She thought he was just an online stalker at first, but the rabbit hole went so much deeper

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She thought he was just an online stalker at first, but the rabbit hole went so much deeper

Buckle up — this Twitter thread is a wild ride.

A serial plagiarist was caught in a lie — really, many lies — after making up a fake story for an Instagram caption, and it shines a light on the harassment women in tech face.

In a now-deleted post, a software developer Tee Medlin — supposed software developer, since who knows what’s true anymore — claimed that a woman who was pictured but not named was stalking him during a tech conference.

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“Has not stopped following me around, asking me questions, and telling me about her life since I got off stage this evening,” read his caption. “Now its social hour and I have a shadow. HELP!”

Except it was all fake. Condon had never met Medlin, and the photo was taken from an article she wrote three years ago.

Wow. I’ve been harassed online before, but @teemedlin – I have no idea who you are, nor was I at a conference/meet-up/event w/ you 4 days ago. Lying about this is next level- also, ++ photo is from my @NewCo article I published years ago/from a conference 3 years ago. Get a life. pic.twitter.com/tk3Vc2zhLX

— Chloe Condon :ribbon: (@ChloeCondon) January 11, 2019

When a Twitter follower asked if the photo was of her, Condon thought she had been included in another round-up list of women in cryptocurrency because “it felt click-baity.”

“Once I read the caption and saw the comment, I was furious,” she said in a private message exchange. “As a woman online and in tech shitty things are said/commented about me all the time — but this was a whole new level of WTF-ery that I had not experienced yet.”

In comments on the post, Medlin stuck to his story.

What. The. Fuck. pic.twitter.com/o2DwOf7K5T

— Chloe Condon :ribbon: (@ChloeCondon) January 12, 2019

“There are a lot of folks on Twitter saying ‘This must be a bot!’ and ‘He’s AI!,’ but as someone working in tech with a pretty good knowledge [of] the advancements in ML/AI, sadly we’re not there yet,” Condon said. “This is just a very mentally disturbed person who has somehow developed a persona in the last 5-ish years.”

And as the Twitter thread unpacks, we learn that Medlin’s “persona” runs deep — dude’s been plagiarizing all over Instagram and social media. From taking credit for another developer’s talk to pretending that he was interviewed in a robotics publication, on screen, Medlin made himself appear to be a major player in tech.

@kimgoodwin is this your talk that this person is taking credit for? (See @ChloeCondon timeline for context)

— Mary Dickson Diaz (@marythought) January 12, 2019

and then there is this – it’s scary how much of is Instagram is invented of plagiarized. (source https://t.co/zcFniBXku0 his copy https://t.co/QFqVWqfrEX ) pic.twitter.com/BaM9n9nsLI

— John Pettitt (@jpp123) January 12, 2019

And he has a habit of posting stock photos and news footage to make up bizarre self-congratulatory stories in his social media captions.

@ChloeCondon lmao. i’m probably the least tech literate person on you, and my detective work uncovered this cool dude pic.twitter.com/zRUsXCtdaO

— Not very bright and things just got out of hand. (@dluippold) January 12, 2019

One more and I’ll leave it alone these images he claims are from 3 years ago is actually from 2012 and the drivers were a woman and a 75 year old man.

Source: https://t.co/A1qmQTzPtU pic.twitter.com/nBtmvT86je

— John Pettitt (@jpp123) January 12, 2019

Twitter users also dug into Medlin’s Pinterest account, where he claimed to hang out with the most bizarre group of public figures. Is there any person who’s friends with both Mitt Romney and Seth Rogen?

Look at this Photoshop of him being friends with Seth Roger pic.twitter.com/QilZ7Ink9L

— Leigh-Ann Friedel (@lafriedel) January 12, 2019

The Rogen photo turned out to be something other than a Photoshop, in fact. As it turned out, this is just a wax replica of the actor, as seen at the Hollywood Wax Museum.

Yeah, Hollywood Wax Museum. pic.twitter.com/DJh0Ik9HZu

— Toking Points – Pass It. (@weed4pundits) January 12, 2019

Moving on….

He has a pinterest with (photoshopped) pics of him and @MittRomney ! https://t.co/I3OBFjH3tq

— Ali Spittel :information_desk_person: (@ASpittel) January 12, 2019

To add to the wild ride, another Twitter user pointed out that Medlin’s dog is also named Chloe — though that’s probably just a coincidence.

Ok @ChloeCondon , I think I have another good @teemedlin one for you!

Two, maybe three, days of posts that are probably all taken at once as the same sweater features and the hats are all in the car, along with the same box of donuts, ground debris appears identical. pic.twitter.com/AAavZc6d9x

— Nicole (@nicolewashere84) January 12, 2019

Although Condon says she usually takes people’s online presence “with a grain of salt,” the bizarre experience has also made her “much more careful” about who she’s willing to meet. The whole thing has also put her “in a spiral of questioning of how deeply someone could make up their career, family, accolades, credentials, etc.”

Since the thread went viral, Tee Medlin has deleted his Twitter account and appears to have revamped his Instagram account as well. Before doing so, he tweeted that his account was hacked and claimed that someone else was accusing Condon of stalking them. 

You changed your Instagram handle last night, so I think you’ve known about me before this morning… Now please explain your Facebook posts dating back several years pic.twitter.com/f6blEi5NpI

— Chloe Condon :ribbon: (@ChloeCondon) January 12, 2019

On Facebook, he posted about a “disgruntled past employee or coworker” hacking his account and complained about getting cyberbullied. (To be clear, whatever this guy did, bullying of any kind is bad. Don’t add to the wrongs done here. The authorities are handling things now.)

This was his latest post seconds before he locked down his FB account. He disabled comments as well. pic.twitter.com/GKCP0au3O8

— That Damned CanAsian (@damnedcanasian) January 13, 2019

On Sunday, Condon filed a police report against Tee Medlin. When asked how she thinks social networks could prevent blatant plagiarism and harassment like this, Condon emphasized the importance of calling out lies.

“What’s funny is that i have personally known several individuals who have been pathological liars,” she said, nodding to a theater peer who would constantly lie about the strangest things. “Looking back, I’m now realizing that none of us ever called him out on it — we just watched it all unfold and talked about it on our drives home.”

Several people who claimed to know Medlin personally DM’d Condon to tell her he’s lied like this for “as long as they’ve known him.”

“I think the pure happenstance that he posted this photo of me, and I was alerted of it, and that my followers started investigating is pretty surreal,” she reflected.

It appears that Medlin has been stopped — for now. But Condon is still wary of the way people present themselves on social media. And if this Medlin character is really just some kind of weird, rogue AI, she’s impressed.

“However, if I’m wrong, and this is very good AI- congrats to whoever built it because this is groundbreaking work, my friend,” Condon quipped.

With additional reporting by Adam Rosenberg.

原文 : Mashable

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