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Oscars Audio Guy Cranks Up the Sarcasm on Twitter

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And the award for Best Oscars Twitter Parody goes to ... Oscars Audio Guy! Twitter prankster Barrett Tryon began tweeting as Oscars Audio Guy during the Academy Awards show Sunday.

“Thank God we have closed captioning," tweeted the supposed sound tech barely an hour into Sunday night's Academy Awards show, which was plagued by awful audio. The humorous Twitter account was set up by Barrett Tryon (@BarrettTryon) as audio problems began dogging the telecast.

“At first, I gave ABC benefit of the doubt" about the annoying audio, the 30-year-old TV news guy from Colorado Springs, Colorado, told Wired by e-mail. “Thought it was just some really bizarre glitch. I'm obsessed with Twitter, so when my friends and followers started saying stuff, I knew I wasn't alone. And, that's where the comedy kicked in. I searched 'Oscars audio' on Twitter and let the magic begin."

What followed from @OscarsAudioGuy was at least as funny as Oscars host Billy Crystal's jokes, and a great example of the kind of satiric heckling that can take place when Twitter becomes a back-channel to a popular event.

(Tryon wasn't the only instant joker cracking wise about the Oscars: See also Angelina Jolie's Leg (@AngiesRightLeg), a tribute to the actress' appearance in a revealing dress, and JLosNipple (@JLosNipple), an homage to Jennifer Lopez's wardrobe malfunction.)

Oscars Audio Problems Ripe for Satire The sound got worse as the Oscars broadcast continued, with microphones constantly on the verge of full-on feedback. But Oscars Audio Guy's jokes just got better: “We used tin cans this year to offset Billy Crystal in HD," he wrote. “Anyone have some more string we can borrow for mic cord?"

It was Tryon's first stab at Twitter parody. He bobbed and weaved, apologizing for the lousy sound when Twitter users complained politely—and slapping down others when they said something nasty.

“I'm a pretty plugged-in guy," he said, “and after seeing the viewer reaction online, I thought it'd be really well-received. And then I got those handful of tweets from people who think I was legitimately the audio guy, which makes it even funnier."


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