GKP News Service 9/18/2007
Cartoonist Kevin Pettway (Heroes of Lesser Earth) was arrested this morning at 9:20 A.M. on charges of perpetrating an internet hoax. Mr. Pettway operates a blog site in conjunction with his web comic with a small but devoted following of readers which publishes every week. In his last article, Mr. Pettway wrote a fake news service article in a seemingly obvious attempt to be funny. Grover-Kaplan Publishing, the news service spoofed, failed however to see the humor.
In the article, Mr. Pettway claimed, in what he thought to be a cleverly worded code, that he had been contacted by a high-school friend of his now working for a very large and extremely well-known software company. This friend ran a research and development team which was currently testing an email tracking program for both homeland security and marketing applications. In his blog, Mr. Pettway stated that the first 250 individuals to distribute the text of the falsified news article to 100 unique email addresses would automatically receive one hundred dollars each deposited to an internet accounting service in their names for participating in the research.
After having been alerted to the faked news article bearing the company’s name, Grover-Kaplan Publishing alerted the proper authorities, and Mr. Pettway was immediately incarcerated.
The software company in question (the name of the company is being withheld pending arraignment of Mr. Pettway) has denied the development of any software with email tracking capabilities as well as any such research tests. This comes despite three highly publicized operations over the past five years in which participants received fifty, seventy-five, and one hundred-twenty dollars each for exactly the same test.
Asked whether they considered any of the previous software tests to be relevant to the status of their case against Mr. Pettway, Grover-Kaplan Publishing released a press-memo stating that prior tests of non-existant software were not germane to their planned course of litigation, and they didn’t think Mr. Pettway’s comic was all that funny either.
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