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Wrestling Fans Attack Matthew Shepard's TIME Poll

'Virtual Vandalism' Closes Down Major Bulletin Board

Mick Foley Fans Furious Over Murdered Student's Lead

Compiled by GayToday

Washington, DC - The bulletin board of the Matthew Shepard Online Resources Web site was shut down Monday as the result of a coordinated attack by thousands of anti-gay fans of pro-wrestler Mick Foley. timefoley.gif - 16.29 K Mick Foley: The New Man of the Year?

Foley's supporters, angered that the slain student was winning a Time magazine online poll for "Man of the Year", overwhelmed the board with a continuous onslaught of anti-Shepard and anti-gay messages, requiring the site to be temporarily shut down.

"On the same day Matt's mom announced the Matthew Shepard Foundation, thousands of wrestling fans descended on my site to belittle Matt's death and attack gay people," said John Aravosis, president of Wired Strategies, who has been managing the site since Shepard's attack and death. "They wrote 'AIDS kills fags, and so do I', and called Matt 'faggot', 'little queer,' and 'Dead Homo of the Year.' It was absolutely sickening," said Aravosis.

The Online Resources site, a comprehensive source of information on the anti-gay hate crime, gained prominence shortly after Shepard was brutally murdered in Wyoming in October of this year.

The site received half a million hits its first week of operation, and Time magazine, CNN, US News & World Report, and the University of Wyoming all established links between themselves and the Shepard site.

The bulletin board has been used to plan at least 70 vigils to honor Shepard across the country and abroad, and to share grief about the student's murder. In addition, when the vandals struck Monday, a number of grassroots activists were in the process of using the board to create a new virtual organization devoted to fighting hate.

"The messages were so hateful and numerous that my regular visitors begged me to take the board down," said Aravosis. "Instead I opted to erase all the messages - good and bad - until this blows over," he said.

Aravosis explained that the assault began when someone posted the bulletin board's address in a wrestling newsgroup called RSPW ("").

Early Monday, December 14 the messages began, and quickly overwhelmed the site's regular users. While the entire Shepard site recently received between 2,500 and 4,000 "hits" a day, on Monday it received 13,000 hits as a result of the attack.

In addition, Aravosis noted that the bulletin board normally gets at least 70 to 100 messages a day from visitors moved by Shepard's death - yet in the day following the attack, only a handful of Shepard supporters posted messages to the site.

"It's really sad," said Aravosis. "It took a bunch of homophobes one day to nearly destroy an online community we spent two months building. I only hope the damage is temporary and people come back," he said.

Additional anti-gay posts to the Matthew Shepard Online Resources bulletin board:

Posted by IP: RSPW ICON on December 14, 1998 at 08:41:53:

you cum slurping fags can't stop the Mick Foley express, you fruit cups should just give up and keep wearing your panties, and flower dresses. besides why would anyone vote for a dead fag when "Our Lord and Savior, Mick Foley" is in the house. see ya @ Monay Night Raw 2 nite. i'll be the guy smoking...crystal meth.

Posted by IP: Pete Kof on December 14, 1998 at 12:34:09:

HO look her eits 1939 Berlin all over again! Whats wrong..hate the fact that some people dont liek gays or their lifestyles? Can't deal with it so you have to go crying to their sysadmins? This is why special interest groups liek yours are hated in this country, because you cry and bitch and stomp your feet when you realize that you are in a lost and dying cause. just dont read their posts if it offends you. trust me, facist censorship like yours scares me a LOT more than some stupid wrestling posts.

Posted by IP: Pete Kof on December 14, 1998 at 12:28:41:

Who died and made you God you moralizing bitch?

[This was posted in response to an apology posted on the site by the wrestling newsgroup's female administrator]

Posted by IP: Stephen Morelock on December 14, 1998 at 14:24:11:

Mick Foley deserves it much more than the fag

Why are all you homos cheating? Foley deserves it so much more than that faggot. Pvt Hudson on December 14, 1998 at 01:31:46:

sheptime.gif - 13.81 K Matthew Shepard: In the running Mick Foley deserves to be Man of the CENTURY. So what if this Shepherd guy got beat up one time, Mick gets his tail kicked nightly. So please people, think this through. This isn't the Time 'Dead Homo of the Year' List... but if it was I'd have to vote for Michelangelo, Liberace, or my Uncle 'Tickles', sorry Matthew Shepherd fans.

Posted by IP: Mick Foley is God on December 15, 1998 at 13:56:03:

In Reply to: I Will Remember You: For Matthew posted by Andrew on December 15, 1998 at 11:09:53:

I HATE FAGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by IP: Mick Foley is God on December 15, 1998 at 13:58:18:

Matthew Shepard Is A Fag! I just wanted to share that with everyone.

Posted by IP: wu9tang from RSPW, brahs! on December 14, 1998 at 04:50:16:

we gotta vote for foley
we cant let that faggot beat him
foley is the icon
that faggot just got his ass kicked
it was probably in use anyway
vote foley, not faggot.

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