One of the internet’s more bizarre homegrown mysteries looks a little closer to being solved this week, with the news that a Canadian man named Dennis Markuze has allegedly been accused of being the well-known online figure David Mabus.
It’s hard to sum up the David Mabus story in a few lines. His reach has been great, and his behaviour has become legendary. This case study of David Mabus seems to cover the story in such detail that it would be futile to try to compete. Suffice to say: David Mabus became something of a legend for his alleged verbal attacks on atheists and scientists.
The Mabus story dates back to the 1990’s, and is maddeningly complicated. The likes of Greg Laden have recorded their contact with Mabus. There’s clearly a book to be written on the subject one day. Mabus has been accused by some of being a troll, but I think arguably he went beyond simple trollery. He was a unique phenomenon, but eventually those who were allegedly harassed by him joined forces and decided to track him down.
Many of the Mabus links point to an old Depeche Mode video. Why? Why not? Nothing makes sense in this story. It’s labyrinthine, and if you start to explore it, you will probably lose many hours following link after link. I have no idea who David Mabus really is. But the story is fascinating, something Borges would have been proud of. And perhaps the David Mabus story still has some way to go.