So, that OKCupid profile under the name “HarryHarrison” sure does look a lot like Julian Assange. (In fact, at least some, if not all, of the photos ARE Julian Assange; the one at right appears on Assange’s old personal blog, IQ.org, as well as on his OKCupid profile.) And the things he says in it are, well, things we would expect Julian Assange to say. Of course, we can’t discount the possibility that this could be an intricate and convincing hoax, even though, as Joe pointed out this weekend, 2006 seems too early in Assange’s infamy to perpetrate such a scam. We got in touch with the folks at OKCupid for their take.
“We’re currently looking into validity (to the limited extent we can),” said Sam Yagan, cofounder and CEO of OKCupid. Beyond that, “I don’t think we’re going to have too much to say.”
UPDATED: Yagan just contacted us to add, “Well, we’ve looked and we have no reason to think it’s not legit. It’s certainly not a PR stunt.”
UPDATE 2: “The biggest thing we want people to know is that we can confirm the last login date of December 2006,” said Yagan. “That has not been modified by OKCupid. The fact pattern points to it being legitimate, but it would take quite a lot to confirm for sure.”
Yagan would not tell us when Assange (or Harry) originally registered for the site, but said “People can send him messages. I have to imagine he’s getting messages asking if it’s really him.”
The next step is having OKCupid’s tech staff do an analysis.
We asked if the profile will be taken down, and whether profiles are ever removed in cases of spies or rapists, allegedly or otherwise. Yagan said, “We don’t take down profiles. We certainly take profiles out of people’s matches, etc. — the longer it’s been since someone logged in, the less likely they are to appear in a match search — but the URL itself pretty much always stays around until the member takes it down. If the authorities ask or he’s convicted, we’d probably take it down.”
Meanwhile, what matches and what doesn’t?
• Assange IS Australian. And lived in Melbourne.
• He’s currently 39. His profile, which says he was last online December 31, 2006 (2006 is when he founded WikiLeaks) has him stuck at 36. Of course, we all lie on our online dating profiles.
• He’s tall with a “Nordic appearance.” True.
• He says on his profile, “Although I am pretty intellectually and physically pugnacious I am very protective of women and children.”
1989, Assange started living with his girlfriend and they had a son, Daniel. After they split up, they engaged in a lengthy custody struggle, and did not agree on a custody arrangement until 1999. The entire process prompted Assange and his mother to form Parent Inquiry Into Child Protection, an activist group centered on creating a “central databank” for otherwise inaccessible legal records related to child custody issues in Australia.
Assange is currently in prison in London being held on charges of sexual molestation of two women, including, in one case, “using his body weight to hold” down the first complainant and having sex with the second complainant “without a condom while she was asleep.”
And then there’s this, from Assange’s old blog,
Thu 29 Jun 2006 : Krill to the baleen of the feminine
I’ve always found women caught in a thunderstorm appealing. Perhaps it is a male universal, for without advertising this proclivity a lovely girl I knew, but not well, on discovering within herself lascivious thoughts about me and noticing raindrops outside her windows, stood for a moment fully clothed in her shower before letting the wind and rain buffet her body as she made her tremulous approach to my door and of course I could not turn her away.
But then, just when one might suspect that men are krill to the baleen of female romantic manipulation, I found myself loving a girl who was a coffee addict. I would make a watery paste of finely ground coffee and surreptitiously smear this around my neck and shoulders before seducing her so she would associate my body with her dopaminergic cravings. But every association relates two objects both ways. She started drinking more and more coffee. Sometimes I looked at her cups of liquid arabicia with envious eyes for if there were four cups then somehow, I was one of them, or a quarter of everyone one of them…
In other news, all this from his profile seems to check:
What I’m doing with my life
Directing a consuming, dangerous human rights project which is, as you might expect, male dominated. Variously professionally involved in international journalism/books, documentaries, cryptography, intelligence agencies, civil rights, political activism, white collar crime and the internet. Formal background in neuroscience, mathematics, physics and philosophy.
• Somewhat surprisingly, however, Assange/Harrison would even date older women!
I’m looking for
* Ages 22-46
* Located anywhere
* Who are single
* For new friends
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on December 13, 2010