Unfortunately I’m now not the only hyperlocal blogger in Melbourne to have acquired a stalker. Vetti live in Northcote recently received a series of increasingly belligerent comments that suggested that an anonymous coward holds her personally responsible for graffiti in Northcote. The author hates street art and sees no difference between it and the broader category of graffiti. Fair enough. Everyone can have their opinion.

Sweaty live in Northcote has used all their initiative to find the same WordPress template as Vetti to make a site that looks like the original. They’re using the information Vetti publishes to aid in the identification of the artists / vandals, and this information is then used to report them to various government authorities. It’s a clear agenda. Extreme, yes, but the law is the law. They’re free to pursue it.

However, the way in which it is done is distasteful. Choose your own design! Whoever you are, your lack of imagination or your vindictive mimicry says a lot about you. Vetti reports on local events and generally offers positive comments about street art in Northcote, but she doesn’t encourage it. Your indifference to the logic of cause and effect makes you look pathetic.

Some of the images on Sweaty appear to have been stolen from elsewhere as they are not referenced. The anonymous author makes an attempt to acknowledge copyright in relation to a screen capture image of Vetti’s site, but not other images. They appear to have studied my referencing practices because what I do is sufficiently unusual to be quite distinctive.

Meanwhile, my own stalker busies itself with incoherent conspiracy theories about whether I deliberately said a street was in Brunswick, not Coburg, when the opposite is true, and exposing that I retrospectively correct typos in my site when I find them. Like der… the flexibility of digital content is that it can be easily changed.

When will the stalkerati realise that they’re just feeding the egos of those they don’t understand?

a sweaty stalker

14 thoughts on “a sweaty stalker

  • 16 February 2011 at 1:31 pm
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    Just yesterday I had a heated comment with a colleague about whether a street was in Coburg, North Coburg or the northern part of Coburg … it’s the little things isn’t it *grin*

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  • 16 February 2011 at 1:39 pm
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    I have a feeling the only reason they left the copyright on Vetti’s pic may be to further involve her in the provision of incriminating evidence, against her will.

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  • 16 February 2011 at 2:33 pm
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    I retrospectively correct typos on my site and blog, too. Why shouldn’t we? At least we can.

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    • 16 February 2011 at 3:41 pm
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      Exactly. But according to my stalker it’s apparently more meaningful than that…

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  • 17 February 2011 at 1:45 pm
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    Is publishing such information on the net as this legal?
    Vexta has not done anything illegal for years, and is now making a legitimate living through her art.
    Not to mention the publisher of this blog is a rat.

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    • 17 February 2011 at 3:57 pm
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      I’m not sure about the legality. If the information is factually correct then it is lawful. If it is defamatory (untrue and damaging) then sweaty could have problems.

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  • 17 February 2011 at 1:50 pm
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    What a Creep! Sweaty’s website left a very bad taste in my mouth, I know a one of the ARTISTS ‘exposed’ on his sight, and felt a little sick reading the blog post and the photos he used from flickr and other sources to help substantiate his slanderous rant. Is that legal?

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  • 21 February 2011 at 9:24 pm
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    I hope somehow we find out who this fukwit is. Would live to pay his fence a visit.

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  • 25 February 2011 at 11:00 am
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    They may not be defamatory posts, but there are certainly grounds for something to be done against him in regards to hate crimes here in Victoria – which are very helpful.

    “A person must not, on the ground of the religious belief or activity of another person or class of persons, engage in conduct that incites hatred against, serious contempt for, or revulsion or severe ridicule of, that other person or class of persons.

    Note: “engage in conduct” includes use of the internet or e-mail to publish or transmit statements or other material.”

    In this reference, “class of persons” meaning “Street artists” and “urban artists” as per a representative class within the community, as noted and agreed to by public consensus to indictate a specific portion or sub cultural group within the Victoria and Australian community.

    The individual has also attempted to blackmail an individual, and although he has “Crossed it out”, you cannot legally “take back” an extortion attempt just by doing that – the attempt has been made, and in the eyes of the law, that is very illegal and it has already been acted out and presented as such an action before its “retraction” – you cant tell a court “but I took it back!” – it just doesn’t work that way.

    “87. Blackmail

    (1) A person is guilty of blackmail if, with a view to gain for himself or another or with intent to cause loss to another, he makes any unwarranted demand with menaces; and for this purpose a demand with menaces is unwarranted unless the person making it does so in the belief-

    (a) that he has reasonable grounds for making the demand; and

    (b) that the use of the menaces is proper means of reinforcing the demand.

    (2) The nature of the act or omission demanded is immaterial, and it is also immaterial whether the menaces relate to action to be taken by the person making the demand.

    (3) A person guilty of blackmail is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to level 4 imprisonment (15 years maximum).”

    The individual “Sweatyliveinnorthcote” has already made this blackmail attempt, which is still present on the blog in question (as repeated before, one cannot make a blackmail attempt, and then “take it back” the action has already been taken. I’d advise this individual who has been blackmailed to contact their legal council to speak to them further on this issue if they feel the need, as it is a definite attempt (just because it is “on the net” it is still an attempt, and we believe the individual “sweatyliveinnorthcote” is a resident of Victoria and subject to its laws).

    That said, if the site were to just “disappear” we’re sure there would be no reason for this action to be taken. Also, the invasion of privacy is quite abhorrent, we have sent him a message regarding it, and some of us have contacted our friends at EFF and the EFA.

    Honestly, from a legal standpoint, this person really needs to cease and desist their actions – there are already three possible legal avenues to take against him, most importantly the hate crime angle – and if he/she knew what was best, he/she would desist, and if he/she has concerns, contact the police and relevant legal authorities directly instead of conducting what are, with the blackmail attempt also in mind, not possibly illegal actions.

    We hope that the site disappears quietly from the internet, otherwise, well – there are very valid legal options for any and all who have been victimised and subjected to hate speech on his site to pursue individually, or as a class action. There are friends of the Street Art community in all walks of life – we all understand the issues of legality often involved, but many particularly abhor hate orientated websites.

    Look into all the options.

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  • 26 February 2011 at 4:17 pm
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    and sweaty appear to have left the building. there’s now no info on the blog. apart from the blogroll with three links, including Vetti Live in Northcote. Some good advertising there for the blog sweaty was originally denigrating :-)

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  • 28 February 2011 at 1:52 pm
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    It is back in lean unadorned form, with all earlier posts gone. Now I am next on the “register”… lol… I am unsure about how much more legal it is with out pics and only claiming they are contacting immigration …threatening to try and keep me out of 70 odd country’s..victimization??? meh..

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