Tuesday, March 31, 2009

R.I.P., fake Brian Burke


Farewell, old friend
I'm announcing today that I've decided to end the fake Brian Burke twitter account.

The background: Fake Brian Burke started with what was meant to be a one-off joke posted at Pension Plan Puppets. When a handful of people realized it was a real account and followed it, I started doing semi-regular updates. I watched with some amusement as things grew from there, well past anything I'd ever intended.

Two months later, the account has been covered by virtually every major hockey blog and at least four newspapers. And while it's been all sorts of fun, the idea was never to turn fake Brian Burke into a permanent fixture. So with the trade deadline past and almost three months before the draft, this seems like a good place to have it end gracefully.

I haven't decided yet what to do with account. I may have it removed, although I'm leaning towards leaving it up. But I won't be doing new updates.

Just to be clear, this is my call. Nobody involved with the Maple Leafs or Brian Burke has ever contacted me. While Burke did infamously drop an "I'm going to sue his ass" quote in the Star, there's never been any formal threat of legal action from his end. Some blogs today are reporting that Burke already "tried" to sue me -- that's 100% false as far as I know. A few cranky sound bites aside, all the evidence is that both Burke and the Leafs have been relatively good sports about the whole thing.

If you liked the fake Brian's sense of humor, you might enjoy some of the writing I do on this blog. Check out the Greatest Hits section on the right, and consider subscribing to the RSS feed or following me on twitter.

My day job is in web marketing, and this whole experience has taught me plenty about twitter, social media and how information spreads on the web, not to mention the law of unintended consequences. It's tempting to keep going and see where it all leads, but part of being a good comedian is to know when to get off the stage.

Finally, a sincere thanks to everyone who helped spread the word. Thanks for all the retweeting, blog posts and forum threads. I got pretty good at using Google Alerts and twitter search over the past month, so if you posted about fake Brian somewhere there's a good chance I saw it. Even if I didn't pop up to say hello, I was probably lurking and appreciated the support.

R.I.P., fake Brian Burke. Thanks for a fun ride.

Update: A full list of all the Brian Burke tweets can be found here.




45 comments:

  1. Too bad- I was just getting started with the digital ghost of Mikhail Grabovski account. Ah, well, it was certainly fun while it lasted, and I hope you have the entire page archived, DGB.

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  2. That's too bad. I guess I'll have o get all my Maple Leafs comedy from watching the team on the ice.

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  3. Twitter? More like Quitter! AMIRITE?!?

    Actually, probably better to quit while you're ahead. I tried to create a fake Bryan Colangelo Twitter account but when it gave me a horse's head avatar by default, I quickly closed it.

    Scott

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  4. What do they say. All good things must come to an end.

    Thanks for a couple weeks of solid laughs.

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  5. RIP fake Brian Burke.

    Thanks for the laughs and memories.

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  6. sniff...sniff..This is almost as sad as when Jesus left Facebook.

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  7. Sorry to see it go but thanks for the laughs. You introduced me to twitter with that account . I'm not entirly sure that's a good thing but thanks anyway.

    The blog is great and i'll be checking back regularly.

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  8. I hope you reconsider, this is a punch to the "Satchel" of all your readers. We are in a a depression and NEED laughter!

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  9. It's a shame.

    On the plus side for you I guess, I am now reading yet another maple leafs blog. What the hell.

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  10. Is this some sort of April Fool's joke? Or maybe a new plan to motivate Gerber.

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  11. I'm looking forward to a mid-May column from Damien Cox on your decision to wind down the twitter account.

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  12. Aww, I really had fun reading it. Thanks for the laughs!

    I hope you keep it up even if you won't be updating it anymore...

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  13. This is like everyone forgetting my birthday and then my dog getting hit by a car.

    NOOOOOOOOO.

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  14. You made the Brian Burke account. On his twitter page, there's a link to Down Goes Brown.

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  15. I just hope you are replaced by your hair or eyebrows starting a twitter account.

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  16. NO! DON'T DO IT!!! Where am I gonna get my comedy fix from now????

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  17. might i suggest an occasional fake brian burke update here at DGB? y'know, just once and a while.

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  18. Are you really Damien Cox?
    Is this a Jekyll and Hyde thing you got going?

    I need Dave Shoalts to substantiate this.

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  19. BTW, a lot of people started their career being the product of a joke.

    Look at Mike Milbury.

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  20. Sheeeeeeeeeit.

    This sucks.

    But I can appreciate a man who goes out on top.

    It was fun while it lasted, DGB. You tha man.

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  21. Harvey Booger..if you read this can you tell Peklund to stop being so lazy and begin blogging again?

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  22. RIP indeed

    made me giggle large!

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  23. United Toronto Sports JournalistsMarch 31, 2009 at 3:40 PM

    Now we can sleep at night!

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  24. Brian Burke may decide to stop his twitter account (E3)

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  25. If there were a poopy joke involved too, this would be a perfect exit.

    Thanks for the laughs, DGB.

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  26. As sad as I am to see it go, at least now I can go back to pretending Twitter does not exist.

    I believe the final nail in the coffin was the compliment from Damien Cox.

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  27. The demise of Brian Burke and Christopher Walken as fake-twitterers pretty much leaves nothing interesting left on that site

    Nice job man, the quality of your writing stood out amongst the rest.

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  28. As Jacques indicated, first cwalken is taken down and now Burke is gone. What is this world coming to when people can't impersonate other people? Totally unfair - the Leafs get away with impersonating a winning hockey team since 2003.

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  29. Sunshine (hf Niko37)March 31, 2009 at 5:25 PM

    I am so sorry hear this news :-(
    You did a really great job w/ this & should be proud; I hope you find another side project that you enjoy & makes us all laugh :-)

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  30. This was a terrific account - one of the VERY few I kept up by someone I don't personally know

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  31. You mean that wasn't actually Burke?

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  32. Waaaahhhhh!

    Now I have a major sad. Fake Burke will be missed.

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  33. Noooooooooo!!!! Oh well, it was a good run :D

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  34. Boooooooo...

    I now feel the same way about you as I did about George Lucas after Indy IV. This news is that much of a disappointment to me.

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  35. This post has more comments than any other. What the shit?

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  36. There's very little I can say about how upset I am by this departure - An exceptional job, and while I'm sure you could have continued delighting for a considerable amount of time going forward, it would have started to show if your heart was out of it.

    Kudos on a job well done. Enjoy your retirement, Fake Burke.

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  37. Please bring it back....

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  38. Glad to see you're back?

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