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HuffPo Hotlinking Redux

Yesterday I highlighted a case of what I suspected to be garden variety hotlinking at The Huffington Post by Max Blumenthal. Max Blumenthal is an employee of Media Matters, a writer for Nation magazine, and the son of former Clinton adviser and journalist Sidney Blumenthal. Huffington Post wasn't the only place Blumenthal's screed against Christopher Hitchens was posted. He posted the same piece on his own site and Smirking Chimp. The Family Research Council photo of Hitchens was altered by the webmasters at FRC to gently inform Blumenthal that hotlinking without permission is not a good idea. Here's how it looked yesterday.

huffingtonposthotlink.jpg


Well today I went back to the original Huffington Post piece and what did I see?

max_huffpo2.JPG


Certainly Blumenthal got the point that the image owner was trying to convey and is now hosting the image himself, right? The HTML code for the picture now showing the image at Huffington Post is shown below.

<img src="http://www.frc.org/img/activedit/witherspoon_hitchens(original).jpg" alt="hitchens fraud" /> <br /> <em>Hitchens, poorly disguised as Colonel Sanders, meets with young cadres of the Family Research Council in 2005</em>


In response to being caught red-handed hotlinking an image from FRC's servers Blumenthal doesn't take down the image or rehost it somewhere else (such as a free image hosting service), but rather he makes the extra effort to go find the original (unaltered) picture on the FRC site and re-hotlink it.

That's not ignorance of how the web works, no that's willfully dishonest bandwidth theft on the part of Mr. Blumenthal.

Update: Caught again...

max_huffpo3.JPG


Blumenthal is now clearly trying to steal this image by hotlinking it. He knows that FRC will not give him permission to use their photo, so he's going to steal it by hotlinking the image.

Update 2: The guys at FRC passed along this screencap. Evidently they've been rotating the site shown in the image for a while now...

max_wizbang2.jpg


Update 3: Oh, it looks like little Maxy realized the graphic he was stealing kept getting changed... Now he claims HE was hacked...

Update: KKK paypal and friend of the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens, Tony Perkins, has orchestrated the hacking of this post. In doing so, he has drawn greater attention to his links to and ideological support for white supremacists. The photo of Christopher Hitchens posing with the Family Research Council's Witherspoon Fellows was scrubbed from FRC's site today out of fear that I would link to it again. Not only does the FRC want to suppress Perkins' links to white supremacists, it wants to suppress its own association with Hitchens. This begs the question: who embarrasses Perkins more, the Klan or Christopher Hitchens?

Clearly this guy is a n00b. The one who "orchestrated the hacking" was Blumenthal himself by hotlinking someone else's hosted image without their consent. Jesus, do his bosses at Media Matters and The Nation know what a dumbass this guy is?


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Comments (39)

I am not going into bloggin... (Below threshold)
John F Not Kerry:

I am not going into blogging. There is too much to remember!

Look quick! pwn3d again!</... (Below threshold)

Look quick! pwn3d again!

I don't think bandwidth the... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

I don't think bandwidth theft is the real point. It just shows how lazy and unethical Blumenthal is.

It is so much easier to paste an http address into your blog than to 1) find the image 2) click "save as" 3) get it on your computer 4) launch FTP program, make sure you have the right permissions, PWD, etc. 5) log into server 6) browse your own CPU to find the image you just saved 7) browrse your server for the proper directory 8)upload to server 9) enter http address for image on your own server with the correct path.

The man is just lazy and discourteous. I wonder if it reflects similarly on his other work?

Hilarious. As if the tool ... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Hilarious. As if the tool couldn't just use a public photo of Hitchens. But wait, that would ruin his oh so clever Colonel Sanders joke!

Jeff, you're right that he wouldn't get pwnd!!1! again if he simply put the image on the HuffPost server, but then he would be violating the FRC's copyright, and I doubt they would hesitate to sue him.

Huff-n-Puff and Max are luc... (Below threshold)

Huff-n-Puff and Max are lucky it's FRC they're hotlinking to. Other people might not be so merciful with the images they use to mock the hotlinking.

but then he would be vio... (Below threshold)

but then he would be violating the FRC's copyright, and I doubt they would hesitate to sue him.

On the contrary, we would have given him permission to use the image if he had only asked. Despite the fact that he has always been dishonest in his reporting on our organization, we wouldn't have denied him the use of the image. But he would never stoop so low as to actually ask us--which is why he's now getting pwnd!!1! (I feel so silly everytime I type that word...)

Oh wow, it's Sidney Blument... (Below threshold)
Jo:

Oh wow, it's Sidney Blumenthal's son! Well of course!

Sidney Blumenthal was the Clinton pal who told Chris Hitchens over lunch that he and the Clinton team were going to go with the "nuts and sluts" defense with Monica Lewinsky.

Lovely bunch.

On the contrary, we woul... (Below threshold)
mantis:

On the contrary, we would have given him permission to use the image if he had only asked.

I meant after the first hotlinking incident, though you may have still granted permission after that, and in either case it would have been very gracious of you to do so.

Oh, btw Joe, as someone who is not a huge fan of the work of FRC, you have shown a sense of humor in this episode which has surprised me. I find that refreshing and encouraging.

And you're not alone; anyone over 15 years-old feels silly using gamer speak, but it's just so funny!

Methinks FRC should rename ... (Below threshold)
Dan Irving:

Methinks FRC should rename the original file from "witherspoon_hitchens(original).jpg" to "witherspoon_hitchens(just_farging_ask_us_you_freaking_tool).jpg"

Is it time to "drop the big... (Below threshold)
Brett:

Is it time to "drop the big one" - i.e. change the link to Goatse?

That kitten picture never g... (Below threshold)
Heralder:

That kitten picture never gets less funny to me.

No Goatse! That crosses th... (Below threshold)
mantis:

No Goatse! That crosses the line from funny to just wrong. Very wrong. Evil wrong.

I am just glued to the TV w... (Below threshold)
jp2:

I am just glued to the TV waiting for CNN/ABC/Faux to pick this up. I know it's early, but I am going to call it the most under-reported story of the century.

Oh, and Go Warriors.

Jeez, I tried to post a com... (Below threshold)
BlacquesJacquesShell:

Jeez, I tried to post a comment at Huffers querying the hotlinks and weird changes to the photo. Oddly enough my comment just keeps on not appearing. Huh, how 'bout that.

Maybe I should have used words unrelated to 'theft'.

Blumenthal is obviously dum... (Below threshold)

Blumenthal is obviously dumber than a box of rocks.

Because he is impervious to negative stimuli, this could continue ad inifinitum.

Goatse.cx has been shut dow... (Below threshold)
The Listkeeper:

Goatse.cx has been shut down for a while now.

http://www.oralse.cx is still up, I believe. Plenty of pussy and weiner shots there.

What a buffoon. Is there no... (Below threshold)
Brian:

What a buffoon. Is there no one at HuffPo to slap him straight?

Took him a while but he fin... (Below threshold)
Dan Irving:

Took him a while but he finally noticed:
"Update: KKK paypal and friend of the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens, Tony Perkins, has orchestrated the hacking of this post. In doing so, he has drawn greater attention to his links to and ideological support for white supremacists. The photo of Christopher Hitchens posing with the Family Research Council's Witherspoon Fellows was scrubbed from FRC's site today out of fear that I would link to it again. The Family Research Council is a paper tiger that fears me and employs juvenile pranks to attempt to silence me. Father forgive them for not knowing that I won't stop bringing the pain."

The idiot thinks swapping out a .jpg image on your own server is 'hacking'.

Freaking n00b I swear.

that is pretty weak. busti... (Below threshold)
slingshot:

that is pretty weak. busting them with a changed graphic is quite funny, though. please do not put up goatse- think of the children!

I'm "hacking" some images t... (Below threshold)
mantis:

I'm "hacking" some images to our server right now!

"Update: KKK paypal and fri... (Below threshold)
Dan Irving:

"Update: KKK paypal and friend of the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens, Tony Perkins, has orchestrated the hacking of this post. In doing so, he has drawn greater attention to his links to and ideological support for white supremacists. The photo of Christopher Hitchens posing with the Family Research Council's Witherspoon Fellows was scrubbed from FRC's site today out of fear that I would link to it again. Not only does the FRC want to suppress Perkins' links to white supremacists, it wants to suppress its own association with Hitchens. This begs the question: who embarrasses Perkins more, the Klan or Christopher Hitchens?"

This is technically Update#2 since he changed the wording from the original. Doesn't he proof his own copy?

I find all this hilarious. I've nothing invested in any of these groups and as a 3rd party observer even I can see Max is missing the entire point of FRC's 'hack'.

Hack ... heh ... ooh the interwebs! I guess his copy of Frontpage doesn't come with instructions on how to embed your own images.

Unsolicited piece of advice... (Below threshold)
SilentStorm:

Unsolicited piece of advice to Mr. Blumenthal

When putting yourself in a hole, the last thing you want to do is keep digging deeper.

As has been stated numerous times above:

A. What a maroon!
B. PWNED!!!

Here's FRC's response to Ma... (Below threshold)

Here's FRC's response to Max's hilarious "update":

Max has a gift for packing a lot of nonsense into a short space so let's separate it out and take it a little at a time:

First, for almost three years Max has been trying to peddle his nonsense about Tony Perkins being associated with David Duke and other white supremacists. In fact, he gets hopping mad that no one seems to pay attention when he repeats such scurrilous charges. The fact is that FRC has responded to that first claim about Duke back in 2005 and yet Max still repeats this lie. He also makes much ado about a speech before the CCC. It is true that when Perkins was a state legislator he spoke at lunch that was sponsored by that group. At the time he did not know of the groups racist agenda (be honest, have you ever heard of the "Council of Conservative Citizens?"). After he found out, he forcefully denounced the group. One question that Max never seems to ask is that if Tony Perkins is a racist, why do so many African-American churches and pastors support him?

Second, he claims that "Tony Perkins, has orchestrated the hacking of this post." Get over yourself, Max. You're not on a level where someone like Tony would take notice of you. My web editor Jared Bridges and I are the one who orchestrated this prank. We did it mostly because it would be fun and because we suspected you wouldn't have a sense of humor (boy, were we right about that!). Also, "hacking" implies that we broke into your website rather than just changed a picture that you stole from our site.

Third, he says "In doing so, he has drawn greater attention to his links to and ideological support for white supremacists." Stop and think about that for a second, Max. If your claims had any truth to them wouldn't we try to avoid bringing attention to your article? Besides, since no one seems to have noticed what was going on it appears no one is reading your site anyway.

Fourth, he says, "The photo of Christopher Hitchens posing with the Family Research Council's Witherspoon Fellows was scrubbed from FRC's site today out of fear that I would link to it again." It wasn't "scrubbed" from our site. In fact, you are welcome to download a copy and post it on your site...if you ask nicely. All you had to do is ask, Max.

Fifth, he goes nuts when he says, "The Family Research Council is a paper tiger that fears me and employs juvenile pranks to attempt to silence me." Was it a juvenile prank? Absolutely. And a pretty funny one, if I may say so myself. Also, how is linking to your posts (all four of them) an attempt to "silence" you? As for the charge of being a paper tiger, we just have one response: Meow.

The absolute best part of the post, though, is when he says, "Father forgive them for not knowing that I won't stop bringing the pain."

Why bring your daddy Sidney into this? And why should he forgive us? Oh well, I guess it doesn't matter. We'll be too busy hiding because Max is gonna Bring the Pain! Flee, flee, FRC, Max is gonna Bring the Pain!.

Dude, you are the biggest source of amusement I've had in years. Please, please keep it coming. You are a riot. Please bring all the pain to: 801 G Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20001. We're looking forward to it.

I see why the Blumenthals d... (Below threshold)
Jo:

I see why the Blumenthals don't like Hitchens. Like I mentioned earlier, Sidney Blumenthal and Hitchens use to be great pals, that's why Blumenthal was sharing the "nuts & sluts" defense gossip with Chris. Chris later exposed this and Sidney has never gotten over it.

Again, lovely bunch those Blumenthals. So transparent though.

jp2I am just g... (Below threshold)
marc:

jp2

I am just glued to the TV waiting for CNN/ABC/Faux to pick this up. I know it's early, but I am going to call it the most under-reported story of the century.

And I bet if you were on one of your friends sites, say the DUmmies or Dkos kiddies, and read the same story but Wizbang or other conservative site were hotlinking images TV news coverage would be the farthest thing from your mind.

Of course that assumes everything (common sense, civil discourse, and honesty among them) isn't the farthest thing from your mind.

re: Update 3What a... (Below threshold)

re: Update 3

What a frickin' idiot! Someone please cut off Maxie's internet access. Please? He's obviously not intelligent nor mature enough to handle it.

This is why Wizbang is one ... (Below threshold)

This is why Wizbang is one of my favorite stops on the interweb.

This whole episode reflects... (Below threshold)
verner:

This whole episode reflects more on HufPo than on Max Blumenthal. Why on earth would they publish him? He's an idiot.

He is obviously a less than mediocre talent who owes his career in "journalism" to daddy, and feels the need (yet again) to carry out the family vendetta.

Well, I remember those days. His father got off with much less than he deserved. Sid "vicious" tried to utterly destroy both Monica and Kathleen Willey. Besides, as I remember, his service to the Clintons earned Sid a big fat book advance, and the opprotunity to write a self-serving farce where he spent many a page trashing Hitchens for doing nothing more than telling the truth.

And I think that Max inadvertantly pays the FRC a compliment. They invited Hitchens knowing full well that he is an anti-theist--and didn't ask him to self-censor in the least. How many "so called" left-wing orgs would do the same?

All of this was dragged up months ago when the visit initially occurred. But Max is so low on material...

Why is it that every time s... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Why is it that every time some dumbass doesn't know that they're doing on the internet they claim they where "hacked" in some way?

Based on there being no men... (Below threshold)
yo:

Based on there being no mention of this on the Huff Po comments section, their comment scrubbers must be busy little bees, this afternoon.

This time I had to laugh ou... (Below threshold)
89:

This time I had to laugh out loud. The first time was funny, but to repeat it again? Priceless.

Yes, they are. I posted a c... (Below threshold)
mcg:

Yes, they are. I posted a comment poking fun at him for the hotlinking, and it never showed up.

It those tubes on the Inter... (Below threshold)
Mark L:

It those tubes on the Internet. Max does not understand how the tubes work.

Joe:I think the ne... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

Joe:

I think the next picture should be of the "Im in ur internets steeling ur kernals" or something like that.

Yes, they are. I posted ... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

Yes, they are. I posted a comment poking fun at him for the hotlinking, and it never showed up.

Yes, I read the comments...not ONE comment on the pwnage. Where is Tim Robbins and his "chill wind" stifling dissent?

I think the next picture... (Below threshold)

I think the next picture should be of the "Im in ur internets steeling ur kernals" or something like that.

Ah, that's perfect! I kept trying to come up with a "Im in ur" line but couldn't think of anything clever.

Glad to be of service.... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

Glad to be of service.

Max Blumenthal is a pedophi... (Below threshold)
M. Knight:

Max Blumenthal is a pedophile. He's been known to attack little girls and boys in his neighborhood. We have evidence, but his father, Sidney Blumenthal ...

NOTE: The above is entirely untrue - I have no evidence or anything that supports this ... however, this is the exact sort of slander campaign Max Blumenthal and his ilk practice - they throw out accusations and then repeat it again and gain no matter what ...

Jesus christ you sure have ... (Below threshold)
Tom:

Jesus christ you sure have a lot of time on your hands! Who cares! Go outside. Read a book. This is why blogs are out of control. Does Max Blumenthal and this situation annoy you so much and have so much relevance that this matters at ALL? Wow.




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