(pronounced either "/goʊt/si: dɒt si: ɛks" or "goʊt sɛks") was an Internet shock site
. Its front page featured a picture, hello.jpg
, showing a naked man stretching his anus
to a large size with both hands, with the inside of his rectum
clearly visible. Below his gaping anus, his dangling penis
were visible, as well as a ring on the ring finger
of his left hand.
The image hello.jpg originates from a set of forty images called gap.zip. In those images, the man used dildos and butt plugs to stretch his anus. The images were located by Stile Project and are also available from the "Contrib" section of the goatse.cx website under the filename gap.zip. hello.jpg is the third file in the archive, gap3.jpg.
On January 14, 2004, the domain goatse.cx
was suspended by Christmas Island Internet Administration
violations in response to a complaint, but many mirrors
of the site are still available, and the image is displayed on many websites.
In January 2007, Christmas Island Internet Administration put the domain goatse.cx back into the pool of available domains. The domain was subsequently registered on January 16 through domain registrar Variomedia, and the current registrant tried to auction off the right to use the domain.
The goatse.cx domain name was reported sold at an auction on April 30, 2007 to an unknown bidder. According to seobidding.com, the first auction ended with fake bids so the auction was reactivated. This was again won by fake bidders, so Seobidding.com announced that the website would be sold for $500,000 and that legal action would be pursued against the fake bidders. On November 25, 2007, the site was for sale on seobidding; "goatse.cx asking: $50200 minimum."
Control of the domain was passed to the secondary market, and has since been taken by domain squatters who are trying to sell the domain name for 10,000 euros.
, the site was relaunched featuring a picture of Bill O'Reilly
and a legal disclaimer. The file name and alt text remained the same as before.
As of 2008-09-28, the site was put up for sale, and the picture changed once again due to a Cease and Desist from Fox Broadcasting Company ordering the owner to stop displaying Bill O'Reilly.
Goatse.cx had four sections, two of which had images intended to shock the viewer:
- The "Receiver" page, titled "Eh", showing the aforementioned hello.jpg. Hello.jpg has the alt attribute "stinger". Since 2000, before the picture is the text in black, "The goatse.cx lawyer has informed us that we need a warning! So.. if you are under the age of 18 or find this photograph offensive, please don't look at it. Thank you!" Newer versions of the site had links to http://www.dolphinsex.org/ and http://www.urinalpoop.org/, while older versions linked to http://www.biganal.com/ (all of which are now occupied by cybersquatters). The text below hello.jpg reads, "IMPORTANT NOTE: There are many merchandising attempts for goatse.cx around the web-- none of them are real, none of them are official. Do not buy this gimmick merchandise. The official goatse.cx merchandise is coming soon!" The oldest versions had a counter tracking the number of visits.
- The "Giver" page, titled "Woah", shows a picture (giver.jpg) of a man reclining in an orange convertible (later versions show him on a yacht or speedboat of some kind, with ocean or river waves in the background). He is depicted with an over-sized penis which reaches up to his chest, faked using digital image editing techniques. The website layout, bearing a man stretching his anus as "The Receiver" and a man with an oversized penis as "The Giver" contains an anal sex joke: that the receiver is stretching his anus so that the giver can insert his oversized penis into it.
- The "Feedback" section, titled "Got mail?", exhibits emails that were sent to the site.
- The "Contrib" section showcasing visitor contributions to the site. Contrib has additional variations of hello.jpg and giver.jpg, as well as other images and files. The title of this page is "Contributed Work".
- bush.jpg is a picture of United States President George W. Bush, calling someone on a telephone in his office, with hello.jpg displayed on a laptop computer on his desk.
- goatse-wwii.jpg is a picture of a large snowball, with "goatse.cx" written on the side, chasing Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, and Hideki Tojo.
- giver2.jpg is a picture of the Goatse giver holding his over-sized penis.
- magiceye.jpg is a Magic Eye picture. The initial image, a legitimate autostereogram of a helix, changes after about 16 seconds to that of a lower resolution, 256 color version of hello.jpg. It attempts to fool viewers by exploiting the fact that, although the server sends a MIME type stating the filename is a JPEG image, the image is in fact an animated GIF.
- warning.jpg is a warning sign picture telling people not to go to goatse.cx
- goatsex.swf is a Flash Movie, set to the hook from "MMMBop" by Hanson. The movie shows a large dildo being inserted into the anus of the man posing in hello.jpg. The background is from another gap.zip picture, gap8.jpg. The photograph in this movie was taken at a different angle than hello.jpg, showing the man in the image from the side as opposed to the back.
- Goatman.mp3 is an MP3 Music file. It takes up 518 KB.
- Foxy_goatse.mp3 is another mp3 music file, a Frank Zappa-inspired parody of the Jimi Hendrix song Foxy Lady. It takes up 1061 KB.
- goatsecx-winamp.zip is a ZIP file containing a Winamp skin, depicting hello.jpg. It takes up 313 KB.
In addition the website included an image called loopback.jpg, which portrays a man's penis being inserted into his anus.
The site used the .cx
country code, the top-level domain
of the Australian territory of Christmas Island
. The actual server of Goatse.cx was not located on Christmas Island, but in the United States
and was owned by Hick.org, a website about computer programming and bathroom humor
. The Hick.org domain was registered by Matt Miller in Overland Park
. Both Goatse.cx and Hick.org originated from the same IP address; the server was located in Kansas City
, metro-region. Goat.cx, formerly a mirror of Goatse.cx, was located in the Dallas
, metro-region, while current mirror Goatse.cz seems to be located in Clifton
, New Jersey
Goatse in popular culture
Because many frequent Internet users have been tricked into viewing the site at one time or another, it has become something of an Internet meme
. As such, hello.jpg
and the other images on the site are common subjects of parodies
- The first documented GOATSE personalized license plate in the United States was successfully acquired, as referenced at Uberzine.com
- Following Hurricane Charley in August 2004, a photograph purporting to show "the hands of God" in the cloud formations in the aftermath of the disaster circulated via email. The image was eventually proven to be a fabricated Goatse parody.
- In June 2007, a parody of the 2012 Summer Olympics logo submitted by "Sean Stayte" appeared on the BBC News website under the alternative Olympic Logo entries and was broadcast on their BBC News 24 channel. Two hands were pulling the 0 from 2012 apart. The image was later shown as part of a gallery of viewers logos on BBC London News and BBC News 24, and was subsequently removed from the website. The editor of the BBC News website acknowledged the mistake in his blog, saying his team "simply didn’t spot it".