In the just over three weeks he’s been tweeting, Washington has wondered about the identity of @DCjourno, who describes himself only as “an important political reporter in Washington.” The stinging parody account takes aim at Washington media, and the resemblance to real journalists is uncanny and to some, scary. “Just always a little too close to the bone,” said one reporter, relieved to have so far been spared mention. ABC’s Jake Tapper admitted there was a “subtle genius” to the account.
But others don’t think he’s genius at all. As one D.C. Editor put it, “Just read his stuff. An “important political reporter in Washington.” Bullshit. I’ll bet you my car nobody’s ever heard of this guy. Anyone who thinks [NJ's] Marc Ambinder is worth writing about can’t be over 23.” The journalist added, “It has a faux insider feel, like someone who watches too much Morning Joe.”
Some see a self-loathing. Still others just find him loathing. “I don’t give too much credence to people too chickensh*t to put their name behind something because, obviously, once we know who they are, we’ll soon realize that they’re just as douchy as the rest of us,” said a longtime Washington journalist. “Likely: Even more douchey.”
@DCjourno recently told the NYT, “Several of my followers still don’t understand that I’m a parody. They think I’m just a cool D.C. journalist, which really says it all.”
And it’s easy to see why he has some people fooled. Just like the journalists he mocks, he’s always speaking with “senior administration officials.” He suggests good people to follow, including WaPo‘s Ezra Klein (“Few understand health care better than Ezra,” he tweeted sarcastically) and Politico‘s Mike Allen (“Follow foreign policy guru @mikeallen for updates on Egypt. He’s tweeting from the frontlines in Rosslyn”). He always directs his followers to “must reads” and “smart takes.” In fact: “If anyone out there sees a tweet that i can re-tweet with “Interesting … ” in front of it, DM me!”
Tapper suggested his followers check out the stream to see what really went down at former White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs‘ farewell party. Apparently, “Gibbs telling the Mark Knoller/vodka-filled-plastic-guitar Vegas story.” Later: “Ambinder talking abt 19th century German philosophy. Gibbs goes, ‘Marc, we know you’re smarter than us. U gonna hit this jameson or not?’” And later still: “Alright, Vietor just challenged me to a dance off with your pants off. Zeleny is the judge. Have a good night, everyone.” Slate‘s Dave Weigel said that @DCjourno was “winning the evening” with his fake live-tweets.
The guessing game has grown more intense as @DCjourno’s follower count has risen, now to more than 3,000 people. CNN’s John King, USA producer Abby Livingston tweeted: “More ppl care about who is @dcjourno than who authored ‘o.’” ABC News’ Political Director Amy Walter agreed: “Ha. So true.”
Asked if he’s @DCJourno, The Daily Caller‘s Mike Riggs adamantly denied it to FishbowlDC, saying, “As much as DCJourno pretends to be in this world, but not of it, whoever’s writing those tweets cares deeply about Beltway culture and the assholes who maintain it. I don’t. Or at least, not enough to glorify its participants through caricature. I’m flattered that you think me even-tempered enough to maintain such a ruse, but I’m not your man, and I don’t know who is.”
@DCJourno wouldn’t give us any clues whatsoever about his identity, but did agree to an interview by e-mail. He wouldn’t, however, allow any follow-up questions. We tried to press him on a couple of things, but no such luck.
Are you actually a D.C. journalist, or more of an observer? I am an actual D.C. journalist, hence the Twitter handle, @DCjourno.
Why are you anonymous? Will you ever reveal yourself? I’m definitely not anonymous. Pretty much everyone in this town knows me now.
Are you a man or a woman? Man.
Find out what @DCJourno likes to do in his spare time and why he’s so looking forward to Tammy Haddad‘s garden brunch…