Jessica Lussenhop’s article is bloody brilliant, one to mull over with a nice hot drink and ponder – don’t skim good journalistic writing.
Update: 19 December 2018
“The publicity stunt for this is done,” Jered Eames assured me at the end of our interview. “Anything I’ve said to you is factual.”
To prove that he was indeed the one that tipped off the media to the hoax Eames forwarded me 16 different news tips sent from the “E. Evieknowsit” account. Four of them were sent to two different general BBC news tip email addresses, and the earliest of those was dated 4 November – five days before the first stories broke.
My colleagues looked for the emails, but because those inboxes are routinely purged, they had nothing.
After we first published our story, I began reaching out to reporters at the other outlets who had allegedly been sent emails. The earliest one was reportedly sent on 2 November to the “tips” inbox for the entertainment magazine Variety.
“Yes, we got this email,” a helpful Variety reporter wrote back, attaching a copy with the exact same text that Jered had shared with me.
Then I looked closer. The timestamp on Jered’s copy said it was sent on “Fri, Nov 2, 2018 at 12:16 PM”. The copy from the Variety reporter read, “Sat, Nov 17, 2018 at 4:32 PM”.
An editor at MetalSucks, which did some of the earliest breaking stories on Threatin, could not find an alleged 7 November email that Jered shared with me. Instead, he found a different email from Evie in their inbox, pointing him to a YouTube clip from one of Threatin’s empty shows. It was dated 17 November.
As I went down the line, I found that the New York Times, Ultimate Classic Rock and Metal Insider all got the “E. Evieknowsit” email on 17 November. But by this date, these outlets had already extensively covered the Threatin story.
Finally, the BBC’s IT specialists managed to recover two deleted messages from “E. Evieknowsit”.
Both were sent on 17 November, less than an hour apart.
When I texted Jered to tell him what I’d found, he said he would respond.