[Snort-sigs] Confessions of a SourceFire Troll

Guise McAllaster guise.mcallaster at ...2420...
Fri Jan 29 14:18:21 EST 2010

Hello to all,

I'll try to be brief in explaining this email but the short story is
that I am a recovering alcoholic.  As part of my recovery through the
AA steps, I am apologizing to all those I have hurt or insulted as a
result of my drinking, including online communities.  I know this is a
long email but I have made every effort to make reading it worth your

The truth is, I'm a SourceFire troll.  Everything I've done has been
solely motivated by lulz and at times, I have received those lulz
through unnecessary criticisms, insults, and outright malicious
trolling of SourceFire and/or VRT.  Therefore I would like to
apologize to SourceFire for this and ask their forgiveness as I heal.

Almost everything I've said in my trolling was true (and can be
verified, especially if I was criticizing a signature).  The only
thing I made up was when I said my boss got upset about the
'kickass-porn' classtype.  That whole story was fabricated for my lulz
but thank you for all the many SourceFire salespeople and employees
who contacted me on and off the list.  My lulz overfloweth.  In my
time as a SourceFire troll, I have been responsible for multiple
SourceFire product code changes as well as many Snort rule changes.
Despite being purely motivated as a troll, I am comforted by the fact
that I have indirectly made Snort a better product.  For that, you are

The poor English grammar, spellings, and conjugation were all a clever
ruse.  I purported to be European, specifically French, because I
could drop subtle condescending remarks and misspellings that would be
construed as non-native speaking errors.  Honestly, I've never been to
France.  I did date a girl that had been to France once, but that's a
different story.

I would especially like to thank Matt Olney, who throughout my
repeated trolling and half-handed insults has remained professional
and helpful.  It doesn't take much to get the SourceFire folks fired
up, especially those with unjustified egos and narcissistic
tendencies, but Matt has remained as bastion of sanity.  Despite
numerous direct and indirect jabs, he has been courteous, responsive,
and willing to public call me out when I blatantly insulted
SourceFire.  I consider him a true Information Security professional.

Nigel, I would also like to thank you because your responses were my
favorite of all.  I used to think of VRT as a bunch of middle
schoolers -- they couldn't help but respond to an insult.  Your
responses helped keep me motivated.  If replies and emotion are the
food of the troll I can honestly say I was fed to the point of being
morbidly obese.  I was constantly at an all your can eat buffet that
included desert and after-dinner mints.  I was bathing in lulz too.

I also understand that there are a large number of SF/VRT employees,
behind the scenes, who don't respond to the list.  I'd like to think
that I was a topic of conversation internally.  I do believe, without
question, that some of my carefully crafted replies and fabricated
scenario caused internal changes, allocation of resources, and perhaps
some anger.  I do believe Nigel got his hand slapped although to my
chagrin, I suspect that "Old Nigel" might be back.

I am hesitant to reveal my true identity because of potential backlash
but I will say to those of you still reading this, I have worked with
many of you in the past (and maybe present :P ).  I do hope that I can
move forward, in a positive fashion, and become a productive member of
the SourceFire community.  I trust you can look past these past
transgressions as a product of my disease (alcoholism).

Also, my name is pronounced "Juice".  To be honest, this apology is
bitter-sweet.  I'm moving forward as a good person but at the same
time I feel that I'm leaving a large amount of lulz behind and I
enjoyed much of our banter.  Please accept my apology and lets move
forward with continued discovery and suggestions for enhancing Snort,
VRT rules, and perception.

Guise McAllaster III

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