This post will likely run long, but read it all and it may make sense. One thing about Bigfootery, try to drop off the info highway for a dozen or so days and you usually miss some gold.
The latest bigfoot gold was Ed Smith’s claim of a captured Bigfoot. Ed appeared on our radar a long time ago, our bigpuffery meter pegged out on him early on. Well, he hung around for years and pulled a “We got a Body” hoax that was right up there with the best of them – they’ve all been pretty bad so far. We applied extensive form game theory and a decision tree to the event, it made some sense but there were too many dotted lines which leads us to believe at least one player in the game entered without an end goal or it was actually a cooperative game that transformed at some point. It would take us way to much time to explain it, and frankly the peer review resulted in a WTF. Here are a few random thoughts of this particular bigdebacle with only a flavoring from the game theory stuff:
About Ed: Bigpuffery is simply part of bigfootery. Most “researchers” practice it to various degrees. People make all sorts of inflated bigfoot claims, as well as personal claims. Someone who digs up fuel tanks is suddenly an environmental scientist, a loss control employee at Wallyworld is a detective, bigfootery abounds with those folks. Ed certainly demonstrated bigpuffery years ago, there were all sorts of red flags that people either missed or ignored. He certainly spent some time fabricating his plan, we do not think it would have worked, but there was certainly some thought, and time, put into how to cage a bigfoot and what to do once you succeeded. Would the plan have worked, we highly doubt it. We do believe that Ed either did not have an end goal figured out, subsequent moves by other players were well beyond what was expected or one of the players flipped from cooperation to competition. We also think he attempted to exit with the sale of the zeros to the quantras, but something drew him back. For motivation, see the catfish section below.
About the Enablers: There were enablers in this event, news blogs, primary and secondary forums, “researchers” who rushed in with the hope of gathering bigfootery street cred and bigfootery credits. Ed would not have been able to foist this hoax without the enabling of the MABRC, some of their associated state coordinators, some news blogs and some “researchers”. These folks provided credibility, a publicity vehicle and served as his mouthpieces. In our book they share a good bit of the credit, or discredit, in minting some bigfootery gold. Last night this author read one of the threads in a forum, we found the investigative “researcher” who was one of his mouthpieces particularly inept. First, set ground rules for a face to face or at least phone interview in this type of situation, giving a person all the time they need to answer your inane questions by email is not going to reveal anything. Ed cut it close with some of his responses, but he was hardly what we would consider a sharp person. This part of the tree was pretty clear, Ed had a well developed idea of how those players would react and they did as expected. His one uncertainty in that part of the game was the MABRC, we do not think he anticipated them selling out his personal info to the point that there were some threads to pick at.
About the “Final Statement”: When you say the buck stops here and proceed to pass the buck every which way we call bigbullcrap. Explain all the due diligence you want, but clearly Ed was full of bigpuffery early on and should have been ignored. Time runs out on his promised, super earning video, simply claim he was under someone else’s release timeframe. When that expires, claim that you sold those rights. Going into his sexual orientation was really inappropriate in our opinion, that reeked. Even the term “Final Statement”, which implies leave us alone we are not talking about it anymore. Baaaah.
About Catfish: There is a documentary and new series out about catfish. It has a bearing upon this event, and it reveals some investigative techniques that have value in the brave new world of internet bigfooting, especially facebook bigfooting. Here’s the quick version of the cod and catfish story as this post is getting long and it is late. At the turn of the century various ways of transporting cod were attempted. Smoking and salting just did not do justice to the fish, and so they attempted live transport. The fish arrived alive but soft and lacking flavor. One enterprising person decided to put a few catfish in the tanks and had remarkable results, the fish were firm, lively and tasted fresh. It seems the catfish stirred the cod up, kept them moving, kept them alert, nipped at em.
What’s the point? Ed was a bigfootery catfish. He stirred things up, he certainly revealed the weak and the strong. He put pressure on the cod and we got to watch, or read after the fact, how the different cods behaved. He revealed a great deal about some of these cods, their motivations, their ability to truely swim, who headed for the edge of the tank, who schooled up, who turned and faced the catfish. There are a few cod who are now belly up, they may not admit it, but that catfish got ya. As to Ed’s motivation, we think like many on this TV show, it was to live a fabricated life that yielded him attention, recognition and support that evidently is lacking elsewhere, pretty simple. Was he trying to establish a relationship with one of his enablers? Perhaps.
And now a note about the documentary and show about Catfish on MTV. We like it. It is essentially about facebook, on-line love, deception and peeling back the layers to get to the truth. It is instructional for bigfootery in the lengths that frauds will go, alter ego cell phones, constructing intricate false social networks and profiles and drama. Bigfootery level drama. It is also instructional to watch the onion peeler work; how he analyzes networks, finds commonalities and connections, finds a thread to pick at and then starts to unravel things. His ultimate strategy is boots on the ground and getting face to face for the truth. It is also instructional to see the catfish and hear their explanation and motivations for their actions. It really is good TV, and there are some things most of bigfootery can learn from it. And here’s the rub, the catfishes can watch it and improve their game, much like the third and fourth level bigfooters like to study the playbooks we have revealed over the years here.