Everything you need is above..
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    $\begingroup$ For anyone too lazy to do 'it', rot13(gur grkg lbh trg nsgre znfxvat jvgu ((kl zbq gjb cyhf kl zbq guerr) zbq gjb) & pbairegvat eto gb nfpvv vf gur sbyybjvat: Gur xrl lbh arrq vf nobir.., Rgtm Lnxh ... gnqc n jjxq hs ezyk ...Odnq ffod. G vy leIlm'g bnwxp fs. Fx xj. Tgnn oj pqhpfi?y x clZkrfo orw Odztsdq.. Tkbr. F pnhq. Zql. Mllr.) $\endgroup$ – Lukas Rotter Mar 5 at 17:53
  • $\begingroup$ @LukasRotter that was fast $\endgroup$ – user74000 Mar 5 at 17:55
  • $\begingroup$ Now we just have to figure out which cipher it is :) rot13(V fhfcrpg gur xrl gb hfr jvgu jungrire pvcure zvtug yvgrenyyl or 'nobir') $\endgroup$ – Lukas Rotter Mar 5 at 17:56
  • $\begingroup$ rot13(Lbh zvtug unir ernq n fvzvyne fgngrzrag fbzrjurer....) $\endgroup$ – user74000 Mar 5 at 18:31
  • $\begingroup$ @LukasRotter i just noticed that the text you obtained is a little short, i am not sure why but it should actually be rot13(Gur xrl lbh arrq vf nobir.., Rgtm Lnxh ... gnqc dkhrrrx qn jjxq hsadfyxmq f ezyk ... . Odnq fr efod. Gfhd vy les. Ilm'g gb bnwbkrxp ohy fs bs. Fs vx x kvj. Tgny qn oj pjruqhpfi? Ahy x clj. Zkrfo orwzdcyfayj. Odztsdq. Uodfjour. Tkbr. F pnhq. Zql. Mllr.) $\endgroup$ – user74000 Mar 5 at 18:42

The plaintext is

Stop Mask ... half excuses to wear undestand a half ... . Real is rare. Take it off. Don't be careless put it on. It is a lie. What to be skeptical? But a dye. Clear perceptible. Removed. Preserve. Once. A soul. Cry. Home.


Only take the cells of the 13x13 grid if (xy % 2 + xy % 3) % 2 == 0, where x and y are the column/row values of the 13x13 grid. This is clued by the XOR-mask in the lower half of the picture. Then, convert the given RGB values to ASCII. This gives us:

The key you need is above.., Etgz Yaku ... tadp qxueeek da wwkd ufnqslkzd s rmlx ... . Bqad se rsbq. Tsuq il yrf. Vyz't to oajoxekc bul sf of. Sf ik k xiw. Gtal da bw cwehducsv? Nul k pyw. Mxesb bejmqplsnlw. Bqmgfqd. Hbqswbhe. Gxoe. S caud. Mdy. Zyye.

Then apply a Vigenere cipher with the key "mask" on the ciphertext part of the message and you get the plaintext above.

Not sure if there's anything more to the puzzle, as the plaintext itself looks pretty cryptic.

  • $\begingroup$ I'm not sure if the plaintext is advocating not wearing a mask, or just making fun of that particular conspiracy theory. $\endgroup$ – bobble Mar 5 at 19:00
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    $\begingroup$ @bobble, to me it looks like a kinda artsy back and forth argument. $\endgroup$ – MacGyver88 Mar 5 at 19:07
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    $\begingroup$ Also, for those of us who previously didn't know about that particular mask, the broken image before "stuck?" actually takes you to a Google search with that formula. EDIT - if you right click and open image in new tab. $\endgroup$ – MacGyver88 Mar 5 at 19:10
  • $\begingroup$ The rest of the challenge quit bad so i will just give it away rot13(Znfx unys gb haqrfgnaq unys, Erny vf ener, Gnxr vg bss. Qba'g or pneryrff chg vg ba. Vg vf n yvr. Jung gb or fxrcgvpny? Ohg n qlr. Pyrne creprcgvoyr. Erzbirq. Cerfreir. Bapr. N fbhy. Pel. Ubzr. Fgbc ... rkphfrf jrne n ... . svefg bar vf znxr hc, frpbaq pbivq znfx ) $\endgroup$ – user74000 Mar 5 at 19:56
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    $\begingroup$ @Alexbries, So we don't need to put makeup on under our mask? Because no one will see it? I actually had a funny handle bar mustache one day at work because I figured no one would see it. I knew though. :}) $\endgroup$ – MacGyver88 Mar 5 at 21:23

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