[NOTE – UK-based web hosts are particularly easy to bully thanks to certain peculiarities in local libel laws, and people acting for (or on behalf of) Redwire Design have been taking advantage of that, by bullying my priovider rather than admitting their role in… well, more bullying. If Nick Catt or Alex Malloy or anyone else at Redwire Design want to deny the involvement of their staff/facilities in online harassment (including publication/promotion of my home address), then they can initiate actual civil proceedings or shut up. My account is honest and truthful, backed by evidence none of them dare challenge, and it stands. Relocated article reinstated 4 May 2010.]
Kooba Radio bills itself as an “independent, non-profit, Internet-based radio station focused on alternative rock, playing unsigned bands from around the world” and was founded by Jon Chappell (Jonny Yeah), Alex Malloy (The Boy Malloy) and Angela Collins (She Who Must Not Be Named).
Kooba Radio is also a joke, and just a wee bit corrupt in places.
As most of you are aware, most of last year was marred by an ongoing campaign of harassment resulting from my encounter with the ‘amateur terror expert’ Dominic Wightman (a former associate of Glen Jenvey and Patrick Mercer). That campaign of harassment escalated to the repeated publication of my home address by a group calling themselves the ‘Cheerleaders’. These people claim to be anti-fascist, but they had no qualms about broadcasting my address to BNP members alongside mentions of my involvement in anti-BNP campaigns such as Billy Brit. The ‘Cheerleaders’ have made a number of unsubstantiated claims in a belated attempt to justify their actions, but what’s most likely is that they initially did this because Wightman told them to do it, and they painted themselves into a corner* from there.
Kooba Radio first came to my attention a couple of days before the email address of one of the founders (Jon Chappell, aka ‘Jonny Yeah’) turned up in the CC list of a group email from the ‘Cheerleaders’ threatening me with violence.
I wrote about that threat and included the relevant email addresses in the report. Months passed, then, over the New Year holiday period, when most people in the entertainment industry were busy with gigs (or at least sleeping it off), someone on that list wasted away their days and nights (again) making good on an earlier threat to share my personal data with Nigerian scammers if I refused to remove that list of names and email addresses.
When doing so, they posed as me, pretended that I was manager of a small local bank branch, and provided them with my main email address and (ex-directory) home address. Nice, huh?
I was recently assured in a further email from someone with a third-person fetish that “they’re going to keep coming until you remove the email addresses from your blog”.
This suggested to me that someone on that list didn’t want to be visibly associated with what the ‘Cheerleaders’ had been up to, so I contacted everyone on that list, and offered them the chance to disassociate themselves from the online attacks and threats of violence. If they wanted to be removed from this post, all they had to do was account for their conduct to date (i.e. why not object before now?), and distance themselves from this ongoing campaign of harassment.
Only ‘Jonny Yeah’ took me up on the offer and asked for his name/address to be removed. Initially, he pretended not to know anything about the campaign of harassment. When this pretence was fatally undermined by the evidence, ‘Jonny’ suddenly lost interest in the attempt to have his name/address removed, but how he did it will be of most interest to any fans of Kooba Radio:
First, while claiming to know nothing about any of it, ‘Jonny Yeah’ implied that his inclusion on the list was the result of some random activity by fans who lifted his email address from his website. Because he’s a superstar DJ, don’t you know.
His claim was contradicted by the evidence, and I said so.
‘Jonny Yeah’ responded by attempting to explain away his demonstrable association with the Cheerleaders (and connections with leader Charlie Flowers) by saying that their ‘very good’ band (The Fighting Cocks) had featured on his show, and that was the limit of his involvement. Because he’s a superstar DJ, don’t you know.
His revised claim was contradicted by the evidence, and I said so.
‘Jonny Yeah’ then went on to claim that he hadn’t been aware of any of this despite being CCed on the original threat and emailed specifically about it because Kooba Radio have strong spam filters to avoid all the ‘crap’ that results from his efforts to “enable young (and not so young) musicians to submit [material] to us”. He then urged me to tune into his show that evening. Because he’s a superstar DJ, don’t you know.
This revised claim was contradicted by the evidence, and I said so.
I also made it absolutely clear to him at this stage that I could prove his association with a YouTube account created mainly to publish my home address and gave him one last opportunity to deny it… or perhaps explain himself.
‘Jonny Yeah’ responded by asking me what I thought of his show that evening.
At no stage did he express any interest in or disapproval of the repeated use of my personal data to intimidate me… most recently, on his behalf.
It wasn’t until I made it clear that I intended to publish something about it that he made good with a vague denial of direct involvement, before quickly moving on to assure me that he wouldn’t ever be mentioning me on his show, as if that’s what I wanted.
Because he’s a superstar DJ, don’t you know.
Sadly for ‘Jonny’, this claim of star-status is also contradicted by the evidence:
1. The IP address used when sending almost all of his emails corresponds with IP data connected to many/most of the edits to this Wikipedia page about his radio ‘station’. Said page is a shameless (and lengthy) construct of laughable self-promotion, the highlight of which is an account of ‘Broadband Aid’, a “new arrangement of Band Aid, the famous Christmas Single”, in which the author goes on to specify (and link directly to) everybody who sang a line in this bold venture. There’s no way it’s going to survive in its current state once I’ve mentioned it here, so here’s a screen capture for the ages.
2. Encouraged by ‘Jonny Yeah’, I did visit their site and explore their glorious world of online radio stardom. For starters, according to Alexa, my main website (bloggerheads.com) attracts a larger audience than theirs (koobaradio.co.uk)… by a factor of around 10-1 by the looks of things. Alexa is really only reliable as a thumbnail sketch, but the Twitter stats support this; I presently have 1,542 followers, while Kooba Radio have 175 (and ‘Jonny Yeah’ has 95). The YouTube stats also support this; with Bloggerheads currently standing at 10,210 channel views and KoobaTV at 1,702. Their most popular video got 402 views. My least popular video got 843. I say all of this while recognising the modesty of my own efforts… it just amused me to be dismissed as a delusional fanboy by a guppy who thinks he’s a shark. The only thing that gives this tosser any power/edge over me is his willingness to participate in the kind of anonymous harassment that almost every web user recognises as being beyond the pale. It also needs to be noted that the audience of this radio ‘station’ listens via these channels; it is not a case of them having a smaller web audience than their actual audience, because the web audience is their audience. There’s more in #4, but if ‘Jonny Yeah’ is worried about going mainstream, he shouldn’t let those concerns keep him up nights; the nearest he’s likely to get to compromising his anti-establishment principles is accepting the ‘employee of the month’ award at Burger King.
On the subject of YouTube, I wasn’t able to mention this before now because Google only got around to suspending the relevant account yesterday, but someone at Kooba Radio used their YouTube channel to link to and promote another YouTube account created mainly (if not only) to publish and promote my ex-directory home address as part of an ongoing campaign of harassment. I’d make a bigger deal of my not knowing exactly who at Kooba Radio did this if it weren’t for the fact that the account JonnyYeah1 was also visibly associated with that same online attack. At the very least, it can be said with some certainty that when ‘Jonny Yeah’ claimed to be completely unaware of the campaign of harassment yesterday, he was lying. This, sadly, undermines the vague denials he made about direct involvement before signing off.
3. It also needs to be noted that ‘Jonny Yeah’ is a lot closer to some of the bands he promotes than he lets on. This is what the professionals in the show business call a ‘conflict if interest’… not that I would dare to imply that Jon Chappell (aka Jonny Yeah) is in any way professional.
4. Attention, unsigned bands (and bands signed with small labels): not only is Kooba Radio co-founder and ‘headline’ DJ Jon Chappell a pathetic lying scoundrel who knowingly participates in anonymous web bullying, but he’s most likely going to end up being a complete waste of your time even if he decides to help you rather than, say, put the safety of your family at risk for shits and giggles. I could help you to reach a much bigger audience without even trying, and even if the deal goes hopelessly sour, there’s no way I’m going to be as much of a twat about it as this guy.
(Not that I’ve any interest in being a superstar DJ at this stage of my life… or a twat. I’m just saying is all.)
[*At any stage, the ‘Cheerleaders’ can render themselves an irrelevance by rolling over on Dominic Wightman. I’ve said so privately will happily declare it publicly. I have no interest in vendettas, as my treatment of Jenvey after his confession should make clear; there are some who may beg to differ on that point, but like ‘Jonny Yeah’ they’ve been telling outright lies about the extent of their involvement in this affair. I’m not out to ‘get at’ any of the ‘Cheerleaders’, but if I have to, I will go through them in order to clearly establish the role played by Wightman. At least one of the ‘Cheerleaders’ should be warned that recent impersonations could lead to the closure of their email account regardless of what I have to say about it, and a window of opportunity is likely to close with it; they will not be able to present me with solid evidence of Wightman’s role if the receiving account has been deactivated. The ‘Cheerleaders’ have made a number of vague claims about being deceived by Dominic Wightman, and if they want to prove it, then now is the time, and there is nothing holding them back if the evidence is there. After all, they can’t possibly claim that they refuse to reveal relevant evidence on the grounds of a person’s right to privacy.]