A thorough bit of reporting by NBC has now tracked down the closest origins for Q of the QAnon cult. Now can we just ignore them, even if Trump retweets them.
Millions of people believe there's a Democratic cabal of baby eaters, and Donald Trump is fighting a secret war to stop them.
It's because, four years ago this month, somebody on 4chan searched emails hacked by Russian intelligence, and replaced “pizza” with “little girl.”— Ben Collins (@oneunderscore__) October 7, 2020
Coleman Rogers has publicly denied that he is the author of the “Q” posts, though his last visible Facebook post, published on Aug. 2, hinted that he might someday be associated with the theory.
“Ten bucks says you see my face on national news within a few weeks, saying that I'm ‘the mysterious hacker known as #Qanon,’” Rogers wrote, a reference to a CNN segment that mistakenly referred to the website 4chan as a hacker.
Following a request for comment from NBC News, Rogers deleted every post on his Facebook profile after 2014. Following another message from a reporter informing him that NBC News had archived his page, he deleted his Facebook account entirely.
As Qanon picked up steam, growing skepticism over the motives of Diaz, Rogers, and the other early Qanon supporters led some in the internet’s conspiracy circles to turn their paranoia on the group.
Recently, some Qanon followers have accused Diaz and Rogers of profiting from the movement by soliciting donations from their followers. Other pro-Trump online groups have questioned the roles that Diaz and Rogers have played in promoting Q, pointing to a series of slip-ups that they say show Rogers and Diaz may have been involved in the theory from the start.
Those accusations have led Diaz and Rogers to both deny that they are Q and say they don’t know who Q is. There is no direct proof that the group or any individual members are behind it.
Still, Qanon skeptics have pointed to two videos as evidence that Rogers had insider knowledge of Q’s account. Some YouTube channels, like one named Unirock, are mostly dedicated to poring over Patriots’ Soapbox livestreams and dissecting purported slip-ups.
One archived livestream appears to show Rogers logging into the 8chan account of “Q.”The Patriots’ Soapbox feed quickly cuts out after the login attempt. “Sorry, leg cramp,” Rogers says, before the feed reappears seconds later.
Users in the associated chatroom begin to wonder if Rogers had accidentally revealed his identity as Q. “How did you post as Q?” one user wrote.
What I came to learn is that QAnon isn’t just a dangerous conspiracy theory. We are witnessing the birth of a new religion. And we are likely closer to the beginning of its story than the end. https://t.co/IkVndDeGha (10/10)
— Adrienne LaFrance (@AdrienneLaF) May 14, 2020
Trump this afternoon cited a tweet and video from an account that pushed Pizzagate. pic.twitter.com/7w4tOXcmfx
— Alex Kaplan (@AlKapDC) October 7, 2020
There’s a lot of QAnon merchandise online. But the question is – will other online retailers follow Etsy in banning such products? https://t.co/CHqFvDN2D4
— Olga Robinson (@O_Rob1nson) October 7, 2020
Speaking of apocalypse
— Jordy (@J_Mei21) October 7, 2020