April 26, 2013

"Brown University student mistakenly linked by amateur sleuths on a social media site to the Boston bombings"... drowned.

Sunil Tripathi, 22.
On Monday, Reddit general manager Erik Martin apologized for the "dangerous speculation" that "spiraled into very negative consequences for innocent parties." In a blog post, he specifically apologized to the Tripathi family "for the pain they have had to endure."

60 comments:

Matthew Sablan said...

I wish the media were as critical of the media as they are of amateur sleuths.

David said...

Did he kill himself before or after he was misidentified as a suspect? The article is not clear.

Chris said...

It would appear he died before he was pegged as one of the Boston Bombers. With exception for the families loss, this is much ado about nothing.

Chris said...

It would appear he died before he was pegged as one of the Boston Bombers. With exception for the families loss, this is much ado about nothing.

AprilApple said...

dangerous speculation

Jane Fonda, Brian Ross, CNN and Chris Matthews have no idea what you are talking about.

rhhardin said...

It's nature's way of strengthening the gene pool.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Why the suicide tag? Do you have information that we don't? Or is it just dangerous speculation?

Henry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Henry said...

Tripathi had been missing for several weeks before the Boston bombing. At my commuter rail station this morning, like every morning for the last month, I passed a missing persons' flyer with his photo on it. This is a heartbreaking development for people who continued to hope he was missing, not dead.

Brown University has posted a notice of his death:

Sunil grew up in Radnor, Pennsylvania. The brother of two Brown graduates, Sunil came to Brown as an undergraduate in 2008. He was a philosophy concentrator and accomplished saxophonist with a keen interest in music. He was known to be a serious, thoughtful, intellectually curious student and a brilliant writer. Sunil will be remembered by all who knew him for his gentle demeanor and generous spirit.

pm317 said...

Reddit apologized. But I don't think conservative blogs like ACE (and Hillaryis44) who were breathlessly propagating that misinformation on that night have. Shame on them and I would feel better knowing he died earlier and that these people did not add to his misery (and death).

Matthew Sablan said...

"But I don't think conservative blogs like ACE (and Hillaryis44) who were breathlessly propagating that misinformation on that night have."

-- I don't remember Ace having anything but reports from news sources. Has NPR ever apologized for their right-wing Hitler birthday, tax-protest fantasies?

pm317 said...

Ann, thank you for shining light on this fiasco. What makes me angry is that some people don't even know what his origins are and all they recognized is his funny name (which is not even Muslim)and from India and there are many Muslims in India. How ignorant can these people be?

On a side note to educate the ignorant, Saudi overlords will be ecstatic on the day they convert Indian Muslims to carry out their heinous deeds within India and outside. Indian Muslims are happy being Indian, the author is a noted Indian Muslim.

pm317 said...

Matthew Sablan said...
-------------

Ace blogged on it perhaps taking Reddit as source on that night.

MisterBuddwing said...

It's nature's way of strengthening the gene pool.

Well, then, do us all a favor...

Patrick said...

The article says he was last seen on March 15. I think your quote from the Reddit guy implies that he (the Reddit guy) was apologizing for the death. Given the length of time he was gone, and the fact that they had to identify him through his dental records, the two events are unfortunate but unrelated.

Although I would guess that the fact that he was missing would've helped fuel speculation on the bombing.

bagoh20 said...

The people who accused him (only suspected actually) made an honest mistake in an attempt to save lives, but this story wrongfully accuses people purposefully, and so is much worse.

It reminds me of when the SWAT team busts in the door, terrorises the whole family, shoots the dog, and takes the kids away, because dad has some weed, and we need to protect the children. Actually a lot of stuff reminds me of that, and I don't have any weed or kids, but I do have issues.

Darrell said...

pms317 is a little liar. Reporting from established new sources requires no apologies. The evidence suggests he was already dead before the bomb went off. A few people saying that he might look like some of the people in the videos carrying a backpack didn't affect him one way or another. Since the FBI was not questioning his family about the matter, internet comments would mean nothing there either. The Left is trying to spin straw into shit again.

Matthew Sablan said...

Reporting that Reddit said something hardly requires an apology.

Henry said...

Here's a more detailed story about how the Reddit events unfolded. Key graf:

Between 3am and 4.30am [of Friday, April 27], Mr Tripathi’s family receive 72 phone calls from media and social media asking for comment on his potential involvement in the case.

The Facebook page set up by Mr Tripathi’s family in an attempt to help find him is frozen due to abuse being posted on the page.

Darrell said...

Reddit is a left-wing site, anyway. They should apologize for that.

edutcher said...

They apologized.

That makes it OK.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Why the suicide tag? Do you have information that we don't? Or is it just dangerous speculation?

Why aren't they saying if there are no signs of foul play?

PS I'm just asking here, but it does seem odd the guy who was the object of so much speculation turns up dead instead of, say, shacked up somewhere.

Matthew Sablan said...

Real media should have known better; then again, CNN issued a mea culpa on their site about getting taken in by a hoax AP tweet. So, "real" media is kind of lazy on this.

Darrell said...

but it does seem odd the guy who was the object of so much speculation turns up dead

Does it? Missing people usually turn up either dead or alive. In this case the ending was sad.

Phil said...

http://ace.mu.nu/archives/339268.php

You're full of shit, pm. No ifs ands or buts.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

edutcher said...

Why aren't they saying if there are no signs of foul play?

He went missing March 15, and was just found in the water. If he had been in the water the whole time it may take a while to determine if there was foul play or not.

Darrell said...

Reddit is a left-wing site

To elaborate, Reddit, like Digg, was created by Lefties to promote their bullshit and help suppress right-wing pieces. Lefties with too much time on their hands stand ready to vote stories down so that they don't get any traction in the blogosphere. Shit Kos pulls out of his ass gets rated as a "can't miss." Conde Nast, its parent company, had decided to stop putting their diminishing resources into the venture. Maybe this new publicity will help them make it a few more months.

Patrick said...

Why aren't they saying if there are no signs of foul play?

Article says no sign of trauma. given the state of writing in the media, maybe they thought it was the same thing. Also, accidental drowning is not ruled out.

AprilApple said...

Here in CO, the police love to bust down the door at the wrong house and shoot an innocent dog.

Darrell said...

If Ace, or any right-wing blogger referenced Reddit, they would certainly tell readers to take the information with a 50-lb bag of rock salt.

Mitchell the Bat said...

I guess this is why we should all go for regular dental checkups.

Titus said...

Sunil was kind of hot.

I would of done him.

Sad.

tits.

edutcher said...

It's getting old.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Why aren't they saying if there are no signs of foul play?

He went missing March 15, and was just found in the water. If he had been in the water the whole time it may take a while to determine if there was foul play or not.


True enough.

Iconochasm said...

I didn't follow the reddit sleuthing too closely, but I did catch what seemed to be a very hard pivot once they realized they had the wrong guy. There was a quite exculpatory effort to set the record straight and shut down the incorrect info asap.

As far as reddit being a "left-wing site", that really misunderstands reddit. It's a tool for creating communities. So while the general /politics subreddit is universally acknowledged as a fetid cesspit of 17 year old socialists, there are a thousand smaller, more focused or better moderated subs where people can find what they're looking for politically (or for any other interest for that matter). If you want to debate relatively well-versed people from across the spectrum, try /politicaldiscussion. If you want a right-wing circlejerk, try /conservative. The whole idea of the site is that if the existing community isn't the community you want, you can go make your own.

Though to be fair, this may not be obvious at all to someone looking at the generic front page.

Darrell said...

Here, Titus. For the pics. . .
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2314744/Sunil-Tripathi-Body-pulled-Providence-River-Boston-confirmed-missing-Brown-student.html

Matthew Sablan said...

Reddit and Wikipedia are great places for things that have no even tangential relation to politics. But, once politics reaches its tendrils into a topic, both places are toxic pits because people naturally get fight-y on the Internet.

MadisonMan said...

Has NPR ever apologized for their right-wing Hitler birthday, tax-protest fantasies?

I hope you can recognize the difference between NPR demonstrating its bias with vague supposition and Reddit causing phone calls to a very specific hopeful on-edge-of-grieving family.

Darrell said...

that really misunderstands reddit. It's a tool for creating communities

Now isn't that special!

It doesn't matter that you can find something of value in its bowels, it still comes out as shit. It gives publicity to left-wing blog stories and rates right-wing blog articles as garbage. It factors into Google placement of stories on searches.

ricpic said...

...Indian Muslims are happy being Indian...

Bullshit. Like Muslims everywhere they are in a constant state of rage until infidels, be they Indians or Americans, submit.

SteveR said...

I saw on Twittet that there was a Redditt posting about a Facebbok page that desribed some Instagram pics that implicated Lee Harvey Oswald in the shooting of JFK. Makes sense to me.

Matthew Sablan said...

"I hope you can recognize the difference between NPR demonstrating its bias with vague supposition and Reddit causing phone calls to a very specific hopeful on-edge-of-grieving family."

-- I recognize that the people who should be apologizing are the ones who made the phone calls; Reddit made a mistake and owned up. The -- what, 70+ people? -- who called did the damage.

Matthew Sablan said...

"It gives publicity to left-wing blog stories and rates right-wing blog articles as garbage."

-- Go upvote right-wing stuff. I'm indifferent on Reddit; it serves a useful purpose, but there is a systemic bias. There's obvious fixes (get more people to balance the bias) or you can recognize and ignore it (which is what I do for political stories -- Reddit is, however, great for all my nerd pursuits).

Titus said...

Those pics are hot Darrell, makes me more horny.

thanks.

tits.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

pm317 said...
Matthew Sablan said...
-------------

Ace blogged on it perhaps taking Reddit as source on that night.

4/26/13, 8:05 AM

That is incorrect. Ace blogged about it after the shootout ended and the police announced over the radio the name of the suspects were Tripathi and Michael Mugati.

So Ace's source was the Boston Police Department.

Henry said...

From the article I linked above:

Several of those in the US who claimed on the forum last Thursday evening local time that he was the man wanted by police, said his name had come up in conversations between officers on the police scanner.

One woman claimed she had gone to Radnor high school with Mr Tripathi and that images provided by police “looked like him” while Kevin Michael, a cameraman with a Hartford affiliate of the CBS television network said on Twitter: “BPD scanner has identified the names: Suspect 1: Mike Mulugeta Suspect 2: Sunil Tripathi.”


Overhearing chatter on a police scanner is not the same as "police announced".

There's plenty of irresponsibility to spread around.

Darrell said...

Overhearing chatter on a police scanner is not the same as "police announced"
Bill said, So Ace's source was the Boston Police Department

"Source" is not "police announced". Are you spreading falsehoods on the internet? Shame on you!

What is the point of all of this anyway, grounds for a civil lawsuit seeking $Millions? Good luck proving that a reasonable, prudent person believes all (or any) the shit they read on the internet.

edutcher said...

pm317 said...

Indian Muslims are happy being Indian

In a Hindu country?

Pardon my skepticism.

MadisonMan said...

Has NPR ever apologized for their right-wing Hitler birthday, tax-protest fantasies?

I hope you can recognize the difference between NPR demonstrating its bias with vague supposition and Reddit causing phone calls to a very specific hopeful on-edge-of-grieving family.


Obviously MadMan doesn't.

This is becoming a blood libel.

MadisonMan said...

The -- what, 70+ people? -- who called did the damage.

Well, here's hoping they don't all call to apologize now.

Geoff Matthews said...

Did his roommate record him having gay sex?

Henry said...

@Darrell -- I'm baffled. Why are you so mad? What are you defending? The right of people to be assholes? You're in luck. That's inalienable.

Darrell said...

Henry--

I'm baffled. Why are you so concerned?
Is it because you were so irresponsible and inaccurate, even going so far as to accuse another commenter of something that you yourself were doing? And why must you use an "@"?

Ann Althouse said...

"Why the suicide tag? Do you have information that we don't?"

Tags indicate the presence of a topic. There is a question whether this was suicide, but that means suicide is a topic.

pm317 said...

Edutcher, read the damn article I linked. Trust me I know more about this than you will ever do.

Darrell said...

read the damn article I linked

Now we're supposed to believe shit on the internet? I'm confused.

Patrick said...

There is a question whether this was suicide

The article makes no mention of suicide. There may be speculation, but the article gives nothing on which to base that speculation. By that standard, there are not very many tags that could be eliminated.

Mary Beth said...

What Iconochasm said.

I like reddit but some of the subreddits lean left, including some of the default ones that show up on the front page. Unsubscribe to them, subscribe to others.

Why don't I see the same blame going to 4chan for its amateur sleuthing attempts? Much of what I saw on reddit that day had begun on 4chan. Is it there a reason to go after the corporate site rather than the privately owned one?

Darrell said...

How has Ann Althouse's posts faired on Reddit? I'm thinking not very well.

And that's all you need to know.

Matthew Sablan said...

"Is it there a reason to go after the corporate site rather than the privately owned one?"

-- Because no one even pretends 4-Chan should be trusted.

Ben Morris said...

If I understand this story correctly, the fact that he was missing already (well *before* the bombings ) helped put him on the radar. That is, Reddit users compared the bombing photo to the well-circulated photo of a known missing person (and possibly on the theory that the disappearance makes him more suspicious). In other words, it's prob more likely that his demise causally contributed to the Reddit firestorm than vice-versa.

If I'm getting that right, it seems maybe a bit distasteful---especially now that he turned up dead. But it doesn't seem any more presumptious or illogical than all the other speculation flying around in the last couple of weeks (like that one time Reddit was accused of killing an innocent college student).

NotquiteunBuckley said...

"dangerous speculation" that "spiraled into very negative consequences for innocent parties."

This describes cops declaring a triple homicide a drug deal gone bad.

Despite much evidence to the contrary.

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