the accretion of little things

by Violet Blue on July 11, 2008

violetbluevioletblue.net
Image via violetbluevioletblue.net

Walking into a Castro business today, the guy behind the counter saw me and called out, “Hey! I thought you were unpublished!”

I grinned and replied, “Hey, don’t make me unsmile.”

Later, at my publisher’s office, I got a big butch hug. “You know you can’t have a dyke romance without a little dyke drama. You’ve been initiated.” She also congratulated me on having the world’s biggest text message breakup.

I still don’t understand what happened, and neither does anyone else. It was brought to my attention that Boing Boing had removed all posts with even a mention of my name in them. I mentioned it on my blog. Other blogs pointed it out, people emailed Boing Boing. There was no response, except the deletion of remaining posts with my name in them. I did not pick a fight, I was in the dark. The blogosphere started to erupt. When it hit mainstream media, Boing Boing responded. They gave no excuse, and unleashed a vicious, brutal character attack. I was called names and heartlessly attacked, and people who defended me, or questioned the character assault were also attacked by BoingBoing and its staff. Yes, anyone can take down their own posts. But no one has the right to do it and turn it into an act of cruelty, sickeningly “for your own good” while trashing the subject. That’s repulsive. As recent as yesterday, the Boing Boing character smear continues. As do the obfuscation of facts. And journalists are repeating what they’re being told without question. Well, I have a few answers. There’s been a ton of media about this all week, and when yesterday’s Columbia piece was published, I decided that I refused to sit quietly without clarifying and correcting the facts.

 

“We don’t want to do that. We try not to be cruel. We try not to cause public drama or draw attention to people’s issues.” + “…it involved some personal, private stuff that I don’t tend to get into. Like whether someone’s character is this or that” (Xeni Jardin, Columbia Journalism Review + LA Times)

Wrong. In one instance, Xeni compared posts with me in them to “piles of shit on the floor” (after the day passed, her comment was non-transparently edited to remove this). Hayden called me “a strain[s] of evil” and there was more from both women.

 

“Except for the fact that they were deleted, the posts in question were unremarkable.” (Joe Uchill, Columbia Journalism Review)

They were significant. Really, a directory of unremarkable things? The list of deleted posts (updated) included Cory Doctorow’s Blogger jailed for refusing to hand over video (Josh Wolf), Photos related to London bombings, blog coverage, Wikipedia, Apple’s new thing? Video iPod; But more crap-o copy-blocking, Electronic Musical instruments from 1970 to 1990, HOWTO tag walls using laser electro LED graffiti, Alan Moore’s erotic “Lost Girls” and Peter Pan copyright woes, Book distributor bankruptcy means indie publishers screwed?, and David Pescovitz’s MondoGlobo podcasts: Violet Blue, Eddie Codel, Ryan Junell, Xeni Tech on NPR: SRL’s robotic mayhem — and much more.

 

“As the person who originally made the posts, she said, “it seemed natural to make the decision.” + “That’s how I felt with this situation. (I mean, there were other reasons for removing the posts.) But –- it was my work.” + “said she had removed the posts about Blue (all by Jardin originally); “I wanted to make my decision to take my work down,” she said.” (Xeni Jardin, New York Times, + LA Times + Chicago Tribune)

Not true. This new spreadsheet contains the author’s names along with more deleted posts, bringing the total to almost 80. 7.7% of the deleted posts were authored and posted by David Pescovitz and Cory Doctorow. Update 07.12.08: Is the word ‘weird’ getting redundant? It appears now that most of David Pescovitz’s previously ‘unpublished’ posts with VB links and references have now been quietly re-posted (or “ununpublished’ or ‘rewonderfuled’). Not all but nearly, and Doctorow’s is still MIA. I wonder why. /update

 

“As Blue’s charges of censorship resonated early last week,” (Chicago Tribune)

Nope, never “charged” censorship, never used the word once.

 

“Ms. Jardin, who says she was the one who took down the posts, conceded that the decision to unpublish was uncharted territory.” (New York Times)

False. This was not the first time. A MetaFilter commenter produced this page containing 407 BoingBoing posts that have been unpublished, mine included.

 

“If Blue has any kind of revenue sharing agreement for her San Francisco Chronicle work where she gets paid more if she gets more traffic, then Jardin’s action will hit her in the pocketbook. Similarly, while it’s unclear to me if Blue’s Tiny Nibbles blog and website has advertisements beyond a Helio sponsorship, Blue’s ability to get a replacement sponsor for the soon-to-be-defunct Helio will be constrained if her traffic goes down. Even if there is no economic impact (which I find unlikely), if Jardin removes references to Blue’s work then Blue’s Google-powered fame and influence go down.” (Mediavorous)

Wrong: deleting me had no effect on my pocketbook, nor am I “Google powered”. I don’t make my money like that. I do not have a revenue sharing agreement with the Chronicle: I get a flat rate for each column. Again, I did not notice that I’d been removed from Boing Boing; this argument falls flat based on that alone. But for the record, I added affiliates to this site at the end of last year; no advertisers. Prior to that, when I was still a friend of Boing Boing, my only affiliates were Amazon and a DVD porn rental site who I’m friends with. For every book purchase at Amazon, I make $1. This website is not profitable (thought right now it’s breaking even), and it certainly wasn’t when Boing Boing was linking to me. As for Helio, that was an introduction made by Xeni, and yet I still seem to have service. If I didn’t, I am also sponsored with another phone by Qik (thanks, Scott) and I have a phone from Nokia (thanks, me). And I invite anyone to attribute any of my successes to Boing Boing. My books? Me. My column? Phil Bronstein. My tech talks and lectures? Me. My appearances on shows? Me, and all of it, the merit of what I do and who I represent. I have gotten where I am on my own. Update: Mediavorous respectfully responded and clarified in More on Boing Boing and Violet Blue… and in the comments of this post. Thank you.


Image by anonymous.

The New York Times piece was one I liked, and they’ve let me know they’ll be making corrections on the post authorship and the statement about my trademark: it’s not in process, it’s been done for a while. On the blogs, Rachel Kramer Bussell didn’t like the NYT piece so much and had her say here.

Hitsville has an excellent post about the aftermath, so succinct that it is the title of this post (runner up: About That Boing Boing Thing). A couple days ago, will shetterly posted crm nd pnshmnt, or immoderate moderation at boingboing, where he’d been banned from criticizing their moderation in the moderation discussion thread, wondering if it had started by commenting in the VB/BB thread. paradox1x hits the nail on the head — that this has brought up issues for bloggers that are practically existential — in What does it mean when our media re-writes itself? Mistress Maitisse is now super glad her breakups are not in the New York Times. Tony Comstock, having been swept up in the mass deletions, is thinking twice about his relationships to bloggers as a small business owner.

Michel Evanchik hits home in The Case of the Missing Violet Blue about the character assassinations, saying “Insinuations by Miss Hayden and Miss Jardin that Miss Blue is somehow responsible for the deletions through bad behaviour are vile, especially as they fail to disclose or deny Miss Blue’s assertion that Miss Jardin and her were “casual” lovers for a brief time. (…) It is hard to believe that some public action of Miss Blue prompted the deletions, since then Jardin would need no coyness in explaining herself. It is also unlikely that Miss Blue was banished for acting as a groupie, as has been suggested by many partisans of Miss Jardin.” Two Ideas is just uncomfortable about the whole thing. The Deceiver takes off the gloves on all fronts here.

Open The Future has an excellent interview with the people who made the Boing Boing Censored game, and answer the question as to why there’s no way to play me in the game.

It’s important to consider that the media hurricane from this issue did not get me as linked as much as it did for Boing Boing. It’s typical; though to me that is equivalent to reporting only half the story. CJR did only after I emailed them about it, asking why. It really sucks that my character has been trashed by Boing Boing and a couple virulent comment trolls — my two most persistent harassers enjoyed using it as a platform to say some truly awful and factually untrue things about me, especially in the Boing Boing “That Violet Blue” post thread. Comments which were allowed to stay. It’s particularly hypocritical to me that Xeni, of all people, would allow comments to remain on her ‘personal blog’ that contain blatantly untrue statements about what people think my birth name or “real name” might be. I suppose, in light of how ugly and vitriolic BoingBoing and Teresa Nielsen Hayden were toward me, these kinds of comments are indeed “on topic”. I think that with all the comment editing that happened, the Boing Boing post comments are probably the least accurate picture of what readers thought.

I think the best way to see what people really thought is to read the MetaFilter comment thread. It’s longer than Boing Boing’s, and is completely uncensored thoughtfully moderated. It is an actual conversation. In it, the whole bungled cover-up is writ large: MeFi readers catch BB doing a lot of very unsavory things. Besides insulting their readers and calling me names, you can see BB busted over changing their Terms of Service to fit their agenda, deleting comments, editing user’s comments, silently changing their own comments, and deleting things they don’t agree with. That’s not to say that many commenters on BB didn’t get away with taking them to task for their allegations that I lied, and many other points of fact that were unfavorable to BB. Some did, and did so eloquently. But the MeFi readers went the distance and investigated everything (including me and my body of work).

From MeFi: TO UNWHOM IT MAY CONCERN:

It has recently come to my attention that unyou have become unwonderful. Therefore, unyou have been depersoned. Cease and desist personing immediately.

Thank Unyou.

I still don’t know why they did this, but I plan on eventually finding out. What’s most conspicuous to me is that Teresa Nielsen Hayden, who I do not know, called me a “strain[s] of human evil”, indicating that whatever these people think I’ve done, it’s more than just a petulant breakup action. I think that someone, somewhere is lying. And when I find out what it is, I’m not keeping quiet about it.

Violet Blue

The London Times named Violet Blue "One of the 40 bloggers who really count" and Self Magazine named TinyNibbles one of the “Best Sex Resources for Women.” Blue is an autodidact and pundit on sex and technology, hacking and security, porn for women, privacy and bleeding-edge tech culture. She is a journalist for ZDNet, CBS News, CNET; she's an educator, speaker, crisis counselor, volunteer NGO trainer, and the author and editor of over 40 award-winning books.

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{ 42 comments }

1 kev August 6, 2008 at 3:24 pm

I’m a bit late to the game! I’m not entirely sure what the hell happened! I really like boing boing and I visit it on a regular basis but this kind of behaviour is disgusting. Honestly, a site that prides itself on transparency, integrity, all that’s decent and whatever, behaving like this! It’s unbelievable. Fair enough it’s their site and they can do as they please, likewise as can I: I don’t have to visit it.

2 admin July 21, 2008 at 6:50 pm

must… touch… Technogirl!!!

3 Technogirl July 20, 2008 at 6:45 pm

You touched Steve jobs and all hell broke lose. You touched Xeni – same result.
For the love of god Violet – stay away from me! ;)

4 admin July 19, 2008 at 5:10 pm

(Violet signed here in as ‘admin’ on another computer) — three weeks later…

http://www.flickr.com/photos/violetblue/2684049606/

5 Elizabeth July 18, 2008 at 5:14 am

*FacePalmandaSympatheticGroan* I’m sorry you’ve been dragged through the webby mud so publicly. If one must find a silver lining in this… at least Perez Hilton is not blogging about you and this incident??? Just keep to the high road and eventually the truth will come out and you will have kept your conscience and soul in the end.

But after reading all this stealthy backtracking and euphemistic vagueness from BB’s staff, they have now taken on that unpalatable quality that seems to reek from the pores of Mel Gibson and Tom Cruise. That they are unconscionable and self-deluded enough to go on such a self-serving rant that you know defies reason and makes you think that, “when ever I read BB, I can’t put that whole VB thing past me and I can’t stand to read this knowing it’s possibly been tainted,” much like my aversion to watching Mel Gibson and Tom Cruise movies, it makes one wonder about intelligence, reason and the nature of vindictiveness and delusion.

I used to like watching with these two (good but tweaky) actors, but since that anti-Semitic rave and the Xenu-induced happy rant, I can’t stand to watch movies starring them. And therefore, I know my taste for reading “all things wonderful” has turned sour.

Here’s to hoping the matter is put to rest and the truth prevails.

6 Antdevamp July 17, 2008 at 4:28 pm

Could this be related to riding in the honor car on Pride next to Ms. Cho? Does it burn your enemies that your star rises as theirs just kind of sits there?

Pathetic. History will record book burners in whatever guise they come in as morons unworthy of the pen.

7 LibertyVini July 14, 2008 at 5:31 pm

Having been recently “unpublished” myself (our old webpage could not withstand the final hitbot attack when it came, we are now at http://www.libertyguys.wordpress.com), I know how you feel, except that I can repost my work, with a little painstaking effort, and I will. But it isn’t just the articles, it’s the links, oh those all-important links that make the posts so valuable to reader and netizen alike, the things that keep us all connected and present the rich diversity of opinion and fact available from sites like tinynibbles and the web in general. They have not just broken the fabric, they have made a very damaging rip in it. I hope this is not a harbinger of bigger, worser things.

FLICK THEM. Speed On, violet!

8 Lewis Haidt July 14, 2008 at 5:19 pm

Violet, you should check out my comments on BB. It’s strange this whole drama; how on one hand, it literally is a small, small tempest in a teapot. But on the other hand, the underlying issue is huge: what happens when prominent sites, such as yours or BB grow to such a large extent that their audience/fans/user reach such a mass/herd mentality, that interesting, bizarre under-currents begin to happen.

There clearly are power dynamics unique to the history between you, Xeni, and the rest of the BBers, plus all the other prominent bloggers who have weighed in. As you all have been “conversing” over the last decade, across multiple networks, now that larger BB and VB brands are involved, now that the MSM comes calling, now that blogger’s fan feel more co-dependent, protective, and at times, obsessive-neurotic, we’re definitely getting into interesting, weird uncharted territory.

Keep up the good work and love the Russkie’s photos.

L

PS: I thought the NYX piece at least did a good job of showing what a gray area the whole notion of “un-publishing” enters.

9 ME July 14, 2008 at 5:00 pm

The republishing of the posts not authored by Jardin suggests dissension within BoingBoing. That’s the next big lead in this mystery, if one were trying to solve it. You’re dealing with amateurs here. Only a fool goes back to the scene of the crime.

10 oscarpatrick July 14, 2008 at 3:57 pm

well, it seems as though some commenters over at BB are still trying to provoke a response:

http://www.boingboing.net/2008/07/14/radioheads-new-3dviz.html#comment-233086

as for me, i’ll just say that the BB’ers seem to be rather deliberate in their public response.

11 valis July 14, 2008 at 2:25 pm

There’s some kinda reverse karma algorithm going on here. The worst behavior lands on those who least deserve it.
I think you will bury all the nay sayers with the whole the best revenge is a life well lived thing.

12 Christopher Brock July 14, 2008 at 11:16 am

As for “public proclamation of what Violet did to hurt them so” I don’t think most of us want that or even care that much… if Violet posted here “Oh, got a call from Xeni over the weekend and she told me why off the record” I think we’d all let that drop. Sure, there’s curiosity, but that’s in the realm of gossip and truly is bad manners. =1

On the other hand, the biggest problem I’ve had with the way this was/is all being handled by BB and TNH is the rampant editting. I’ll disagree here with vml and say certainly, there are times to ethically unpublish material: open racism or off-topic posts, for example, should be regularly reamed out. Too many spam bots poison the wells of internet forums. Even saying “we don’t like Violet anymore, she knows why, and we’re removing all her stuff” would raise eyebrows and questions, but probably would have blown over in a weekend and never made it to print publications. BUT the thing that really got my goat at the end were the number of posts on BB that were being censored out based on the matter of disagreeing with their actions. You could watch it happen: I’d finish reading the current log, hit F5 to refresh, and see posts vanish. There were numerous re-posts of “I’ve commented three times and all three have been deleted!” during the debacle. It got pretty shady there as I left.

If they weren’t such champions of free speech and anti-censorship, again it would have blown over. But it seemed too hypocritical to continue receiving my (click-based ad) support.

13 vml July 14, 2008 at 6:54 am

Violet,

I love your blog and until recently loved BB. I can’t imagine what kind of ethics allow an organisation to unpublish but they are not the kind that allow people like me to support them. They should understand, more than anyone, that writing is your, and their, life.

I’ll keep reading. Good luck from Oz.

14 violet July 13, 2008 at 2:34 pm

@ GDallimore – glad to have your response, though I’m again confused by your assertions. Boing Boing removes all posts relating to me and the only tangible excuse they offer up is that I’m a bad person. and so I’m the one encouraging speculation?

that doesn’t make any sense.

still, there are a number of things you’re suggesting like that I’m selective linking, so if you feel I’m not including enough negative coverage about myself — and I’ve included plenty of unkind links in all three blog posts I’ve about it — then by all means, put them here in the comments. I have also been careful to state that there are tons of links, and I apologized for not including everyone.

and I think you will enjoy that very much, as you seem to leave no opportunity behind to include negative heresay about my character in your comments. such as, “your actions and/or personality render you ineligible for a directory of anything wonderful” and “they never, ever, want to have anything to do with you again” (in addition to your first comment). seems to me that whatever points you’re trying to make, they’d be a lot clearer without being laced with your bias against me.

kind of like how Boing Boing could have done this a lot cleaner without making it a character smear, whatever their reasons. I honestly wouldn’t give a fuck anymore if they hadn’t (and still) make this into an ugly, baseless — and as of yet, still unfounded — smear campaign.

oh, and it’s not ‘my’ Wikipedia page. it’s the Wikipedia page about me, and it often contains false information. recently, for a month, it said I live in Berkeley. trolls really love that page. if you have any questions for me, please do ask.

15 GDallimore July 13, 2008 at 10:03 am

I suppose that what I was getting at earlier was inspired by the swarm of blog links throughout your post. People keep writing about this because the lure of potentially salacious mystery drama is too much to resist. You say you don’t know what caused the split but are really interested in finding out, which is like license for rampant speculation. Reading up on the situation had already led me to some of the blogs you linked to, as well as some you didn’t. In the latter, they tended to agree wholeheartedly with the Boing Boing POV that your actions and/or personality render you ineligible for a directory of anything wonderful. I say this because it seems like you keep insisting on immediate public disclosure of why they don’t like you anymore, and why they never, ever, want to have anything to do with you again. People have pretty much exhausted the fact that you got unpublished, so debate is switching towards answering the question “Violet Blue is a crap person y/n?”

Btw, I DID read the AVN article linked to on your wikipedia page. I wasn’t referring to anything specific from there, and I mistakenly used the word “particulars” when “generalities” would probably have been more appropriate.

16 Robyn July 12, 2008 at 10:15 pm

I’m reading about this all over the state (L.A. Times) and even the right coast. Sorry you were “unpublished.”

BB’s attempt at backpedaling was a major embarassment.

But, on the other hand, you keep popping up on favorite female bloggers list.

http://northxeast.com/general/nxe%E2%80%99s-fifty-most-influential-female-bloggers

17 Seth Finkelstein July 12, 2008 at 6:24 pm
18 violet July 12, 2008 at 6:23 pm

will – cool, again I appreciate your candor. gawd, that’s a great line about glass houses. I am so trying to come up with a ‘don’t throw comments at glass blogs’ joke here, but I can’t quite get it together… :)

19 DB July 12, 2008 at 6:23 pm

I didn’t realize it until this deletion business started, but I had been looking for a reason to unsubscribe to Boing Boing for quite a while. Happily, I still enjoy your blog very much. The noise between BB and VB is very complicated, but I’m ecstatic to report that it comes out rather simple to me in the end: I have ceased reading BB and will continue reading VB. Cheers to you and yours. :)

20 will shetterly July 12, 2008 at 5:39 pm

VB, when people wondered why you were unwonderfuled, trademark came up. But intellectual property law is primarily a concern of Cory’s, and he’s never hesitated to damn IP abuse when he saw it, so now I’m wondering why anyone thought that might’ve been the reason here. I dunno. I stay on the side that says no one has to know why BB no longer wants to link to you, but they should’ve left the old posts alone and simply stopped linking.

Ah, well. Folks who hate glass houses should stay off the web.

21 violet July 12, 2008 at 5:36 pm

wow — now *this* is interesting. now — like, now — it looks like Boing Boing is quietly (of course) re-publishing David Pecovitz’s posts that included me. with links to, and mention of me intact:

http://www.metafilter.com/72928/Boing-Boing-Finds-21st-Century-Trotsky#2181715

right now, all non-Xeni-authored-VB posts are back up except for one of Pesco’s and Cory’s ‘Josh Wolf’ post. very curious.

22 violet July 12, 2008 at 5:10 pm

hi everyone — thanks for stopping by. I really appreciate the time put into all of the responses and comments here. I’ll parse a few responses:

thank you, sincerely, to everyone who’s said nice, supportive and constructive things. it means a lot.

@ Brad Berens – the clarification helped immensely. I updated that part of the post and linked to your new post as well. I agree, I think the monetary aspects, or even the intention of monetary or ‘Google Juice’ used as a thing that can be given or taken away punitively definitely enters into the conversation here.

@ not_scottbot – thanks for that! I’m an outsider to the MeFi community, so I have to say those moderators deserve a beer. I’m impressed. I later spotted a couple comments from moderators in the thread where they essentially say they have no stake in the topic either way but sure think it’s interesting, and I thought that was really cool. I did a strikethrough correction and linked to your comment for clarity.

@ Christopher – wow, that’s an interesting piece of information. sex negativity didn’t even cross my mind. but now I realize how long it’s been since I’ve written about dildos, and I feel remiss. will fix.

@ will shetterly – a very positive comment. you know, I read a pleasant MeFi comment where everyone apologized and content was restored and everyone bandaged their wounds and went home. that was a nice thought. I’m still hoping they’ll cut me some slack, but that seems unlikely, so I’m not sure how I’m supposed to return the gesture. I understand that you and I likely see the trademark issue from different angles, and I appreciate your candor on this topic. however, I don’t see what my trademark, or lawsuit, have to do with this. I filed suit, and made the trademark application known in October last year, so even date-wise, it doesn’t add up. additionally, when Xeni and I were friends, she was deeply sympathetic and supportive of the distress it caused me personally and with public confusion in regard to having someone else using my brand name (and my name) for their business purposes. so that doesn’t add up, either. but, I do enjoy seeing your comments here and look forward to more time on your blog.

@ GDallimore – first of all, I’m wondering what your statements have to do with the Boing Boing deletions. do you know something I don’t? you’re making accusations without statements of verifiable fact, so what you say can be neither agreed with or refuted. I would really love to know what you mean by both sides not having much to be proud of. is there something I’m supposed to be ashamed of? if you have an argument, please state and substantiate the details, rather than vague hearsay. give me some facts, so that I can address them. I don’t see how the trademark case has unpleasant particulars, nor do I see that the ongoing Wikpiedia edit wars, which I am not a part of, are in any way embarrassing.

also, please read the facts about my trademark lawsuit here:
http://www.jurisnote.com/Cases/blue5370.htm

and let me add that if you’re going on what you’ve read in AVN about the case, I’d like to *gently suggest* that those two pieces were not fact checked.

23 GDallimore July 12, 2008 at 2:17 pm

All of the rumors and speculation have got a lot of people poking around, and it seems to me that neither side has a lot they need to be proud of. I agree with Will — the particulars of your trademark case seem pretty unpleasant. On Wikipedia, the whole Wikiwikimoore vs. Ninavizz angle comes across as embarrassing and poorly thought out. When there’s this much digging going on, everyone gets dirty.

24 Erin July 12, 2008 at 12:37 pm

Well done, Violet. I’m very proud and love ya to bits!
Erin

25 will shetterly July 12, 2008 at 9:37 am

P.S. Uh, in the comment just submitted, that should be, “Oh, man, *I’m* sorry I got so carried away!” The price of hitting “submit” too quickly.

26 will shetterly July 12, 2008 at 9:34 am

If there were only two sides in a disagreement, I would be completely against you: I’ve known Teresa Nielsen Hayden for a couple of decades. I love and respect her. She’s a person of great integrity. She’s extremely loyal to those she considers friends, and I suspect that’s part of the reason she’s being so very supportive of Xeni in the Great Unpublishing.

Also, while I realize that trademark law is what’s ultimately wrong, I don’t like that one person using the Violet Blue handle has pushed out another. I’m not mentioning that to bring up old business. Just want to stress that I should be completely on the other side of this kerfuffle.

But you’re handling this with grace and humor. I admire that enormously. May you be able to continue in that spirit!

Do try to cut XJ and Teresa as much slack as you possibly can. Kerfuffles eventually settle down, and it would be nice if this ended with a lot of people saying, “Oh, man, we’re sorry I got so carried away!”

P.S. Teresa’s last name is actually “Nielsen Hayden” without a hyphen. She and her husband took both names.

27 Christopher July 12, 2008 at 7:58 am

I find it especially suspicious that you were unpersoned within a few days after Tere…–no, I won’t personify her with a name–a few days after TNH joined the staff. Toward the end of my subscription to BB during the massive comment war (I left around 600 posts) I began to see a pattern in her comments of TNH probably disapproving of such frank and open sexuality, comments about your writings only being about dildos and such. You’re evil? Why, because you’ll talk abut sex, or because you took your name back from someone who stole it years after you first published with it? I personally think it’s the sex thing giving her such a hate-on for you…

Luv ya lots, V! I think you’re handling this mahvelously…

28 Agile Cyborg July 12, 2008 at 7:30 am

Baing Baing Boing Boing!

29 Ambrose July 12, 2008 at 5:16 am

Just to let you know, I unsubscribed from BoingBoing and subscribed to your blog, just on principle. I had never heard of you before. I’ve been a reader of BoingBoing for many years. I’m shocked by the hypocrisy of it, and very frustrated by the insinuating, prevaricating, condescending tone they’ve taken.

30 Steph Mineart July 12, 2008 at 5:08 am

I almost think, by reading into some of their explanations, it was just something Xeni did without notifying the others, and when it came out they circled the wagons and tried to come up with a BS rationalization to make it something other than seventh grade behavior.

If it was truly some sort of ethical stance, why not say why?

31 quehanna July 12, 2008 at 4:54 am

So basically the-powers-that-be at boing boing have personal issues with Violet and had a think-tank to decide what to do. One ( or more ) of them remembered the fantastically mature way they handled things when they were in seventh grade and went with that.

I’ve quit sites for less.

32 Stephen July 11, 2008 at 11:59 pm

the dogs are barking again, much to the annoyance of us cats. spit at them as they pass beneath your window.

33 not_scottbot July 11, 2008 at 11:04 pm

‘…and is completely uncensored.’

Actually, that is not quite true. Metafilter is a community forum which does have moderators, and comments which are beyond community standards in the eyes of the moderators are deleted. Tellingly, however, the community generally reacts quite fiercely against such out of bounds comments long before a moderator removes the post – or in the case of a quite ugly comment concerning Xeni, the original post and many posts decrying it were deleted. No ‘unpublishing’ at Metafilter – when they delete, they are aren’t ashamed of the fact, and don’t hide the truth that they have standards which they are proud to uphold. As explained by the moderator in that case, deleting merely the original quote would have left a block of posts which would no longer make much sense.

Strange, in a way – Metafilter, which generally received nothing but abuse from several of the main figures in this discussion, was more concerned about simple civilized decency than those who felt no compunction deleting and dsmvwllng any commenter they disagreed with in an attempt to ensure that their own one-sided perspective was the only one presented. Actions justified in their eyes because it was the only truth they were capable of accepting. A glaring trait of hypocrites is their inability to recognize it in their actions.

Personally, these days, I recommend bngbng.net – the content is much improved by using a simple script.

34 Steph Mineart July 11, 2008 at 9:20 pm

What made me hit the unsubscribe on BB was reading on various sites the comments from the intersection of fans of yours and regular BB readers, about how their comments had been deleted when they asked questions in BB comments.

I wish I could find the site I was on to link to for you… but the readers were posting “this was my comment; does it look like it violated terms of service to you?” Of course they didn’t at all. They were just guilty of making BB uncomfortable.

So they have a beef with you that they handled badly – okay, not cool. But to try to cover up what was going on by systematically deleting questions from their regular readers? WTF? Why bother blogging at all if that’s they way you go about it?

I was also completely bugged that people were acting like you had gone apeshit over all of it, when you’ve been level-headed and almost blasé through the whole thing.

35 Sarah July 11, 2008 at 8:46 pm

*hugs Violet* This whole thing has been crazy.

36 Brad Berens July 11, 2008 at 8:01 pm

Dear Ms. Blue,

Thank you for responding to my Mediavorous post about the current contratemps between you and Boing Boing. I appreciate your engaging with my comments. I accept completely that Boing Boing’s excision of references to you had no impact on your pocketbook.

However, I do want to clarify (and I’ll do this on Mediavorous as well) something that your excerpt from my post does not convey. Regardless of whether or not Boing Boing’s excision of references to you had any actual negative impact on you, the *desire* to have such an impact was a possible Boing Boing motivation that David Sarno at the L.A. Times had not considered in his article. This was the point of my post, which is titled, “BoingBoing Brouhaha… L.A. Times Misses Story.”

While you and your work may be both invulnerable and indifferent to the vicissitudes of Google Juice, a good portion of the annual multi billion dollar online advertising industry — the industry that I serve professionally at ad:tech and iMedia — is powered by Google AdSense and similar programs (see this recent NY Times article for some relevant numbers: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/09/business/media/09adco.html). Many online publishers, particularly smaller ones, survive based on their Google Juice– a fact that would never be lost on the savvy editors of Boing Boing.

I was primarily speculating on a possible business motive.

I will also confess that I find most of this story mystifying as one of the more constant truisms about the internet is that everything said on it is indelible and there are infinite numbers of people paying attention to details at a level unthinkable just a few short years ago… so why would Ms. Jardin think that nobody would notice?

Best of luck to you in your work.

Sincerely,

Brad Berens
Chief Content Officer & Editor at Large
ad:tech & iMedia
…and now blogging at http://www.mediavorous.com

37 MichaelK July 11, 2008 at 7:59 pm

I still don’t believe anyone really thought that everyone would of course know that “unpublish” is just an innocent button, and not some snarky doublespeak. Or that explaining it as such would instantly change everyone’s minds. I didn’t know it was an official term in their back end software, does that mean I’m not cool enough to read BB?

I also refuse to add it to my computer’s dictionary for spell check.

Certain people in the BB thread have been incredible jerks, but with TNH I find it pretty inexcusable. A moderator I’m going to hold to a higher standard, and no, she doesn’t come off at hip.

Which brings me to disemvoweling, which is funny a couple of times and then just seems jerky itself.

Not setting a standard for class over there. At least not a good one.

38 marrz July 11, 2008 at 7:22 pm

Yah, I’ve been fallowing it loosely, and it makes about as much sense as Steve Jobs did ^_^

really, weather or not they had the right to unpublish the posts is irrelevant, I just think the way they did it was incredibly rude. you should most defiantly snubb them not let them take photos with you :p

39 Lolita Wolf July 11, 2008 at 7:22 pm

BTW I get the RSS feed of your blog and read it. I do not get an RSS feed of Boing Boing. I don’t read Boing Boing unless someone I read deliberately links to a post there.

40 B.E. Earl July 11, 2008 at 7:08 pm

I’m not sure I quite followed all that, but I hope you get to the bottom of this mess!

41 Kurt July 11, 2008 at 7:07 pm

Thanks for responding to this whole mess. I have to admit that I’m not unbiased. I listen to your pod-cast and read your blog and articles and I have for several years. I guess what puzzles me most is the Teresa Nielsen Hayden thing. I have a lot of respect for her as well, and it sounds like this whole thing has come out of left field for you.

Good luck getting to the bottom of this, and thanks for all the work you do.

42 Dustin Lacina July 11, 2008 at 6:36 pm

*hug*

This whole thing is just so ridiculous. I’m so sorry you are having to go through this insanity. The most ridiculous thing about it to me, besides my general disapproval of BB’s blanket “It’s ours, we can do what we want” and Xeni’s whole “the work i did a year ago is not reflective of my work now” bs, is that they constantly keep phrasing the worst kinds of character attacks against you while saying “We don’t want to hurt anyone.” I mean really now, do they not know?

It breaks my heart you’re having to put up with this shit, V. But I totally got your back. Somos hermanas electronicas, chica! <3

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