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The Star War Kid�s Day!

Yeah, I know...everybody is talking about him, so why do I :-)

A couple of webloggers are raising money for an unfortunate teenager humiliated worldwide after a private video of his energetic lightsaber moves was leaked to the Net.

The video shows a lone, overweight teenager fighting a mock battle with a broomstick lightsaber. In the two-minute video, the teenager twirls the broomstick ever more energetically while generating his own lightsaber sound effects. The video, which is obviously not for public consumption, is amusing and excruciating.

Baio and Mukerji, who linked to their video from their weblogs, identify the Star Wars Kid as a 15-year-old French Canadian named Ghyslain. Because Ghyslain is a minor, the pair is protecting his identity. Ghyslain couldn't be reached for comment

"He's given us a lot of amusement, so we thought we should do something for him," explained Mukerji. "There's been a lot of sympathy donations. A lot of people see a little bit of themselves in him. We've all done the same thing. Maybe it was the Saturday Night Fever thing. We've all done it."

According to Baio's website, the video was secretly recorded by Ghyslain at his school's A/V lab, only to be discovered by some kids at school who digitized it and uploaded it to the Kazaa file-sharing network.

"It only took two weeks for the video to spread around the world," Baio wrote.

In late April, an edited version of the video, which added music, video and sound effects, was created by Raven Software's Bryan Dube, according to Baio.

"A week later, both videos were linked on every major gaming- and technology-related website, forum, and chat room online," Baio said.

It's impossible to say how many times the videos were downloaded from Kazaa and countless websites, but Baio claims 1.1 million downloads from his site alone, a total of 2.3 terabytes of data.

"Most people who had it up on their sites had to take it down rather quickly because their hosts choked," said Mukerji.

Mukerji, a biologist who lives in San Francisco, said Ghyslain is well aware that his video was distributed around the world. Mukerji telephoned Ghyslain last week and posted a transcript of the conversation on his site.

"He's a young guy," said Mukerji. "He has self-confidence issues. Obviously, the video didn't help, but hopefully the donations will."

Mukerji said the fundraiser was prompted partly by guilt at laughing at Ghyslain, partly by geek sympathy.

The other weblogger, Baio, said, "I thought he deserved better. This video was uploaded to humiliate an awkward and overweight computer geek. But the truth is, he's not too different than many of us (were) in 10th grade. I was furious at the hypocritical comments being posted to my site ... all these geeks and dorks were trashing one of their own.... I'm hoping he records a sequel."

The video is pretty cool !
Right on Kid!