Around 9pm, Voat user NeedleStack reached the front page of the website with the above post. The user claims to have evidence that a ShareBlue staff member offered to pay to obtain an influential Voat account for the purposes of creating a new Subverse.
User NeedleStack links to the below post, which is four days old, created by the user JohnCStevenson–an account that is also four days old.
Needlestack puts forward the claim that, because of the letters SB in the email address, and the accounts previous posting of a ShareBlue article, user JohnCStevenson must be an employee of ShareBlue. That guess at an acronym, combined with this post’s allusion to “an organization that pays its workers handsomely,” and the stated aim of clearing up disinformation on vote, leads NeedleStack (and other Voat users) to the assumption that this post is a ShareBlue attempt to influence the Voat community.
The only thing is, johncstevensonSB@gmail.com isn’t even a real email address. When I attempted to log-in to the email address to verify its existence, I was met with this error: the Google Account could not be found. And why would a ShareBlue employee designate their employment their with letters in the email address? Why would they use a gmail address at all for that matter? Wouldn’t they just use first initial last name @shareblue.com?
To verify my suspicion that this was not a email address currently in use, I created an account with this email address for myself, seen below.
Why would a ShareBlue employee ask to buy an account with an email address that doesn’t exist? I come to the conclusion that the post that NeedleStack links to was not made by anyone connected to ShareBlue. I believe that the JohnCStevenson account was created by NeedleStack, or another Voat user, for the sole purpose of making a conspicuously fishy post. After all, the only activity in this account in its 4 days of existence is the post asking to buy an account, and the post made on its first day linking to a ShareBlue article.
Then, after waiting four days, Needlestack created the post tonight linking the email address and the ShareBlue article. Only he was too lazy to actually make sure the email address he had made up actually worked.
At the time of this posting, at least one Voat user has caught on to the dubious authenticity of the original JohnCStevenson post.
So is this a real ShareBlue invasion, or a false-flag made up by a Voat user? Or some other troll? Let me know what you think.
Since I posted this article, the JohnCStevenson Voat account has been active and made an additional post, and one comment on NeedleStack’s post, making reference to PizzaGate.