Jillian C. York

Jillian C. York is a writer and activist.

Month: November 2013

The most artful of spam emails

Subject: Uprising!

Hi there,

My name is Aisha daughter of Shukri Ghanem. We fled from Libya last year following the uprising against Col Muammar Gaddafi.

My father’s death is no longer news but my mother’s deteriorating health made me want to do this despite the fact that I barely know you. I believe in my late father’s philosophy: “risk many things in life; but not life itself”. I believe in taking business risk with strangers mainly to escape the spotlight and I hope you can do this for my family.

I have a rather unusual proposition having found you on the internet in desperation and I am here to surprise you with this extreme offer you can easily afford. It’s something that I believe could provide a great deal of profit to you if you give me a moment of your time. I would like to propose a joint venture with you because we are looking at investment opportunities in your area and we need a local presence to carry out our plans. Everything depends on you and ultimately how self-motivated you are.

Of course, you may simply have reservations about teaming with us when you don’t know my family. Please be assured that I want nothing more than what could be a very profitable joint venture and a lasting business relationship.

Please write back and I’ll explain everything in full detail.

Thank you.

Best Regard,
Aisha Ghanem.

That’s Yikes…Chillian J. Yikes!

In possibly the funniest thing that’s ever happened to me on the Internet (and please remember that I’ve been called a fattie by the daughter of the Uzbek dictator and crowdfunded my ticket to troll a Thomas Friedman event), the New York Times, that paper of record, has today issued a correction that’s been called “the best thing on the Internet this week.”

It all started when the Wall Street Journal (that paper of disrepute) published an article in its ‘Experts’ section by none other than third-rate actress and ThighMaster-peddler Suzanne Somers. Entitled “The Affordable Care Act is a Socialist Ponzi Scheme,” the article was riddled with errors and ripe for humor. So, I did what anyone would do, and I tweeted a few fake headlines.

One of those headlines (and in my opinion, not even the funniest)—”I Starred In Two Mediocre Sitcoms, Let Me Explain Government To You”—made it into the New York Times, both online and in print (October 31, page E7).


The hilarity could’ve stopped there, except it was Halloween week and so, in conforming with my friends, I had changed my Twitter name to “Chillian J. Yikes!”, something that a) I appreciate is allowed on Twitter, as pseudonyms are increasingly banned from online platforms and b) Katherine Maher (or should I say MUAHAHAHAHAR) had the good wit to come up with for me.

And so, The Paper of Record quoted me as Chillian J. Yikes! The fun could’ve stopped there, but alas, it did not, for EFF’s media coordinator Dave Maass wrote a note to Jim Romenesko, who covered it on his popular blog, resulting in…a correction from the New York Times:

Screen Shot 2013-11-01 at 8.07.20 AM


And there you have it.  Hilariously, BoingBoing, HyperVocal, and Poynter have also now covered the story.

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