The O.S.D.M., iConfidant, and The System

This topic contains 68 replies, has 22 voices, and was last updated by  Maranda 2 years, 5 months ago.

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  • #11039
     Anonymous

    So I’ve been thinking hard since @theladyj‘s brush with the man called Marcos and the breaking out the fourth wall so soon.

    Based off of @kasch‘s lewd emails to Stacey at iConfidant tying Noah Sinclair to them and the fact that Kristen today told @111error about men in suits (assumed OSDM agents) at iConfidant I’m lead to believe this may be the connection.

    So in Tension the OSDM set up the OOA in order to gather information on us all. So what better way to gather more data on people then to invest in an app promising to pair people up with the perfect companion. You can get even more honest information from people just looking to get the perfect match (because if you lie then your confidant might not be who you’re looking for.)

    So this leaves The System… The System isn’t so much a data gathering company though. So what use could they be to the OSDM?

    We know the System is there to train people to be cut throat, no bullshit, winner-minded people. People that would do anything to get what they want. People who could be an incredible asset to… The OSDM.

    The System is the OSDM training ground. A place where they can easily suss out who is qualified emotionally enough to join the OSDM and help them in their grand plan (which I assume is only nefarious.)

    iConfidant – Data Collection
    The System – Training center for future OSDM agents.

    And then you have Noah… trapped in the midst of it all… trying to do his part to tear it all down. Fucking with iConfidant to screw up their email servers, and trying to chase people away from being groomed to be brand spanking new overlords to himself.

    This could 100% be wild speculation… but I believe this is worth talking about. Until we know more…

  • #11041
     Cristen 
    Participant

    This. This is the most cohesive tying in of all the different parts of what we know so far that I’ve seen.

  • #11042
     Lauren Bello 
    Moderator

    I like this idea, but my question would be – why would computers have been “compromised” yesterday if the sole purpose of iConfidant’s existence is providing info to the investors? If the investors conceived of this enterprise in order to gather data, one would think they wouldn’t need to hack their own servers.

  • #11043
     Andrew Kasch 
    Participant

    This is as good a theory as I’ve heard.

    The total silence from the Sinclair camp has me now 100% certain that Noah was impersonating me. And re-reading those e-mails, it seems like he was less bent on fucking things up for me and more into messing with Stacey. It fits into everything we know about the man.

  • #11044
     Megan 
    Participant

    “Live training resumes May 1”

    So, some of us will become OSDM agents?

    “The System is coming Megan. Decide if you want in our want to bang on the door from the outside.”

  • #11045
     Lauren Bello 
    Moderator

    Maybe Noah was behind the hack/virus/whatever was screwing up iConfidant too.

  • #11047
     Anonymous

    @daela said

    If the investors conceived of this enterprise in order to gather data, one would think they wouldn’t need to hack their own servers.

    Unless it wasn’t them that compromised the data. It very well could have been Noah. And when you compromise the data you have to throw it all out.

    If you have a test audience review a movie, and then it’s discovered that the producers Sister in Law was in the audience… then all the data is contaminated (like what if the sister in law strong armed people next to her to give the movie a better review, etc..).

    So if one data sample is fucked… well there’s a ton of reviewing that must get done.

  • #11048
     Megan 
    Participant

    The System is where the divide occurs among us – the OOA/BOS thing. Those who are “in” and those who aren’t. What did the loser email say? Something about them coming to take everything from you?

  • #11049
     Cristen 
    Participant

    How do you see the investors “meta” storyline working in with this theory?

  • #11050
     Meghan Mayhem 
    Participant

    @kasch The radio silence from the Sinclair camp isn’t just for you it seems. I haven’t heard a peep out of Noah in 5 days and it seems even Sarah’s stopped responding to emails in the last few days.

    Did…something happen to them after the Periscope?

    Edit: I retract my statement. Sean got a happy birthday 😉

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 5 months ago by  Meghan Mayhem.
  • #11051
     Anonymous

    @wanda102 said

    How do you see the investors “meta” storyline working in with this theory?

    During Tension the investors were part of the OSDM.

    So it would seem this is still most definitely the case. Create fake ARG with two distinct plot lines… one that gathers data… one that sizes you up to see if you’re fit for them.

    And there seems to be doubts that any of it’s working… thus Marcos calling @theladyj and asking what she thinks of “The Lust Experience”. Noah is supremely fucking things up or at least he thinks he is. OSDM might be trying to make it look like to him that his antics are only helping their cause.

  • #11052
     Jackie 
    Participant

    And it’s all sugar coated to look like Entertainment. Because then if it gets wild, or doesn’t work, “Hey Folks! It was all a show!”

  • #11054
     Anonymous

    And as far as our dearly departed (from the experience) creators go…

    The reason they’ve cut off contact is probably because they are still being monitored and are terrified of anything we give them in regards to personal stuff. They’re trying to help us by going dark.

  • #11055
     Megan 
    Participant

    Except for the attempted warning that Clint sent Bryan hidden in the photo – something is going on that’s dark enough to make Clint take that chance.

  • #11056
     Kyle Bown 
    Participant

    As far as hacking: I concur on the Noah of it all. I think he did it. Clearly they opened the image he sent them, the Maddyxxx.jpg, I’m willing to bet there was some sort of trojan or virus in that file that he put on their system.

    And I also agree @theladyj, before things got too serious, Marcos steps in to “remind” us all this is all fake and fun and entertainment, don’t worry about giving them all of your personal information, or diving head first into the System, there’s no consequences to it. Go all out!

    When, in actuality, he’s with the OSDM, and the more carefree we are with the system the less we protect ourselves and the more successful they can be.

    Only the active move forward. If you want to play, you gotta pay.

  • #11057
     Brad Ruwe 
    Participant

    Agree with all of this. And as such, we are all fucked.

  • #11058
     Maranda 
    Participant

    Oh man, I could totally see this being the connecting thread. I’ve also been thinking about where “Never Silent” fits into all this. At first, it just seemed like something The Creators want us to do so that no story threads are lost, and that buzz is constantly being generated on the forums, but now I’m not so sure. If the Investors will go as far as to directly call a participant, it makes total sense for them to want to hear from us as much as possible.

  • #11059
     Andrew Kasch 
    Participant

    I like the Trojan virus theory. Kristen said their computers were being “confiscated” by their I.T. department

  • #11060
     Jackie 
    Participant

    And as such, we are all fucked.

    #ChooChootoAnarchy

  • #11061
     Lukas L 
    Participant

    @thebuz so the system is finding people the OSDM can use that are good with getting data out if people. Any thoughts on if this is the first set of participants in “The System” or could there be previous sessions of “the system”

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 5 months ago by  Lukas L.
  • #11063
     Kyle Bown 
    Participant

    @lukasrl Good question. I’d be very, very wary if we start meeting people who previously went through “The System.”

  • #11067
     Meghan Mayhem 
    Participant

    I really like that theory @thebuz.

    Didn’t Noah say something during his park rant about the ants, about how they are soldiers that don’t know their own strength?

    The System would be training soldiers for the OSDM, while iConfidant would be studying the intricacies of the human condition for the “robots”.

  • #11069
     Chris 
    Participant

    A simple, elegant, brutal solution. I definitely prefer this to any talk of the OSDM being rendered as fictional as the OOA. This would also go a long way to explaining Noah’s presence in general. At first it felt random that the “suit guy” was suddenly a sinister Tony Robbins type. This explains that completely. May 1st can’t come soon enough…

  • #11070
     Lukas L 
    Participant

    @bruinbown or currently in the class

  • #11071
     Anonymous

    @lukasrl I don’t know what exactly they are looking for. For all we know they could be looking for people to come in and help strong arm people or potentially set up new ARGs in the future.

    Who knows what exactly the end game is… we just know the personality types.

    Based on how Noah is acting and the investor calling… I have a feeling The System is on its first trial run. And things are messy for them.

    This could literally all just be smoke and mirrors though. Distracting from a bigger picture none of us are aware of yet.

  • #11075
     Brad Ruwe 
    Participant

    @macbethinabathtub I get the feeling a lot is going to happen between now and May 1. Between @theladyj and @111error‘s encounters, the bigger picture is starting to come into focus (or so it seems). But there’s a LOT we still don’t know.

    Strap in boys and girls, shit’s getting exciting.

  • #11076
     111error 
    Participant

    @thebuz No, this could not “literally” be smoke and mirrors. ::slap::

    But I like your theory.

  • #11077
     Anonymous

    @111error You asshole. Literally.

    FIGURATIVELY THIS COULD BE SMOKE AND MIRRORS.

    xoxox

  • #11078
     Meghan Mayhem 
    Participant

    @thebuz @111error
    Technically, Tension LITERALLY had smoke and mirrors so…

  • #11079
     Andrew Kasch 
    Participant

    @thebuz is right. This could LITERALLY be smoke and mirrors. Remember what happened to some of us in downtown L.A. with Gatekeeper 4 last summer…

  • #11080
     Maranda 
    Participant

    @kasch, I’d be very surprised if you guys saw literal smoke and mirrors at the first System meeting next Monday! For some reason Sarah doesn’t seem the type for that sort of thing. 😉

  • #11082
     Jackie 
    Participant

    OR MAYBE MIRRORS ON THE CEILING! HEYO!
    *HIGHFIVE!*
    @izryn

  • #11083
     Lukas L 
    Participant

    I guess the system seminar could have fog machines and Noah could look into a mirror and use it as a metaphor for who he used to be vs who he is now. That could kinda be smoke and mirrors

  • #11085
     Maxwell R 
    Participant

    Where does “The Works” fit into this?

  • #11086
     Anonymous

    @moustachemax I may have missed that, what is The Works?

  • #11088
     Kevin 
    Participant

    @thebuz It’s the previous company Stacey worked for.

    From her bio on the iConfidant site:
    Stacey launched her career as a managing consultant for the “The Works”, an investment and consulting firm focused on consumer startups.

    • #11091
       Anonymous

      @kevin Ah okay.

      No clue then how that connects but there’s been no other mention of it other than that bit on the website.

      I won’t start going down that thread until more information is available.

  • #11089
     Jackie 
    Participant

    Not to be confused with “It Works!” The dietary supplements. Which I was originally getting mixed up.

  • #11092
     Max Z 
    Participant

    I think the thing that really confuses me is how EARLY all of this seems to be bubbling to the surface. I wasn’t following along with Tension from the beginning, but from what I’ve read I thought that the “OSDM-created-the-OOA-as-a-fake-ARG” thing was like, the third act reveal. Now it’s right here on front street. I mean, to be fair, the OSDM did put their name right on the title so I guess what can one expect. But frankly, and speaking a little bit OOG (if there is such a thing anymore), I have to admit I’m sort of resistant to this new development. The OSDM-created-the-OOA thing was certainly novel and exciting, but I was kind of hoping that time around we could take the story at face value, more or less (not in the sense of knowing everything but in the sense of it not all being “fake”). Don’t get me wrong, I definitely have faith that this will go in interesting directions from here, but I have to admit I’m a little…troubled as it stands now. Are we trending toward another story of a fake ARG used to mine data? I thought that kinda happened already.

    Again, that’s not to blaspheme or complain out of school before I have all the info, just sort of thinking out loud. I’m definitely thrown off my balance and that’s a fun place to be for now.

  • #11093
     Maranda 
    Participant

    @maxzumstein I find myself agreeing with you, but I don’t think “fake-ARG-to-mine-data” is part of the twist this time – that would be far too repetitive, predictable, and frankly, bad storytelling. The way I’m looking at it is that datamining via ARG is part of the exposition, a plot point to be developed, before the real twist comes later.

  • #11094
     Anonymous

    Like any good sequel, how the first one ends informs the first act of Episode II.

    We are most definitely in the first act.

  • #11095
     Max Z 
    Participant

    @izryn I think you’re right. I don’t imagine that “fake-ARG-to-mine-data” is going to be the whole story this time. Far from it. I have to admit though that I am a bit pre-emptively heartbroken by the potential implications this twist may or may not have, like my beloved Sarah Sinclair potentially being an actress, as others have suggested in the original thread about the Marcos call (hence her discussion of being “replaced”). But then, that’s still all conjecture, and even if it turns out to be true, one doesn’t come to these things to NOT have their hearts broken, so I guess I’m right where I should be.

  • #11096
     Meghan Mayhem 
    Participant

    The assumption that any of us have any fucking clue what’s going on is foolish and naive. People hated Noah when the site launched. Then people started to like him. Then people started fighting. Then people started expressing their displeasure that “this was about pitting us against each other”. Then Sarah became more active. Then it was about robots. Then Macy. Then people hated Sarah. Then iConfidant as the cuddly happy place. Then iConfidant as possibly nefarious. Then it’s all a play within a play. Then it’s data mining.
    And every step of the way we’ve seen people saying things like “if this is the direction they’re going with, I’m going to be unhappy” etc etc.
    Guys.
    We’re barely 2 months into this and it’s only really been active for the last month.
    To think the creators would be so one layered and easy to figure out early on is not giving these brilliant mind fuckers enough credit.
    So theorize away and enjoy the ride as you fall further into chaos because it’s only going to get more weird and intense with each day that passes.

  • #11097
     Max Z 
    Participant

    @meghanmayhem You’re right. I certainly didn’t mean to make it sound like I thought I had a real clue as to what was going on or anything like that, I apologize if it came off that way. I debated with myself whether to even post the comment tbh. Kind of regretting it now, but I’ll leave it up as a reminder to myself.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 5 months ago by  Max Z.
  • #11099
     Jackie 
    Participant

    I’m just happy to be here. ♡

  • #11100
     Carl Webb 
    Participant

    Yeah, @meghanmayhem, how much of what we think we know now is going to seem quaint in just two weeks? I think I will just go for now with a Pollyanna outlook that Noah’s this great guy, iConfidant is cuddly and happy, and that if I’m replaced by a robot I will probably think it’s a great idea. And the more information I give out in the process, the better.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 5 months ago by  Carl Webb.
  • #11102
     Lawrence Meyers 
    Participant

    Skynet.

  • #11103
     Maranda 
    Participant

    @theladyj At the rate this heartbreak is happening, that upside-down frown will turn right-side up before you know it.

  • #11104
     Anonymous

    What heartbreak? Still got a whole lot of nothing.

  • #11105
     Jackie 
    Participant

    @izryn
    Well Marcos isn’t probably calling again tonight, so it dims my enthusiasm to a roar.
    ;3

    Dumb phone autocorrect.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 5 months ago by  Jackie.
  • #11107
     Shaun 
    Participant

    I’m still thinking the “we can inject personality into a human” can fit with both iConfidant and The System. OSDM using the technology they have on two fronts:

    – iConfidant where non robots (you and I) pay to have robot friends (our perfect companion)
    – The System where non robots (you and I) pay to become robots (be all you can be and ‘take yours’)

    Some parts that don’t fit are:

    – Sarah (to Macy) laughing at (some of) us for thinking Noah was talking about real live, walking, talking robots.. unless she is a robot and is unaware of being said robot
    – Otis.. unless he is an iConfidant robot friend
    – iConfidant phone calls with the strange noises… are they just testing out remote programming techniques?

  • #11108
     Carl Webb 
    Participant

    – iConfidant where non robots (you and I) pay to have robot friends (our perfect companion)

    Or to be programmed to be a perfect companion (c.f., the aforementioned phone calls with the strange noises).

  • #11109
     Jackie 
    Participant

    @shaun @llamawithhat
    CHOBITS. have you ever read the Manga or seen the show? CHOBITS my brothers.

  • #11110
     Carl Webb 
    Participant

    I have not, @theladyj — I have learned something today, and have something else to add to the queue 🙂

  • #11111
     Brad Ruwe 
    Participant

    Frankly I’d be down with either option. Having a new robot friend or becoming a robot. I mean did you guys see Dollhouse? The place they got to live in was AWESOME!

  • #11125
     Megan 
    Participant

    I will happily take endless theorizing that we have to backtrack on over the choruses of PICK ME PICK ME any day. Trying to figure it out is half the fun.

    I am struggling with a lot of the people for whom it’s not moving fast enough, or not moving in a certain direction, etc. Narratives almost NEVER move in a direction with which I’m satisfied. And I have never had any success with the horror genre. I understand that I’m likely an anomaly here and was even more so last year, when the majority of us were horror/extreme haunt fans, not immersive theater fans. For the people who came in after September last year, check out the timeline I created for how things played out with Tension – things are moving SO much faster this year, it makes my head spin. The direction we are moving in changes daily. I don’t think that Addison was introduced to us as anything other than a voice on the phone last year until mid to late May, we had some character interaction on the forums but no characters to interact with in real life and certainly no one to care about (only Gatekeeper 4 was the real “character” at that point). Things picked up in May and June – June was when the periscopes began and the real fun started.

    Right now I feel like pieces are being put on a chess board. A much more complex narrative is being set out. Chapter one probably starts on Monday. We probably have a longer story ahead of us. We’ve had plenty of indication that this is going to get real dark – Clint’s warning to Bryan, the creation of shadows, the duplicate Clints, DLB’s freaking out, and now Kristen’s panic and call to Morgan. Whatever iConfidant and The System are on the surface, they are covering something else up, something much more nefarious. It may not get human sacrifice elder god cult dark. But there are other kinds of dark.

    We had Samson’s warning to (I don’t remember who exactly – Addison? Rizzo?) that we have no idea how deep this rabbit hole goes – OH MY GOD, I want to keep finding out. I don’t need things to be intimately connected but finding out that the OOA is one tiny star in a larger galaxy that is the OSDM? And maybe that it even gets larger than that?

    I still don’t really know what was scary about Tension but the pieces we’ve seen so far from Lust? They have a inkling of potential of scaring *me.* Maybe. And they tell a tighter, more layered and complex story, which makes me excited. Even from a theater/performance theory standpoint, the events that kicked it all off were so unusual and new that I still haven’t stopped talking about them to other art and theater colleagues in conversations that go on for hours. I even have someone in the psychology department who wants to sit down and talk to me about it because it sounds to her like one big psych experiment.

    Now I’ve gone off the nerd deep end so I’ll shut up. I’m on board, and I’m excited. Theorize away.

  • #11126
     scot 
    Participant

    Well, now everyone is equally confused, vets and noobs alike

    are you playing?

  • #11127
     Megan 
    Participant

    Did I confuse people? I didn’t mean to confuse people.

  • #11128
     scot 
    Participant

    No, not you @coryphella I mean the whole thing. Nothing is as it seemed to be or what people were expecting. I think it’s great and make me more excited to participate and be engaged.
    I feel like the past few days have been a big pallet cleanser to wipe away preconceived notions and expectations. We kind of talked about this at the pub. How could a new and novel situation be set up for the vets? I think I just was.

  • #11130
     Maranda 
    Participant

    @coryphella Like you, I’m not a big horror or haunt fan. In fact, I’ve never visited a haunted attraction or seen a horror movie.

    What drew me to Tension was the story and the medium through which it was told. There’s a lot you can do with interactive media that you can’t do with traditional media, and I’m eager to see where Lust goes. That said, one reason why I decided to jump in and stop being a passive observer was to get out of my comfort zone. I’ve always been pretty reserved and reluctant to be vulnerable in front of other people for fear of losing face. But with the big change in my life with moving to Japan and all I’m really hoping participating will help me explore my own boundaries a bit. Maybe I’ll finally muster up the courage to do a haunt someday too!

    (Whelp, I hope it’s still too early for TPTB to be up reading the forums)

  • #11131
     Bryan Bishop 
    Participant

    @maxzumstein – first off, I just wanted to say don’t feel bad about posting your comment at all. Talking about all of these things from all different angles is the trick to figuring out how a fragmented narrative fits together, so keep posting away. 🙂

    To your specific point, I don’t think we have any idea what the “real” story is at this point. I dig a ton about Buz’s theory on this thread, but I also wonder if the creators would make a sequel this is so dependent on what was, for participants not hype-active on the forums, the minutiae of Tension. Maybe they will though! The meta storyline was one of my favorite things, so I would certainly dig it.

    But given that TPTB have described this more as an American Horror Story anthology-style situation, I’m guessing we might be looking at something resembling a fresh(ish) start. Which would also explain why we’ve all found it so hard to put the pieces together. These ones simply may not fit in the way we’re expecting them to – because Lust is going to be its own kind of savage beast.

    Only time will tell. Patience and trust. :devilemoji:

  • #11135
     Anonymous

    I agree with @bcbishop, @maxzumstein. Don’t feel bad about sharing.

    I will say this though, anthology series or not… the connection to Tension has been there from the very start with them stating “OSDM presents THE LUST EXPERIENCE.”

    So this is all in one big universe.

  • #11136
     Bryan Bishop 
    Participant

    @thebuz One big universe, totally, but exactly how literal those connections are (or what forces lurk behind curtains that haven’t been pulled back yet)… we shall see. One thing’s for sure: I don’t expect anything to be as it looks at first glance. 😀

  • #11137
     Meghan Mayhem 
    Participant

    Oh yes, please don’t misunderstand me and think I am implying that people shouldn’t theorize or discuss their thoughts. Please share! Share all! (Well, almost all)
    It’s more about people theorizing, and then making assumptions that they know for sure what’s happening and the path we’re on. I’ve seen a good handful of people say things like “If this is going to be about ____, then I’m not interested/this isn’t the game for me/I’m going to be really disappointed/etc”, only for that one thing they were complaining about to turn out to be not what they thought it was.

    A D&D campaign isn’t about the giant spiders you encounter in the hidden cave on night one, on your way to the forgotten city!

    …oh god.

  • #11138
     Megan 
    Participant

    I don’t think that anything that has been done so far has relied on minutiae from Tension. We’ve talked about specifics ourselves but that doesn’t mean the narrative has relied on them, we’ve just referred to them. We’re going to do that – it’s not like we’re going to pretend the entire Obama administration didn’t happen now that we’re in the Trump administration. This has to some extent been a “reality” for us. It’s part of our world.

    @maxzumstein – keep posting theories and other things. There are going to be PLENTY of times in the coming months when things are slow and we only have theories to keep each other company on the forums (or else, you know, live normal non-Lust lives). Plus I’ve been meaning to ask you if you’ve read Foucault’s “Of Other Spaces: Utopias and Heteroutopias?”

  • #11141
     Bryan Bishop 
    Participant

    I was under the impression that giant spiders would not be part of this experience. Help?

  • #11142
     Andrew Kasch 
    Participant

    It’s a new day. More silence from the Sinclair camp. And no word from Stacey.

    The suspicion grows.

  • #11143
     Max Z 
    Participant

    @bcbishop @thebuz @coryphella Hey all, thank you so much for the kind words and encouragement! 🙂 That’s real nice of you guys. And thank you @meghanmayhem for clearing that up! All of you have made me feel much better. It’s really nice be part of a community with so many kind people in it!

    @coryphella I haven’t! I’ve read shamefully little Foucault, actually. I’ve mostly just read the stuff everyone reads, like the Biopower stuff and the panopticon stuff. I’ve never even read a full book actually, just selected chapters from books that I read as standalone essays. I find him brilliant but a little on the harder-to-read side, for me, just in terms of getting lobbed with critical theory speak and style left and right. I gently demand that you tell me all about it and what you’re finding in it, either in DM or here!

  • #11791
     Maranda 
    Participant

    OK, so I have some theory thoughts about how Sinclair Industries, iConfidant, and robots might be connected. We know from Macy’s unintentional email leak and Noah’s links that Sinclair Industries has something to do with “robots,” AI, and the like. Sarah is doing something with a thing she called IT. I and others have speculated elsewhere about whether this IT could stand for Imitation Technology or Influence Technology.

    That brings me to my next point. Some of our iConfidants definitely seem like real people (@nothenrygale ‘s comes to mind), but others have only had one-word or one-phrase messages, with no punctuation, seeming almost…automated or computer-generated, if I dare say. What if we, iC beta testers, are engaging in some kind of Turing Test for IT, essentially playing a large-scale imitation game?

    What this could mean in the greater scheme of things is not clear, but I do know that if computers with our data can also pass as real people…, well, this would change the digital world as we know it.

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