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The Man Behind BP Spoof—Leroy Stick

Contract workers from BP ferry oil soaked waste to a pickup point as other workers use skimmers to clean oil from a marsh near Pass a Loutre on June 1, 2010 near Venice, Louisiana. Earlier in the day, U.S. President Barack Obama called the Deepwater Horizon accident the 'greatest environmental disaster of its kind in our history.'
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Contract workers from BP ferry oil soaked waste to a pickup point as other workers use skimmers to clean oil from a marsh near Pass a Loutre on June 1, 2010 near Venice, Louisiana. Earlier in the day, U.S. President Barack Obama called the Deepwater Horizon accident the 'greatest environmental disaster of its kind in our history.'

"Dearest Media, My name is Leroy Stick and I am the man behind @BPGlobalPR."

Thus begins the "press release" issued Wednesday night by the person behind the Twitter account@BPGlobalPR.

He isn't with the real PR department at BP.

This is a now-famous prank.

If you've been reading this blog, you know I've been trying to find out who this guy is.

Leroy Stick isn't really his name.

He says the name came from Leroy, a dog who used to terrorize his neighborhood. "Stick" refers to the stick his father gave him to beat back the dog if he threatened to attack.

"A lot of our neighbors started carrying Leroy sticks as well," he writes. "Soon enough, Leroy and his owner saw everyone carrying sticks and Leroy didn’t run free anymore. If you think the point of this story is to beat dogs with sticks, then I’m guessing you probably still think I work for BP as well. The point of this story is that if someone is terrorizing your neighborhood, sometimes it’s alright to grab a stick and take a swing."

@BPGlobalPR is his "swing", and it's been pretty effective. His Twitter feed has been filled with hilarious fake PR missteps related to the oil spill.

He's not going for laughs now.

Leroy Stick sets out in his press release to verbally eviscerate the real public relations campaign waged by BP.

"Do you want to know what their PR strategy should be? They should fire everyone in their joke of a PR department," Stick writes, "starting with all-star Anne Womack-Kolto and focus on actually fixing the problems at hand. Honestly, Cheney’s publicist? That’s too easy. BP seems to only care about maintaining their image so they can keep making money..."

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He says he started the Twitter account for a few laughs, "but now it has turned into something of a movement...Why has this caught on? I think it’s because people can smell the bull and sometimes laughing at it feels better than getting angry or depressed over it."

Finally, Leroy Stick—who may or may not be in the PR biz—gives branding advice. "FORGET YOUR BRAND. You don’t own it because it is literally nothing," he declares. "You know the best way to get the public to respect your brand? Have a respectable brand."

To his 100,000 plus followers, he gives these marching orders: "If you are angry, speak up."

Looks like he did just that. As of this writing, we still don't know who Leroy Stick really is. But he's angry.

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