Rick Ross Feud: The Battle Over Who Will Own Rickross.com
Men speaking in strange tongues call Rick Ross late in the night and ask him questions involving matters he has no knowledge of.
In English more broken than Tim Tebow's NFL chances, they ply him for info on his next ill beat. They croon how much they love his jam.
Then, the white, 60-year-old cult expert living in New Jersey hangs up the phone, confused, and thinks of all of the money he could bank.
"Over the last month, we've discussed whether or not to auction our domain," says Rick Ross, who runs the cultic studies Rick A. Ross Institute, and has a hegemonic grip on the Rick Ross URLs: rickross.com, rickross.net, and rickross.org.
"At one time, believe it or not, I was the most famous Rick Ross."
A little something's changed.
More than a decade after Rick Ross christened rickross.com in 1996, our own local celebrity, rapper Rick Ross, went supernova. Now, the Bawse owns the rap world -- even if he's not as hard as he says, and his would-be assassins have worse aim than bad guys in a Rambo flick. (Last January some entirely feckless hit-men unloaded 17 bullets at the Bawse in Fort Lauderdale and, incredibly, missed his Rolls-Royce with every shot.)
But the Bawse has a problem: the biggest rapper in America doesn't even have his own signature website. He instead must use rickrossdeeperthanrap.com while the other Rick Ross deploys the suddenly desirable rickross.com. And that Rick Ross isn't giving the URL up.
Unless the price is right, or course.
"One time -- but this was years ago -- I got a message from one his people saying they wanted to buy rickross.com," he said. "But their offer was, like, $10,000. And I thought, 'That's ridiculously low.' So I dismissed it. "
But so far, no better offer has arrived. And in the time since, the cult expert has collected thousands of rapper Rick Ross' fans who have unwittingly clacked rickross.com into their browser and came upon a site strewn with tens of thousands of archived materials related to strange churches across the nation.
"At least a 1,000 per day," Rick Ross estimates their number.
The site also lists Rick Ross' e-mail, the inbox of which explodes with fan e-mail -- not for him, of course. And next to his e-mail, and perhaps imprudently, is Rick Ross' cell phone. So at night the calls come.
"I love your music!" the callers yell.
"And I tell them, 'I'm not the right Rick Ross.' I do cults."
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss New Times Broward-Palm Beach's biggest stories.