by Rupert Insider
Duncan Oldham of Koptalk has been trying in vain for years to prove he is close to LFC.
A couple of months ago he published real-time photos of the interior of his Koptalk HQ – the Portkabin in his back garden. He wanted to open up his business to scrutiny – to show how he and his family were all devoted fans of LFC.
And very impressive it was, too. The walls were covered by posters of players wearing the new kit. The staff must have been very keen to get hold of them before they were available to the public and then give them place of honour like that.
But on closer inspection, admiration turned to contempt. The photos had been doctored. The posters of Fowler & Co had been added later. In fact, Oldham was not being open, at all, he was concealing what was really on the walls of his shed the day the photo was taken. Another example of how he betrays the trust of his members and insults their intelligence.
Yesterday, he tried again. He said he had met Dirk Kuyt.
From anyone else that would have been believable enough – anyone can meet him who stands in the right place at the right time. But typically Oldham tried to turn the event, if there was such an event, into evidence that he is close to the players – he said he had “a quiet word with him”.
There is no exchange that is so quiet and confidential that Oldham would not immediately post it on Koptalk if it contributed even a smidgen to the credibility of his ongoing confidence trick – that he is an insider at LFC capable of bringing his readers information from players for the modest price of 30 quid a year. Who knows, perhaps it will be that post that triggers the payment of another membership from a kid in Taiwan or Thailand.
But Oldham knows better than anyone that nobody takes his word for anything. He has to have photos.
Is this proof enough?
I’m told “Dirk” wrote the “To Dunk” bit with the pen grasped between the toes of his left foot.
Even more impressive was this version which “Dirk” wrote with his right foot.
After posting the above, “Kopdan” – a poster on EST 1892 – claimed the second image as his invention. And very good it is too, for a right foot, that is.
I also received the following note from a Doubting Thomas who happens also to be an expert in Image Alteration (his name to be supplied if permission received). He is referring to the first image – the one that comes from Oldham and Koptalk as proof of his meeting with Kuyt:
“I compared the sections of the image that show the “To Dunk” text with the autograph. As can be seen in this enlargement, you can see a lot of “pixel disturbance” around the “To Dunk” part of the text.
When I say “pixel disturbance” I mean the lighter jagged pink areas around the letter forms. This is particularly noticeable in the “n” and “k” letter forms.
If you compare this to the Dirk Kuyt signature (which I’ve moved up so you can get a better comparison) you see practically no pixel disturbance whatsoever.
The areas around the Dirk Kuyt part of the text are smooth and continuous – not jagged and no discontinuities of colour as in the upper text.
Pixel disturbance is an artifact of post-hoc image manipulation. It is symptomatic of image manipulation as you are “disturbing” the continuities of tone and colour in the original image.
The “To Dunk” part of the text has been added in an image manipulation program
such as photoshop. There are ways of hiding this evidence, but Dunk isn’t clever enough to know.
Quite apart from the pixel disturbance evidence, anyone with any skills in image analysis would point out to you that the upper text (“To Dunk”) is of a completely different nature, in visual appearance alone, than the lower text.
This is a bodged job. If he wants to doctor images he should call a professional.”
So, it would seem that Oldham acquired a shirt signed by Dirk Kuyt – or a photograph of such a shirt. He or somebody else in his shed then added “To Dunk” to the photo.
If Oldham actually has a shirt, and not just a photo of one, he could have acquired it already signed. Perhaps he sent his 17 year-old sidekick to get it signed at Melwood, as he tried two weeks ago, with another shirt.
Or he could have got it from Dirk Kuyt, after “a quiet word”, as he said.
But why would anyone believe that? It’s normal for a player to add a personal message when someone asks – and Oldham would not have been too shy to ask. But we know from the analysis that Kuyt did not put that personal message on the shirt. Therefore, it’s reasonable to deduce that Oldham was not with Kuyt when the shirt was signed.
So he either forged the handwriting of a LFC player or, at the very least, he tried to pass off the forgery to members of Koptalk to support his false claim he had met and spoken with Kuyt.
His target were people who have placed their confidence in him by giving him their personal details, automated access to their PayPal account and 30 pounds.