc med fashions will be prominently displayed on life-sized avatars. A karaoke stage will also be set up in case the Catchup Lady ever visits.

For directions, just consult Douglas Karr‘s BrightKite posts.

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(Previous StickyFigure spoofs)

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TwACORN Busted for Massive on-line Fraud

A-list Bloggers and Twitterers caught up in Widespread Scam

During what was expected to be a routine call to check on the report of an honest poll worker in the Richard Daley Memorial Electioneering Institute, Chicago police uncovered a massive on-line fraud operation that has shaken the blogging world to its core.

“We had gotten this anonymous call from a community organizer that there was an inside operative actually counting real votes and screening out fraudulent registrations,” said Sgt. Frank Mulcahey of the Chicago PD. “We can’t have that around here, as everyone knows…so after cracking down on that guy, we took a look in the basement and found this amazing underground operation hiding there, calling itself TwACORN.”

TwACORN turns out to be a secret organization whose sole purpose is to inflate the rankings of bloggers and Twitterers by generating fake subscriber numbers. Their technology infrastucture consists of slick programs they call RoboRSS, RoboComment, and RoboSub. With these tools, they have managed to play “kingmaker” to scores of unwitting digiterati, who were led to believe that they actually had an audience.

Chicagoland technology guru (and TwACORN victim) Todd Andrlik examined the programs and reported, with mixed admiration and dismay, that they were first-rate. “Here I thought I had all these engaged readers, who subscribed to my blog, read my tweets, and made interesting comments. Turns out that 90% of them were Robos from TwACORN. Now I see that a former high school friend, one second cousin, and some plumber in Nebraska are the only ones reading my stuff. Plus, my entire Top 3,000 blog ranking system with AdAge just got flushed!”

TwACORN Chief Obfuscating Officer Guy Yamaha explained from his jail cell; “We got our inspiration from MarketingProfs Daily Fix, actually. We thought – what could be more fun than to “fix” the numbers for all these self-absorbed bloggers? Just wait until Scoble finds out that only 14 people actually follow him – and three of those are in Iceland. Ha!”

Twitterers were scrambling to identify which of their subscribers were actually homeless folks, deceased, or Disney cartoon characters. The flood of confirmatory DMs was about to bring the system to its knees and launch a huge Fail Whale display, until it became clear that there were only 300 actual, breathing users of Twitter. Worldwide.

TwACORN was formed by pulling from the ranks of local community organizers, political activists, Robo-call tech folks, and Swiftboat veterans. “Look, all this blogging stuff is political anyway – we all know that. It’s a popularity contest, just like our national elections. So why not bring together the best minds from that field to help create a little chaos here?” declared Yamaha.

Meanwhile, a pall was cast over the glittering MarketingProfs Digital Mixer event in Scottsdale, when it was discovered that keynote speaker Arianna Huffington’s blogging property actually has only 33 readers. She was immediately pulled from the stage by Q-list blogger Ann Handley, and replaced by Tina Fey, who did a dead-on impersonation of Sarah Palin unsubscribing from the Huffington Post.

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Prior spoofs:

New TwIndependent party springs up overnight

Well-known Blogger Demoted to “Q-List”

Meaning of Life Unveiled!

Twitter Rockstar Half-Year Calendar…Tweeet!

(photo credit: David Alston)

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