Friday, September 23, 2011

An Administrative Note

Earlier this week, I composed an entry on blogging that was inspired by some of the anger and (I thought) misplaced blame that I was seeing from blog writers who were leaving the scene. My intent was not to single out any one blogger; indeed, I had four primary blogs in mind as I wrote the post, and made an effort to indicate when I was speaking about different sites.

I didn't name names, because pointing fingers wasn't the point. I didn't call names, because I wasn't trying to insult anyone. I even discouraged commenters from attempting to treat the entry as if it were some huge blind item. Again, that wasn't the point.

One blogger, however, read the entry—or parts of it—and decided it was a massive attack on him alone. Very late last night, within the space of a little over an hour, he bombarded several of my latest entries with close to two dozen vicious comments attacking my blog, my writing, my family, and my credibility.

I've deleted the comments because I don't tolerate that kind of behavior on my own site.

Because of this little tantrum, I'm moderating all comments until further notice. It's a pain for you, and a bigger pain for me, but I'd rather not let one person's hissy fit spoil the comments section, where there's  generally a civil and interesting sharing of experiences and thoughts.

My policy for the last year and a half has been to accept all comments—unmoderated—and to clean up what tiny bits of ugliness there've been, as needed. The fact that I stated in the post in question that I've only had to delete less than fifty of over seven thousand comments over the journal's life (though as of last night, it's closer to sixty-five) tells me that most of my readers are indeed reasonable, rational people.

So it's a shame when a couple of bad apples try to make spoilage. I'm more than a bit sorry to have to come down like this, but I appreciate you guys understanding the reasons why.


  1. Hang in there breederman. It's pretty easy to tell one of you has been crazy for a long long time. (and it's not you.)

  2. Gavin,

    Thanks, but I hope no one's crazy here. I appreciate it, though.

  3. Rob,

    I'm sorry it has come down to this as well. As someone who has starter as a reader and then turned blogger, I can tell you that for many of us the comments section is very fun. We all enjoy talking to you and each other. But I understand why you have been place in this position, and so will the others. It is just too bad. You're a good guy and don't deserve to have to deal with these things.


  4. Ace,

    Thanks for that. I don't like painting it as a good guy thing, because that implies there's a bad guy. And it's tough to see someone you once admired as a bad guy, even if he's behaving in an ugly way.

    I appreciate the support, though.

  5. I am sorry about your troubles. Your entry was written very thoughtfully so I regret to learn someone took is as offense. Reading your entry yesterday it did occur to me that at least one of the bloggers you described might also be the type to take things personally.

    Hopefully this situation gets resolved in a positive way.

  6. Countess,

    Thanks sincerely, m'dear.

    You know, it's one thing to take it personally, then write a comment that outlines your difference of opinion. It's something else entirely to add another 20+ comments after that telling me I'm a fraud, I have a made-up journal, a made-up family, a recent made-up ailment, and that I'm a bad writer to boot. Saying aloud many times over that I'm a fake, with your fingers stuck in your ears to prevent hearing otherwise, doesn't make it so. Nor does it automatically make my opinions about the blogger any the less valid.

    What it does is to prevent any chance of a positive resolution.

  7. It amazes me how some people can act in cyberland. But because it is cyberland, they act badly knowing that no one knows who they are or where they are. If you don't like something just move on.

  8. What took you so long? I have been banning that kind of crap from day one and then a few months into blogging I also rejected any comments coming from "anonymous" or someone without a traceable e-mail address or a blog. I figure if someone's convictions are so frail that they have to hide behind anonymity or they might be too lazy to have a blog I am not going to give them a podium.

  9. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  10. Cyberi4a,

    Yeah, it would seem to me that if you don't like a person's blog, unless you've got good reason to study it, move on. Life's too short.

  11. Trickle Down,

    I have a lot of really good and thoughtful anonymous commenters, and really don't like cutting them out. That's why I don't limit their voice on here.

    As for the comment moderation, it's just an extra step that sucks a few precious seconds away from my day that could be better spent watching cheesy eighties videos on YouTube!

  12. Midwest,

    I took down your question not because it was offensive, but because I don't want to drag any names or websites into the discussion. I hope you understand. Thanks.

  13. Obviously I don't know anything about the circumstances of your life but one thing I am absolutely sure of: You're a very good writer. (I don't want to gush because gushing doesn't suit me but were I to gush I would. Gush, I mean.)

    Oh, and come to think of it: Were any of his accusations regarding your life–and your ailments–true I'd admire you even more as a writer.

  14. Countess,

    I'll skip over the compliment since I wasn't fishing (thank you though) and get right to the other thing: no shit. I'd have to be pretty damned organized to keep all that crap straight if it were fiction.

  15. I must say I too like your written style of English. It flows very nicely. And as for you earlier post that may have offended, Well if people can't object in a positive adult manner, then thumbs up for deleting the comments!
    I wonder if this will get past your new security checks and end up on your blog? Lol!

  16. Say no more breeder man!! I ROFL at the guy who made up a near death experience so he could get comments and attention getting on your back for your akin thing. Hope that's better btw. Peace.

  17. Ah, of course this is day I was writing you to say look for my blog starting October 1. (I'll send you the link...)

  18. Rob,

    Once again you've proven yourself rational and sane in an irrational and insane world. Thanks for continuing to remind us that reason and sex aren't mutually exclusive -- just as you always remind us that good writing and sex make an enticing combination, too. Keep it up and hope you continue to settle in to life here on the east coast.


  19. God, what a pain ... for you, I mean. I occasionally blog on a professional site in my day job, and I rarely ignite full-blown personal attacks there (except for the time I was inundated with literally hundreds of messages from infuriated Jimmy Nelson fans when I inadvertently credited his ventriloquist dummy Farfel to Paul Winchell. No. I am not kidding). Anyway, inhale blue, exhale pink. Know that, however improbable it may sound, you've come to mean a lot to many of us, so hang in there, buddy.

  20. MaleDude,

    I'm going to be quite exclusive from now on on who gets in and out. It's going ot be like Studio 54 at its height!

    You made it.

  21. Midwest,

    I see that road you're heading down, but I hope you won't object when I stay here on this path. In fact, let's just not go there at all? I'm trying to avoid ugliness here if we can.

    Thanks for asking about my skin--the symptoms have completely faded and I've had a much better time sleeping, though I'm left with welts where I scratched in my sleep.

  22. FelchingPisser,

    Ah, what a difference a day makes. My advice today would be to run for the hills.

    But seriously, I think you'll be loved. Let me have the link and I'll let everyone know when the day comes.

  23. PJ,

    Thanks for the voice of calm today. When you're neck-deep in the crazy, it's nice to hear.

  24. I know personal attacks are petty and reflect more on the person making them. I wouldn't be overly concerned. I love your blog. hal

  25. John,

    I've never heard that blue and pink phrase before. I like it! It's a pity you're such a Farfelphobe, though.

    And thank you.

  26. Hal,

    I tend to agree with this one myself. That's why I'm keeping names out of it on this one, and trying to keep posters civil. Thanks for the support!

  27. I believe you are legit but wouldn't care if you weren't. I try and check in here every day and look forward to it. I love your writing.

  28. I didn't see any of the comments, but I have noticed on other forums some individuals simply cannot accept anyone disagreeing with their point of view. Healthy debate is good for everyone, sad that more of it can't take place!

  29. 12:11 Anonymous,

    Thanks for the testimonial. When it comes to a blog, I guess whether the writing keeps drawing one back is the important thing, in the end.

    I'm always a little mystified by accusations (by others...I'm not implying by you) of not being real, though. I've had readers who've met me and found me real enough. How is that not evidence enough for some people?

  30. Cleveland,

    There is a vast, vast difference between an adult comment that states disagreement in rational terms, and the close to 40 screened comments I received from this individual in less than 24 hours that indulge in name-calling, personal attack, and attacks against my loved ones.

    One is grown-up discourse. The other is unacceptable.


    There must be some law.

    - MisterSpinnaker

  32. Few of us take criticism well (I'm not one of them), and it's far too easy to read a personal attack into well placed criticism. I decided to wait a day, then re-read your original post. The most egregious comment you made "hissy fit" was pretty mild, and not clearly directed. The reaction was excessive, and I hope the person has since thought better of it. Unfortunately, another thing that few of us do well is apologize when we know we screwed up (that one I'm better at).

  33. On a separate note, I see two possibilities. Either the vast bulk of what you write is accurate to within limits of error, or you're a damned fine organizer as well as wordsmith. The difference is inconsequential to me, and unless someone is physically interacting with you, I don't understand why they would feel they have the right to care. There are enough genuinely dishonest people, using that dishonesty to do real damage to others every day, that to analyze whether a sex blog is as accurate as claimed borders on the obsessive.

  34. Rob my friend,
    I have to agree with what you are doing. I don't know why people are doing things like that to you or to some other blogs. You are a true gentleman and i love you for that. You are always there for your followers and never said anything wrong to them. I want to say that i am very proud of you and i will always be your follower # 1 ou # 2.


  35. Spinnaker,

    I will take the time to read that later this afternoon.

  36. Kevin,

    When you said about the veracity of this blog, and I quote, "Unless someone is physically interacting with you, I don't understand why they would feel they have the right to care," you're one hundred percent correct. This person and I aren't coming into contact. It really shouldn't be his concern.

    However, whatever in my original mild criticism triggered his extreme reaction now rests on his quest to expose me as a fraud. If I'm a fraud, and I've lied about everything in my blog, and made it all up, from my photos to my experiences to Spencer to my god-damned relationship of twenty-odd years—if all that is false, then nothing mildly critical I said about him can possibly be true.

    It's an extreme bit of logic, there.

    What really saddens me about the whole thing is that the person in question is someone whose blog I admired for a couple of years. Most of the entries, let's be frank, would have been covered with red pen if they'd been submitted in a college-level composition 101 class—let's be honest. But they had an incredible vigor and viewpoint that's missing from most sex blogs, and that more that makes up for the circular writing and abuse of the caps key. That vigor and enthusiasm of subject more than made up for minor crimes of style.

    But his abuses of the last 48 hours have made my other bipolar comment abuser look like a rank amateur.

  37. Yves,

    You're so nice to me, you can be follower #1, 2, and 3.

  38. Rob, I'm sorry to read of all the trouble you've been getting recently. As does everything sooner or later, I'm sure it will blow over. I haven't commented for a long time but wanted you to know that I still read your posts religiously and enjoy every one. Keep up the good work.

  39. T.,

    Yeah, it's been a drama-filled week all right. Thanks for the sympathy, and I'm glad to have you as a reader.

  40. It's been a while since I last commented; been reading, but not replying. But I guess I should comment to show my support. Your last entry was well written; I think those who reacted viciously are too sensitive and intolerant.

    Keep up the lit-ruh-chah...

    anonymous tony

  41. Anonymous T.,

    I think you compliment me too much. I'll settle for 'readable', much less lit-ruh-chah.

  42. @ Anon 1:50am - People take shit too seriously on the internet too. While I do believe the writing that happens here on this blog I always approach anything I read on the internet with a subliminal sort of caution I think. The anger, drama and just plain hatefulness that people post (from Facebook to news posts) is astounding. I've recently given up Facebook because I found myself getting caught up in the drama. People need to lighten up a little. There are certainly bigger fish to fry in our daily lives.

  43. Rob, I've enjoyed your blog from the day I first found it. I have also enjoyed the blog of the offending party, until his on-again, off-again antics. But I enjoyed them, each on different levels.

    His was titillating, and somewhat entertaining. But not one of his posts ever stayed with me. I take that back. The one thing that did stay with me was that I was being written AT, not to. Not for the pleasure of blogging/writing, but for the constant adulation and validation by his readers. Selfish motives, pure and simple.

    Your blog consistently is entertaining, provocative, and an on-going conversation WITH your readers. You don't ask "how great am I? How "right" are my thoughts? You ask your readers about topics you share. What do WE think, how do WE feel about them?

    The other blogger, having shut his site down at least twice, keeps coming back. For validation, and apparently out of a false sense of superiority. He's got more of a "life" to lead? Really? Then why return to something that he himself realized was "pointless", and that he didn't get out of it what HE wanted? Waaaaaahhhh. That's all I hear.

    I look forward coming back to your blog regularly, and participating in the conversation.

    Be well ~ S.

  44. 3:27 Anonymous,

    Many are the times in this blog I've wished for a little more civility on the internet. There's ways to express one's feelings when one is indignant about something, and then there's ways that cross the line. I'm probably guilty as anyone of crossing the latter from time to time, of course. But reining it in a little isn't that tough!

  45. Anonymous S.,

    Aw, g'wan. That's enough about me. Let's talk about what you think about me.

    I'm trying not to get petty here, but I think the whole "I'm not blogging any more because I have a life" thing was what finally turned me off. I'd stuck through several incarnations of the blog—of which again I want to stress I was an admirer, and a contributing commenter until the time before last he yanked it down—until then.

    But seriously, thank you. I appreciate your kind words. They mean a lot.

  46. @ Kevin Shea: I like how you think.

    Mr Steed, there are no words, really. Stupid crazy shit indeed. The Readers got your back, brother.