Register for an account

X

Enter your name and email address below.

Your email address is used to log in and will not be shared or sold. Read our privacy policy.

X

Website access code

Enter your access code into the form field below.

If you are a Zinio, Nook, Kindle, Apple, or Google Play subscriber, you can enter your website access code to gain subscriber access. Your website access code is located in the upper right corner of the Table of Contents page of your digital edition.

Technology

Prosecutor to 4Chan Founder: Please Explain the Meaning of "Rickroll"

DiscoblogBy Joseph CalamiaAugust 11, 2010 11:48 PM

Newsletter

Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

poole1.gif

When a Tennessee man hacked Sarah Palin’s e-mail account and wrote of his exploits on the forum 4chan, federal investigators asked the site's founder Christopher "Moot" Poole for server logs. Court testimony from April and published yesterday shows that federal prosecutors had other pressing questions for Poole: for example, the meaning of "peeps" and "rickroll." Assistant to the U.S. Attorney Mark Krotoski questions Poole:

Q. Certain terms, have a meaning unique to 4chan? A. Yes. Q. Like "OP," what is "OP"? A. OP means original poster. Q. Are you familiar these terms, having been the founder and administrator of the 4chan site? A. Yes. Q. What would "lurker" mean? A. Somebody who browses but does not post, does not contribute. Q. What do the words "caps" mean? A. Screenshots. Q. And is there any significance to "new fags"? A. That is the term used to describe new users to the site. Q. What about "b tard"? A. It's a term that users of the /b/- Random board use for themselves. Q. What about "troll"? A. Troublemaker. Q. "404"? A. 404 is the status code for not found. It means essentially gone or not found. Q. Not found on where, the 4chan site? A. 404 is the http status code for not found, a page not found by the Web server. Q. In what about "peeps"? A. People. Q. "Rickroll"? A. Rickroll is a mean [sic] or Internet kind of trend that started on 4chan where users -- it basically a bait and switch. Users link you to a video of Rick Astley performing Never Gonna Give You Up.

Bonus humor points for the fact that the court reporter had apparently never heard the word "meme" before. The story went viral yesterday; we found it on Gawker's Valleywag and the complete testimony on The Smoking Gun. Apologies to those hoping to find a reference to LOLcats: relevancy?

Check out DISCOVER on Facebook.

Related content: Bad Astronomy: Sucked into a black LOL Discoblog: Your Plants Have More Twitter Followers Than You—Literally Discoblog: ZOMG! Get These iPhone Apps Right Meow! Discoblog: Should the Internet Win the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize?

Image: flickr /Andrew Dupont

2 Free Articles Left

Want it all? Get unlimited access when you subscribe.

Subscribe

Already a subscriber? Register or Log In

Want unlimited access?

Subscribe today and save 70%

Subscribe

Already a subscriber? Register or Log In