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oOsoupOo

Bonsai Kitten BS

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I emailed some people and got the hook ups...

 

an email from a friend :

 

by Declan McCullagh

10:10 a.m. Feb. 9, 2001 PST

 

WASHINGTON -- A website devoted to squishing kittens into Mason jars is

one of two things: A

trenchant parody designed to provoke, or a nefarious kitty-mutilation

scheme that must be

stopped, and probably outlawed. Count the FBI among the many visitors to

 

bonsaikitten.com who

are anything but amused at the descriptions of how to use muscle

relaxant, feeding tubes and

Klein bottles to shape a perfect Bonsai Cat.

 

FBI agents in the Boston field office have launched an investigation

into the site. They also

have served MIT with a grand jury subpoena asking for "any and all

subscriber information"

about the site, which was initially hosted in a campus dormitory but has

 

since moved to a

commercial provider.

 

MIT said in a letter to bonsaikitten.com's pseudonymous webmaster, a

graduate student using

the alias Dr. Michael Wong Chang, that it will wait until Sunday to turn

 

over records that

would identify him by name. "I was surprised," Chang said. "I really

thought that the FBI had

better things to do. That's your tax dollars at work."

 

Bonsaikitten.com is, of course, a joke devised by prankster MIT students

 

-- who else would talk

about "rectilinear kittens?" -- to provoke owners of kittens, an

adorably fuzzy topic that's

usually beyond parody.

 

Bonsaikitten.com offers to sell visitors a custom-shaped kitten -- the

site says "typical wait

time for a fully shaped Bonsai Kitten is 3 to 4 months" -- but the site

does not list prices or

a mailing address for where to send money orders. It does, however,

occasionally receive

requests for more information. It also has sparked tens of thousands of

hate-mail messages,

anti-Bonsai Kitten groups on Yahoo, and even a blistering denunciation

from the venerable

Humane Society of the United States.

 

For the site's fans, watching e-mail nastygrams arrive has become a kind

 

of spectator sport:

There's even a mailing list that lets bonsaikitten.com aficionados view

any mail sent to the

site's webmaster.

 

A typical message: "This site is horrible! You should go in a mental

hospital! You son of a

bitch! I'll do my best to shut down this site and your disgusting

hobby!" A gun-toting

investigator from the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of

Cruelty to Animals reportedly

stopped by campus and quizzed MIT network administrators about the

intent of the site. Under

state law, MSPCA investigators are deputized as "special state police

officers" with

investigation and arrest abilities.

 

The combined efforts of animal rights proponents, including such ardent

activists as the

closed-subscription "meowmies" group, seem to have prompted the FBI to

launch its

investigation. "Why are they doing this?" asks Harvey Silverglate, a

prominent Boston criminal

defense attorney. "I think the answer is that political correctness has

infected the FBI." "The

kind of fanatical end of the spectrum animal protection movement has

affected them," says

Silverglate, a partner at Silverglate and Good. "They want to be the

good guys. They massively

run rampant over Americans' liberties but they want to be seen as nice

fuzzy guys who want to

protect kittens." Silverglate predicts that when the FBI realizes

bonsaikitten.com is not

serious, the bureau will quietly abandon its investigation.

 

Ellen Kearns, an FBI agent in the bureau's Lakeville, Massachusetts

office who is involved in

the investigation, could not be reached for comment. Nadine Pellegrini,

the assistant U.S.

Attorney who signed the subpoena, refused to discuss the investigation.

"I'm making no

comment," Pellegrini said.

 

The subpoena does not discuss what law the bonsaikitten.com operators

allegedly violated. But

Pellegrini hinted that it was based on a relatively recent federal

statute: "I would assume

there's a case, if there's a law, but I'm not making any comment." In

December 1999, President

Clinton signed a law that makes it a federal felony to possess "a

depiction of animal cruelty"

with the intent to distribute across state lines -- such as on the

Internet.

 

During a floor debate, Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-Calif.) claimed that "sick

 

criminals are taking

advantage of the loopholes in the local law and the lack of federal law

on animal cruelty

videos." The law, which observers at the time said probably violated the

 

First Amendment, only

applies to images, videos, and sound recordings that are distributed

"for commercial gain" --

and bonsaikitten.com's tongue-in-cheek descriptions of mail-order cats

in bottles appears to

have given the FBI sufficient justification for an investigation.

 

 

The national Humane Society, based in Washington, applauded the FBI's

efforts. "If the FBI is

looking into this, that's great," said spokeswoman Karen Allanach.

"Anything to discourage

animal cruelty would be very helpful. Allanach said she's not sure if

the site is a parody --

and even if it isn't, it should be taken offline because it could

encourage people to

experiment on their own household pets. "It's totally promoting animal

cruelty," Allanach said.

"They consider it a sick joke. People will take it seriously. Animal

cruelty is not funny.

Animal torture is not funny. We would like bonsaikitten.com to be

removed permanently."

 

When asked whether someone has the First Amendment right to advocate for

 

animal cruelty,

Allanach replied: "That's a great question. That's at the heart of a lot

 

of debate." Jered

Floyd, a recent MIT graduate, says animal rights activists -- who have

successfully pressured

hosting services to ban bonsaikitten.com until rotten.com offered it

server space -- don't have

a sense of humor. "The First Amendment protects all speech, no matter

how offensive some people

may find it," Floyd says. "The site is clearly a humorous endeavor. The

fact that a number of

people seem to have very little sense of humor isn't relevant."

 

A letter dated Feb. 1 from MIT lawyer Jeff Swope says that federal law

requires the university

to notify students when it receives subpoenas for information about

them. It says that

"pursuant to that legal process, MIT will produce such information, no

earlier than Feb. 11,

2001."

 

also see:

http://urbanlegends.about.com/science/urba...s=bonsai+kitten

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i mean yeah thats fucked up,but can't people take a fucking joke anymore ?

 

------------------

your ghetto if you pee in the shower...

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I signed thier guestbook like I admired them in every way...I told them I had a collection of over fifty cats and the one that look ugly i bury...

I lead them to believe I was serious and that i used to run over buried to thier head cats with my lawn mowwer...

then I lead them to believe I was a total phsyco and how they are just like me in a sence....

It was a mutalated story...hope they see the madness of it all.

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Originally posted by PIRone716:

i mean yeah thats fucked up,but can't people take a fucking joke anymore ?

 

 

 

some things arent funny......

well unless of course you're sick...

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I realize its a joke...but shit...who finds that funny? what kind of person sits around and goes "hey! I know what I'll do for a joke...I'll make a fake website for a company that sells dead kittens formed into the shape of a jar! that should get alot of laughs!" I dont get that kind of absolutely tasteless humor....anyone wanna help me out?

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some people are just fucked like that.i thought it was sick and was wondering where the fuck,they would get an idea like that.but nevertheless its a joke,a sick one.i understand what you are sayin though.i guess it just takes a really fucked person to do something like that...

 

------------------

your ghetto if you pee in the shower...

 

[This message has been edited by PIRone716 (edited 06-15-2001).]

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Guest the heebie jeebies
Originally posted by ese:

I realize its a joke...but shit...who finds that funny? what kind of person sits around and goes "hey! I know what I'll do for a joke...I'll make a fake website for a company that sells dead kittens formed into the shape of a jar! that should get alot of laughs!" I dont get that kind of absolutely tasteless humor....anyone wanna help me out?

 

they were MIT students. of course they would do this. college kids with lots of intelligence and lots of money. a good situation to suggest certain ideas and imagery and provoke people with it.

 

duh.

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Guest platapie

willy the police are gonna knock your fucking door down. hahahahahahaa. hide the kiddie porn.

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Is it by any chance a protest/parady for twisty cats ? (this is really who the FBI should go after) They intentionally breed cats to have a gene which changes the shape of the cats feet. lemmie see if i can scrounge some pics.

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Originally posted by platapie:

willy the police are gonna knock your fucking door down. hahahahahahaa. hide the kiddie porn.

 

 

hahahaha....how did you know of my kiddie porn?!

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Oh... I always thought you were talking about KITTY PORN...

 

------------------

2 Can Sam

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