Operation Chokehold aims to bring AT&T data network down

Blogger joke taken seriously. Too seriously

Operation Chokehold aims to bring AT&T data network down
Blogger Dan Lyons has voiced his satirical views of the quality of AT&T’s network service on several occasions, posting spoof interviews with leading industry players as a way to poke fun at their company’s shortcomings.

Things took a turn for the serious lately when his joke about Operation Chokehold – a Die Hard-esque mass attack on AT&T’s data network intended to bring the service to its knees by encouraging thousands of users to all launch data-heavy applications on their smartphones all at once – caught the attention of the internet.

With thousands signed on, it now seems as though his satirical idea might happen. Both AT&T and the FCC have also taken the idea very seriously, with the network operator’s spokesman telling Cult of Mac : "There is nothing amusing about advocating that customers attempt to deliberately degrade service on a network that provides critical communications services for more than 80 million customers."

Jamie Barnett, chief of the FCC’s public safety and homeland security bureau backed up this statement with one of his own, saying, "Threats of this nature are serious. To purposely try to disrupt or negatively impact a network with ill-intent is irresponsible and presents a significant public safety concern."

Although Lyons has since asserted that Operation Chokehold is just a joke, a huge number of participants have signed up through Facebook and the stunt seems to have gathered an unstoppable momentum. It’s scheduled to take place today (December 18th) at noon (Pacific Standard Time).

Yes. Spanner's his real name. And, yes, he's heard that joke before.