Astroturf? YouTube’s Mr. Obvious

Here’s a strange case to consider.

I first found Mr. Obvious linked from a Save Pepe thread on /pol/ which set an alarm bell off for me. Linking to outside sources without an archive link is unacceptable. Nobody having their work discussed on an anonymous board should not get the extra clicks.

MR_OBVIOUS on Minds, first post 8 August 2017
Mr_Obvious on Vidme, joined 7 August 2017
Mr. Obvious on YouTube, joined 4 July 2017 with 95,000+ views and the description “Greetings, my name is Obvious, and this is MR. OBVIOUS where I make videos for you about the truth.”

Mr. Obvious clearly knows how sound editing, script writing and video editing works. But, there is a lot of post-production on his voice. The voicals were recorded in probably one long take (he sounds like he’s several bad takes in — trust me, man, I know how it feels to mess up multiple takes and just sounding defeated by the end) from where he picked it apart, sentence by sentence.

In his best-watched video entitled Why Normies Are Afraid of 4chan: Pepe, an American Horror Story we can see that he uses several clips and images. Here are a few of the things he used:

  • 4chan landing page
  • Big Red
  • The obese WOW nerd from South Park
  • Footage from the Tiki luau congo line at Charlottesville
  • A 2016 CNN clip discussing the “Deplorables” comment and the “Deplorables” meme featuring several including Roger Stone Jr, Alex Jones and Milo Yiannopoulos
  • A 7 Sept 2017 artciel on Deadline by Dominic Patten entitled ‘American Horror Story: Cult’ Debut Ratings Fall from 2016  ‘Roanoke’
  • Stills from American Horror Story (sorry, never watched the show, not sure which episode it’s from)
  • An image of the Glee TV show

The most recent vid is #SavePepe Creator of Pepe is Trying to Make Memes Illegal, with the description:

Save Pepe! The creator of Pepe, Matt Furie, [is] launching a legal attack on Reddit, Richard Spencer, Baked Alaska, and Mike Cernovich. Issuing several DMCAs and cease and desist attacks. The author wants to take down Pepe from the internet and make memes illegal. The Kekistani people will not stand for this oppression, most like. #SavePepe

Here are some of the images used in the sixteen minute video:

  • Motherboard’s Pepe the Frog’s Creator Goes Legally Nuclear Against the Alt-Right, by Matthew Gault
  • A large .png of Pepe Coin
  • MSNBC screengrab, Trump supporters dismiss David Duke Controversy
  • Libertarian macro, Libertarians: Diligently plotting to take over the World and leave you alone.
  • Google image search of a 1984 poster on dark mode
  • Matt Furie’s “Death of Pepe” comic
  • Google image search of Baked Alaska’s Meme Magic: Secrets Revealed book on dark mode

The strangest thing is the superimposition of the Pepe Coin .png. Look, Furie isn’t getting upset at people drawing MS Paint Pepes, he’s upset that his creation is being used to sell books and sell a scam coin.

So here’s my assumption on Mr. Obvious: That it’s astroturfing produced by one guy but supported by committee research. The silly name, the shilling on 4chan, the scam coin, the silly V for Vendetta icon.

This article touches on dozens of different topics, but as I develop them elsewhere, I’ll be able to link back to this article here.

3 Comments on “Astroturf? YouTube’s Mr. Obvious”

  1. I got the history of pepe, the popular internet meme.. I have written here from the wikipedia… Please take a look the real history from this link…
    Pepe the Frog is a popular Internet meme. A green anthropomorphic frog with a humanoid body, Pepe originated in a comic by Matt Furie called Boy’s Club. It became an Internet meme when its popularity steadily grew across Myspace, Gaia Online and 4chan in 2008. By 2015, it had become one of the most popular memes used on 4chan and Tumblr.
    Beginning in 2015, the character’s image has been appropriated as a symbol of the controversial alt-right movement. The Anti-Defamation League added Pepe the Frog to their database of hate symbols in 2016, adding that not all Pepe memes are racist. Since then, Pepe’s creator has publicly expressed his dismay at Pepe being used as a hate symbol.
    The meme’s original use has evolved over time and has many variants, including Sad Frog, Smug Frog, Feels Frog, and “You will never…” Frog.
    Thanks to all…

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