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Operation Wu-Pocalypse

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Operation Wu-Pocalypse was launched by Jace and Eli in January 2015 in order to "destroy the SJW movement". This incident also marks the end of the Jace Connors/Tyce Andrews Saga, with the entire shebang revealed as a work of satire.

Prelude: The Mystery Mission

On January 14, 2015, Jace announced an "upcoming BLACK-level operation" in a post on DeagleNation.tv,[1] without giving any further details as to its objectives. Observers came up with a number of theories, including an attempt to steal marijuana from Mexican drug cartels and an overseas mission to Germany to stop Tranny Hitler from destroying the weed economy of Amsterdam, both of which had been hot topics in Jace's recent livestreams.

In the TF2 Livestream of January 16, Jace revealed a number of details while keeping the overall objective of the mission secret:

  • The main objective would be to hunt down a specific individual.
  • The mission would take place outside the United states, but not in Canada. The team would have to travel around "a hundred miles or something" to get there, ideally by car, most likely a Prius because of the favorable mileage. They might have to use an airplane because of the distance, but if everything else failed, Greyhound Buses would be an option as well.
  • The mission would involve "intense vehicular action" and a getaway, for which Jace and Eli had already been training.
  • A helmet camera would be used throughout the mission, the footage would be published online. If feasible, there would be livestreams as well.
  • The mission would get under way within the next two weeks.
  • Funding would be a problem, Eli's paycheck wouldn't be enough to cover it all.
  • Further team members aside from Jace and Eli might be needed. Colby and Kyle were obvious candidates, but the team would need a computer expert as well.

On January 25, Jace declared a partial media blackout on DeagleNation.tv,[2] because he and Eli would "actually both engaged in operations that could potentially be dangerous and we cant leak them online. When I enter Phase #1 of the mission, I am going to be entering an area with no access to the online OR phones at all, and this will cause me to actually be unable to post. So get used to it, But it shouldnt be more than a week or so before we are back at full speed." He also renewed his promise to record the entire operation on video and put it online.

Again, it is important to note that this was before Jace had been revealed to be satire, but even still, the credibility of his threats and plan were around the level of nil. Any onlooker at this point can see that Jace and company putting all of this online and pretty much publicly viewable was not only pretty much guaranteed to get Law Enforcement's response if he were an actual threat, and that, given how well Jace's previous plans had gone, there was precious little reason to believe he was going to accomplish anything.

Phase I: Brianna Wu and a Street Race to the Grave

See also: Jace Connors vs. Brianna Wu

On January 30, Jace lifted the blackout with a bang. The first sign that the operation had begun was a chatlog that FlyAwayNow posted on the Kiwi Farms.[3] From 2:16:49 PM to 3:11:37 PM, Jace had tried to recruit him for phase I of what would later be known as Operation Wu-Pocalypse.

Full text: FlyAwayNow's Wu-Pocalypse Chatlog

While Eli had been sent an undisclosed location (later revealed to be Canada) to take out Brianna Wu's "comms" (later revealed to be Reddit and Tumblr), Jace had once again stolen his mother's Prius to confront his arch-nemesis head-on and beat her in a street race to expose her as a fake gamer. He feared that Wu, whom he suspected of working "with the National Social Justice Party to stop gamers" by "taking over Gamer Gate", might be a less than honorable street racer and try to shoot him. Since bullet holes in the Prius would mean trouble with his mother, he tried to get FlyAwayNow to bring his rifle and ride along to dissuade Wu from sabotaging the race. FlyAwayNow would meet up with Jace at a McDonald's and together they would bring justice to the gaming world. FlyAwayNow, however, was having none of it. He flat-out refused to get involved, not in a street race and certainly not in a drive-by shooting. Even Jace's assurance that he didn't want to kill Wu, only to race her, couldn't change his mind, and neither could his offer to pick him up at a Starbucks instead of a McDonald's. This would be because Brianna Wu blocked him, though it didn't stop Wu from claiming he was a prime example of her own personal harassment, even as evidence continued to mount that Jace wasn't exactly a substantive threat.

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Tweet by Brianna Wu, posted soon after the chatlog was leaked.
Jace reports that his head is bleeding a lot, causing some alarm among observers. His injury was later diagnosed as a moderate concussion.

Only a few hours after the chatlog was leaked to the Kiwi Farms, Wu tweeted about a GamerGater threatening to come to her house with a gun. The most likely explanation is that Brianna Wu's supporters and/or third-party trolls made her aware of the log right after it was posted. In either case, Jace would have to move quickly if he was to carry out his street racing plans. Betrayed by FlyAwayNow, he decided to go it alone. He took his mother's Prius to the highway, where he drove "very quickly and challenging other drivers, in order to sneak up on Wu un-noticed."

[4] Low visibility and snow and ice on the road made this somewhat difficult and it didn't take long before he managed to run his car off the road, destroying it completely and injuring his head in the process. His first reaction was to shoot a video of himself kicking the totalled car, ranting and raving about his street racing skills, and blaming Ivan Komarov "and the rest of these terrorists" for the accident.

What happened next is currently unknown, but he somehow managed to make it to Kyle's house, from where he uploaded the the video to Youtube, but not before adding a declaration outlining his plans. At this point, he had already abandoned the idea that Ivan had anything to do with his crash and put the blame entirely on Wu. It must have been her who had sabotaged his mother's Prius. Her goals could not have been anything less than to murder him, and older tweets of hers showing off her new motorcycle and joking about how much more dangerous riding a bike was than driving a car could not have been anything less than a "thinly-veiled death threat". But he would not be be silenced this easily. "Armed with the Truth of [his] Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ" he would rise to become a "#GamerGate Vigilante" and "hold the industry responsible.". Eli had already been sent "across the continent" to begin Phase II of what was now officially revealed to be "Operation Wu-Pocalypse". As a "seasoned war journalist who documented the Israel-Palestine conflict with his overseas vlogging", Eli would be instrumental in uncovering "shocking facts to discredit the SJW People online".

Again, at this point, it's now painfully apparent that team Wu is, for lack of a better term, being rolled. If there is someone at this point who can look at Jace's insane rambling during this event and take it as a credible threat to Brianna Wu's life, they are either willfully misconstruing the facts or being intentionally alarmist to the point of complete credibility loss. To restate: This incident involved a man challenging random people to street races in his mother's Prius in the hopes of luring out Brianna Wu, crashing the car and blaming Wu for it, and then claiming Wu's tweets about owning a motorcycle were evidence she had tried to murder him.

The Rising Storm

After the video had been posted, the ball was in Wu's court.

On January 31, while observers still speculated how badly Jace had been hurt and what the consequences of stealing and destroying his mother's car would be, she made her move and retweeted the video, causing a storm among her followers as well as her detractors that closely resembled the one that happened in the wake of his Batman of Gaming video, albeit on a much bigger scale. The number of video views rose to almost 40,000 within a day, threads about it sprang up on places like Reddit's GamerGhazi[5] and KotakuInAction,[6] as well as on NeoGAF.[7] The event was covered in articles on Daily Kos[8] and BostInno[9]. The article on Daily Kos was later linked on Fark.com.[10] Most of these threads and articles heavily borrowed from each other, leading to some misleading rumors to be repeated over and over, such as the idea that Jace had been carrying actual firearms.

As always when a large group of people without prior exposure to Jace are introduced to his world, every single existing theory on his authenticity was brought up and discussed in great detail, as were questions concerning the state of mental health care in the United States, the situation of veterans, and the practicality of using a Prius in a street race. The number of comments on the video on Youtube rose accordingly, forcing Jace to spend some time on trying to set the record straight. On GamerGhazi, comments explaining that Jace was little more than an elaborate hoax were deleted, because they did not fit Wu's harassment narrative.

Meanwhile, the Kiwi Farms' Null went on GamerGhazi to contact Wu and try to talk her out of pressing charges against Jace. According to his account in the King of /pol/ Interview, this didn't work, and for the crime of daring to point out that Jace may not have been as big a threat as Wu claimed he was, Null was immediately banned. However, he was subsequently approached by a writer at the Boston Globe who wanted his opinion for a story on the affair.[11] It's worth noting that despite claiming her intent to press charges and claiming to have gotten a restraining order against Jace, Brianna Wu ultimately didn't - she never filed a police report and no restraining order would be provided against someone who ultimately did not exist.

Null had also been in contact with Jace himself to attempt to get him to have his injury treated at a hospital – instead of the herbal remedies and fish oil supplements that he had been getting from Kyle.[12] Jace, on the other hand remained defiant. He showed up on Twitter to remind everyone that Eli was still around to finish the mission and that further videos would be released.

Back at Home Base

On February 1 after getting out of hospital, where he finally went to get treatment for what was now confirmed to be a moderate concussion, and moving back in with his mother, Jace posted a manifesto on DeagleNation.tv to explain both the background and the current status of the operation. He finally gave King of /pol/ the interview that he had promised even before the crash and tried to present his side of the story. Right after that, he hosted an impromptu livestream and gave even more details.

February 2 saw the publication of the first of the promised videos on Eli's part of the mission, as well as three more articles on the whole affair: One on Gawker that tried to implicate FlyAwayNow in the planned shooting of Brianna Wu,[13], one on Jezebel,[14] and another one on Bustle.com.[15]

While Wu complained about Jace to Congress, Jace himself tried to start a counter-offensive on Twitter and posted a pre-recorded video of Eli packing for his mission to Canada. Eli, who had only just heard about Jace's car crash, broke radio silence with a video in which he vowed to avenge his commander and to take down Brianna Wu, GamerGhazi, Kotaku, and the Boston Globe.

Investigative reporter Reuben G. Baron.

Having reached the bottom of the journalistic barrel with Tuesday's article on bustle.com, the media storm finally subsided on February 3, but not before self-styled gonzo journalist Reuben G. Baron of the-LFB.com decided to try his hand at exposing Jace with an interview. He had planned to forward any admission of illegal activities on Jace's part to law enforcement and use quotes from the interview for an attack article. However, he found Jace to be a formidable opponent who parried most of his stabs with ease, while Baron himself stuttered and stumbled his way through the interview, accidentally admitting to be "a friend of Brianna Wu" halfway through. When Jace revealed that he too had been recording the conversation and was planning on making it public, Baron panicked[16] and published the recording[17] along with a rushed version of his article that contained a number of factual errors, not the least of which was calling Eli "Jace's drug dealer".[18] Jace promised to upload his own recording on the following day.

Brianna Wu announced that she would be testifying for a judge on the next day on Twitter. Suffice to say, what followed was exactly what most predicted.

Phase II is off to a Rocky Start

On February 4, the operation hit another snag. Jace had ordered Eli to take his sword to the Reddit server farm that he suspected to be located in Toronto. When he didn't hear back from his field agent, he concluded that he must have been taken prisoner by "Reddit thugs".

Things looked similarly grim on the home front, as Gail confiscated Jace's PC to search it for his hentai collection. Jace wasn't too worried though: He had already hidden all of the incriminating material in Windows' cursor folder.

The document posted by Wu.

February 5 brought no relief. Brianna Wu posted a document on Twitter, that turned out to be a Harrassment Protection Order, a temporary order good for 10 days until a hearing with the defendant could be held.[19]

Jace, still recovering from his concussion and still without access to his PC due to Gail's ongoing hentai investigation,[20][21] tried to relax by smoking weed and watching TV, which only served to further his paranoia.

Since there was no sign of life from Eli, Jace saw himself forced to presume him killed, captured, or even grounded by his father. He contemplated holding either a funeral fundraiser or a bail fundraiser, depending on the situation.

The enemy of his enemy is not necessarily Jace's friend.

When Tyce posted a video in which he declared himself a men's rights activist and vowed to wage war against Brianna Wu (and women in the gaming industry in general), Jace condemned this as a "terrorist act" and claimed that Wu was his alone.

The day ended when a flurry of Tweets disrespecting John Cena and the Marines who died in 9/11 caused Jace to leave Twitter "forever".[22] His exodus lasted for less than 14 hours.[23]

Tyce's skeleton hat is in the ring.

The following days were relatively quiet. On February 6, another article mentioning Jace was published on vice.com,[24] on February 7 the Deagle Nation Forums were taken down due to a TOS violation. Whether the takedown had anything to do with Operation Wu-Pocalypse was unclear, although observers were quick to blame Brianna Wu's supporters, who by this point had a well-known reputation for such actions.

Jace kept a low profile and didn't comment on either of these events. Brianna Wu did, however, take note of Tyce's latest video,[25] sparking yet another debate on GamerGhazi.[26] As was the case for the last two times Jace had appeared on the site, anyone pointing out that Jace, Tyce, and Eli weren't actual threats were immediately deleted and their posters banned.

February 8 brought an explanation for Jace's silence. His mother had found out that he had been using "harsh language" on the internet, made him apologize to the lord and dragged him offline.[27] The fact that she had told jace that "the reason why cops call it the web is because, The online is a 'Web' of lies and/or Computers are Satans kingdom on earth"[28] led some observers to speculate that Gail's crackdown had come as a result of Brianna Wu's restraining order. Jace promised that he would return to the internet once his soul had been saved.[29]

Jace broke the silence for a moment on February 9, when he managed to talk his mother into hosting a religious livestream. Operation Wu-Pocalypse was mentioned briefly – Gail doesn't think that Brianna Wu is a lady, because ladies don't ride motorcycles – and when the call-ins didn't go the way Jace had planned, he fell silent once more.

Wu fired another salvo on February 11 with a new article on bustle.com, mentioning both Jace and Tyce, and calling on the Obama administration to take down 8chan.[30] It didn't miss it's mark. On the following day, Jace's Twitter account was suspended due to a TOS violation once more.

While Wu was celebrating this success on her own Twitter,[31] Jace snuck online while his mother was at work to register a new account[32] and post a rant on deaglenation.tv, in which he announced the rebirth of the Deagle Nation Forums and once again vowed to "systematically Destroy the entire Feminist and Social Justice movement piece-by-piece, starting with Corrupt video game dev and feminist Brianna Wu." He also mentioned Eli for the first time in a week and admitted that he wasn't sure about his current status and that he "MIGHT BE IN CANADIAN PRISON RIGHT NOW FOR TRYING TO BRING A SWORD AND HOME MADE BOMBS TO THE TUMBLR SERVERS TO DESTROY FEMINISM!!!!!"[33]

Jace's return to Twitter didn't last long. On February 13, his alternate account was suspended as well.[34] While Jace laid low for a couple of days, the media carousel kept on spinning. Another article published on movieplots.com on February 16 mentioned both Tyce and "a stalker known only on the internet as 'The Commander.' He had recorded a video of himself brandishing a knife and threatening to murder her "Assassin's Creed style" in order to 'deliver justice.' (...) In his car were guns, and he claimed to have a friend who planned to help him murder Wu."[35]

On February 27, Wu decided to go one step beyond and showed Jace's Prius destruction video during a lecture at UCI.[36] Brianna Wu multiple times had stated she intended to press charges against Tyce, Jace, and the rest of Deagle Nation. Unfortunately for Wu, and her ongoing campaign to portray herself as the most victimized individual in GamerGate was about to hit an abrupt and unpleasant speed bump.

Curtain Fall

The final part of the Deagle Nation Saga - and Brianna Wu's relation thereto - came on February 22nd, 2015, when the shocking truth that most had long suspected was revealed - that the infamous Ruseman Theory, espousing that Jace, Tyce, and the rest of their crew had been nothing but an elaborate hoax and act of Andy Kaufmann-esque satire perpetrated by performance artist Jan Rankowski. Whilst speculation as to Jace's authenticity was nothing new,[37] conclusive evidence was found,[38] and with that, the Jace Saga finally came to a close. The reactions from Jace's observers ranged from admiration for the successful long game and considerable humor brought about via Jace and friends' antics, to rage and frustration on the part of Jace's trolls, especially amongst Team Gamerfood.[39] Allies of Team Gamerfood's posing as GamerGate supporters attempted to create a board to coordinate attacks on Jan Rankowski on 8chan,[40] but these ultimately went nowhere as the bulk of GamerGate supporters didn't fall for it, condemned the action, and went about their business. As of this moment, /ggaj/ has not had a single post since February 25th.

It was the opposition to GamerGate, however - and more specifically Brianna Wu herself - who ultimately suffered the most from the revelation that Jace was nothing but a hoax. In one motion, Wu's ongoing narrative, that Jace and friends were a threat to her life immediately crashed headlong into a wall. No longer could Wu get away with claiming that Jace was a real threat to her (or so conventional wisdom thought), and Wu certainly wouldn't be able to secure legal action against a man who didn't exist.

The event caused a new wave of articles covering the entire affair.[41][42][43][44][45][46] Unsurprisingly, discussions also sprang up on KotakuInAction[47] and GamerGhazi.[48][49] In the meantime, Brianna Wu – who now knew why her restraining order couldn't be served – announced a counter-offensive and suggested that Rankowski should "lawyer up".[50] Suffice to say, nothing came of this.

On February 25, he hosted The Final Livestream to shed some light on what had been going on behind the scenes.

Several more articles were published over the following days.[51][52][53][54][55][56][57][58][59]

Even in this revelation, however, Brianna Wu would only dig in her heels. On June 19th, 2015, during InspireFest, roughly four months after Jace and Tyce had been exposed as an elaborate hoax, Brianna Wu once more listed Tyce Andrews as a credible threat to her life.[60]

References

  1. Upcoming DN BLACK-Level Operation, deaglenation.tv, January 14 2015.
  2. Going Dark…, deaglenation.tv, January 25 2015.
  3. Post by FlyAwayNow, Kiwi Farms, January 30 2015.
  4. Brianna Wu tried to assassinate me via street racing, video description.
  5. Brianna Wu sent video threatening "Wu-Pocalypse." Man admits to sending her death threats, stands in front of car he crashed enroute to her house with guns., GamerGhazi, January 31 2015.
  6. Wu posts new "threat" video. You have to see this, it's hilarious and retarded on so many levels, KotakuInAction, January 31 2015.
  7. Armed and crazy Gater crashes his car en route to Brianna Wu's house - Rages online, NeoGAF, January 31 2015.
  8. YT: Armed Gamergate-r Crashes Mother's Prius en route to Brianna Wu's House, Daily Kos, January 31 2014.
  9. Game Developer Brianna Wu Wants Law Enforcement to Make an Arrest after New Online Threats, BostInno, January 31 2015.
  10. Gamergater totals his mom's Prius while heading to Briana Wu's house to "expose her as a fake gamer via street racing". The fact he also had a gun on him is just a coincidence., Fark.com, February 1 2015.
  11. I was contacted by the Boston Globe after talking to Brianna Wu, Kiwi Farms, January 31 2015.
  12. Post by Null, Kiwi Farms, January 31 3015.
  13. Sam Biddle: The Psychopaths of GamerGate Are All That's Left, and They're Terrifying, Gawker.com, February 2 2015. (Archive)
  14. Anna Merlan: A Man Is Making Bizarre, Terrifying YouTube Videos About Brianna Wu, Jezebel, February 2 2015. (Archive)
  15. Chris Tognotti: Threats Against Brianna Wu By GamerGate Proponents Are Truly Out Of Control, Bustle.com, February 2 2015. (Archive)
  16. Targetted by /baph/ Now, GamerGhazi, February 4 2015. (Archive)
  17. Interview with a GamerGate Vigilante, Youtube, February 3 2015. (Rehost)
  18. Reuben G. Baron: Interview With a GamerGate Vigilante (Trigger Warning: Homophobic/Racist/Transphobic Slurs, Death Threats), the LFB, February 3 2015. (Archive)
  19. Post by Saul Goodman, Kiwi Farms, February 5 2015.
  20. Mike Diver: That Was the Week in Video Games, vice.com, February 6 2015. (Archive)
  21. Brianna Wu on Twitter: "This person sent a video outlining his plan to kill me tonight. Hope Massachusetts Law Enforcement will act quickly., GamerGhazi, February 7 2015. (Archive)
  22. Brianna Wu: I'm Brianna Wu, And I'm Risking My Life Standing Up To Gamergate, bustle.com, February 11 2015. (Archive)
  23. Wupocalypse: Our Darkest Hour, deaglenation.tv, February 12 2015.
  24. Post by That's Our Lolcow, Kiwi Farms, February 13 2015.
  25. Alisha Grauso: The War for the Soul of Geek Culture, movieplot.com, February 16 2015. (Archive)
  26. Brianna Wu, Giant Spacekat Studios, IVECG Seminar Series Talk at UCI (00:42:48), youtube.com, March 4 2015.
  27. Sam Hyde (MDE) video referencing Jace, Kiwi Farms, January 23 2015.
  28. Jace Connors is a hoax, Kiwi Farms, February 22 2015.
  29. Gamerfood is salty and DDOS'es the Farms, Kiwi Farms, February 23 2015.
  30. /ggaj/ - Gamergator's Against Jan
  31. Adi Robertson: A violent, delusional Gamergate psychopath is actually a comedian's terrible hoax, The Verge, February 24 2015. (Archive)
  32. Alison Herman: The Jace Connors Fiasco Shows That Gamergate Is Beyond Satire, Flavorwire, February 24 2015. (Archive)
  33. Joseph Bernstein: GamerGate’s Archvillain Is Really A Trolling Sketch Comedian, Buzzfeed, February 24 2015. (Archive)
  34. Ray Routhier: Mainer Jan Rankowski says in interview he was in controversial GamerGate video, Portland Press Herald, February 24 2015. (Archive)
  35. Anna Merlan: Man Who Terrorized Brianna Wu For Months Says He Was Just Kiddin Around, Jezebel, February 24 2015. (Archive)
  36. Sam Machkovech: GamerGate troll turns tail after receiving harassment of his own, Ars Technica, February 24 2015. (Archive)
  37. Deagle Nation is officially over. Jace Connors was a hoax., KotakuInAction, February 24 2015.
  38. Psychopath Who Harassed Brianna Wu: Just Kidding!, GamerGhazi, February 24 2015.
  39. Michael Blaustein: ‘It was all a joke’: Gamergate villain says online threats were satire, New York Post, February 24 2015. (Archive)
  40. Katherine Cross: Women’s lives? Just a joke to trolls, Feministing.com, February 26 2015. (Archive)
  41. Jace Connors and 4/4 Male Internet Reporters Agree; He Was Just Kidding About The Death Threats, Daily Kos, February 25 2015. (Archive)
  42. Katie McDonough: Horrible dudes get taste of own medicine: GamerGate, revenge porn & a shocking discovery about harassment, February 26 2015. (Archive)
  43. James 'DexX' Dominguez: Man who terrorised video game creator Brianna Wu now says it was a 'joke', Sydney Morning Herald, February 27 2015. (Archive)
  44. Caitlin Dewey: What was fake on the Internet this week: school lunches, ‘female God,’ and Macklemore joining Islamic State, Washington Post, February 27 2015. (Archive)
  45. Carli Velocci: Trolling female gamers in the name of satire isn't funny—it's abusive, Daily Dot, February 26 2015. (Archive)
  46. Victor Frascarelli: Quando a zuera gringa perdeu a noção, oplayer2, February 24 2015. (Archive)
  47. Gawker (et al) Are Not Your Friends, Adland.tv, February 28 2015. (Archive)
  48. Jay Sherman: The Jace Connors Story: How One Man Tricked Them All, Reaxxion, March 2 2015. (Archive)
  49. InspireFest - June 19th, 2015