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Photograph: Bloomberg/Getty Images


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Bloomberg/Getty Images

How do you rescue someone you love from the clutches of an internet conspiracy cult?

Do you maybe tell them that the operator of the “most prominent” website devoted to the unhinged, fact-free QAnon conspiracy theory was recently rumbled as a senior vice-president at Citibank?

According to reports, Jason Gelinas was a “longtime Wall Street IT expert” with a noteworthy professional interest in data mining. He perhaps knew better than most how susceptible people are to advertising when they’re angry and they’re frightened; reports claim he was earning $US3,000 a month from Q-adherents on his Patreon site, and suspected of compiling data on 10 million site visitors willing to believe – without evidence – that a network of Hollywood satanists run vast underground camps where raped children are milked for blood. It’s an unquestioning credulity that would have any marketer salivating.

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How do you rescue someone you love from the clutches of an internet conspiracy cult?

Do you maybe tell them that the operator of the “most prominent” website devoted to the unhinged, fact-free QAnon conspiracy theory was recently rumbled as a senior vice-president at Citibank?

According to reports, Jason Gelinas was a “longtime Wall Street IT expert” with a noteworthy professional interest in data mining. He perhaps knew better than most how susceptible people are to advertising when they’re angry and they’re frightened; reports claim he was earning $US3,000 a month from Q-adherents on his Patreon site, and suspected of compiling data on 10 million site visitors willing to believe – without evidence – that a network of Hollywood satanists run vast underground camps where raped children are milked for blood. It’s an unquestioning credulity that would have any marketer salivating.

Alas, the truth has done little to dissuade QAnon

Read More

How do you rescue someone you love from the clutches of an internet conspiracy cult?

Do you maybe tell them that the operator of the “most prominent” website devoted to the unhinged, fact-free QAnon conspiracy theory was recently rumbled as a senior vice-president at Citibank?

According to reports, Jason Gelinas was a “longtime Wall Street IT expert” with a noteworthy professional interest in data mining. He perhaps knew better than most how susceptible people are to advertising when they’re angry and they’re frightened; reports claim he was earning $US3,000 a month from Q-adherents on his Patreon site, and suspected of compiling data on 10 million site visitors willing to believe – without evidence – that a network of Hollywood satanists run vast underground camps where raped children are milked for blood. It’s an unquestioning credulity that would have any marketer salivating.

Alas, the truth has done little to dissuade QAnon

Read More

One year later, on June 15, 2020, the U.S. Department of Justice charged six former eBay employees, all part of the corporate security team, with conspiring to commit cyberstalking and tamper with witnesses. Their alleged targets were almost comically obscure — a mom-and-pop blogging duo from a suburb of Boston and a Twitter gadfly who wrote often in their comments section. According to the government, their methods were juvenile and grotesque, featuring cockroaches, pornography, barely veiled threats of violence and death, physical surveillance and the weaponization of late-night pizza.

“This was a determined, systematic effort by senior employees of a major company to destroy the lives of a couple in Natick,” said the U.S. attorney in Boston, Andrew Lelling, at a news conference, “all because they published content the company executives didn’t like.”

Each charge carries a sentence of up to five years in prison. Mr. Baugh, whose age was

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