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Get Ready AT&T: Operation Chokehold Has More Than 1,600 Facebook Fans

Tower

Cell tower photo by forklift - http://flic.kr/p/772WXR

Fake Steve’s Operation Chokehold is growing fast. The number of Facebook fans has jumped five-fold overnight, from about 300 fans on Tuesday to more than 1,600.

Fake Steve is calling on disgruntled AT&T customers to bring AT&T’s data network “to its knees” at 12 noon PST this Friday, December 18. (Here’s Fake Steve’s original Operation Chokehold post).

The action is in protest of comments made by AT&T’s CEO Ralph de la Vega that some iPhone users are using too much data. The protest started as a joke, but is taking on a life of its own.

On Tuesday, AT&T dismissed the planned protest as a publicity stunt. A company spokesman downplayed any effect it may have — but that was when there was only 300 fans.

AT&T Responds to Fake Steve’s Operation Chokehold

Tower

Cell tower photo by forklift - http://flic.kr/p/772WXR

AT&T has dismissed Fake Steve’s Operation Chokehold protest as an attention-getting stunt.

Fake Steve is calling on disgruntled AT&T customers to bring AT&T’s data network “to its knees” at 12 noon PST this Friday, December 18.

The action is in protest of comments made by a company executive that some iPhone users are using too much data. The protest started as a joke, but seems to have taking on a life of its own. Judging by comments on forums, Facebook and Twitter, people are planning to take part.

Contacted by CultofMac.com, an AT&T spokesman said:

We understand that fakesteve.net is primarily a satirical forum, but there is nothing amusing about advocating that customers attempt to deliberately degrade service on a network that provides critical communications services for more than 80 million customers. We know that the vast majority of customers will see this action for what it is: an irresponsible and pointless scheme to draw attention to a blog.

The AT&T spokesman doubted the action — if it goes ahead — will have much effect. There’s only about 300 participants committed to take part, according to a Facebook fan page set up for the event. The spokesman also claims that many have criticized the event: several have pointed out that the action may affect emergency calls.

Protesters plan to disrupt AT&T’s data network in several ways:

It’s unclear whether disruption of AT&T’s data network will affect voice calls.

Operation Chokehold Is Gathering Steam — Bring AT&T To Its Knees on Friday

Tower

Cell tower photo by forklift - http://flic.kr/p/772WXR

Operation Chokehold — a flashmob-style protest against AT&T that began as a joke on Fake Steve’s blog — looks like it may actually take place.

The meme is gathering a lot of steam on Twitter and Facebook, with people saying they plan to join the protest.

“We have got to do this!,” says Mashable reader pjserven, who set up a couple of Facbook pages to help mobilize protestors: an event page and a fanpage that makes it easy to invite friends.

The protest began with a Fake Steve post about an internal Apple memo — fake of course — about bringing AT&T’s network to its knees on Friday, December 18 at noon Pacific:

Subject: Operation Chokehold
On Friday, December 18, at noon Pacific time, we will attempt to overwhelm the AT&T data network and bring it to its knees. The goal is to have every iPhone user (or as many as we can) turn on a data intensive app and run that app for one solid hour. Send the message to AT&T that we are sick of their substandard network and sick of their abusive comments. The idea is we’ll create a digital flash mob. We’re calling it in Operation Chokehold. Join us and speak truth to power!

“I made up the note,” said Dan Lyons, aka Fake Steve. “A reader sent in the opposite idea — a boycott of AT&T for one day, everyone stops using their iPhone for a day, and we show them what’s what. I liked the sentiment but who’s going to stop using their iPhone? And for a whole day? I figured no one would go for it. But a one-hour flash mob of overuse? Now that i could see people doing.”

The fake memo follows Fake Steve’s inspired and widely-linked anti-AT&T rant last week. Fake Steve’s diatribe was prompted by comments by A&T CEO Ralph de la Vega’s saying the carrier may “incentivize” iPhone users to cut back on their usage.

Note: Operation Chokehold may adversely affect AT&T’s voice network and block emergency calls.

Pic Of the Day: Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer Rendered In Windows Blue Screens

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Remember that famous mosaic portrait of Steve Jobs that Fortune commissioned made from popular Apple products?

Well, a reader of Day Lyon’s Fake Steve blog created this portrait of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer from snaps of Microsoft’s most memorable product — the blue screen of death. Check out the detail of Ballmer’s tongue:

ballmer_tongue

This is actually quite astounding. Dear Reader Fraser has created a mosaic using 80 random Windows crash shots to portray Uncle Fester. Below is a detail of the tongue. Click on both to see them in greater detail. The full file is really amazing — we hope to make it available as a download soon so that you can print it out, frame it, give to people you don’t like as a winter solstice holiday present — you get the idea.

For what it’s worth, Fraser says he’ll create a poorly drawn portrait of anyone — just check out his site, PoorlyDrawnPortraits.com. Much love, Fraser. You sick bastard.

Gallery of Uncanny Steve Jobs Lookalikes

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Isamu Sanada’s day gig is photography, but his passion is Apple mock-up design.

An amateur designer of fantasy Macintoshes with a website that showcases dozens of his speculative designs for Apple gear, Sanada got his mock-up cred back when he posted an amazingly prescient take on the Titanium G4 PowerBook months before the real deal was released.

Though he’s gotten lots of praise for his designs, Sanada has been quoted regarding his design chops humbly, saying, “Apple’s thought is more splendid than my thought.”

Hit the jump for more Steve Jobs lookalikes and if you find one out and about — or happen to be one yourself — send us a pic or post it on our Facebook wall and we may feature yours in a gallery post down the road.

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Fake Steve’s Must-Read Take on Schmidt’s Board Resignation

jobs-squirrel-good-fellas

Fake Steve has a hilarious series of posts about Eric “Squirrel Boy” Schmidt’s resignation from Apple’s board. Much better than the real news and boring analysis. Starts with Squirrel Down! and continues:

“Eric, let me tell you something. After what you pulled here at Apple, no one will ever trust you again. You’re a dead man. Okay? You are the herpes of the tech industry. You lame-ass spy. You backstabbing, flack-fucking thief. You sat in our meetings and learned all of our secrets. You listened to our product development plans. Then you went off and copied our products and now you’re trying to fuck me in the ear with my own ideas.”

Then he goes on to detail the hilarious phone calls Steve has taken from wannabes looking to fill Schmidt’s empty seat, including Woz, Kara Swisher, Jon Shirley, Guy Kawasaki, Robert Scoble and Chris Anderson.

Worth reading in order to appreciate how the joke builds (I made the mistake of reading them backwards). Highlights are the Kawasaki and Anderson posts.

Link.

Fake Steve Jobs Is Back

Dan Lyons at a San Francisco book signing in 2007 with tech podcaster Veronica Belmont and Bike Helmet Girl, a recurrent character in the Secret Diary.

Dan Lyons at a San Francisco book signing in 2007 with tech podcaster Veronica Belmont and Bike Helmet Girl, a recurrent character in the Secret Diary.

Steve Jobs may not be back to work yet, but Fake Steve is.

Fake Steve Jobs (aka Newsweek columnist Dan Lyons) has started blogging again.

Over the weekend, Fake Steve made a series of off-color jokes about Steve Jobs’ recent liver transplant. The posts are classic Fake Steve  — sick, tasteless and LOL funny.

Unfortunately, it may not last.

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‘Fake Steve Jobs’ Lashes Out on CNBC

A couple of the larger media egos on the Apple beat got into a public spat on CNBC Wednesday, in the wake of Steve Jobs’ sudden decision to step aside from day-to-day operations in Cupertino.

Newsweek columnist Dan Lyons, who outed himself as the man behind the formerly wildly popular blog Fake Steve Jobs told CNBC’s Silicon Valley bureau chief, Jim Goldman, he’d been “played” and “punked” by his sources at Apple.

Goldman had previously reported, in the wake of Jobs’ decision to forgo the keynote address at Macworld 2009, that his sources had assured him the Apple CEO was fine and healthy and that the company’s decisions around Macworld had more to do with its long-term market strategy, and had not been guided by any concerns about Jobs’ health.

The clip is a bit of Kabuki theater that reminds one of nothing so much as children squabbling over a dying parent. It devolves, as so many of these things do, into a tempest of shouting and mewling. The conversation’s moderator sums it up nicely at the end, saying, “nobody can hear anything you guys are saying because you’re talking all over one another, and we’re out of time.”

Sad.

Via Cnet

Boo! Fake Steve Jobs Halloween Costume

Boo! Fake Steve Jobs Halloween Costume

Good news: you may already have the black mock-neck, 501s, New Balance sneakers and an iPod Touch in your wardrobe.
Bad news: any costume you have to explain a few times until everyone is too drunk to care isn’t your best bet.

Unless maybe you drum up interest on your Fake Steve Facebook profile beforehand…

Via iPhone Savior

“Calvin and Jobs,” the Story of a Boy and His iCEO

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In my childhood, I had two obsessions: Calvin and Hobbes and Apple. And someone has finally had the foresight to bring them together for Calvin and Jobs, which chronicles the adventures of a boy and his imaginary Apple CEO. It’s quite witty, very much in the tone of the real series. The cartooning isn’t so elegant as (almost certainly disapproving) Bill Watterson, but that’s pretty much a certainty. Still, my favorite remix comic since Garfield Minus Garfield, so well done, PinkFloyd99 of Flickr!  Click through the jump for four more adventures of Calvin and Jobs!

Update: This set of cartoons was written by Jacob Lambert and drawn by Gary Hallgren, and is from a two-page spread in the current issue of MAD Magazine.

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