Did Preyproject's nifty software just help Sean Power and posse of newfound twitter friends track down and retrieve his laptop from a bar in NYC, or are we all reading a masterly clever (as in entertaining) viral WOM story? Check this nifty chronological summary of tweets about the event (storify seems pretty neat y'all so I've been turned on to at least one product after this), and if you do a google search on "Sean Power’s Laptop and the Girl in the Purple Sarong" you'll find that it's posted everywhere, including the motherload Metafilter.
Cliff notes: @seanpower was in Canada when his laptop, that had been stolen earlier, was started up by the alleged thief. As soon as it was going, Prey alerted Sean who immediately tweeted about it - including screendumps of what the man who was using it looked like and how he was logging into his Chase bank account and Facebook page with it. Random twitter fof @neilreese and a Girl in a Purple Sarong jumped into action, went to the bar where the laptop was located, and somehow got it back! You can read Reese's posts about what happened here. The film that used to be in that post has been removed to protect the privacy of the girl in the purple sarong. There's a happy ending coming soon as Sean Powers and Nicholas Reese will meet up and livetweet the reunion of the kidnapped laptop and his main man.
Great story right? Too great say some cynics who point out that The alleged thiefs facebook account is but five months old and has barely any updates. His group facebook page is currently suffering the onslaughts of keyboard warriors calling him names. Check out this comment on how the story doesn't add up over at Metafilter. It does seem very strange that one hasn't reported the theft of a bag that contains "my birth certificate, short form birth certificate, health card, cell phone, 17" macbook, and $$ :/". But as Sean says haters gonna hate, and he's not bothered if you don't believe the story - either way it was entertaining. A bit like a Scooby Doo episode, with Daphne in a purple sarong. The alleged theif would have gotten away with it too, if it wasn't for that meddling software!