Of Identity Theft and The Offside

Numbers start with 1, 2, 3; the Alphabet starts with ABC; Identity Theft starts with not fun-ny.

—Yours Truly.

I’m going to cut to the chase and say there are people impersonating me on the site The Offside. I don’t know why they are doing it, or what they hope to achieve but they are commenting on the Arsenal, Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Inter Offsides to my knowledge.

As a result, I will no longer be commenting on the Offside site until further notice.

This situation was first brought to my attention by commenter/reader beeeef, who had informed me someone was commenting on the Arsenal Offside under the name “Kari” about the Toral case. Other commenters (Tajh and ak amongst others) have also informed me of other appearances made by this “Kari”.

I’ll be honest here: the first time I saw that someone was using my name to post comments, I was annoyed but also quite flattered. Sure, it’s a piss off if someone is using your name and pretending they are you, but it also means they like you enough to go that far, right? They must like my work, right? And out of all the possible writers here, they had picked me of all people (that says something about their judgement skills). Then again, it’s also true they could hate or have a vendetta against me. Why else would they spend their time trolling (yes, I consider what they are doing trolling) other blogs under my name?

I had gone on to inform those Offsides that this fake Kari was not me and I thought I would just leave it at that. This person would eventually get bored and go away, I thought.

Except it didn’t work out that way.

Yesterday, this impersonation was taken to another, much, much scarier, level. Another “Kari” had shown up using the same avatar, name, and link to BFB as me. They had decided to post on the Arsenal Offside, replaying to the other “Kari”, Real Madrid Offside, and Barca Offside. I had hoped maybe Kxevin or someone from the Team had, for some odd reason, taken my email and started to post to counter the other, more aggressive, “Kari”.

It was swiftly and completely denied.

I won’t lie: I was scared. Really scared. I had thought I’d been hacked somehow. Or that someone on the Offside had somehow gotten my email and was using it. There were a million thoughts going through my head and none of them were positive.

I have since gotten their information from My Favourite Real Madrid Writer to whom I’m forever grateful for (he knows who he is!) and have found my email has not been hacked. The second Kari took the time to find my avatar on Google Images. I have the emails and names of both of the fake Kari’s. I won’t reveal them, but I know who you are.

Stop it. Now. The joke is over. You may not be saying offensive, trollish comments, which I am thankful for, but this is creepy. I don’t feel flattered–I feel violated. If you’re dying for your comments to be read that badly, repost them a million times; someone will read it then. Or make a name for yourself and post under it. If you continue to post comments under my name, prepare to be banned.

Right now, I’m upset. Genuinely upset. I’m going to take a break from the blog to clear my head.

I have never been the victim of Identity Theft before, so this was a first. I never, for a second, thought this would happen to me. Maybe some time in the future, I’ll look back and say this ordeal was flattering and that I might be overreacting (I doubt it), but right now, I just feel betrayed, unnerved, violated and so many other things. It’s all fun and games until someone assumes your identity, huh? And that was the creepiest part. It’s not what they are saying under my name that’s bothering me, it’s that they have tried to take my name and pass off as me.

That’s wrong. Just so wrong.

In any case, I’ll see you guys soon,

Kari

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240 Comments

  1. soccermomof4
    February 28, 2011

    Barca offside has removed kari and soccerdad’s posts! As for me I’m going to bed kids. Keep talking soccer!

  2. vicsoc
    February 28, 2011

    This thread is like an episode of the X-files.

    • Sheena
      March 1, 2011

      ^This.

  3. Miguel
    February 28, 2011

    ya know, we didn’t have pedro in the starting line-up last time around.
    http://www.zonalmarking.net/2010/10/19/barcelona-2-1-valencia-tactics/

    valencia hasn’t lost since november. couple that w/xavi coming back from injury, villa debuting at the mestalla, & valencia coming back to win v athletic, i’m worried too. joaquin has been really good lately. he scored a doblete last week, i believe.

  4. Pyro
    February 28, 2011

    I potentially see the ugliness of that logo ruining our apparel sales.
    It just doesn’t seem right. The UNICEF logo just seemed so at home. Bah, 🙁

  5. February 28, 2011

    To go into more Football related manners, and as i would like to hear the opinion of Barca fans on this. What do you think of the recent demotion of Italy to 3 spots and Germany being raised to 4. Soccermom raised the question over at my site and asked if Spain are in danger of this. Here is what i replied:

    Right now, England are first in the rankings with 82.928 points. Spain are second with 77.329. Germany moved into third with 68.103 and italy are in fourth (which means 3 CL spots) at 59.981.

    It should be noted that these numbers get affected by not only the CL, but the europa league as well. Hence why last year, when Atletico won the Europa league, spain got around 17 added to their total.

    How it works is that nations get points according to their teams performance in competition they are competing in. So yes, each win matters. Not just winning the competition. Last year, we had around 17 points, England around 17 points and Italy had 18 points, even though they won the CL. As long as Barcelona and Real Madrid rock the group stages (getting most wins), we are good for a good sum of years.

    Germany has been great in cup competitions lately, which has made them grow in numbers.

    here is a link if you want to see the overview:

    http://www.xs4all.nl/~kassiesa/bert/uefa/data/method4/crank2011.html

    Spain has been doing well in europa league (thanks to Sevilla and Atletico). I dont think there is a chance of us dropping below Germany, but man, if Dortmund manage to hold on to their stars and continue at this pace, we have another Beyern leverkusen (they reached the final against us in 2002 and were a power house for 3 years back then). I have a soft spot for Dortmund and specifically for Nuri Sahin!

    • Diego
      February 28, 2011

      Even if somehow someway in someone’s imagination we dropped behind Germany we’ll still have 4 CL and 3 Europa Liga, We’re only in Danger if we fall behind Italy or France which I think (Thanks to Barca, EE, Sevilla, Atletico, Valencia) is highly unlikely.

      • February 28, 2011

        I have doubts about Valencia going through. They have a tough schedule before their game in Germany. They have better quality than the german team, but you cant but help and feel that their overworked and shallow shallow squad might crumble under pressure.

  6. Diego
    February 28, 2011

    soccerdadof4 ?? Really ?!

    I’ll guess we’ll see Jmean, Aklavya, BarcaGuy_Indo, Innerspacedout.

    I feel sorry for him, If only he had used this energy for something useful.

    • barca96
      February 28, 2011

      Miguel-Michael.
      Beeef-chicken.
      K_Legit-K_Illegal?

      What else guys?
      Something to cheer us up.

      • Miguel
        March 1, 2011

        my brothers call me Michael. 🙂

    • BarcaGirl_Indo
      March 1, 2011

      Jmean… LMAO…

      and maybe, Dora to accompany Diego… 😛

      • barca96
        March 1, 2011

        Haha I love watching my lil’ sis watching Dora.

      • BarcaGirl_Indo
        March 1, 2011

        😀

    • Eklavya
      March 1, 2011

      Jmean LOL

      • Jnice
        March 1, 2011

        I laughed too.

  7. BA
    March 1, 2011

    that hideous pink script on our new training uniforms, seen in the training shots from today on the main site, makes me want to vomit.

    i’d love to know Hristo Stoichkov’s thoughts on that whole situation, incidentally.

  8. BarcaGirl_Indo
    March 1, 2011

    since we haven’t beaten Valencia at their home under Guardiola,
    against Valencia in Mestalla will be a very tough game,
    thank God for 7 points gap atm…

    I’m worry about our Captain Puyol,
    is he gonna make it for Arsenal clash?
    Xavi and Jeffren are back, but still missing our Captain Caveman… 🙁

    • barca96
      March 1, 2011

      Things are different now.
      We are stronger than ever. Even better than the quadruple season.

      • BarcaGirl_Indo
        March 1, 2011

        yes, but Barça is not invincible for sure… 🙂

        the next five road domestic games :

        Valencia – Sevilla – Villareal – EE (Liga) – EE (CdR final)

        dayyum!

  9. K_legit
    March 1, 2011

    yaay welcome all the doppelgänger people 😀

  10. OSBAG
    March 1, 2011

    good morn all. on topic i should tell kari to follow mei’s advice above .’Its internet. Its anonymous. And when something like this happens, you should only be worried about what happens in this space .
    One thing internet does more easily than in real life , is being able to focus more on what someone says and not who actually said that.
    Your physical presence is not attacked , and cannot be attacked in any
    way like this ,and your online presence is safe with us.”

    off topic, it was nice to see my fellow country ,man score the winning goal in the league cup final. wonderful result for me as i wouldnt want arsenal charging into the cl return leg full of confidence. but then it could also backfire as they might be more determined to make sometrhing out of it.
    though i really feel for them having not lifted silverware all these years.

    • barca96
      March 1, 2011

      It’s not as simple as that although this case is different.
      If Kari used her real name, it could be used against her at some point later in her life like when an employer does a quick scan or her potential bf. Just try googling your real name and see what the results are. Im sure a lot of people here have tried googling their names before :p
      However, Kari is not using her real name so it is not that serious.

      • mei
        March 1, 2011

        But she didnt. And she shouldnt. You are anonymous , unless you dont really want to or want to create an identity around your name , which is not what internet is about. Should you do it though, there are ways to protect it.
        There are ways of protecting your privacy , as soon as you are up for it. Care enough to learn the medium , and its setbacks.
        Trust me on this one , I was a cs student.
        People get the idea that there is somebody out to get them when dealing with whatever in the internet , just because of its worldwide reach. But its pretty much the opposite. Odds are you will be attacked near your neighborhood rather than surfing your favorite websites. Odds are that you will be mugged near your ATM machine rather than someone hijacking your credit card account.
        People get too protective about ideals that are not theirs to begin with. So if I get this straight , someone is not allowed to have the same nickname , or since it was proven , a real name the same as a commenter here , and post on a rivals website for whatever reason?
        This is absurd. It sounds like a copyright claim , and copyright stuff have gone mental in our times.

  11. jnelson
    March 1, 2011

    I for one never imagined copycats being an issue with these blogs. I guess trolling is out of style for the moment.

    As for Valencia, I think this is the year. This year we finally rolled through Bilbao, patetico, and Pamplona with max points, so why not add Valencia to the list? I’m feeling confident. We will miss Valdes and Puyol again, but Xavi coming back is a huge plus. Last year we were missing a few important people, right?

  12. hammeronmessi
    March 1, 2011

    hi 2 all.

    posted in 10,000bc (before the time of registration),but then become as involved as CT(always read the posts and comments,but never participated).

    my sympathy is with u,kari,although i think u have encouraged the person 2 imitate u more.(never encouraged the trolls).

    @eklavya,SoMo4,in a previous post,u asked if there are any other engineers?i m for one,a mechanical engineer.

    @kxevin,what a brilliant objective blogger u r.(though i m not in agreement with u for all of ur KRS).about the”every peak has its valley”?i think in case of arsenal the valley is equivalent to an abyss.(unlike our gaspert years,where we signed every maradona we can just win ).in this case i m in agreement with “andre the giant”.

    and why is everybody so fed up with QF?its not beautiful,i agree,but they r giving 124M for 5 years(my only grunt that roSELL cant squeeze out more juices from QF).maybe we should all blame the nike designers instead of roSELL and QF.

    i think i will be hectored

    • barca96
      March 1, 2011

      welcome.

      you sound like a seasoned lurker :p
      you know all the in’s and out’s.

      ps. can you not abbreviate so many words 🙂

      • hammeronmessi
        March 1, 2011

        yeah i m.

        ok i will try to elaborate next time.

        can you please let me know which abbreviated words you dont understand?

        by the way,(my memory is not good enough,may be i ask the same question way before),are you supporting barca from 96?

        adios

      • hammeronmessi
        March 1, 2011

        and thanks for welcoming me.(is it with a big hug or a simple welcome?)

        thank you.muchos garacias

  13. hammeronmessi
    March 1, 2011

    thanx jose,i m aware of the topic.

    my line of thought is since it is a football related blog,the posts and comments should mostly concentrated on a football related topic.although i agree with bassam and vicsoc about what would happen,i still think that karis re action just a bit over the top.(its not like the impostor is damaging her reputation with foul mouth and language,as kari has mentioned).

    rember lukes take on quatar hosting the WC.now thats a fascinating and thoughtful non football related topic.but identity theft.not my cup of tea(although i understand kari and her concern)

    • hammeronmessi
      March 1, 2011

      that gif is simply awesome.thanx jose

  14. Jnice
    March 1, 2011

    Revista should be interesting today.

    • hammeronmessi
      March 1, 2011

      why?

      and m i wrong that as soon as it is aired,u r here to post the links?(although i m now registered fbtz,its a pleasure to get the links from you)

      u r like zeus in the field of downloads

      • Jnice
        March 1, 2011

        Several different talking points. Barça winning without 4 key players, our upcoming match against Valencia, Mourinho and his recent complaints, etc.

        I post the links after they are uploaded on fbtz, which is probably 30 minutes to an hour after it’s aired in the UK.

        I don’t upload the show or anything, so I’m nothing special. I’m just good at finding links. That praise should be reserved for the cappers like Pakman and co, but thanks.

      • hammeronmessi
        March 1, 2011

        without you i may never know about fbtz or pakman.it is you who introduced me to them.so to me u r special in this regard,and u always credit pakman at the end of your post,so i know u dont upload them,just find them.

        Is it true after the arsenal game u vowed to return only after the 2nd leg.(i didnt get that as it took 3 days for me to get over that loss,and i cut myself from the internet).

      • Jnice
        March 1, 2011

        “Vowed to return”

        Hahaha, I feel like some sort of warrior waiting to avenge the death of his comrade.

        I don’t know if I specifically said after the 2nd leg. I just needed a few days to get over my disappointment. I’m real emotional when it comes to Barça (as many of you probably are), so a loss like that can affect me for weeks.

        It’s all good now. I spoke with my dad, who is a big Arsenal fan, and he still acknowledged we were and are the better team, so that kind of made me feel better.

        Welcome and thanks again for the compliments.

  15. hammeronmessi
    March 1, 2011

    may i know who is the person from calcutta,india?checked the readers online application.its a joy to find a barca fan in my own region.

    • soccermomof4
      March 1, 2011

      checked the readers online application

      huh?!?

      • hammeronmessi
        March 1, 2011

        designer of the BFB GIRLS V2.0 ,u dont know bout this application?shame shame.

        Btw,is your daughter a RB Like dani show me the money alves or a LB like ashley likes to shoot cole?

      • blitzen
        March 1, 2011

        SoMa4, look on the menu on the right side where it says Readers Online, and click on the button showing a number. It takes you to a page where you can see where the people who visit this site are located.

  16. Eklavya
    March 1, 2011

    What. The. Fudge.

    This is the craziest comments we’ve ever had. This is some movie script for the next Christopher Nolan movie, right?

    @Diego I laughed at that.

  17. hammeronmessi
    March 1, 2011

    i think hitckock is still the maestro.for this kind of script see north by northwest or usual suspects.and if you really wanna confuse yourself bout your identity watch memento.
    @eklavya,you r indian and a med student,right?nice mythical nick,btw.

    • Eklavya
      March 1, 2011

      No, no I’m not a medical student! I prefer Physics!

  18. soccermomof4
    March 1, 2011

    Hey guys, I’ve decided to do less posting and more lurking for a while. Hope you understand. I won’t be gone forever so the typos will be back 🙂

    • Jnice
      March 1, 2011

      Nooooooooooooooooo. 🙁

  19. soccermomof4
    March 1, 2011

    Oh, and don’t feed the trolls!

  20. Lev
    March 1, 2011

    Mmmm….so when is soccerkidwith4moms signing in?

  21. hammeronmessi
    March 1, 2011

    @jnice.
    I m an avid reader of the guardian.the way the ppl there enjoyed barcas loss i m now in war mood to beat the hell out of the gunners just to shut up these EPL ers.they are more unlikeable then guti.

    Vowed to return,its more like i will be back from terminator 2.

    Nice to know your dad is a gooner.in my cricket mad country its difficult to find a fan who supports a club.although in the WC season the country is literally divided into argentina and brazil.its simply amazing in wc football years in my country.

  22. Lev
    March 1, 2011

    off topic – congratulations to Ryan Giggs on his 20 year anniversary playing for Man U. A legend of the game

    • K_legit
      March 1, 2011

      Absolute legend and if I may add the hairiest player in existence 😀

      Sir Ryan of Canton indeed

  23. Sheena
    March 1, 2011

    Tito gave the press con today since Pep’s back is giving him trouble (and so our list of injuries continues to lengthen…), and I have to say, it’s really, really bothering me that Puyol and Valdes don’t have a set return time.

    I’d be content with Pinto in goal for Arsenal (not because of Valdes’ error in the first leg mind you, accidents happen), but the thought of being without both Puyol and Pique is one that frightens the living daylights out of me. It hadn’t occured to me that Puyol may not make it in time, but after today’s press conference in which Tito said that he couldn’t predict when he would be back on the pitch……… My head hurts.

    • Jnice
      March 1, 2011

      I feel the same as you do.

      After reading what Tito had to say, I doubt Puyol will play against Arsenal.

      He still hasn’t been able to train with the team, and if they can’t predict a date yet, then I don’t see how he will be ready in 7 days.

      Same applies to Victor, though like you, I’m more worried about the Puyol absence.

      I think we may see Busquets back there because I don’t know if Pep would play two lefties in Abidal and Milito at center back.

      Ugh.

      • Sheena
        March 1, 2011

        I don’t know about Pep leaving out Milito entirely. Busi in midfield is so crucial, and I’d really hate to see the formation (or lack of one) that we saw against Bilbao in which he played as a CB/MF/Astronaut. He’s so, so important to our passing game.

        My favoured choice would be Mascherano at CB, but I highly doubt Pep would risk that for the first time in such a crucial game.

        I want to throw things at my wall. Sigh.

      • Jnice
        March 1, 2011

        Yeah, I definitely want Busi in midfield, but I just don’t know if Pep is willing to play two lefties together.

        Maybe Euler has some thoughts about this.

        And on Puyol, if he doesn’t start training with the team by the weekend at the very least, I don’t see how he will start against Arsenal.

      • Extreme barca fan
        March 1, 2011

        Ohh, as usual the english version of the official website have nothing up to date.
        So it will be like last year when we played without the P-P partnership, lets hope messi will score 4 more goals.

    • Goo
      March 1, 2011

      Even Pep’s injured? Wow. I thought February’s over.

      • mei
        March 1, 2011

        Small squad…We should sign a replacement!

  24. March 1, 2011

    Saw on the Twitters via @barcastuff that Alves and the club are less than a half-mil apart, and that Alves is willing to give up half that difference. Seems like he’s putting his actions where his mouth is. He has said that he wants to retire with us.

    • soccermomof4
      March 1, 2011

      Comming out of posting limbo long enough to say please read thread and do what you can about the strangeness. Outta here!

    • hammeronmessi
      March 1, 2011

      very funny,though it is the fault of NIKE,not because of QF

      • mei
        March 1, 2011

        So , THATS why guardiola had a back injury? the damn new training kit ? 😛

    • blitzen
      March 1, 2011

      LOL!!!

  25. March 1, 2011

    Right. Here we go:

    When we are out in the world, posting as our little Barca-happy selves, we should recognize that right now, we aren’t exactly everybody’s favorite team. They believe that we’re arrogant, holier-than-thou namby pambies. As such, people are going to decide to, for lack of a more elegant phrase, eff with us. This might manifest itself in comments that send up our comments or screen names, might be trollers, might be similarly-named commenters at various sites.

    We would ALL do well to presume that the person is honest, until they prove otherwise, and not act as arrogant and sanctimonious as people accuse our team of being. The hostility that greeted soccerdadof4 is not cool. He didn’t use the same Gravatar image as soccermomof4. He used an image from an extraordinary moment in this club’s history, just as any Barca fanatic might do. Nothing wrong with that.

    As for his moniker, what if (shudder) soccerdadof4 actually is a soccer dad, with 4 kids, and got the idea from soccermomof4? Nothing wrong with that. Did SoccerMom take umbrage when soccermomof4 showed up? No. We should not circle the wagons and assume that everyone is an impostor or interloper. This is an open site, in that it is open to anyone who registers. It’s a bit of bother to register, for the express purpose of being a jackass.

    So the first thing that I would do about the “strangeness,” such as it is, is remind everyone of what I just said. We’ve made a name for ourselves by being a cool, welcoming space in which everyone is welcome. If people come and are up to no good, management will deal with it.

    Now, back to footy.

    • blitzen
      March 1, 2011

      Who are you, and what have you done with the real Kxevin?!? 😉

      And I totally read that phrase as “Barca-happy elves” the first-time through. 😀

      I demand an Isaiah preview of tomorrow’s game!

      • March 1, 2011

        Oh, it’s coming, blitzen. It’s coming ….

    • soccermomof4
      March 1, 2011

      Sorry Kxexin, Please accept my apologies. It’s just freaky to someone as overly cautious as I am, and too coincidental for me not to freak out. And when another poster mentioned my daughter, momma bear’s claws came out.

      As for soccermom and me having similar names, I’ve often worried about it. But by the time I thought to change it everyone knew me as soccermomof 4.

      Again sorry. How ’bout them Blaugrana!

    • Lev
      March 1, 2011

      well said.

      to both soccerdad and karyanna – if my comments seemed sharp, my tongue was firmly in cheek when i wrote them

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