About that mailbag video.

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#1 Posted by Jeff (6065 posts) -

So if you haven't heard, an old mailbag video of ours recently showed up in an episode of a BBC show covering a murder that happened some time ago. Figured I'd give a little context on it.

A few days after that mailbag video full of weirdly expensive stuff showed up we were contacted by an officer who was assigned to the case. He requested that we box it all back up and get it off to him, which we promptly did. At the time I looked into the case details a little bit, but the info was relatively spotty. We were told that it was a murder case and there was a little bit of local reporting about it, but I don't really remember the specifics of what was known then versus what came out later.

There was a bit of hemming and hawing over what we should do about the video. Our legal team suggested that, given that it was an ongoing case, we probably shouldn't do anything like take the videos down. That's more or less where I was leaning, too. Taking it down would just turn in into a "rare" video that people would trade back and forth like contraband, considering the video had me shooting Dan with an airsoft gun in it. People would've probably assumed that it was "too hot" for Giant Bomb and it'd Streisand Effect out a little bit... that seemed like the opposite of what we'd want. Given that we let users download videos, it wasn't something that was just going to "go away." So we left the video up, to languish and be forgotten alongside the thousands of other videos we've published. We never heard anything else from the authorities.

After that, it didn't really come up. I got a talking-to from someone internally about shooting my direct reports with fake guns and that was pretty much the last we heard of it until extremely recently. For those who asked, yes, we recently became aware that the BBC was producing something on the case.

The person who sent that package will now hopefully rot in prison for the rest of his days.

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#2 Posted by ninnyjams (173 posts) -

Thanks for the update, Jeff, and I agree wholeheartedly with the last line in your post.

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#4 Edited by Zeik (5203 posts) -

This is the first time I've heard about this. That's...super fucked up, for so many reasons.

Not much else to say really, but I do think you guys made the right decision.

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#5 Posted by gren (76 posts) -

Thanks for the transparency Jeff, hopefully this puts an end to the chatter about it.

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#6 Edited by EskimoSnow (74 posts) -

Thanks for the update Jeff.

The world is a scary place and personally I wouldn’t want the kind of exposure you guys get, it’s shameful that this guy dragged you (the giant bomb staff) into this.

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#7 Posted by Blitzrules240 (292 posts) -

Really messed up situation but you all handled it well.

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#8 Posted by ExZippo (42 posts) -

Cheers Jeff for the info.

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#9 Edited by dertek (7 posts) -

Thanks for the context Jeff, I look forward to twitter completely ignoring it.

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#10 Edited by deactivated-5b85a38d6c493 (1990 posts) -

Thanks for the update Jeff. I understand the reasons not to take the video down, though I would not mind if it was since it's not a very pleasant watch anymore given what we now know about the sender. Let it be forgotten at least.

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#11 Posted by htr10 (1060 posts) -

People on Twitter demanding Giant Bomb take down this mailbag video? Like that matters at all here? People always feel the need to jump to “action” and be “righteous” when things go bad. Adrian Loya has been sentenced to life in prison. That is the end of this story that people need to know. Not the availability of a video from years ago.

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#12 Posted by Mikeytz (128 posts) -


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#13 Posted by stankonia (5 posts) -

I don’t know any of the background of this story at all, but it is definitely strange to see how a site about video games continues to get wrapped up in the news. In a way though it really shows how transcendent video games have become, that they form this web of social interaction that spans so far. I’m just holding out hope that those ties are to more positive outcomes than this seems not to be. Thanks for the transparency Jeff, it is great to get that kind of authenticity and transparency.

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#14 Posted by ShaggE (9281 posts) -

I somehow completely missed everything about this. Wow, that's a hell of a thing. Smart move leaving the video up, too. We're nothing if not obsessive about unarchived content, even without a controversy behind them.

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#15 Posted by zombiepenguin9 (763 posts) -

I wasn't aware of this at all, but it sounds like the site hasn't got any negative attention from this, which is always a possibility with these messed up situations.

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#16 Posted by TheHT (15870 posts) -

Oh my god, this is awful.

Thanks for talkin about it I guess. Geez...

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#17 Edited by Onemanarmyy (4443 posts) -

seems like the right call. Shame how the BBC documentary put it in this ominous context. Like you guys were shooting a 'possibly' real gun in an office environment.

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#18 Posted by clagnaught (2136 posts) -

Thanks for the update. It was a shock seeing that snippet from the BBC documentary, but I didn't know that you guys were already aware of this.

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#19 Edited by deactivated-5b85a38d6c493 (1990 posts) -

@onemanarmyy: Definitely. But expecting anything more from TV shows is expecting too much I feel like. It's almost always edited in a way that is misleading and often gross. It's why I don't bother watching TV anymore. It's incredibly manipulative.

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#20 Posted by sicamore (60 posts) -

yeah, leave the video up and just link to this post if possible in the video notes.

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#21 Edited by killerDLS (33 posts) -

Don’t let some asshole ruin mailbag videos. Keep doing them, they bring people so much joy. You guys did nothing wrong and shouldn’t feel bad even a little.

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#22 Posted by MonkeyKing1969 (7610 posts) -

Wow...I remember that video.

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#23 Posted by Mike (17998 posts) -

@shagge said:

I somehow completely missed everything about this.

It really only came out publicly a few hours ago because of Twitter. I wouldn't say you missed it unless you are actively watching Twitter for any and all mentions of GB or staff members, and even then it was only earlier this afternoon.

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#24 Posted by Dray2k (884 posts) -

Ugh, thats really fucked up, at least the guys in prison. Just heard about all of this.

I've also seen the BBC documentary in question, don't even know what to say about this. It almost feels surreal in a way.

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#25 Posted by Milkman (19298 posts) -

The way the BBC video is edited to make it seem like you guys are messing around with a real gun is really gross.

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#26 Edited by NickFoley (683 posts) -

Good update Jeff!

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#27 Edited by hassun (10002 posts) -

Thanks for the heads-up, Jeff. I hope it doesn't discourage anyone from sending neat mailbag stuff.

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#28 Edited by ShaggE (9281 posts) -

@mike: Ah, gotcha. I haven't listened to the Bombcast for a good while, so I assumed it was a talking point there or something.

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#29 Posted by Novis (296 posts) -

Thank you, Jeff.

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#30 Edited by BeachThunder (15156 posts) -


Also, the editing on that BBC segment really makes you think just how easily video footage can be manipulated to evoke a specific reaction.

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#31 Posted by colourful_hippie (5907 posts) -


Also, the editing on that BBC segment really makes you think just how easily video footage can be manipulated to evoke a specific reaction.

Understatement of the year.

Thanks for the heads up about all this, Jeff

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#32 Edited by LonelySpacePanda (712 posts) -

Shame to see such ugliness reach the GB office, no matter how unattached and distant. On the bright side, I bet most of the mailbags throughout the years weren't from murderous scumbags!

This does make me wonder though what crazy stories that will die with the site, never reaching the public (would this one even be known if not for this documentary?)

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#33 Posted by GRIMREEFZ (400 posts) -

this is all very strange. Thanks for the heads up.

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#34 Edited by NoneSun (807 posts) -

Jeff is right, I was already thinking how I could get my hands on the vid if it was already taken down haha. Pity you had to give all that stuff back... he gave it to you!

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#35 Posted by joebillmatt (39 posts) -

I appreciate the honesty and transparency on this all. Is there any issues with the BBC using the video without permission?

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#36 Posted by korwin (3918 posts) -

Add this to the list of weird shit that's happened around here.

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#37 Posted by Zeik (5203 posts) -

@nonesun: I reeeally doubt they wanted to keep it knowing the source, no matter what it was.

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#38 Posted by entireties (225 posts) -
@htr10 said:

People on Twitter demanding Giant Bomb take down this mailbag video? Like that matters at all here? People always feel the need to jump to “action” and be “righteous” when things go bad.

What? Nobody is demanding that GB remove the video. What on earth are you reacting to?

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#39 Edited by solidwolf52 (371 posts) -

@entireties: Definitely saw some replies / comment from people saying they should take it down. Not gonna link them hear because that's borderline witch hunting / I think those people are entitled to their opinion. But there are for sure people with that perspective.

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#40 Posted by Brackstone (924 posts) -

You guys did all the right things in this situation, and I agree with leaving the video up lest it become notorious for no good reason.

That BBC video leaving out the part where the guns were clearly, overtly airsoft and even saying that the guns were real is some pretty shameful reporting.

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#41 Posted by OpusOfTheMagnum (647 posts) -

@onemanarmyy: surprise, the media is clueless about firearms. They straight up "assumed" someone sent a firearm in the mail to a CALIFORNIA business address to unknowing recipients. Even thpugh the rifle was shown to be an airsoft gun. They lied.

Anything to cling to the hype against inanimate tools.

As someone said above, the media's ability to fail to include key details is unlimited. Never trust that shit. Do your research. They love to remove context and use their new version of events to lie.

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#42 Posted by Relkin (1197 posts) -

Huh, that is definitely not what I expected to read upon opening this thread. That seems like it must have been a little surreal, Jeff; thanks for sharing this with us.

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#43 Posted by RonGalaxy (4936 posts) -

The creepiness levels of this are off the chart

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#44 Edited by chaser324 (8672 posts) -

@solidwolf52 said:

Definitely saw some replies / comment from people saying they should take it down.

I wasn't shouting about it on Twitter, but my initial reaction was that it should be taken down. However, I think Jeff's statement provides enough context that it's totally fine for it to stay up.

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#45 Posted by TanookiSuit (719 posts) -

Thank you for addressing this, Jeff. It's some wild shit. Appreciate your stance on the subject as I'm sure it came as really jarring when it first came up, and now resurfacing this long afterwards.

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#46 Posted by conmulligan (1934 posts) -


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#47 Posted by bybeach (6365 posts) -

Amazing how the world goes sideways.

But my condolences for the victims, meaning whoever lost their life and their family and friends affected. And the same what Jeff says about the perp.

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#48 Posted by csl316 (14978 posts) -

The world is a strange place.

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#49 Posted by Y2Ken (2964 posts) -

Thanks for the update, Jeff.

I was kind of on the, "Well they should probably take this down" angle but Jeff makes a good point, and hearing it was something the crew dealt with at the time makes that make more sense as well. Linking to this post from the video probably makes sense, though.

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#50 Posted by moondogg (361 posts) -

I wonder how many people who see that doc, will put together that it contains blinking white guy. What a weird series of events.

That editing does seem a little skewered, they definitely could have made it clear those were airsoft rifles.