Chad Perrin: SOB

7 July 2006

Three Arrrs: Registration Requirement Removed

Filed under: Metalog — apotheon @ 02:59

In response to a comment by TDavid in his own Make You Go Hmm weblog, which posted a trackback to my previous remarks on Rocketboom’s detonation, wherein he stated that he chose to avoid commenting directly because of the registration requirement:

I’ve eliminated the registration requirement for commenting here. You can all post semi-anonymous comments if you like.

Every time you post a comment, it goes into the moderation queue, where it awaits my approval (bad news for spammers), unless you’re a registered user who has already had a previous comment approved. Because “anonymous” comments cannot (reasonably) be validated as coming from a previously-approved commenter, anonymous comments will always go into moderation. This may prove almost as annoying as having to register, but I like having my several layers of anti-spam protections in place. C’est la vie. If moderation really bothers you, just register an account here — or do what TDavid did, and post somewhere else with a trackback to this site.

Let’s see if anyone cares. . . .

just a mindless follower

Filed under: Metalog — apotheon @ 12:23

Once again, I followed Sterling’s lead, and have installed a couple of WordPress plugins that he installed first. In particular:

  1. I installed the Follow URL plugin that disables WordPress “nofollow” defaults. This means that Google will now index your pages when they’re linked in comments here at SOB. Of course, that assumes that your comments make it past moderation, so spammers might as well give it up (not that I expect this statement to make a difference, but I don’t much mind if they waste their time anyway).
  2. I also installed the WP Subscribe To Comments plugin, which allows you to email-subscribe for notifications of new comments to SOB entries on which you’ve commented. Like Sterling, I’m defaulting to the subscription checkbox being selected, and hope someone will let me know if that’s not preferred behavior.

Okay, fine, I’ll comment on Rocketboom.

Filed under: Cognition,Geek,Metalog — apotheon @ 12:46

What a mess — what a bunch of high school drama queen nonsense this is.

Rocketboom blew up. There’s a gen-u-ine he-said/she-said set of (apparently) incompatible statements being made by Amanda Congdon and Andrew Baron (the apparent 49% and 51%, respectively, owners of Rocketboom). Amanda and Rocketboom are separating.

I’ve never watched a Rocketboom video (vlogging, they call it — you’d think they’d come up with something easier to pronounce, especially when it’s a sound-enabled medium), and I probably never will. This thing was hyped up TV-over-the-Internet, with scripts and producers and a pretty face in front of the camera, and really, I don’t watch TV as it is (with the exception of a couple of SciFi Channel series that are in the off-season now anyway, the Tour de France, and the occasional rare bit of Law and Order). Why would I pursue yet more TV-ness? It annoys me that I spend as much time in front of it as I already do — but enough of that tangent. . . .

So it went kablooey. Why do I care?

Sterling commented very briefly on what he called Boom Doom, and I decided to follow a couple of links. That led me to Amanda Congdon’s story, and to Andrew Baron’s announcement. Dave Winer weighed in with what reads to me like a very ill-advised bit of wining (spelling intentional) about how lowly everyone has been about it (when by all accounts the initial story sounded very much like it said exactly what he suggests it didn’t), but I can’t entirely discount the notion that maybe he has a point about everyone siding automatically with the pretty girl that was the face of Rocketboom, even if he didn’t make that point explicit. Things have progressed since he posted that (including the previous links), and now there’s more concrete stuff to contemplate from both sides, as indicated eloquently by TDavid’s Make You Go Hmm.

So now we get to the point where I was inspired to say something. TDavid said, toward the end of his discussion of events:

I’m not taking any sides here except to say that I think Congdon’s video yesterday was poorly executed. The fact that she admits it wasn’t the whole truth and played upon being “transparent” with viewers makes me trust what she says less going further.

In fact, throughout the thing he made it quite clear that he thinks very poorly of the way Amanda said she wanted to provide some transparency while still attempting to maintain a reasonably “neutral” and civil facade. I have a small problem with TDavid’s clearly unflattering characterization of the matter.

From what I understand, based on quotes of the video in question, it seems likely she meant “transparency” in terms of ensuring the viewing public is aware that Amanda Congdon will not be appearing in Rocketboom productions any longer, and that they deserve to be informed as soon as possible. That may well not be her true motivation, but it strikes me as her intended meaning by use of the term “transparent”. It does not appear to be the case that she meant she was laying out all the spilled guts and dismembered body parts left over by the horrific car wreck so that every rubbernecking passer-by on the street could gum up the flow of traffic by stopping to stare with morbid fascination at others’ deaths. A little perspective on the word “transparent” might be important here. I, for one, find it particularly annoying when every single filthy backbiting detail of a sordid affair like this makes the rounds — disgusting, even. I find it especially disgusting when people not only obsess over it all, but make snarky comments about how the involved parties haven’t been even more forthcoming with what should have been a largely private matter anyway.

That aside, I have no idea what’s going on behind the scenes, and neither do any of you. There are, in all probability, exactly three people who know enough about it to be able to determine who’s bending what truths, and it’s highly likely that a little “alternative interpretation” is going on from both sides, largely colored by the perspectives of two people who both feel quite wronged, mostly fed by misunderstandings, ultimately ending in far more rancor and regrettable actions than should have resulted. As far as I’m concerned, they both get a clean slate starting the moment they shut the hell up, maybe issuing a joint statement to the effect that it’s none of your business — any of you. I guess I’m just a fan of reserved civility and privacy in cases like this.

Since that can of worms got opened by clearly contradictory attempts at civility, I’m not sure they could have kept it civil in any case, but I definitely think it’s wrong to go off half-cocked at someone for attempting to keep things polite (even if she later escalated things somewhat).

Then again, I’m not a fan, so I don’t have any bias toward anyone involved. I really don’t care.

All original content Copyright Chad Perrin: Distributed under the terms of the Open Works License