Sometimes, if you want something bad enough, you’re willing to believe just about anything.
Awhile back, the name @TheKevinConroy popped up on Twitter. Kevin Conroy, as I’m sure you all know by now, will forever be known as the voice of Batman (and has provided the voice of Batman and Bruce Wayne for more than 20 years). Being a Batman fan, and a fan of Batman The Animated Series, I was excited!
Sure enough, the account started to pick up followers left and right. Shortly after that, @TheKevinConroy became a verified account on Twitter which, as you all know, means it’s not a fake but the actual person. Not sure what Twitter does to actually verify an account, but I’m sure it’s a fairly lengthy ordeal, right? You can’t just have anyone claiming to be a celebrity, that just won’t do! Hence the reason “verified accounts” came to be on Twitter anyway.
@TheKevinConroy was wonderfully nice, as you might expect Kevin Conroy to be. He responded to questions from fans, talked about upcoming events, you name it, he did it. Soon the account had more than 8,000 followers, including Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) who played opposite Conroy in the Batman booth as the voice of The Joker, Paul Dini (@Paul_Dini) who was one of the masterminds behind Batman The Animated Series along with Bruce Timm, and Tara Strong (@tarastrong) who has provided the voice of several characters in the Batman cannon, from Batgirl to most recently Harley Quinn in the Arkham City. Strong also provides the voice of Timmy Turner in Fairly Odd Parents, and has done more voiceover work than you could possibly imagine – don’t believe me? Check this link out and see for yourself.
I digress. @TheKevinConroy was having a ball on Twitter, talking to his fans, having a good time with his friends and colleagues, you name it.
One problem – @TheKevinConroy is a fake. Even though the account was verified by Twitter, the person running the account is not Kevin Conroy.
Strong started spreading the word about the fake on her Twitter account, even though she met some resistance (and yes, I was one who didn’t want to believe her).
“Let me tell u, when I spoke 2 real Kevin, I was SHOCKED. This guy is devious & I was DM-ing him a lot ;(,” Strong told me via Twitter. “But we all had lil weird hints. When I asked him how 2 get verified he was completely wrong & then started ignoring me, then he posted I was on his panel @Comic con but I was never slated 4 that! Then when a bunch of us wanted 2 meet he disappeared!”
Still having trouble believing it? A couple of months ago, I was fortunate to have interviewed the real Kevin Conroy for a piece here on ComicBooked.com. I sent him an email to see if he could clear up the mess. A day or so later, I got a response back from him:
Thank you for your help with this. Someone has been impersonating me on Twitter and Facebook and having conversations with fans and friends. I’ve actually had people show up at my agent’s office saying that I told them to go there. If you could get the word out that I am not on Twitter and whoever it is is doing damage. I’ve just opened a (site) on Facebook and will try to wrest control of my name back.
So what do you know? Kevin Conroy himself says @TheKevinConroy is a fake. Well, I immediately unfollowed whoever has the account, but he still has over 7,000 followers. What’s worse, the account is still verified, which begs the questions: What do you have to do to get verified on Twitter? Apparently, you don’t have to do much, because if someone could fake being the voice of Batman and have his friends and fans fooled, who else out there with a verified account is actually a fake?
I call on Twitter to investigate the matter further. At this point, I don’t think you could trust any “verified” account until Twitter actually does a better job of screening for all the wackos and nutjobs out there.
So, if you’re currently following @TheKevinConroy, know that it’s not the real Kevin Conroy – and please tell your friends. I, for one, don’t want Batman pissed off with me.