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Tuesday, 02 December, 2008

Email From Stephen Choate

I got my very first email from a prophet last night.

Last week I posted a little throw-away item about a self-proclaimed prophet named Stephen Choate who compared Kennedy and Obama. See JFK and BHO.

I had forgotten all about this post, until the email arrived:

Subject: Please remove all information that connects to Stephen Choate and SpeakGodSpeak from your website

If you could remove all information as it connects to Stephen Choate and SpeakGodSpeak from your website I would appreciate it.

Thank you!
Stephen

That's odd. He spent a lot of time and money on his SpeakGodSpeak site. Then, when someone discovers it and links to it, he doesn't like it. I can only assume that he doesn't understand how the Web works. It's pretty simple, actually:

  1. People create Web sites because they want to share something or sell something.
  2. Others find those sites and link to them.

Importantly, a Web site owner cannot control who links to their site. And brief quotes from other sites are allowed, because of a legal concept known as fair use.

Choate's email prompted me to find his personal web site, and also check out his prophesies. I found this thread at Rants & Raves in which someone discovered Choate's site and wrote about it: Speak God Speak.

A god huckster trying to sell prophecies has a "miracles and visions" sections on his site. He considers these documented miracles. He also says he's seen a parallel universe. For real. One of the miracles, Every channel turns to TBN.

How I witnessed every channel turning to TBN (Trinity broadcasting network) after I asked the LORD to make it so. This was so that my family would know and believe in Christ. After I prayed, every channel became Christian the next day. My Mother was amazed and told all her friends. The TV technician when he arrived could not fix the box either.

The thread linked to several other "documented miracles" pages at Choate's site -- but now these pages are all gone. Apparently, Choate had second thoughts and no longer wants others to read his prophetic words.

Then, Choates started threatening Rants & Raves...

Please remove the below website from your server. I did not attack your website, nor will I ever. Apart of the article written is copyrighted under LAW and I did not give anyone permission to use what was found on my website.

I asked you to remove the information, because it speaks of my work. You are broadcasting slander upon the website. This is ILLEGAL. Since you do not care, I will be filing a POLICE REPORT against you today.

If this case is brought to court, you may be summons to come to MASSACHUSETTS for a court hearing. Please use your head before you continue with this nonsense. I will take action.

I guess he's also threatened the folks at Fundies Say The Darndest Things.

Since you have not complied with my request, for every visitor that CLICKS on the LINK to SpeakGodSpeak that is found on your server, I have made it where it speaks about FSTDT.com and says that you are an ILLEGAL website.

Apparently he had second thoughts about that, too.

Steven, if you happen find this post, I urge you to read this: Streisand Effect.

The Streisand effect is a phenomenon on the Internet where an attempt to censor or remove a piece of information backfires, causing the information to be widely publicized. Examples of such attempts include censoring a photograph, a number, a file, or a website (for example via a cease-and-desist letter). Instead of being suppressed, the information quickly receives extensive publicity, often being widely mirrored across the Internet, or distributed on file-sharing networks.