Sunday, May 16, 2010

Cheap Thrills: Suburban Commando (1991)

Cheap Thrills is a column on The Following Preview featuring movies that can be had new at certain stores for $5 or less. Today's movie is the action-thriller Suburban Commando (1991), which I found at a Big Lots! store for $3.00.

There were three movie series I grew up on: Ghostbusters, Back to the Future, and Home Alone and that was pretty much it. I was only allowed to see movies that were rated G or PG, and instead of bothering to look for other things to capture my imagination, the seven films that comprised those three franchises at the time were basically my comfort zone.

Eventually, my parents started to resist my desires to just watch the same thing over and over, and I was forced to branch out. I chose to take baby steps, and just followed the actors. This led me to movies like Groundhog Day, Richie Rich, Life With Mikey, and Suburban Commando.

I vividly remember getting the VHS tape from behind the counter at Safeway, and discovering that while the box said the film was rated PG, the tape itself had the PG-13 logo on it. I was excited. Time to see some intense stuff, I thought. When the movie started and the human-looking villain has his hand chopped off, the image burned itself into my brain.

Today, Suburban Commando is fascinatingly disjointed. For about 10 minutes, the movie moves at a normal pace and even appears to have a plot, but then it suddenly and decisively devolves into a Greatest Hits compilation of Hulk Hogan doing impressive feats. He's lifting the kids! He's throwing a skateboard into space! He's bench-pressing workshop machinery! After 20 minutes of this, the movie gets bored and devolves further into random wacky antics. Hulk squishes a melon in an old lady's face! Hulk tries to skateboard! Hulk punches a mime! Whoooooa!

Miraculously, Suburban Commando stays pretty fast-paced and earnest about all of this nonsense (as opposed to insistent and belabored), which actually creates some goodwill towards the movie and Hogan's character. Sure, he's not a very good actor (his range seems to consist of how wide he has his eyes opened), but he seems relatively cheerful regardless of what's going on, even when he's supposed to be annoyed.

I wrote the above paragraphs about two months ago, and I don't want to delete them. However, other than mentioning what appeared to be an attempted rape sequence (which Christopher Lloyd heroically foils), I've already forgotten everything about Suburban Commando, which probably sums up the viewing experience in a nutshell. The movie is so forgettable, it's actually managed to partially delete the hand-capitation that I claimed had "burned itself into my brain". (If anyone finds me and I've become a complete and total amnesiac, blame Suburban Commando.) The DVD comes with widescreen and full-screen presentations, and a set-top game of some sort. Sadly, I can't recommend it. Save your three dollars for something more critical, like a third of a city parking fee, and rent the movie on Netflix instead, if you have to see it again. I guarantee it will be 90 minutes of surprisingly-pleasant-but-also-moronic childhood memories.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

The Importance of FilmXTRATOM

Right up front, I want to admit that there isn't much more that can currently be said about the story of FilmXTRATOM's plagiarism, at least not until YouTube responds to Matthew Turner's copyright claim against him. However, in the wake of Tom posting his newest review (which I won't link, since it gives him paid traffic as a YouTube Partner) I've seen a dispiriting amount of comments saying that Tom's actions don't matter or the posters of said comments don't care about what he did, and I think there is something to be said about that. Yeah, okay, those people probably aren't going to come to this blog. They probably aren't going to see this. But I feel like writing it, because, like the list of Tom's infringements itself, I think it's somewhat important.

There are a few primary reasons why Tom's actions mean something:

Plagiarism is a crime.
The easiest and most obvious statement to make here is that plagiarism is illegal.


Most cases of plagiarism are considered misdemeanors, punishable by fines of anywhere between $100 and $50,000 -- and up to one year in jail.

Plagiarism can also be considered a felony under certain state and federal laws. For example, if a plagiarist copies and earns more than $2,500 from copyrighted material, he or she may face up to $250,000 in fines and up to ten years in jail.

Most of the people trying to let Tom off the hook don't think plagiarism matters, because a) they just don't care, b) they don't care when it's on the internet, or c) they don't care because the plagiarized work in question is a bunch of movie reviews. Well...

Writers care.
This is pretty obvious too, but there's more to it than "it was my writing, and therefore I am mad about it!"

I have become acquainted with Matthew Turner in the last week, both via Twitter and e-mail, and he's clearly angry about what happened to him. I understand why people who are generally not "creative" about their opinion (i.e., opinions are stated in basic terms and not elaborately written out -- not an assessment of the quality of the opinions themselves, just the amount of effort put into them) have trouble understanding what the big deal is that Tom took the words out of someone's .doc file, especially when it's an opinion. "Two people can have the same opinion, right?"

But good writers try and create a "voice". It's not always perceptible, or, not always as perceptible as the writer in question (like me) would like to think it is, but regardless, that's part of the goal. Personally, I hope that if someone read my movie reviews, they would feel like they're having a conversation with me about the movie (albeit a one-sided one, although I think Matthew Lingo would attest that's what conversing with me is like).

At the very least, this should be easy to convey when it comes to the most extreme, stylized examples. Since this is a film blog, and the plagiarism concerns film, take Quentin Tarantino or Kevin Smith. Just by listening to the way the characters in one of their movies speak, I'd expect any viewer familiar with either of those filmmakers' work would know instantly they were watching a film by that person. That's a big part of what's at stake, and I guarantee that no writer wants their "voice" stolen.

Of all the reviews I found on Tom's page (and I may have missed some), only the first three reviews (of Hellboy II, Babylon A.D., and The Duchess) did not appear to be plagiarized. The fans that still support Tom don't seem to grasp that, if you watched purely for the reviews and opinions (as opposed to Tom reading the news, which he did link to), there wasn't anything to learn about Tom himself in those videos. He doesn't have "a way of looking at the films" or "a certain style", because almost the entirety of every review (excepting sentence or two at most, and not on the majority or even a significant portion of the videos) was taken word for word from those other reviews. Tom has no "voice". If the viewers thought there was something about Tom they liked when watching his reviews, I'm afraid the most he could be given credit for personally was his hyper-caffeinated enthusiasm.

Plagiarism is stealing from the writer.
Even having said all of that, it's still hard to get across why it matters that someone would steal your "voice", but to a writer, it's probably no different than having your house broken into. The actual mechanics and significance of the crime is different, sure -- it unquestionably takes more balls to break into a stranger's home and go through their belongings than it does to copy, paste, and memorize -- but the emotions are the same. It's invasive (they're coming into your headspace). They're taking something away from you that you worked hard for (either as an achievement or as a material item). They're passing it off as their own when they did nothing to earn it (the same for money, material goods, or the review) and in a way, they've invalidated you and everything that you did in the process.

The amount and mindset of plagiarism matters.
Another common sentiment is that I and other online voices are blowing things out of proportion. Tom's just some anonymous kid in Yorkshire, England. What business do a bunch of older professional film critics have beating up on this guy?

And, if Tom had swiped a one or two lines from a random review, and upon being found out, apologized swiftly, profusely, and genuinely, it probably wouldn't have been a blip on the Twittersphere. But not only was it nearly every single one of his reviews, it totaled nearly 100 counts of plagiarism.

I debated with a reasonably friendly person on Twitter about Tom, and the other person compared it to shoplifting a bottle of Coke from a local corner store. There are lots of reasons to dispute this comparison, but the biggest one is the amount of plagiarism. Okay, so for one review -- and even then, I'm being generous, since a given Tom video was 99% stolen and 1% Tom, if that -- let's say for the sake of argument I agree with this equation. And one Coke is certainly not deserving of the electric chair. But once Tom's stolen 75 Cokes, begun selling them to other people with his own label on them, and even started receiving the kind of Coke-seller cred that it takes legitimate salesmen years to earn, then it becomes a legitimate problem.

On top of that, it wasn't idle theft. Tom clearly put some level of effort into stealing from people, because a number of his reviews weren't copped from a single source. He would take the paragraphs he liked from multiple sources and re-arrange them until they sounded like they could all have come from the same review. I also didn't get the impression that Tom was reading off of cue cards, which hints that he may have memorized these reviews in order to make them sound like his own train of thought. If putting work into a crime doesn't wave a big red flag, then your code of ethics is probably in need of some revisions.

Tom was profiting off his plagiarism.
Okay, so we've got malicious mass plagiarism. Rage-inducing, sure, and worthy of punishment, but not seriously actionable...until you realize that Tom was pocketing cash for his operation. Not only was Tom a YouTube Partner, meaning the traffic his videos received earned him cash, but he also runs a Cafe Press-like T-shirt shop, has Google ads activated on his videos (no idea if that's set apart from being a YouTube Partner), and was being invited to red-carpet premieres in his country, as well as advance screenings. Right now I'm affiliated with three websites, and I don't make even a fifth of enough money doing that to earn any sort of living off of it, nor have I ever been to a red carpet premiere (I only see movies in advance). I don't know if Tom has a real job (he doesn't seem to), but he's the 85th most subscribed UK journalist of all time on YouTube, so I imagine his vids got a fair amount of traffic (although, like the Google Ads, I have no idea how much money this translates into).

This changes the entire scope of Tom's crimes. Another analogy: would you appreciate it if you went into your job, every day, toiling away at work that's hard but rewarding, and when payday came, you went up to collect your check, and found that another guy was getting paid for the work you were doing? Sure, he's not taking any money out of your paycheck, but this other guy gets to sit at home relaxing, and cashes in on the effort you put in. Does that seem fair to you?

Tom is still profiting off his plagiarism, even if he deleted it.
As a second part to this bullet point, Tom is, as of the time I write this, still a YouTube Partner. It takes a certain amount of views and traffic to become a YouTube Partner, and although Tom finally deleted the videos (rather than simply making them "private"), he still has a heightened level of awareness and membership to a club he wouldn't be part of without his plagiarism. Any money he makes off of his continuing status as a YouTube Partner is directly attributable to his crimes. If Tom really wants to soldier on (by which I mean ignore the fallout from this last week), which it seems he does, then the best thing to do is to dump the FilmXTRA name (which, although he didn't steal it, is the same name as a new UK film TV show), and launch a whole new channel without the existing one's benefits (i.e., not only the YouTube Partner status, but also the legions of followers he's retained).

It's just lazy, and if you're going to be lazy, why bother?
Even if none of that means a damn thing to you, it's outright lazy. I mean, how hard is it to formulate an opinion on something and express it to another person? I'm pretty sure that everyone in the world does it on a daily basis, so it can't be that tough.

Beyond that, what I said in my original blog post bears repeating: I just can't understand why you'd want to have a film review show on YouTube if you don't want to do the work when it comes to the primary, central function of the whole enterprise, which is reviewing movies. I've heard complaints from people that we're picking on this guy over his passion, but if Tom really loves film, then Tom would want to express his own views on movies. If he's not good at it, he should just talk about movies with his friends, who probably won't be judgmental of whatever it is that holds him back. If he wants to tell people other than his friends, then he should learn to get better, or not worry about the quality of his output, because the act of expressing himself is all that matters. If he wants to reach a wide audience without improving, then he should be happy with whatever he can create.

The only reason I can think of that Tom would want a film review show on the internet where he wants to express opinions, without self-improving, but still not being satisfied with what he personally creates, with the goal of reaching a wide audience, is that there must be some other benefit to the show, something he believes he won't get without stronger reviews, and the only thing I can think of is money. You must apply or accept an offer to become a YouTube partner, and if Tom was really testing the corruptibility of the website, then he should have declined.

Plus, if Tom's new review is "no different than the old ones" in terms of style (another claim I've heard in Tom's defense), then it means he is capable of expressing his own opinions, without stealing, and therefore his crime actually becomes more indefensible. If you don't have to steal, you shouldn't be doing it. What possible purpose could it serve ("corruptibility" aside) to steal something for no reason?

It's insulting.
Last, but not least, he's insulting you. You, his loyal viewer. Of anything he did, I think I was most personally shocked by the plagiarism in his blogtv video, which he prefaced by saying the movie in question (Collateral) was something he watched because one of his own fans suggested it. He's lying to your face! He's assuming nobody will care enough to figure it out, least of all the people watching. The only reason people care enough to repeat visit any critic's blog, vlog, channel, Twitter, etc., is because they feel like that person has something unique to offer, something that the seeker can't get anywhere else, and Tom is throwing this basic agreement back in your face by faking the things that should make his tiny corner of the internet unique.

Look at his demeanor in his most recent video (or don't). He hasn't learned. He hasn't changed. Not only does he think what he's done is something that can be brushed off with a half-assed apology letter, but he thinks he can ignore the repercussions, and more importantly the people he's walked over in the process, and feed you, the viewer, a whole new slate of enthusiastic BS. Come on. Be honest. Doesn't that make you feel used? And if it doesn't, why not?

UPDATE: I do just want to add, once again, that is also stealing from Matthew Turner, and it's no more or less important that they are than it is that Tom was. Please, if you mention Tom in any blogs or Tweets, mention iZone and Izaruddin as well.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

The Tragic Saga of FilmXTRATOM

A few days ago, JoBlo's Twitter account (@joblo) called out an online blogger known as Tom S Perkins (@FilmXTRATOM) for straight-up stealing 85% of his video review of Iron Man 2 from their write-up by JimmyO (the corresponding FilmXTRA video has been removed).

Using cutting-edge technology known as Google, I identified the rest of his review (which sounded equally professional) as having come from Den of Geek, and others noted that snippets of his Alice in Wonderland review also came from JoBlo.

After a few hours of collective internet hatred heading his way, Perkins finally signed onto his account in order to thoroughly deny that he'd done any wrong (here, here, and here), before finally caving early the next day (here).

It is worth noting at this point that Hey U Guys, which sponsored/ran Tom's videos for some period of time, almost immediately disassociated themselves from him via their Twitter (@heyuguysblog). Since this is something that is essentially developing and spreading, I've seen a lot of people just finding out about this demanding to know their position, but they've already made it clear. You can read their announcement here, here, here, and here.

This is when, suspiciously, the video reviews from 2010 vanished from his YouTube channel (here), along with any comments identifying the plagiarism on his page or on any videos. Perkins' previously-promised apology letter failed to materialize, and people I follow were suspicious that Tom wasn't ready to fess up to all of his crimes after all. In the interest of public service, I thusly have gone through every one of Tom's videos to find the plagiarism in question.

Pineapple Express
Review in FilmXTRA #9 taken from Empire (unidentified writer)

Righteous Kill
Review in FilmXTRA #11 taken from NewsBlaze (Prairie Miller)

Tropic Thunder
Phrase "more explosions than Krakatoa" in FilmXTRA #12 taken from Mansized (Chris Laverty). Can't access the full review to see if more was taken, Mansized is password protected...?

Death Race (2008)
Review in FilmXTRA #13 taken from The Movie Blog (John Campea)

How to Lose Friends & Alienate People
Review in FilmXTRA #15 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Review in FilmXTRA #18 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Burn After Reading
Review in FilmXTRA #19 taken from Daily Mirror (David Edwards) and View London (Matthew Turner)

Ghost Town
Review in FilmXTRA #22 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Eagle Eye
Review in FilmXTRA #22 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Quantum of Solace
Review in FilmXTRA #23 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Pride and Glory
Review in FilmXTRA #26 taken from View London (Matthew Turner). Plot summary seems to be taken from official press release.

Max Payne
Review in FilmXTRA #27 taken from View Oxford (Matthew Turner)

Note: In FilmXTRA #29 he starts passing off the classic "Invisibles" screen caps as a segment he created. Clever!

Body of Lies
Review in FilmXTRA #30 taken from View Hamilton (Matthew Turner, he's stalking you!)

Review in Film XTRA #31 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Lakeview Terrace
Review in FilmXTRA #33 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008)
Review in FilmXTRA #34 taken from View London (Matthew Turner) and Bloody-Disgusting (Brad Miska)

Transporter 3
Review in FilmXTRA #35 taken from View London (Matthew Turner) and Empire Online (Chris Hewitt)

The Spirit
Review in FilmXTRA #38 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Review in FilmXTRA #39 taken from View Auckland (Matthew Turner)

Role Models
Review in FilmXTRA #40 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Seven Pounds
Review in FilmXTRA #41 taken from (Mark Adams)

Review in FilmXTRA #41 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Review in FilmXTRA #42 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Underworld: Rise of the Lycans
Review in FilmXTRA #43 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

In addition, there is also this review over at Blogger News Network, which has a passage quite similar to the one I Googled.

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Review in FilmXTRA #44 taken from View Auckland (Matthew Turner)

Review in FilmXTRA #45 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Review in FilmXTRA #47 taken from View Auckland (Matthew Turner)

X-Men Origins: Wolverine
Review in FilmXTRA #49 taken from View Hamilton (Matthew Turner)

Star Trek (2009)
Review in FilmXTRA #50 (Part 2) taken from IGN UK (Orlando Parfitt) and View London (Matthew Turner)

Fast & Furious
Review in FilmXTRA #51 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Terminator: Salvation
Review in FilmXTRA #54 taken from View Auckland (Matthew Turner)

The Hangover
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Night at the Museum 2: Battle For the Smithsonian
Review in FilmXTRA #56 taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
Review in FilmXTRA #57 taken from Collider (Matt Goldberg) and undoubtedly one other source, which, despite repeated Googling, I could not find.

Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Public Enemies
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner) and Daily Mail (Chris Tookey)

The Hurt Locker
Review here taken from View Auckland (Matthew Turner) and STL Today (Calvin Wilson)

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner) and Total Film (Jonathan Crocker)

I Love You, Man
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner), SFX (Andrew Osmond), and probably at least one more I couldn't identify.

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

The International
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

Inglourious Basterds
Review here taken from JoBlo (Chris Bumbray) and (yes, really, as far as I can tell) IMDb user laurylou-1, plus potentially others I couldn't identify

The Time Traveler's Wife
Review here taken from JoBlo (Chris Bumbray)

Funny People
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner)

District 9
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner) and JoBlo (Chris Bumbray)

Dorian Gray
Review here taken from Shadows on the Wall (Rich Cline) and View London (Matthew Turner)

Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner), SFX (James White), and Mark Reviews Movies (Mark Dujsik)

Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner) and JoBlo (Jenna Busch)

The Invention of Lying
Review here taken from JoBlo (Chris Bumbray) and possibly somewhere else

Review here taken from JoBlo (Chris Bumbray) and possibly somewhere else

The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus
Review here taken from JoBlo (Chris Bumbray) and possibly somewhere else

Review here taken from JoBlo (Brian Kelley) and possibly somewhere else

The Fantastic Mr. Fox
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner) and IGN UK (Chris Tilly)

Review here taken from JoBlo (JimmyO) and possibly somewhere else

The Men Who Stare at Goats
Review here taken from View London (Matthew Turner) and possibly somewhere else

Harry Brown
Review here taken from Little White Lies (Josh Winning)

The Twilight Saga: New Moon
Review here, oddly enough, doesn't appear to be taken from anywhere, or at least, the internet is too flooded with Twilight crap for Google to find it.

Paranormal Activity
Review here taken from View Auckland (Matthew Turner) and JoBlo (JimmyO)

Law Abiding Citizen
Review here taken from JoBlo (Chris Bumbray) and possibly somewhere else

The Box
Review here taken from JoBlo (Chris Bumbray) and possibly somewhere else

Review here taken from JoBlo (Jenna Busch) and possibly somewhere else

Sherlock Holmes
Review here taken from JoBlo (Chris Bumbray)

This has already taken more time than I could have possibly imagined, so I'm not going to scrutinize his channel, but previously, I did determine that he was doing the same on his live podcasts, with the most recent podcast making for a perfect example.

EDIT (05/09/10 6:00PM): I got a little heat from the charming Scott Weinberg of Cinematical (@scottEweinberg) for running the list, and I see his point (it is kind of like ganging up on him, and I have to completely admit to having already made two days worth of jokes at his expense on Twitter), but the true purpose of the list is to a) alert people whose work might have been stolen (which some fellow Twitterers indicate that it has), and b) make sure Tom confesses to everything he's done. There have been indications (based on the leisurely pace Tom is dealing with this, and the rate at which he deletes accusations of plagiarism from his YouTube channel and videos) that he had some thoughts about trying to fess up to some but not all of the theft. It also seems pretty clear that the guy had found ways to make money off of his hackism, via a merchandise shop and Google advertising, and he was being invited to premieres in the UK.

The silly thing, I think, is the whole idea of plagiarism itself. I write about movies because I love writing about movies. The point is to express my thoughts on them, which is something I'd do whether I had a blog or not. To skip over that part of the process is unfathomable to me, because what appeal could running a channel about movies possibly have if you don't actually want to put out your own, original thoughts about them? If that part of it is a chore to you, then clearly you should focus your energy elsewhere.

EDIT 2 (05/09/10 7:30PM): Somewhat ironically, it seems I've inadvertently discovered further plagiarism in the form of @iZone, which has ALSO been targeting Matthew Turner's reviews. Matthew had 42 of his reviews stolen by FilmXTRATOM and an unidentified number of reviews stolen by iZone. Make him feel a little better by following him on Twitter, and hopefully assure that all of his content will be heard from him first in the future.

EDIT 3 (05/10/10 4:00 AM): Unsurprisingly, most of the links to the videos have stopped functioning since I posted this about 12 hours ago. However (equally unsurprisingly), the videos have only gone private as opposed to being deleted from YouTube entirely.

According to Turner, Tom has also issued his personal apology. I have only seen the one comment Turner Tweeted, but Tom claims he was "trying to test the corruptibility of YouTube". Gee, sorry, Tom, what a noble thing to do!

When I first started at DVDTalk, there was a forum post about a plagiarist who had just been deleted. His excuse was supposedly that he "liked the passages" he'd ripped from reviews so much, he'd put them into the same document as his reviews in an attempt to write something equally good, and they just happened to stay in.

Readers may also appreciate the story of "comedian" Nick Madson here and here over at Patton Oswalt's MySpace blog, which broke a little over a week ago. The second blog, in particular, is essential.

EDIT 4 (05/10/10 5:20 AM): Thanks to YouTube video by a user named FuryoftheFilmFan (how fitting), I realize I would be remiss if I did not mention FredLozano, the JoBlo poster who first alerted anyone about any of FilmXTRATOM's crimes. He deserves as much credit as anyone, if not more, for without Fred, Tom would still be getting away with everything.

In addition to FuryoftheFilmFan, a user named OrionSyndicate910 has created a very nice video about the situation here.

EDIT 5 (05/10/10 2:24 PM): In case you wanted to read FilmXTRATOM's apology letter, you can do that here at JoBlo. As a Twitter user pointed out, if he was "testing the corruptibility of YouTube", what purpose did it serve plagiarizing for his weekly live videos?

Luckily, Tom is resilient. As per his most recent Tweet, he will continue to do his video reviews. Well, thank goodness.

EDIT 6 (05/10/10 9:51 PM): Well, even though Tom seems to be prepared to put up new videos this week, it's still good to see that he has finally pulled the trigger and deleted the videos from his account (previously, he had only made them private).

I have two videos on YouTube, which are clip montages from films. They were both flagged at one point by movie studios, but I noticed even while the videos were not available, my view counts remained.

My theory about Tom's attempt to leave the videos "private" is that he could continue being a YouTube Partner -- and thusly, keep profiting from his plagiarism -- if the videos still existed, along with the view counts.

That said, I am not certain as to whether Tom is currently a YouTube Partner. I am going on the implied word of OrionSyndicate910, who suggests that Tom is (or was) a Partner, so make of it what you will.

EDIT 6 (05/11/10 11:42 AM): OrionSyndicate910 has posted a new video which explicitly states that Tom has been a YouTube Partner for 2 months.

By way of this story, I also got mentioned on FilmDrunk, my favorite movie blog on the internet. Day: made.

EDIT 7 (05/11/10 3:07 PM): Initial whistleblower Fred Lozano has put up his own two cents on the issue. Fred also Tweets as @BubblegumWay.

EDIT 8 (05/14/10 11:42 PM): Matthew Turner has a blog up about it, and the newest Empire video blog references the whole mess.