Anthony Weiner's campaign did not respond Tuesday to repeated inquiries about a new set of unverified images suggesting that he exchanged sexually charged messages — and an explicit image — with a woman last summer.
The screenshots of conversations — on the nightlife site The Dirty — could not be independently confirmed. They consist of screenshots of exchanges on Facebook and the lesser-known social network Formspring between a woman (whose avatar is blurred) and a man alleged to be (and who she appears to believe) is Weiner, but who also uses the handle "Carlos Danger."
The site's anonymous tipster claims that Weiner continued the correspondence with her at least until August 2012, when Weiner allegedly suggested finding her a Chicago condo where they could meet. The screenshots of the exchanges are undated, however, and whether they could be shown to have taken place before or after Weiner's 2011 fall — before which he has said he had other, yet undisclosed, online relationships — is a key question.
"Can you hard delete all our chats here," the person identified as Weiner writes in one chat, in which he also allegedly offered his correspondent help in getting on a Politico blogger panel. "I'm deeply flawed," he allegedly says in another.
Weiner's blank avatar in one chat matches his blank avatar in images posted by Radar Online during the 2011 scandal that ended his congressional career. Weiner is now running for mayor of New York; other images show an avatar of Weiner and his wife, Huma Abedin. These details do not guarantee, however, that the screenshots are authentic.
The Dirty is a gossip site that initially focused on nightlife in Scottsdale, Arizona, but which has gained a national following. The site made political news in 2010 when Ben Quayle, the son of the former vice president and then a congressional candidate, admitted he had written for the site under a pseudonym. Quayle was elected to Congress.
The site's publisher, Nik Ritchie, had also been the subject of a lawsuit for posting anonymous, unverified sexual allegations about a former Cincinnati Bengals cheerleader. The site, known online for its cruelty to minor celebrities and non-celebrities, grew by publishing gossip and nude photographs of club scene figures and then moved on to reality television stars and other B-list celebrities.
The site is widely read; one Weiner post has more than 100,000 views.
Ritchie didn't respond to an inquiry seeking more details on his claims. "I'm currently in talks with Anonymous. She has lawyered up in fear of Anthony Weiner, but she is willing to expose his sexual nature to TheDirty.com for the betterment of America," he wrote on his site.
BuzzFeed contacted Weiner's spokeswoman, Barbara Morgan, at 7:21 a.m. Tuesday about the postings, which went online Monday, asking whether they are real. She responded before 9 a.m. and then replied three more times that she would respond soon.
Ben Smith is the editor-in-chief of BuzzFeed and is based in New York.
Contact Ben Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.