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Proxy (plural: Proxies) is the term given to those who serve The Slender Man. The theory behind the name is that Proxies are entities or people who are under the influence or control of the Slender Man (or the same force that influences Slender Man), and act based on its wants and needs- hence, Proxies serve as an in-between (i.e. a proxy) for Slender Man.
It is suspected that Proxies do the actual, physical work for Slender Man, such as creating and manipulating objects, destroying and leaving evidence, creating videos and responding on Twitter (in ARGs), and influencing victims as needed.
TribeTwelve contains the largest organization of Proxies called the Collective. On February 14, 2012, during a live webcast with Noah Maxwell, the Observer hacked into Noah's Twitter account and used it to interview Noah and the viewers, where he then revealed the names and identities of Firebrand, DeadHead, Swain, and Cursor, and possible Proxies Mr. Scars and Persolus.
Despite popular belief, proxies are essentially little more than slaves. They are simply mind-controlled humans, who do not gain any unnatural properties other than their behavior. Most proxies are completely unaware of their nature, as their memories are suppressed by Slender Man, and those who do find out they are proxies are often horrified to learn of the mind control that had occurred.
Very few proxies retain any of their personality while in forced servitude, as most adopt a separate personality altogether, sometimes nearly opposite of their real personality. This may be a method in which Slender Man helps prevent them from remembering their actions, or figure out what they really are. This alternate personality can range from sadistic to completely emotionless.
Many proxies seem to figuratively (or sometimes literally) worship Slender Man while under his control; whether this is as a means of keeping them obedient or a result of an inflated ego is unknown, although the former may be more likely.
Some stories report proxies who have either failed or who outlive their usefulness later being destroyed to prevent them from becoming a problem.
In somewhat rare cases, fans will report Slender Man possessing a proxy completely, taking full control of the individual to the point they become nothing more than a vessel for Slender Man's own mind.
The Blogosphere in its story eventually fleshed out a system of ranks for its proxies. While other sources traditionally only had one or two proxies, the blogosphere went through a period where runners would be hunted by large packs of proxies. This lead to criticisms claiming that the proxies took the focus away from the Slender Man itself, and that the proxy hordes made the stories too much resemble a zombie apocalypse fiction. Some blogs made efforts to retcon proxy hordes away as hallucinations.
The ranking system is as follows:
- Hallowed - Mindless puppets created by Slender Man for the harassment of runners, with no other purpose.
- Berserkers - Most closely resembling the traditional perception of proxies, slaves to the Slender Man, but with enough of their own will left to have superior problem solving and tactics.
- Sleepers - Have their original personalities kept intact, and are left unaware of their status of proxies.
- Agents - Not proxies in the traditional sense; Agents appear to be the blogosphere's interpretation of cultists.
- Revenants - Proxies with super-strength and regenerative abilities granted to them by Slender Man. Eventually became unpopular with bloggers and were retconned away as hallucinations.
Initial Influence and Origins
Proxies most likely got their start from early Slenderman works' usage of mental influence of Slenderman. Early creepypasta indicated that Slenderman was able to telepathically communicate or influence his victims or those he wished to do his bidding. The most common early evidence for this was the usage of telepathic communication to speak to children who he would lead outdoors and then into the forest. He also used the telepathy to control his victims without their knowing and bring them into his domain. Several stories in particular focus on the strength and usage of this power. The idea behind proxies may be derived from the idea that he could not only influence his victims, but also influence individuals to do as he wishes to get to his victims. Proxies are considered the primary or secondary antagonists of most Slenderman based ARG's.
Symbols and Markings
Each proxy appears to have some kind of symbol of their own. If not, they sometimes share the marks of others. It's unknown what each mark means; Whether they have an actual paranormal or physical use, or simply a symbol of Slender Man's repeating presence.
Notorious Proxy from TribeTwelve; the Observer, is theorized to use their symbol in order to watch Noah, keeping a tab on his every movement. Though, it could be nothing but scare tactics.
The Operator Symbol has been seen in many Slenderman ARGs. Including, but not limited to TribeTwelve, DarkHarvest00, and even wildshadows57. It has been accepted as the primary pop culture symbol for Slender Man and Proxies.
It is important to note that characters from MarbleHornets or EverymanHYBRID are never termed as Proxies, as the two series have never adopted nor stated the term, and otherwise have no connection to the term whatsoever.
List of Proxies
Known (Canon) Proxies
- The Observer (TribeTwelve)
- Firebrand (TribeTwelve)
- DeadHead (TribeTwelve)
- Cursor (TribeTwelve)
- Swain (TribeTwelve)
- Persolus (TribeTwelve)
- Mr.Scars (TribeTwelve)
- Vince (Proxy)
- Kate (Slender: The Arrival)
- Unknown Proxy (DarkHarvest00)
- Charlie Matheson Jr. (Slender: The Arrival)
- HABIT (EverymanHYBRID)
- It is also possible that Michael Andersen from MLAndersen0 could possibly be a Proxy, as hinted at by the most recent video, "Going Away Present."
Amateur writers and film artists have claimed to be stalked by a wide variety of proxies, be proxies themselves, or house proxy identities in their subconscious mind. None of which have been properly identified. Such amateur creations include The Tan Suit Man, The Studded Man, or the Faceless Follower.
The fan-creations of amateur writers can be found on the connection wiki.
Characters commonly mistaken for proxies who are not.
- Anyone from MarbleHornets - One of the Big 5 ARG's, Marble Hornets is one of the only series that the term "Proxy" cannot be identified with. Since it was one of the first ones, and the crew of MH has specifically stated they have no connection with the other ARG's, the term can only be unofficially applied, but is not appropriate to use to describe any of the characters in the series such as Masky or Hoody.
- Furthermore, Masky and Hoody do not even work for The Operator, and actually are trying to kill him.
- KindVonDerRitter - KindVonDerRitter is not a Proxy. A Proxy does the direct bidding of Slender Man, whereas KindVonDerRitter only worships him as a God, and only works towards goals that are speculated to be Slender Man's goals without any real contact with Slender Man. In essence, KindVonDerRitter tries to be a Proxy, but was never chosen by Slender Man himself.
Problems with the community
Masky, Hoodie, and Toby
This is a point of confusion in the mythos that often is question without truly understand who Masky and Hoodie are. Ticci-Toby is, in his own story, a proxy. Masky and Hoodie, however, are not proxies, and have never come into contact with Slender Man. The main antagonist of MarbleHornets is The Operator, a similar character to Slender Man with several fundamental aspects altered. The Operator does not use proxies, and neither Masky nor Hoodie are ever seen trying to help it. The opposite is true, actually, as they are constantly trying to impede Alex, who is also trying to destroy The Operator, but through a different method than they are.
Additionally, Hoodie and Masky are the alternate personas of Brian Thomas and Tim Wright. By the end of MarbleHornets, Brian is dead, and Tim has cast off his personality shifts. Neither have had control of their shifts, do not show any ability to remember what has happened, and Tim specifically does everything both as Masky and as himself to stop The Operator the best he can. By the end of the series, Tim and Hoodie were enemies, and Hoodie was ultimately killed by Tim and then revealed to be Brian.
Ticci-Toby has never existed in the MarbleHornets universe, and therefore would never interact with either Tim Wright nor Brian Thomas. Furthermore, Masky and Hoodie are typically depicted as individuals with a similar build to Toby, which is false as both are bulkier men with a heavier set. Finally, MarbleHornets states it exists in its own continuity, meaning it would be impossible for Ticci-Toby to meet either Brian or Tim, let alone the fact that Brian is dead and Tim is missing.
One other piece of confusion is part of the Creepypasta World theory, which stipulates all creepypasta characters actually exist in one singular universe. While most creepypasta authors do not accept this, Brian and Tim still wouldn't be part of it even if it were true. This is because Hoody and Masky are not creepypasta. By definition, a creepypasta is essentially an internet horror story, whereas Hoody and Masky were characters created for a YouTube show. They were never written in a story prior to this, and are copyrighted characters just like Toby, so they cannot be written without permission from Troy Wagner, Joseph DeLage, and Tim Sutton. Any creepypasta stories involving Brian and Hoody are not only non-canon, but totally fake, just like any spinoff creepypasta of Ticci-Toby.
Is Toby Canon?
This is a point of confusion for most people in the Toby fandom, which mainly stems from confusion as to how Slender Man canon works.
A Slender Man story is typically regarded as canon or not on an individual basis, but as a mythos overall, stories that are canon are typically only accepted as canon once the mythos has come to accept it as either a fundamental aspect of the Slender Man, or the world Slender Man embodies. Furthermore, most works involving characters interacting with Slender Man often have very limited storytelling, and quickly die out. From a surgist point of view, Toby would be an unacceptable part of the mythos, as Surgists do not tend to believe in the concept of proxies as a canon aspect.
One major problem is that Slender Man is attributed under a creative commons, allowing for use of him in everything save for commercial products that are released without the permission of Eric "Victor Surge" Knudsen. Ticci-Toby, however is a copyrighted character belonging to Kastoway, who used Toby in only one story and has distanced himself from his creation altogether. As such, Toby is a dropped concept, and is non-canon. He exists in only one story and will not be used in any further stories.
Kastoway and his creation
On the Ticci-Toby Deviantart page created by author Kastoway, comments have been disabled.
On Friday, December 14th, 2014, Kastoway wrote the following after a series of arguments regarding Toby being shipped with other Creepypasta characters. The post was titled "Creepypasta Fandom, Please Read"
- Hello guys,
- Due to recent events I feel the need to clarify a few things.
- A lot of people really have been white knighting for me, which I understand is in attempt to help me out and defend me in a situation in which I wouldn't defend myself but you really don't need to do that.
- I know in the past I have asked people not to draw or write anything involving Toby which featured him being shipped with anyone other than Clockwork but I know now that it's really pointless to ask something like that.
- A lot of people have respected what I am and am not comfortable with and some people haven't. That's fine, I don't really find it to be important anymore, it's really just not worth the effort in trying to fight back against stuff like that and I guess I really just don't care much anymore.
- I'm done with the Creepypasta fandom. I've been done with it for a while and with Toby's copyrights in place I plan on not looking back on it or bothering with it unless it involves legal violation of copyright.
- Please don't feel inclined to defend me against people shipping Toby with other characters or OCs or anything like that, it's fine. And not to mention people are getting hurt because some others tend to take it too far.
- Bashing on someone's OC is a big nono. Please do not do that it's very hurtful towards the creator.
- Bashing and Constructive criticism are two very different things and have two very different outcomes.
- I never wanted to ultimately hurt anyone, I just thought that in the past that by putting up boundaries with my character I'd feel more comfortable with my place in the fandom but I was wrong and I am 100% not afraid to admit that.
- This is my fault. It is and I am truly sorry that I caused so much trouble, please know that it wasn't intended.
- From this point on please don't attack anyone about shipping with Toby or anything like that.
- Just leave it be, okay?
- And to anyone who has been hurt in the process please know that I truly am sorry. The fact that one little thing went against something I didn't like doesn't mean that it's right for you to be hurt, and I truly hope that everything gets better for you.
- I wasn't prepared for my character to become popular on the internet. I really wasn't.
- I never thought it would happen and I'm still not good at dealing with it. In fact I suck at it, it's true.
- Anyone who dislikes me has one reason or another to feel that way about me and that's fine. As I've said before I don't ask anyone to think of me any certain way so hate me if that's what you feel, just know that I'm sorry for what I've done and if I've ever done anything to personally offend you or anything like that and you'd like to confront me about it please do so so that I can apologize to you directly, because I want you all to understand that I'm not just playing nice, I mean it when I say I'm sorry for the trouble I've caused.
- I don't want to come on Deviantart and worry about people hating me. I don't want to start or continue conflicts, I just want it all to be water under the bridge.
- So all and all--
- Thank you and I'm sorry. I really am.
Kastoway has tended to refuse to answer questions regarding Ticci-Toby, with reasoning not being directly cited, but possibly being due to receiving the same questions over and over, and possibly in response to any flame wars that happened due to the above post.
The Slender Man Connection (SMC) wiki has hosted an article regarding Toby since May 2014, and has repeatedly had to delete or redact comments worshiping Toby. These include worshiping Toby's aspects, wanting to be in a relationship with Toby, believing Toby to be real or, at the very least, based on a real person, wishing to be in a romantic relationship with Toby, idolizing his murderous behavior, and a myriad of other problems. On April 29th, 2016, Kastoway wrote the following on a blog post on Deviantart titled "What the F---". The beginning portion of the blog was added after Kastoway had posted a comment on this wiki which will be posted after this blog.
- EDIT:// Hey guys, sorry again for how hostile I sounded in this journal, I usually try not to use such a large amount of cursing and stuff like that, I was in a really infuriated state so I let all of that slip. ANYWAY the mods on the wiki have featured my comment as a discussion and edited to wiki in order to give the issue some recognition, which I am incredibly thankful for! Hopefully that helps cut this crap down, although I know there will always be those hard-headed people who will refuse to accept the fact that he's not real. Anyways, sorry about that. I'd like to go back to avoiding the subject of Ticci-Toby from here on out.
- Thanks guys
- I know I said I'd like to avoid this topic to the best of my ability but I feel like straight up pointing this out because I have no tolerance for this asinine bulls---. Sure it's all fun and games until another person gets hurt because some crazy f---ed up kid thinks they're gonna please some made up f---ing character by harming someone else again.
- The comments on this are absolutely ridiculous.
- I'm saying this here and now, and I'm going to make a comment there linking back to this journal so people know that I'm the actual person who wrote the god damn story: Ticci-Toby is 100% fictional, he is made up, I am f---ing positive because I made him up. His sole purpose was for my entertainment because I like horror and I wanted to create a scary story that ended up actually getting unexpected amounts of attention. He is not real, he not based off of a real person or an urban legend, you have not seen him with your own eyes because he is FAKE. Do NOT take this and make another f---ing sick move like those girls who stabbed their friend over Slenderman, do not do this to me, do not do this to anyone. Claiming that he's real is taking an imaginary thing meant to do nothing but take the form of a scary story for entertainment purposes and making it a real life issue that actually affects real life people. I'm horrified to see people say this, I don't know what I'd do if this were the cause of something awful because of some f---ed up prepubescent s---head hurting someone over something I made.
- I know I sound aggressive and rude but that's because I am furious. I am not going to take lightly to this subject, I'm not playing games, this is an issue and I'm not going to sit back and let people take something made up to a harmful realistic magnitude.
- To the people who think that Ticci-Toby or any horror character, creepy pasta or not is real; get your f---ing head on straight, don't be a god damn idiot.
(Minimally edited to censor curses, Original blog link above, can be read uncensored on Deviantart)
In response, Kastoway also posted the following under the username "Bonejags" on the comment section of this article (Link to uncensored comment):
- I cannot believe the bulls--- that I am seeing in these comments. I cannot believe that there is an actual debate over whether or not Ticci-Toby is real. I made this account to announce that no, he is not real. How do I know? Because I'm the one who made him the hell up. I'm Kastoway from deviantart, the one that's credited in the wiki for writing the story. If you don't believe me here's a link to a journal about this subject that's on my account http://kastoway.deviantart.com/journal/What-the-f----599845215
- So, once again, I'm going to say it. Ticci-Toby is 100% FICTIONAL. As in he is NOT REAL. So no, to those saying that they've seen him with their own eyes, you haven't, there's nothing to see because he doesn't exist. He's not based on a real person nor an urban legend, he is a character I made up because I wanted to write a scary story for my own entertainment. I had no clue that it would get this amount of attention, and that's why handling the subject has been so rough for me.
- I apologize if I sound harsh but I have no tolerance for this bulls---. The amount of people who think that he's real is absolutely obscene, and I can't bare to think that another incident similar to the Slenderman Stabbings is possible because of something I created for fun. Please do not let that happen and take this seriously. It's one thing to enjoy a horror story, it's another thing to get joy from thinking that fictional psychopaths are real and that you're able to interact with them. They're fake and quite frankly I don't care how hearing that affects you, if you're heartbroken to hear that a crazy f---ing murderer isn't real then there is something wrong with and what you need is help and a taste of reality.
(Edited minimally to censor curses. Original unedited comment link above, and will remain unedited for record).
Since then, all comments regarding worshiping Toby or trying to imply he is real have been either heavily edited or deleted entirely. Kastoway himself does not wish to speak about Ticci-Toby further.