delirium happy

Just keep on trying till you run out of cake

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Because everybody loves conspiracy theories.
delirium happy
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It's competition time!

Every time that LiveJournal is down for more than 3 seconds, there are always, without fail, conspiracy theories abounding as to why this happened. Six Apart did it on purpose. Elvis pressed the big red button. Orbital lasers shot from alien spacecraft disrupted the internet. And so on.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to write me the best possible conspiracy theory to explain LJ downtime. An ideal conspiracy theory would seem plausible at first glance but completely implausible when you look deeper, be clever, original and amusing, and satirise (but not too much) the sort of people who generally do come up with weird theories as to why LJ is down.

And to put my money where my mouth is, the competition's winner (aka, "my favourite conspiracy theory") wins £25 donated to the charity of their choice (provided that they're non-contraversial, and can accept payment online or cheques in pound sterling). Competition ends at 12:00 noon GMT, Saturday March 5.

Get to it.

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Brad deliberately shuts down LiveJournal now and then so he can play hard to get with his fiancee' and make her appreciate him more by realizing just how much he's done through its absence.

The dimwit janitor at the server storage facility was looking on the master system, saw the cluster "Filetmignon," and decided that a grill would be more effective than electric wires. He wasn't so stupid as to just grab something hot, so he disconnected the power and let it cool down, and proceeded to remove the disks and wander off in search of a restaurant that had just the right barbecue sauce for his prize. About a day later, Brad and his super search party found him lying in a ditch on the side of the interstate, staring at the sky while twitching and muttering to himself, the disks in his backpack, held together with a magnet the size of an orange. Brad recognizes the man as a member of his college fraternity's rival frat, and wonders what had happened to cause him to lose a finger.

Six Apart has a plan to implement "super-paid accounts" which cost 50 USD per month. They've told Brad to turn the servers off for a few minutes each day, frustrating all users to the point that when Six Apart announces super-paid accounts (guaranteed, of course, to never have downtime) users will clamber for them.

"clamor", even. it is late.

(Deleted comment)
Every now and then, the experimental military AI they're training to hate humanity with all the journal entries gets overloaded with the angst, and has to pause for while.
You can prove this is true - every time there's an outage, all you have to do is look for an *incredibly* angsty post just a few moments before the system went down.

(Deleted comment)
Brad keeps forgetting to feed the hamsters that power the whole shebang, and out of desperation they start gnawing through the wires to assuage their hunger.

Bill Gates took over LiveJournal in an unfortunate game of poker with Brad Fitzpatrick and Mena Trott. Having been dealt a royal flush, Mr. Gates bet Microsoft's blogging service. Not to be outdone, Mrs. Trott bet LiveJournal, despite having only a pair of tens. Mr. Fitzpatrick, feeling a bit left out, tried to bet his girlfriend, who was not available for comment. Out of love for conformity, Mr. Gates promptly turned LiveJournal to crap. In an display of idiotic innovation, the LiveJournal servers were immediately modified to be powered through cold fusion. Needless to say, it didn't work at all, and the servers died.

NEW INFO!!!

The night after the game, it was discovered that Mr. Gates had been cheating. Mr. Fitzpatrick and Mrs. Trott were found dead in a ditch in Redmond, Washington. In Fitzpatrick's pocket was a deck of cards containing the Microsoft logo and holographic emblems on the back, missing all but the five cards needed to have a royal flush of spades. A mourning Ben Trott was unavailable to comment on Mena's pair of tens, as he was busy at Microsoft applying for a job as a Programming Goon.

*cue X-Files theme music*

This wouldn't be complete without some old-school X-Files knockoff conspiracy theory ...


Brad has been under the control of aliens plotting domination of Earth since 1997 (roughly). Under their guidance, he has built a system so vital to the every-day functioning of a significant fraction of the Earth's geeks that they will be mentally unable to function in its absence. The aliens are also behind Slashdot, BoingBoing, SomethingAwful, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!, Keenspace and most other major webcomic hosts, and have replaced Linus Torvalds with a look-alike android.

These LJ outages are merely tests to see how the geeks addicted to these services will react. Will a complete shutdown of the site for over a day work best, or will outages for a half-hour to a few hours followed by a few minutes of uptime, followed by more outage be better?

The cluster moves are a ploy to get all the geeks on one cluster, all the teen angst on another cluster, and so on and so forth. That way, the aliens can control who has access to LJ by creating cluster-specific outages. The recent free-user freezing is a refinement to create bad feeling between paid and free users so that paid user geeks, who might manage to keep their cool while the site is down, will get angrily lynched by free user geeks and angstful teens.

When the invasion comes, LiveJournal and all the other vital geek sites will be shut down not quite entirely, so that frantic and merciless refreshing will occasionally result in a reward -- with the same addictive ratio of payoffs to attempts as the aliens have
discovered works best (through their experiments in the Las Vegas casinos). The back doors built into all Microsoft products will be used to bring most of the rest of the internet to a screeching, grinding, crashing gridlock of a halt; the Y2K scare was a test to see how vital the non-geek population found their computerized functions. The bitter battles that they have encouraged in the open source movement will make it impossible for those who don't depend on Microsoft to work together cooperatively on short notice. (Richard Stallman and Eric S. Raymond are both notable pawns of the aliens.) The geek portion of society will be incapacitated for the duration of the invasion, and by the time they recover from LJ and the other sites being down (but not entirely down), the aliens will have already conquered Earth.

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