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November 09 2009

Rossum Corporation has new website. In a clever way to promote Dollhouse's return in December, the Rossum Corporation has set up its own website explaining its mission. It includes the locations of some of the regional offices that could also be doubling as "Dollhouses". There's even a response to Senator Daniel Perrin's investigation which will be part of the show next month.

The response can be found here.
ETA: Also, note that one of the regional offices is Cleveland. Isn't that where a Hellmouth is supposed to be?

Has anyone called the phone number provided? I just did, but they ask for an extension to dial out to. Anyone want to play around with this?
It seems to be two choices, either leave a message or enter your K-security code. Its a 7 digit code so I tried spelling J W H E D O N and I M A L P H A and neither worked. Bummer.

But with a simple FCC database search, we know its an unlisted number in Seattle, WA, USA.
That website is well done! Too bad it now comes up "page cannot be displayed." Too many hits at once?
Wow, now THIS is exactly the sort of thing I was thinking about when we were discussing following Lost's example by setting up Rossum as the new Dharma Initiative.

Of particular relevance, I noticed this snippet:
New for 2008, the Rossum Corporation offers exclusive 5-year paid internships for candidates of superior genetic disposition. Contact a Rossum Human Recruitment office near you for more details.

5 years? Superior genetic disposition? What could this "internship" entail, I wonder...

Edit: Also creepy:

If you find yourself in less-than-desirable circumstances, if the world appears to be closing in on you and you don't see a way out, don't despair! Our work here at Rossum is to help you resurface. You may have unexpected options.

Contact us now for a confidential evaluation:

It would be interesting to see what email they send back!

[ edited by AnotherFireflyfan on 2009-11-09 23:41 ]
I took the plunge and sent an email. Be cute if they respond.
I never thought of there being a Dollhouse in Vancouver, assuming all those regional offices also have Dollhouses nearby. For some reason the thought gives me the willies. They really are everywhere!

This site is creepy and fun, I like it.
Amusing that they have a location in an Icelandic town of some 6500 people.
Oh, I like this. It is realy creepy in that cold sterile corporate way we have grown familar with. I especially like "Let us think who you are".
I tried calling as well. I'm tempted to leave a message.

Well, I sent them an email inquiring about the "Dollhouse rumors". Would be interesting to see what kind of a reply I get. ;-)
There's an "office" in Sydney! Does that mean we're at risk from an Epitaph 1 scenario? Eeeep!

Is there any word on whether this is an official Fox creation, or if it's a fan effort? The domain registration information is particularly mysterious.
Ok, I'm pretty sure this is official JenskiJen
The domain registration is not overly mysterious. At least not any moreso than any other private registration.
Just emailed about a rumor I heard involving the Dollhouse; )
Don't think it's Fox. From what's included and what's not, I'd say someone with a UK or EU background. But it is mysterious, all right. Love it!
In the source (HTML) code, the following are listed as meta keywords:
Rossum, Ambrose, Dollhouse, development, pharmacology, adrenaline, adults, affliction, aggressive, agitated, agitation, alertness, allergies, alpha, alternative, amino, anti-inflammatory, apathy, apprehension, aura, barrier, behaving, behavior, behavioral, behavior, biologically, bloodstream, blue, Boswellia, brain, breathing problems, burden, burnout, calm, caps, chemical, children, compulsive, concentration, crisis, depleted, depressed, depression, despair, destress, discomfort, dopamine, doze, dragging, dread, drowsy, egcg, emotion, endorphin,endurance, energy, epinephrine, exasperation, excitement, exhaustion, fat, fatigue, fear, feeling, fog, function, genetic, glutamate, glutamic acid, glutamine, gratification, green tea, gut, head, headache, histidine, histamine, hostile, hunger, hyper, immune, Impulse, indecision, injury, intestines, irritability, irritable, irritable bowel, joint pain, joy, kidneys, kids, lab, laboratory, lack of energy, languish, lax, L-dopa, levels, libido, lipolysis, listlessness, loss, malaise, medical, melancholy, memory, menopause, metabolism, midlife, misery, misfortune, mood, mood swings, natural, naturally, nausea, nerves, nervous, nervous impulse, nervousness, neuro, neuron, NeuroScience, neuroscienceinc, NeuroSupport, Neurotransmitter, noradrenaline, norepinephrine, obsession, obsessive, optimum, over active, pain, painful, parasympathetic, passion, performance, performance enhancer, phenylethylamine, phobia, pleasure, precursor, predispose, pressure, prevention, problem, product, products, protein, pruriens, reaction time, recall, recollection, regulating movement, relax, relaxation, relaxed, research, response, restlessness, rhodiola, rosea, routine, run down, sadness, satisfaction, science, sensation, sense, serene, serotonin, setback, sexual desire, sexual drive, sick, sleep, sleeping, sleeplessness, sloth, sluggish, sorrow, spirit, squeamish, stimulant, straining , stress, stupor, suntheanine, susceptibility, susceptible, swing, sympathetic, symptoms, synapse, targeted, taurine, temper, tendency, tenderness, tenor, test, testing, theanine, therapy, tired, toxins, translean, tryptophan, tyrosine, unhappy, urinary, urination, urine, vibes, vigor, virility, weary, weight, woe, worry, yawn, zeal, zest, neurotransmitter test

And the meta description is
Rossum Corporation provides medical research and cutting-edge Neuroscience development. Rossum is subsidiery of Ambrose Enterprises.

Especially interesting that "subsidiery" isn't a word. ;)
Maybe it's the British spelling? They're often weird that way... ;-)

Thing I like best about the site: It doesn't club you over the head with the ruse. In fact, I've got to wonder what someone completely unfamiliar with Dollhouse would make of it.
'Fraid we in Britland spell it 'subsidiary' too :p
Icelandic, then?
Note the "Echo at the bottom of the pool" take-off on the contact page. Exceedingly well thought out on many levels. Kudos to...someone!
I just glanced at the posts here and saw the word creepy at least three time, yet no mention of that baby morphing into a brain? The stuff of nightmares.

Awesome site by the way.
just posted it on my fb and someone messaged me sounding kind of concerned that I would be interested in such an "apparent scam." HA!
The phone number listed belongs to International Telcom Limited. ITL provides callback, voicemail, and virtual PBX services.

From Savagenapkin & Alexreager descriptions sounds like the number is for callback and VM. Use of callback services would fit with Eyes of the world assessment that the author is EU,UK ..or some place with high telcom tolls.

[ edited by mister0 on 2017-08-21 18:09 ]
All I know is that these guys knew I use Twitter, and thanked me for visiting their site. Weird.
And that we should really be worried about this Clive Ambrose guy. See "Epitaph One", and you'll really know what I mean.
I believe I'll make me some tea, curl up on the sofa, pull on my worn old mertsocks, and ponder all this.
I am tempted to call and see if they have any job openings in Cleveland... hehe.
It looks like the origin is UK (or they used a UK-based template). Their 'Confidentiality' section of the 'Terms and Conditions' references the Data Protection Act of 1998.
"The best way to understand the wonderous variety of the human mind is to ... dissect each brain." - Nice.

Also loved the conquering of "toddler dementia". Made me chuckle. Not in a cruel and unfeeling way - I just work in mental health and they hand out evil laughs at the door.
They don't mention the Tucson office.

And here I thought I might finally find a job. :: Sigh! ::
This is brilliant, kudos to whoever is responsible.

Was anyone else reminded of the corporate propaganda film in Michael Clayton? Also some R/L commercials about antidepressants, and USDA propaganda about GMO's.

No branch in Hilo? I'm either offended or relieved, not sure which. ;)

Holy research mode, starlady and succatash.
No New Zealand office. Normally I'd get all outraged and complain about being left out but I think in this instance I'll just be grateful and keep my mouth shut.

Also, this is very awesome.
It's nice to know Rossum will break the law to keep their records confidential:
Client records themselves are regarded as confidential and therefore will not be divulged to any third party, even if legally required to do so by the appropriate authorities.

But I'm pretty sure I didn't agree to this:
By visiting this website you abdicate any and all of your statutory rights, whether as a client, consumer or affiliate.

Creepy is right.
beck: I was just about to quote that first sentence! I hadn't gotten to that second one yet on the terms page. Crap! UN-affiliate! Un-affiliate!
Just checked out the website and called the number. Wasn't sure of an extension to dial or a message to leave, so I hung up immediately after it beeped. I'm hearing people started getting creepy "ditch the tech" messages shortly after calling though, but I have yet to get one myself.

After reading that notice about abdicating my statutory rights though, I'm a little freaked out!! But that's probably a good thing...freaky viral marketing is sometimes very effective. Don't even get me started on how the interactive Eagle Eye marketing gave me nightmares...
Awesome, I have five years to spare. Going to check out the London offices.

Also, you know the dots between numbers on the phone number, are we meant to ignore them and just dial... or what? The whole thing is creepy and very, very DHARMA/Hanso Foundation.
To burst some bubbles -- all clues indicate this is done by the same folks who did the "Senator Perrin" site/Twitter. Networks don't need to register domains under obfuscated/falsified info. In other words, it's a fan effort. Funny that fans do a better job at understanding how to market this series than the network does.
I'm very sceptical about that Whedonage. It's a fun idea but really only for those who are already fans. I'll eat my shoe if it attracts a sizeable number of new viewers to Dollhouse. How would people who weren't already fans even come across this site? And even if they did they would just be very confused and, indeed, probably think it was a real company. And nowhere does the site even mention the show Dollhouse (or at least not prominently - I haven't read everything). I would be dismayed if FOX's advertising people were spending their time dong this sort of thing. That's not to knock the site btw. I'm just saying it's not an effective advertising tool
Based on these posts, if there's ever a real mystery to solve, we are so going to solve it.

If someone "goes missing mysteriously" the 10,000+ strong Scooby gang will crack the case. (I call eye patch)
@Let Down: By "better job" I mean that fans understand how to engage other fans with the story universe that Whedon created. FOX, as far as I can tell, doesn't have an interest in this level of interaction. As someone mentioned previously, the "Alternative Reality Game" (ARG) created for LOST viewers during its off-season ("The Lost Experience") has become the gold standard, in that it created a feeding frenzy about the mythology and background of the series. Yes, that sort of indirect marketing is aimed at fans-- generating a buzz and excitement among them, which is hoped will drive more eyeballs to the series (or at least keep the current ones watching). A number of other series have tried similar approaches, often to less than stellar results. (Think the weak "Heroes 360" ARG.)

Unfortunately, as you rightly point out, at this late in the game, Dollhouse isn't going to benefit from such an online effort. But it's a fun distraction-- albeit as an "unofficial" ARG it won't introduce anything deeper than has already been revealed by the show itself.

Fox have used fakeo domain registrations before with viral stuff. Recently, also, they made headlines for running the 'House' campaign, which didn't mention the show name, and they denied officially it was them - but it was. (The 'snakes on a cane' posters). Yadadada. Also, if it's tied to the Senator stuff - that site has been running images from the show which wasn't released to press, before screeners went out.

You could argue the point isn't the site, it's where the sites are going. Which we don't know yet.

[ edited by gossi on 2009-11-10 16:26 ]

[ edited by gossi on 2009-11-10 16:29 ]
Wait till people find out Whedonesque is also a viral site.
I thought it was a shipping site?
Viruses FROM shipping, gossi

As an FYI: using fake registration info is contrary to ICANN policy and grounds to have a domain revoked. Marketers who may be doing so under the guise of creating an ARG, are flying into dangerous territory. If FOX legal let sites get posted, without any disclaimer or terms of use indicating their origin, they're not doing their job. But beyond that, if this series of sites is "official" they're a day late and a dollar short.
Forwarding addresses are allowed though, Whedonage, which these are.
206 area code is Western Washington and there are "corporate" offices in Seattle. (Hmm, I wonder if Rossum is behind the anti-downtown-tunnel politics in Seattle to prevent civic projects from drilling into their secret dollhouse. So that's why McGinn got elected Mayor. It all makes sense now.)
This gives me the shivers!
Proxy/Private registration has been a gray area with ICANN; it's been allowed due to past abuse of WHOIS info for individual registrants, but is under current study by ICANN to determine what changes need to be made to the practice. A company doing so for inappropriate reasons puts themselves into a tenuous position; obfuscating domain ownership is favored method of spammers/scammers.

But seriously, though, if someone was paid to create the Rossum Corp site and host it on the discount/ad-hoc provider "" -- they must be having to do it on a cut-rate budget. As the Proxy Services FAQ at notes,
Ok, who doesn't need this?

Big companies, who can afford to park somebody from the legal department at a desk to handle it, put their corporate address out there without compromising anything, and generally don't host with us anyway, don't need this service. They've already got "faceless" covered.

Coolness: Just got an email from "ANONYMOUS," with the subject "DITCH THE TECH." Text reads:

We have hacked Rossum.

DITCH THE TECH or society will collapse.

Now to check out this site...
"The Company reserves the right to seek recovery of any monies remaining unpaid sixty days from the date of invoice via the Company's internal Agency Collection Service (ACS). In such circumstances, Client shall also be liable for any and all additional administrative and procedural costs."

Why do I suddenly suspect that their Collections service is extremely effective?
My favorite thing about this site, overall, is that it speaks to the component of Dollhouse that could have the most potential to effectively comment on one of the issues/developments facing society. The whole "corporations own us/want to own us/are determined to have our attention/loyalty" thing (and inside of that, I think Joss and Mutant Enemy are also sort of exploring the question of how far we should go with technology and the fantasy escapes it provides...while at the same time providing a fantasy escape, heh, albeit a dark and at least questioning one. And then of course there's the whole higher-ups/rich-will-own-the-middle-class-and-poor/quest-for-immortality-of-a-sort thing). Not saying all corporations are scary and the higher-ups at Wal-Mart are all evil, not like that, but going beyond that and aiming it at things like "Big Pharma", as some folks call it. Joss could say more with the remainder of Season 2 of Dollhouse than someone like Michael Moore says in an actual documentary/docu-commentary about something along these lines (Capitalism...although a better movie to mention in this post might be The Corporation, but I haven't watched it yet, even though it's been available online, legally for free, for years).

I'm not certain how I feel about some of these things, but it's fun to continue to puzzle it all out and see my entertainment tackle it a little too.

[ edited by Kris on 2009-11-10 19:14 ]
Maurissa has been Tweeting about these sites. If it hasn't been figured out already, we know they're definitely official.
What has Maurissa been saying, for those of us who don't do the Tweet thing?
Maurissa has tweeted a lot of Dollhouse stuff that wasn't official. Her tweeting something tells us nothing either way.
She just gave the link to Rossum, and also said "It's all real" and linked to "Ditch the Tech."

Daniel Perrin's Twitter linked to the Rossum site as well. (The press response to his investigations.)
Maurissa tweeted Horrible Turn back when 3% of us thought it could be official, didn't she even tweet those memos? Wait, do we know if the memos were real? Disregard that, then. But still, Becca it doesn't mean anything
Wait, just read your last comment Becca nvm, you kinda have a point. For the record I DID think it was official, just saying we didn't know ;D But I think you're right
By "It's all real," Maurissa could have meant Rossum Corporation is real (in a "watch out!" kind of way).

Tin Ear Tom, they said they hacked Rossum? Didn't look like the Rossum site had changed...yet...
Eyes of the world "Hacked Rossum" doesn't need to mean they hacked the website, it could be alot bigger than that...
Well they have hacked it in that they are responding to the phones and e-mails...
Has anyone tried logging in as DeWitt? Some combination of her name and/or initials with a password that seems like her?

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