my brother and i, back in the day
Posted 2/17/14. 1 note.
Posted 2/16/14. 5 notes.
Posted 2/16/14. 5 notes.
Posted 2/09/14. 14 notes.
a catfish stole my identity ∞
today i received a pretty heartbreaking message from a spanish guy who was catfished by someone who stole my identity. here is the message:
First of all, thanks for replying to my question. I really needed to make sure you didn’t know me.
Let me introduce myself. I am Miquel Vidal Bover, as you can see in my profile. I am 18 years old and I study my first year of Translation and Interpreting in the Autonomous University of Barcelona, although I come from a little island called Mallorca, Spain.
I love learning languages: it’s my passion and that’s why I study Translation in Catalan, Spanish, English and Chinese (although sorry for my mistakes when I write in English; I still have got a long way to go to write perfect English). This passion of mine led me to sign up in a webpage called “Interpals” last summer (2013). It is a social network where you interact with citizens of all places in the world, specially those from a country in which they speak the language you are learning. For that reason, I talked to many British people and many Chinese. The thing is… One of the British were you.
It may astonish you, and it’s completely natural. I commented on some of your photos saying that I loved your hair. Because yes, I am bisexual and your hair was something that grabbed my attention. Nonetheless, I didn’t expect you to talk to me after that. But you did: we started to talk and we had fun. After some time talking, maybe five days, you asked me my KIK (a mobile chat app) and I gave it to you. It is a very confidential app: you don’t even have to give the other person’s your mobile phone number, you just give the other person your username and that’s it.
On the following days, we were talking all the time. We started to talk about important issues in our lives: love, friends, family, etc. You kept telling me that “talking about it makes no change at all, so it’s not worth talking about it”. After some time, you decided to talk about your things too. You weren’t lucky with love: the guys you dated were always “assholes” and sometimes your friends were that too. You felt lonely. After some more time (it may have been late July), you told me about your family: your mother was an alcoholic addict, your older brother had gone to University and hadn’t ever come back to visit, your father didn’t want to know about you and your family as he had divorced your mother, and the only thing you had was your little sister, Leigh.
I am, also, a very empathic person. When I read that story, I really felt bad for you and I was there to help. I promised you that I would keep talking to you, that you had someone that cared about you in Spain, that you didn’t deserve what you were receiving. I tried to cheer you up.
Your mother kept drinking and drinking; your friends didn’t count on you for anything; your sporadic boyfriends were assholes. And there was I! Trying to help you from the distance.
Time passed by. I remember that you stopped talking to me for a week and I was very worried - I thought something could have happened to you. When you replied to my messages, you told me your mobile phone had broken and that you hadn’t been able to talk to me for all that time.
We kept talking from then on until I moved to Barcelona to study. There, everything was new for me and I was really excited about my “new life”. For these reasons, I stopped talking to you. I forgot about that friend I had been living for during the previous summer. But I kept talking to you sporadically, when I went to bed, probably once a week. You replied and told me that you were glad everything was going OK.
But there was a day when all changed. You told me something which I felt really bad for: “my mother died last month”. You told me that after having chatted more than usual. You told me that it had been because of the alcohol and all that bad life she was carrying. I felt totally devastated: firstly, because you had lost your mother, one of your most important people in one’s life; secondly, because I hadn’t been with you in such an important matter.
From that day on, we started talking as we had been doing during the summer. I kept apologising and you told me that it was OK. We chatted a lot those days (maybe from late October until mid January).
Having talked for some days as we had been doing in summer, I suggested you that you came over to Barcelona. And you agreed. You were going to skip classes for a week and come to my place in Barcelona. We had it very well planned.
Nonetheless, a problem arouse: you broke the camera of one of your friends (because, as you had told me, you were doing some “things” with cameras, although continuing with your highschool, because yes, you also told me that you were 17, in your last year of highschool), and you had to pay him immediately. So you didn’t have enough money to come to Barcelona.
Still, you went to your father’s. He didn’t give you the money (you had gone to France in December, you wouldn’t go to Barcelona in February).
Imagine how I was feeling during all this time. We were going to meet, we were going to enjoy being together and, who knows, maybe some kind of relationship would start. But after living and sharing so much with each other, you weren’t allowed to come and visit me. I was very sad. But, as I always try to be optimistic, I said no, I want to meet him, he deserves some more happiness and I want to give it to him. I started looking for flights to London and told you that I wanted to skype you before coming. I also asked which part of London you were living in and you said “Islington”.
Something I forgot to say: during all this time, from when we first talked up to this day, you and I had been sending photos to each other. They were photos of ourselves. You even sent me two videos of a day in which you couldn’t sleep because of mice in your bedroom. And for my birthday, you sent me an advert you did with Ariel - P&G. I was really pleased receiving all that. The thing is that I never looked up for your name in the internet. Never. Your username was “Alex Cookieman”, obviously a surname which was fiction, but I thought that fit you perfectly - it was funny. And I never asked you for your real surname as you didn’t ask me for mine.
It is curious, then, that on the day I was looking for flights, an idea came up to me. I looked for the advert of Ariel typing “Alex Ariel Ad”. After some time looking for it, I could find it on YouTube. The strange thing was that the video of the ad I had received had the beginning cut, which was the part in which someone introduced you as a student at Ravensbourne, being 19 years old (if I remember correctly). I was surprised but I thought that was all lies for the advert. Anyway, from there I could get your name: Alex Odam. I typed it in YouTube and saw that you were kind of famous, having 3 channels on YouTube, which had all been inactive for more or less a year. I started watching some videos to see that you were happy all that time.
But I got to the mice videos too. They were from two years ago, and so, it didn’t match the day you had sent me them. That was the point in which I texted you and asked you if you were a student at Ravensbourne. That way I would know if you were telling lies in the advert or to me.
I also typed Alex Odam in Google and found your personalized website in which all ways of contacting you were exposed. I found your instagram and looked at your photos. All of the photos I had received of you were from Instagram and some of them were much more current, but some of them were from 2 or 3 years ago. I started trembling.
I went on to Twitter and saw that you actually had Twitter. I finally logged in Facebook and saw that you had a fan page, and a profile account, to which I sent you the question you answered.
At last, I realised I had been tricked, that it all had been something unreal. Firstly, I was shocked. Then, I was really really sad and didn’t go out of bed for some days. And after that, I saw and understood that these things happen online, but that I can’t blame myself for being a better person than the person that made me believe it was you. Then, the “you” I have been using for all the letter isn’t you.
The thing is… I believe I know you, I feel as if I knew you. I watch your videos, I see your photos, I see your social networks and I can’t help thinking: that’s my friend. And the truth is that you actually don’t even know my name. For this reason, I wanted to write to you, telling you that you have someone supplanting your identity, making others believe that you are the person others are talking to. As I had the opportunity to contact you, I wouldn’t waste it.
In this “letter”, I am not blaming you at all and I am not asking you to do anything about anything. I am just telling you a story that, without you even knowing, happened involving “you”. I just wanted you to know that I have suffered a lot, but I am now getting over it. If that had happened to you instead of me, I would have liked to know about that. That’s basically why I am telling you all this story.
I will also take advantage of this letter to congratulate you on your videos and your filming skills. I will keep following you on YouTube and whatever other social networks you have. I like your style, and I like what you do.
Sorry for writing such a long letter, but I am sincere in everything I said and I wanted to explain it all with as much detail as I could.
Thank you for your attention. Enjoy life,
Posted 2/08/14. 196 notes.
Check out the trailer for Bertie's 'The 56 Year Old Boy' that I finished shooting yesterday.
Posted 1/27/14. 13 notes.