Richard "Lowtax" Kyanka dead at 45

Originally published at: Richard "Lowtax" Kyanka dead at 45 | Boing Boing


That’s pretty damn young, I guess the shit spewing hydra he created will live on though.


My favorite SomethingAwful memory was that time the Goons attacked the newsgroup

At the time, SA was hosted in a very low rent IP space, also used by many spammers. An automated spam email blocklist called SPEWS escalated its blocking to include SA’s IP.

I don’t know why that should cause a problem with the SA site. No one sane would use SPEWS for anything other than email blocking. Perhaps notification emails and post digests?

The SPEWS site had no appeal process or contact information, just a “helpful” suggestion that might be a place to get advice on why they were blocked.

So Lowtax sicced the goons on…

They were told that their IP was in a bad neighborhood, SPEWS was an automated system, and the only solution was to move or have their provider kick out the spammers and wait for the listing to age off. Yeah, that didn’t make them happy, and unhappy goons set about their usual tactics by flooding with masses of spam forgery posts using a program called hipcrime.

I barely noticed. Scientology had tried the same with alt.religion.scientology previously, and my news proxy filtered out almost all of it. Meanwhile their injection points were getting whack-a-moled.

Eventually I think it dawned on Lowtax that this wasn’t just another kitty newsgroup, that a lot of the people on nanae were administrators for large networks, they maintained other spam blocklists, or were generally BOFH.

And so he called off the goons. (“Run Away!”)


Brings back memories of the early days of the internet. Whatever his recent troubles and, apparently, massive moral and character flaws were, you could at least count on Lowtax to not be a Nazi. Which I guess is notable, these days?

I’ve found, in my 20 years of running the site, that whenever you ban an ironic Nazi, suddenly they become actual Nazis.

  1. He was just four years older than me. This is really disturbing, especiall since I frequented SA back in the day…

Threadlocking is sure having its heydey here.


Fare thee well good traveler, off to the big interwebs in the sky.


Good riddance to bad rubbish. May he spend his next several lives learning what it was like to have a flood of his bored asshole users come harass you.


That’s why you never piss off the system admins- their lives are hard enough, but doing it intentionally? that just flips the “be evil, vindictive, and vicious” switch on.


I haven’t thought of SA in a long time. I used to haunt it in the early 2000s. Not the forums but the site itself. I remember Cliff Yablowski being pretty funny at the time.

Though they did cause me trouble. In the early 2000s I ran one of the largest paintball forums on the internet. One day we suddenly had giant pics of the head of a penis with semen on it showing up on the forum. The deletes and bans commenced. We thought it was a bunch of people making trouble. But then I notice that even established member who never made trouble were posting it.

Turns out SA decided they didn’t want people hot linking to images posted on the forum (this was when space and bandwidth were at a premium), so they returned this image to anyone doing so. We ended up just blocking all content from that site and if fixed it. But it was an interesting day, to say the least.


Damn. Probably one of the first places I was online.

Fair statement to say he wasn’t that involved in what the forums created, just for the soil that allowed them to create. Think that Something Awful had one of the best moderation implementation that I’ve seen - you paid your $10, if you broke the rules, the spirit of the rules, or tired to rule lawyer some daft shit, you got banned with the reason why for everyone to see, and could pay to re-register.

This is oddly hitting me a wee bit more than I would have thought.


The content of that link implies he had three daughters

Tweet and reply hit the mark.

“Oh, I think I see the problem. Here, you can see it too if you just lean over and look down this lift shaft…”


Yikes. I guess you followed the link from the Kotaku article, it has this post by his ex-wife, Lady Ambien.

I have been sitting for hours debating whether or not to disclose this, and I feel like it’s something I do need to get off of my chest.
Frankly, I’m tried of being quiet. I’ve mostly had to stay quiet for years about things happening behind the scenes. I’ve held things inside so long and so hard my chest physically hurt the same way it is now.

I considered not sharing this out of respect for Rich’s parents and sister, but after thinking on the incredibly vitriolic wall of text Rich’s Mother sent to me this morning, saying upon many other things, that his blood is on my hands, I need to share it to regain some sense of control over what’s taken place in the past 48 hours.

Yesterday I recieved a divorce ruling that would help me and my daughter stay in our home in Canada and allow me to provide a good life for her as well as pay back numerous debts that had accrued during the past two years when I was receiving $350 a month in child support.

In the divorce ruling the judge found that Rich had willfully spent down the martial fund, confirmed his treatment of me was Domestic Violence and put together a plan to pay for the attorney fees etc. He would still retain custody settled on previously in mediation. He was due to get our daughter for Christmas.

An hour later I was contacted by my attorney who informed me that Rich had shot himself earlier in the morning.

So. There it is.
His other ex and I got to tell our children that their father died without saying goodbye to them, or that he loved them, or to my knowledge, left a note for them.

If you’ve made it this far thank you for giving me space to let this go so I know longer have to hold onto it.

TL;DR - Judge ruled he was an asshole who spent marital funds, did domestic abuse, and was now liable for fees etc, and then he shot himself this morning. :confused:


I think the mom has two other daughters by a different father, but will update asap if you’re right

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The only experience I have with SA is every furry I know saying the site made life a living hell for them as frequently as possible, and that it was a driving reason for the “furries are creepy and bad” bullshit that still infests the internet to this day. And that lowtax was a driving force in that behavior.

So as far as I’m concerned, he can go fuck himself.


It’s a long story, but Lowtax has had multiple wives and has three daughters between two of them. His death (by apparent suicide) came just hours after divorce hearings with one of the spouses and her daughter had just been finalized. That spouse and her abuse situation was what led to the forums being sold off to another prominent community member and the GoFundMe that was linked was originally intended to help that specific spouse, but in light of his passing has been expanded to cover all his children. The whole story is actually updated on the GoFundMe page now.


It just makes me think about all the guys I grew up with who followed the same trajectory of being cool and funny when they were young and successful, then being angry and funny when things didn’t quite go their way, then just being angry and wrecking their own lives.
There are a couple who I’m just waiting to hear the news, and I wish I could do something but it’s like they’ve gone too far to turn around now.