Mark November 9th On Your Calendar

I think the "real" trailer stands its best chance yet of appearing before Beowulf which opens on November 16th. However, some critics and a lucky few will see early or advanced screenings. I didn't spend too much time on this, but I see that one such screening will take place on November 9th. That's in less than two weeks.

OT: I'm trying out "threaded" comments, so if you know of an earlier advanced screening of Beowulf, do me a favor and drop your info in a comment.

Update: So says CommingSoon:

All has been relatively quiet on the 1-18-08 front for the last few months since the San Diego Comic-Con, but a source for ComingSoon.net has revealed to us that the J.J. Abrams-produced monster movie will get a new trailer AND its title will finally be revealed on November 16 in front of Robert Zemeckis' animated Beowulf.
And /film:

I’ve been hearing in the past couple weeks from a number of sources that a new 1-18-08/Cloverfield movie trailer will premiere in front of Beowulf on November 16th.
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What Do JJ Abrams' Fans Want?

TJ Miller thinks he knows.

Starpulse Exclusive: 'Carpooler's' TJ Miller Talks About JJ Abrams Role, ...

You've also got a role in this untitled JJ Abrams project.
Yes it is. I can't talk about it at all with you.

Will audiences get their fair share of T.J. Miller in this?
Audiences are going to get less than any share of T.J. Miller. They're going to get a fraction of what is considered a fair share of me. You will probably see my face for possibly 3 minutes and twenty-five seconds. It's possibly the weirdest situation I've been in. But you'll hear me, and I'll be present in the movie for the entire duration of the film.

Is that information that you are able to reveal?
Yeah, I think so. You can say that it's safe to say that because I'm behind the camera and you're going to hear a lot more of me than you're going to see. And you can get that from the preview. In the preview you don't see me at all, you just hear me. It's going to be crazy. It's going to be everything the JJ Abrams fan wants out of a movie and probably more.

Is it hard to keep a secret this big?
I'm not a guy who runs out and is like, "Look what happened to me!" But I think it's strange because in every other film, they want you to talk about it as much as you can. They just want people to be aware of it, and in this one I just got a call because I spoke to a PA who is on the trailer but isn't on the movie and I talked to her about the film in some bar and it got back to them. They said that this was a huge problem, "You can't go out drinking and talk about the movie." I didn't know she wasn't on it. They're furious about how secretive it is. Nobody can really confirm what is going on in the film. You just can't. It's even almost hard for me to confirm anything. I didn't get the script until after I signed onto the project, and even when I did get the script I wasn't told what was going on. It's a very strange project to work on.

What would happen if somehow it slipped out?
It's JJ Abrams. I'd never be able to work with him again or I would have to be in Mission Impossible: 4. Both of which are disconcerting to me.
Via DougBThree.

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Timing Is Everything

As you're no doubt aware (or will be), Mr. http://www.boldfutura.jp/ has been a busy bee. The site, as they call it in Unfiction, is OOG (Out Of Game)--and has been since soon after it was first discovered on September 8.

So why is this guy undeterred. Maybe because, from what I've heard, a .jp domain costs something like $100 to register (read: a lot). But more, whoever it is knows that not everyone following events online is an expert, and not all the experts are scrupulous. So while there's really no hope whatsoever that this game jack will ever earn legitimacy, the domain name itself will earn PageRank (and who knows, maybe he'll be able to turn around and sell it for more than his $100 investment).

So infamy is his game. Considering he'll enjoy more traffic, links, attention than, for example, this blog ever will, you can't really blame him for going over to the dark side. If nothing else, in a game as obscure as this, the small kindness of an update when we've come to expect one is what the game jacker gave us, which is more than can be said of the real producers.

The silver lining, however, might be that the real producers realized the error of their ways in releasing updates just before the weekend. After all, it's not like they're the Bush Administration.

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Marking Time 1-18-08/Cloverfield Style

Today, Friday October 26, 2007, is a good day to watch for something new from known in-game sites. This advice brought to you by my gut, and the fact that the last two updates to known in-game sites (excluding jamieandteddy videos) were two weeks apart, and the last, two weeks ago. So keep an eye on Tagruato (I'm betting Headlines), Slusho (far right [contest] bubble) and of course 1-18-08.com (and the next in line pic_7.swf).

Otherwise, one thing I'll be looking for in light of the next in-your-face-clue will be whether what it reveals is something we could have/should have already found based on what's currently available to us. I just can't seem to shake the sense that we're not up to the maze JJ and Co. have built for us...

In site news (a lot of that this week), you've no doubt noted the countdown I added just below the header. It's set to zero out at 11:59 p.m. EST, 1-17-08. I've also added Snap Shots to the Boolean search feeds in the right sidebar -- both because those are the contents I exercise the least amount of control over; and because Snap Shots is better than it was; kinda cool; and in keeping with the overkill design ethic that dominates this particular blog--which (over-design) is one of the ways I mark time between clues.

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Nothing To See Here, Move Along, Gotta Love The Internet Though

A post by hmghosthoost caught my attention the other day. It had to do with hand gestures of the figures in the background of the Slusho! Store, and the suggestion that they might be signing a clue? Curious, I posed the question to alldeaf. An alldeaf poster by the name of Schermy was kind enough to humor me:

I've looked at it and I really don't see people "signing" in this picture. It seems to me they are just throwing up their hands while dancing. That's my humble observations.
Too bad.

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Echo Chamber Springs Leak, Fans Fray and 1-18-08/Cloverfield Universe Endures a Second Extinction

Despite the addition of Tagruato and recent updates of 1-18-08.com, jamieandteddy.com and Slusho! (one of which being the promise of a contest), not to mention all the distribution email responses, many fans are beginning to show signs of stress.

First there's the drop-off of formerly dedicated and regularly updated 1-18-08/Cloverfield blogs. Back in July dozens upon dozens of 1-18-08/Cloverfield blogs sprung up. I sifted through all of them and selected those that proved committed for inclusion in the Blogroll. Later, I reviewed them again and added enthusiastic latecomers to the Blogroll. But my review over this past weekend of those select blogs left me no choice but to cut the list by nearly half due to inactivity. Fatigue turned indifference has taken a toll.

Second, fanaticism is starting to get the better of the hardcore. Down in Unfiction (aka the center of the 1-18-08/Cloverfield universe), PEOPLE ARE GOING INSANE.

Finally, the pitiable death throws the pore losers. Here, context is important. There were two distinct types of blogs that sprang up to take advantage of the 1-18-08/Cloverfield phenomena. The first type are pure fan sites (like mine). Notice there is no advertising on this blog. Notice I do not hesitate to tell you exactly where I found the information I’m posting, even if that information is from a 1-18-08/Cloverfield blog or site that is better than mine. Notice that by doing this on blogspot it's not costing me a penny. In other words, for the fan, for me, it's not about me or my site, it's about the movie.

The second type of site that sought to take advantage of the interest generated by the Untitled JJ Abrams Project is the business model site. These are people who bought domains or started blogspots and immediately started advertising. They're in it for the money. As such, they're in competition with one another (as well as the fan sites). Some, to their credit, will link to the competition. But others won't except as a last resort (and even then, sometimes not).

But back to the point. Jordan, the owner of Project Cloverfield, lost his her mind over the weekend. Considering his her commercial motivations for running his her 1-18-08/Cloverfield site, you can guess at why he's she's so frustrated. He's She's losing market share to his her competition and this despite his her exhaustive efforts to keep his her readers in the dark about the existence of alternatives to his her shoddy and sporadic 1-18-08/Cloverfield coverage. What's worse is Jordan doesn't even get full credit for his her lackluster coverage given he's she's recruited willing slave labor to provide content for his her blog. To give you a sense of perspective, Jordan's blog was, early on, one of the three most successful 1-18-08/Cloverfield sites. But not anymore, and apparently he's she's starting to resent that it's costing his her money.

The kicker, however, is appearances are deceiving. Having commented on Jordan's outburst, I became the lucky recipient of his her editing. He She removed the link back to this blog which was imbedded in my screen name. Not a big deal. It's not like that inconspicuous link was sending any traffic here anyway. But later over the weekend, having subscribed to comments to that regrettable post of his hers, I was treated to email alerts of other comments. One in particular, by James, read:

good lord this website sucks, check a out a real website dedicated to cloverfield coverage www.cloverfieldnews.com.
But when I went to read the comment on Jordan's blog it had been edited. It now reads:

James
October 21st, 2007
at 12:35 am

I love the cock
To clarify, I had no idea the lengths to which Jordan would go to prevent his her readers from discovering that there were other sites devoted to covering 1-18-08/Cloverfield. This tactic of abusing his her editorial powers to put words in other people's mouths is, as far as I'm concerned, ugly and sick. That's not to say I don't respect a site owner's right to control the content on his or her site, but there are other ways, including simply deleting or not approving reader's comments, to manage content.

So I'm really left with no choice. Jordan and I once saw eye to eye, but now I see he's she's a nasty hypocrite. Project Cloverfield joins the very short list of 1-18-08/Cloverfield blogs dropped from the Blogroll for being repulsive.

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Cloverfield Project Muddies The Waters

Note to self: Prune Blogroll.

Edit: Well, that was ugly. Dropped from the Blogroll:
http://11808clover.blogspot.com/ - inactive
http://cloverfieldblog.blogspot.com/ - inactive
http://www.cloverfield-movie.com/blog/ - not responding
http://cloverfieldparasite.blogspot.com/ - inactive
http://cloverfieldproject.com/ - inactive/bonehead
http://monstrous-movie.blogspot.com/ - inactive
http://www.eurotransient.com/category/cloverfield/ - inactive
http://semidi.wordpress.com/category/1-18-08/ - inactive


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A Third Video Has Been Posted To Jamieandteddy.com

http://jamieandteddy.com/
Password: jllovesth

Keep an eye on Cloverfield Clues for the YouTube upload.

The Unfiction Thread...


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A Couple New Viral Metrics For The Toolbox

I've added "Tagruato" as a key word to most of the searches, and will include it in this and future reports.

A graph from Technorati showing the number of posts from blogs in their directory making reference to, if not actually about, Cloverfield. Click on the image to go to the page.


Google Search Trend which tracks the number of searches. This particular metric, unlike the others, better reflects the other 99% of the online market, i.e. passive consumers. Again, clicking on the image will take you to Google Trends.


Edit: Playing around with Google Trends a bit more I hit on a few more instructive graphs. The first one I'd title "The Trouble With Dates", and the second "The Untitled [Eddy] Trend", 'cause my fame quotient could use the boost.


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An Empty YouTube

Dib, over at Unficiton, found a YouTube account for a Mr. Teddy Hassen. The consensus, so far, is that it's legit. Trouble is, it's empty (i.e. no videos, no comments, ..., just a little history). I've added it to the Junk Drawer (far right) for now.

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This Slusho Distribution Email Reply Is Not Like The Others

I can't say that I was on the edge of my seat waiting for *my* reply from 18KagashimaD@tagruato.jp, and then a bit more not on the edge of my seat after seeing the response(s)(s)(s) that others were getting. But maybe I am special, because when I did finally receive my response from Tzigane Koga, I saw that it wasn't like the others.

My email:

from Ed Edd
to 18KagashimaD@tagruato.jp
date Oct 12, 2007 9:47 PM
subject Sign me up.

Whatever it is, I'm down.

p.s. I've totally enjoyed this. Tell whoever is responsible that I said thanks.

Best,
--
Ed Edd Eddy
http://11808.blogspot.com/
The reply:

from "18kagashimad@tagruato.jp"
to Ed Edd
date Oct 15, 2007 4:52 PM
subject RE: Sign me up.

Dear Mr. Edd,

Thank you for your support of Tagruato! Mr. Yoshida never forgets his most loyal customers! We are most pleased to have customers like you!

Sincerely,
Tzigane Koga
Customer Service
Office of Daiske Kagashima

"Exploring our world. Ensuring your future."
What to make of it? Well, unlike the others, I wasn't really playing along, so maybe that's the response you get when you're not really playing along. Other possible explanations, of course, but that one seems the most objective (read: un-special).

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Slusho.jp Has Been Update

As usual, just in time for the weakend (read: when I have better things to do). Check it out: http://www.slusho.jp/.

For the specifics of what's new and breaking, see the Unfiction Thread...

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1-18-08 Cloverfield Fans On The Map

http://www.frappr.com/11808

The related thread in Unfiction.



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Open Source Mythmaking

The Fashionably Latecomer's Guide to The Untitled JJ Abrams Project working titles Cloverfield, 1-18-08, ...,

...an article by yours truly featured in Quiblit Magazine.

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The Nature of the Beast

That is, what to expect if you invite the internet to play your game of hide and seek.

A 1-18-08 fan that goes by the pseudonym Helo is disgusted and upset by, get this, other 1-18-08 fans. Specifically, fans who think there's nothing wrong with "hacking" the game sites (that can be hacked). Of course, hacking is a very broad term. The incident at hand, the "hack" in question, was the random discovery of the password for Jamie's Photobucket account. The method of discovery, manual trial and error. Hardly high-tech, and hardly what people envision when they think of hackers. It's also not the first time a password has been unearthed. Recall jamieandteddy.com requires a password, yet a month and two videos accessible only by password, and not a single objection. So what makes Jamie's Photobucket different? Probably the fact that once the password was known, the site became corrupt (i.e. anyone with the password could upload photos to it). Unfortunately for some, it was a while after they'd broken into the account before someone made a point of casting doubt on its contents.

Here's pseudonym Helo's rant.

First, Halo resents the people who are playing the game better, more intently, than himself. I've seen many posts asking newcomers to please search the forum before posting their pet theory. A perfectly reasonable request, one would think, but Halo is clearly bothered that it's considered bad etiquette to arbitrarily spout your latest brainchild without first checking to see whether it's original or not. The attitude is akin to someone joining a baseball team but only wanting to play when it's their turn at bat. What's worse, no one is telling him he can't swing away. Rather, if that's what gets his rocks off, just please do it somewhere other than in the middle of the field where the team players have set up shop.

Next, Halo discovered the existence of nutjobs on the internet. Stop the presses people! There are crazies with computers! But wait. What's this? He doesn't actually point to or quote actual nutjobs. Instead, he apes these purported "conspiracy wackos." He even goes so far as to "quote" his imitation of them. This seems very strange to me. If you're going to make an example of "the tin foil maniacs", why fabricate evidence? Perhaps, and I'm reaching here, Halo found the actual text of those "conspiracy nuts" indistinguishable from his own?

Finally, Halo gets to the hackers. Again, he seems a little confused, but happily so. Without skipping a beat he conflates a player guessing the password to an ingame photobucket account with malicious identity theft, havoc, the malevolent destruction of electronic gear and even the end of fun itself, online. Halo then lectures us on the legal ramifications of guessing the password of an ingame photobucket account for a fictional character in a movie. Apparently we're all going to jail for a very long time. I'm guessing it's not Halo Esq.

Lastly, Halo drops the bombshell. Apparently, this 1-18-08 game is nothing but a clever marketing ploy! Who knew!?! But Halo is out. Why? Not because it just dawned on him that it's about marketing a movie. No, because in all the World Wide Web, Halo wants to play at Unfiction and Unfiction only. But the rules the kids at Unfiction play by, such as Try to pull your head out of your ass before posting are just too onerous for Halo, and the rules they don't play by, such as No good guesses are ones Halo finds utterly unconscionable.

The one perspective that counts is that of the game designers. By putting yourself in their shoes you quickly come to terms with the fact that out of bounds when the playing field is the internet is defined as that which is beyond human ingenuity. That means you have to assume that there will be players who know how to use Google, who know how to translate Japanese, who know a thing or two about software development and who have both the time and inclination to type password after password in the hopes they'll get lucky. The list goes on of course, but the blame, if there's any to be had, for a game going off the tracks rests squarely on the shoulders of its designers. To argue otherwise is to argue that the players need to be psychics in knowing what the designers failed to guard against or account for, and that the players need to throw the game the way a parent might let a child win a round of tic-tac-toe. Last I checked, that's not really playing.

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The Tagruato Spike

But first, as one who has occasionally complained that the viral marketing of Cloverfield/1-18-08 was either misguided or downright mind numbing (read: MySpace Ick!), the addition/discovery of http://tagruato.jp/ has totally redeemed the exercise. To prove that I'm not alone (i.e. all the MySpace updates in the world can't compete with the interest/buzz generated by the addition of a single website), see the spike below, and in particular note that it compares (using one metric) favorably with JJ's appearance at Comic-Con (that's pixel vs. meat).




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Some of the Images From the Tagruato Corp. Website

...http://tagruato.jp/

Click on the images for the larger versions.
nav_backup
undersea_tagline

ganu_ceo drilling_map_2 drilling_map_1 drilling_map bold_futura_logo_2 sidebar_whale
bold_futura_logo_1 bold_futura_logo slusho_logo_1 paraffun_logo_1 ymr_logo
tagruato_screen_bw slusho_screen_bw ymr_screen_bw boldfutura_screen_bw_3 paraffun_screen_bw paraffun_logo

Their urls:
http://tagruato.jp/images/bold_futura_logo.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/bold_futura_logo_1.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/bold_futura_logo_2.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/drilling_map.jpg
http://tagruato.jp/images/drilling_map_1.jpg
http://tagruato.jp/images/drilling_map_2.jpg
http://tagruato.jp/images/ganu_ceo.jpg
http://tagruato.jp/images/nav_backup.jpg
http://tagruato.jp/images/paraffun_logo.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/paraffun_logo_1.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/slusho_logo.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/slusho_logo_1.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/tagruato_screen_bw.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/ymr_logo.gif
http://www.tagruato.jp/all_subsidiaries.php/images/bold_futura_logo_3.gif
http://www.tagruato.jp/images/sidebar_whale.jpg
http://tagruato.jp/images/undersea_tagline.jpg
http://tagruato.jp/images/ymr_screen_bw.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/paraffun_screen_bw.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/boldfutura_screen_bw_3.gif
http://tagruato.jp/images/slusho_screen_bw.gif


Please let me know if you find any I'm missing.

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A Second Video Up On jamieandteddy.com



Or see it here: http://jamieandteddy.com/
Password: jllovesth

Many thanks to Cloverfield Clues for the heads-up, and for putting it on YouTube.

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Recap w/Links

http://www.1-18-08.com/ was updated with two new pictures:



Unfiction started a translation thread. Through searching bits of the text from the translation, Dr. Awkward hit upon a restaurant review and started a second thread. Shortly thereafter, MrToasty, searching key words from the restaurant review hit upon Tagruato Corp.

And that's how it went down. Add to your list of useful sites:

http://tagruato.jp/, thread...

Vernon MacDooble aka deliciousmacdoob, thread...
http://reviewsby.us/profile/deliciousmacdoob
http://www.chow.com/profile/127392
http://www.menuism.com/users/deliciousmacdoob/reviews

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