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January 05, 2012

5WPR: Once A Sockpuppet, Always A Sockpuppet

Ronn Torossian5WPR's founder and CEO Ronn Torossian is caught sockpuppeting against Rabbi Yoshiyahu Yosef Pinto, for Chabad, and for 5WPR itself.

 

Once A Sockpuppet, Always A Sockpuppet
Hated PR Flack Ronn Torossian Caught Posting Comments Against His Enemies Using False Names
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com

5WPR head Ronn Torossian is arguably the most hated man in the PR business.

Besides harassment of his own employess and threats to ruin marriages of his enemies, Torossian's firm 5WPR was caught by FailedMessiah.com (and later by the JTA) impersonating on the Internet enemies of his client, kosher meat giant Agriprocessors, in order to discredit them. Known as sockpuppeting, 5WPR's behavior was condemned by the PR industry, pilloried in the media, and almost landed Torossian in court.

After weeks of stalling and under threat of a lawsuit, 5WPR issued a terse public admission of guilt and apology late on the Friday afternoon of a holiday weekend – when few people would see it.

(You can see a series of reports on 5WPR's sockpuppeting scandal here.)

More recently, in a New York Times report in December, Torossian was accused by Rabbi Yoshiyahu Yosef Pinto's spokespeople of extorting Pinto and his charity Shuva Israel along with a former Pinto aide. Pinto claims the FBI is investigating the alleged extortion and the what Pinto says is several million dollars missing from Shuva Israel.

Torossian has denied Pinto's accusations against him.

But now Torossian himself has been caught sockpuppeting, posting anti-Pinto comments under fake names that go back as far as December 14, 2010. The most recent of these anti-Pinto comments were posted earlier this morning.

Similar comments in support of Chabad and, not surprisingly, 5WPR were also posted by Torossian using false names. The earliest of those is a comment posted using the name "Larry Rothstein" on August 9, 2009 on a story reporting Birthright Israel's hiring of 5WPR as its public relations firm of record.

The IP address (i.e., the identifying address of the computer used to post these comments) is 65.112.21.194, as you'll see below. That IP address has been flagged by Wikipedia for possible sockpuppeting on entries, including Pinto's.

Here's proof of the socpuppeting done here. Please click to enlarge.

Email from Torossian to me time-stamped at 6:10 am CST today showing the sender's IP address as 65.112.21.194:

Ronn Torossian email with IP address 1-5-2012

Two comments posted on FailedMessiah.com this morning, the first at 6:09 am CST today, the second at 6:13 am CST today. Each have the IP address 65.112.21.194:

Torossian Sockpuppet comment 1-5-2012

Ronn Torossian sockpuppet comment #2 1-5-2012

Here are all comments posted on FailedMessiah.com from the 65.112.21.194 IP address in a PDF file. Note that the first comment posted (i.e., the last on the list) is from August 9, 2009 on a post about Birthright Israel hiring 5WPR as its public relations representative:

Download IP Address 65.112.21.194 [Ronn Torossian sockpuppet comments] Comments - FailedMessiah.com

All of the comments all were posted in the morning, many in the early morning, which has some significance as you'll soon see.

The 65.112.21.194 IP address traces to MP-SPORTSCLUB.COM, which is owned by Millennium Partners Sports Club Management LLC, a company that owns and operates gyms.

It lands on a website for The Sports Club/LA, which has sports clubs in NYC, Washington DC, Boston, San Francisco and Miami under several brand names.

It appears that Torossian used a computer or a WiFi connection at his gym beginning in August 2009 in order to avoid getting caught sockpuppeting after 5WPR was rocked and threatened with lawsuits after it was caught sockpuppeting by FailedMessiah.com and the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) in 2008.

Comments

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Silly. If you are going to commit fraud at least don't be such an amateur about it. It would be very easy to avoid detection with a little knowledge.

Nice catch.

At least they didn't use their own IP this time.

Have you forwarded this to The New York Times or to Pinto's representatives? Pinto is of course reprehensible, but no one should be subjected to this sort of conduct.

All that aside, what he says is all true. So, what's wrong? All he did was post using a "screen name".

Why, why isn't this man out of business yet?

@God's only Daughter

He did it for money, using multiple screen names - all of which were false. You REALLY think that's OK?

Here's a copy of the archived Wikipedia Sockpuppet investigation regarding that IP address:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Sockpuppet_investigations/Babasalichai/Archive

One of the comments you posted for the IP address has the name "Joey Glickstein".

Wikipedia lists several suspected related sockpuppets for this IP address that include Jonathanglick13 and Jonathangluck.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Wikipedia_sockpuppets_of_Babasalichai

You may want to check with Wikipedia but I believe several of these sockpuppets claimed that they were relatives with a shared IP address. Now we know that the IP address is from a gym that story is out the window.

what a lowlife.

One of the comments you reproduced for the IP address is a comment defending Saul Berman's protector Rabbi Avi Weiss.

"Torossian is a close personal friend of Rabbi Avi Weiss, and grew up in Weiss' Riverdale synagogue.". Weiss recently wrote an editorial review for Torossian's book.

“Ronn Torossian has always had a brilliant ability to present complicated, sophisticated ideas with clarity and simplicity. For Immediate Release is no exception. In it, Ronn demonstrates his unique talent for understanding the issues, deciphering and filtering them, and then presenting them to the public in just the right way. This book takes the reader into Ronn's world, and gives a glimpse of his passion, brilliance, and rare aptitude for communicating well.”
--Rabbi Avi Weiss, National President, Coalition for Jewish Concerns – Named 2010 & 2011 to Newsweek list of most influential American Rabbis

It appears that Ronn Torossian wrote an article at http://thejewishreporter.com/2011/12/25/make-way-for-the-young/

One of the comments to the article clarifies what Torrison wrote. The comment is written by "Joey Glick".

Sounds similar to the names "Joey Glickstein", "Jonathanglick13" and "Jonathangluck" that are referred to above. Can you say sockpuppet?

Bravo, Shmarya

I'm lost over the whole sockpuppeting thing. He used a sock to do what?

lol avi weiss is such a tool too..

The stone-faced PR man has he right to comment anonymously on your blog. He has his supporters as do you. This is not a big deal. Must have been a slow news day for you.

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