This is crazy!
Backstory: New York-based gossip website Gawker says it was approached by someone trying to sell a video of Toronto mayor Rob Ford apparently smoking crack cocaine in a glass pipe. Gawker editor John Cook says he’s seen the video (two reporters from the Toronto Star say they have, too) – but the person who has it wants money for it. A LOT of money.
Gawker has published a photo they say is a screengrab from the video:
That’s all crazy enough on it’s own – but here’s where it goes into overdrive: Cook has started an Indiegogo fundraiser he’s titled “Rob Ford Crackstarter” (a takeoff of fundraising site KickStarter), saying:
This is a fluid situation. The people who have this video have been straight with Gawker so far, and honored every commitment they have made. We have every expectation that they will live up to their end of the bargain and, if enough money is raised, hand over the video. But buying videos of prominent political figures smoking crack inherently involves a bit of unavoidable dodginess. In the even that, for some reason, the deal goes south and we raise the money but don’t get the video, Gawker pledges to donate 100% of the proceeds to a Canadian non-profit institution that helps people suffering from drug addiction and its various consequences. We’ll figure out what that is later if it comes to it.
But that’s not going to happen! Because we’re going to raise the money and use it to buy a video of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford smoking crack cocaine and publish it online! Please help us get there.
How much have they raised so far (in less than one day?):
More than $36,000.
Bonus: This is going to get even nuttier as the hours and days pass!
We’ll keep you updated!
Update, hour after original: The National Post chimes in.