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Chewbacca, the most famous Wookiee of them all. (Getty Images North America)

'Wookieeleaks': Popular, It Is; Because 'Geeks Love To Go Deep On Things'

Jul 30, 2010 (All Things Considered)

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"Best hashtag ever"?

That's what The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder says of #Wookieeleaks, a top "trending" phrase on Twitter in the past few days.

Greg "Storm" DiCostanzo, who's been given the credit for starting the #Wookieeleaks storm on Twitter, told All Things Considered co-host Michele Norris today that when he heard the news earlier this week about the tens of thousands of classified documents from the Afghan war that were posted online by WikiLeaks.org, "in a thunderclap it just became Wookieeleaks."

A Wookiee, if you somehow have missed the whole Star Wars thing, is a huge, hairy creature who's on the side of good. The most famous of the species: Chewbacca.

"It seemed to me," DiCostanzo told Michele, "like it would make a terrific Twitter game to come up with these ideas ... about leaks from the Star Wars universe — little naughty details."

His first tweet:

"Testimony in some of the papers indicate that Chewbacca used mind-alerting drugs while on Endor."

More than 100,000 messages later, the game's still on.

Among DiCostanzo's favorite tweets so far is one from NPR's own Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me host Peter Sagal, who wrote "Han shot first" — a reference to a scene, changed in later versions of the Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope movie, in which Harrison Ford's Han Solo character fired first when he gunned down a bounty hunter. Many Star Wars fans are still outraged that the scene was later altered to make it look like Han didn't do that.

Other tweeters have used the thread to mix in some politics — implying, for instance, that the droid C-3P0 was discharged from the rebel forces for violating "don't ask, don't tell."

As DiCostanzo tells Michele, "geeks love to go deep on things," and the Star Wars saga "allows you to do that."

Correction at 8:35 a.m. ET, Aug. 2: My apologies to all Star Wars fans (and my thanks to commenter Avi E for pointing it out) for messing up C-3PO's name. It's now corrected in the post.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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