Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Y'all may have noticed I haven't done a whole lot of posting (or even commenting) lately. I just haven't felt, um, bloggy.

I was starting to think about moving on, maybe changing the direction and tone of this blog, maybe scuttling this blog and starting something new, maybe focusing on art or books or music or some obscure fandom nobody digs but me, or maybe finding something entirely new to do with my time.

But, you know, maybe not.

So I'm having a really tough time trying to figure out how to respond to this:

I don’t think that this particular thread is particularly damaging to feminism (by the anti-feminists) - however, blogs such AP’s “I shame the matriarchy” certainly is - I’d describe it as ‘a large calibre munitions depot’ for the anti-feminists. The entire premise of the site is to tear down other feminists, but in particular, radfems.

(note link included for context)

oh, crap. you found me out, didn't you? my master plan exposed. all is in ruins.

Curses! Foiled again!

well, yeah, except not.

I can't deny that I have been angry angry ANGRY with radical feminism, and some radical feminists. I can't deny that I've been immature, hypersensitive, wildly hyperbolic, tantrum-y, rant-y and probably flatout mean at least once or twice, in the nine months I've been blogging. I have used strong language, stronger than what might have been necessary. And, when it's been brought to my attention that I have hurt someone with my words, I have made it right, as right as I can, as quickly as I can.

I feel a little misunderstood by Stormcloud and others - but that's probably not their fault as much as it is mine, for failing to communicate clearly and without rancor. If I really really don't want to give the impression I'm a tearer-downer, I should make a stronger committment to being a builder-upper, even while speaking my piece.

Maybe it's the title that bothers folks. I explained it most recently back in December, if anyone cares to look. But, you know, I can always change a title, if anyone has any suggestions for something more appropriate.

Stormcloud helpfully provided some terms of cease-fire in that thread.

Here is the proposal, a truce.
*small pathetic looking white flag is waved hesitantly in air*

To stop extracting rad posts and twisting them on your own blogs,

As I said on the OpWasp thread, I can see where the practice of copying key points out of other people’s posts and pasting them on my own blog, for purposes of adding my own commentary, can be seen as “twisting” if not done extra-super-carefully.

but often dissenting commentary, or questioning commentary, is explicitly not welcome on the blog from which the posts originate.

so what do you suggest, if I have a question or comment of my own that I can’t post on the original thread?

and to stop ridiculing the rads as the main purpose.

Well, I have certainly made an effort recently to broaden my subject matter. I should probably work harder on that.

if it's the title that's bugging you, you may be interested to know that Twisty Herself has not mentioned that it bothers her. If it did, and I knew about it, I'd take action accordingly.

I am not going to claim that I never ridiculed the rads, nor can I promise that I'll never ridicule another rad again - but I can honestly say that I was on this, well before being asked to.

Of course, my efforts to improve my blogging might not be relevant, in the face of the final term of the cease-fire:

To retire/remove the anti-radfem site. You know the one; large calibre ammo.

Stormcloud, I can't do that. I wish I could, just to make you happy, and give you peace of mind, and help you feel like the world is safe for radical feminism now and forever, once I shut up. But that would mean giving into a bully who wants to silence me. On principle, you know I can't do that.

what advice would you, yourself, give a woman (radical or merely mortal) who was being bullied into silence?

This is my voice. Deal with it. Deal with it the best way you know how. Mock it or deride it or insult it or demean it or engage it or convince it or applaud it - do what you gotta do, as I'm sure as shit not going away.

Instead of being all snitty and huffy and indignant and offended at the suggestion I stop blogging in exchange for you and yours behaving in a civil manner, I feel grateful, and compelled to thank you for helping me re-commit to participating in the blogosphere.

so, in a word: NO.

in many words: No, no no, no nonono no, no nono no no no no no, no no no, no nonono no, no no no, no no no - no nononono no, no no nonono no no no no, no.

Hell fucking yea.
well, I could totally build a better blog.

I could be less reactive, more interesting, less defensive, more progressive, less sucky, more fun and informative.

of course, I couldn't really do that without actually, you know, having a blog.
I haven't read through your entire blog but what I've seen looks just fine to me. Do whatever you feel is necessary, but don't quit just because someone else thinks your blog should be deleted.

That was just plain rude and frankly, I can't believe any woman would dare tell you that you should delete your blog. Especially not after complaining about other women feeling silenced. Doesn't seem to make a whole helluva lot of sense to me.
I like you the way you are.

Everyone could be a better this or a more articulate that or whatever. Then we'd all sound just the same and *yawn* who wants that??

I do know this for sure: It truly sucks when someone makes you question your own right to speak.
clap clap clap clap clap woot woot.

that is all.
You could make a blog about the going ons around you or knitting or even...dare I say...cooking! Or maybe sewing and the amazing world or sewing or a sewing machine snob!
Stop apologizing!

If you want to create a new or different blog let it be because of your creative needs and agenda, certainly not to capitulate because someone *doesn't like the title*?!

Tell me that these comments are fascetious and I'm just not seeing it because I'm thick.

The phrase 'academically rude' is laughable. This sort of comparison and scrutiny of another's philosophy is academically common, traditional, and even necessary.

Nothing of value has been accomplished through oppression. Nothing of value has been accomplished by bowing and scraping. Fuck that shit. Stop apologizing for having a mind and a voice.
I'm glad you're staying.
bimbo, that's the weird thing - I don't know specifically what the objectors are objecting to, precisely.

it might be the title. it might not. I wish to christ someone would give me something specific to get defensive about.

a specific way in which I am a)harmful to feminism or b)tearing down radical feminists would be helpful to me in understanding what I can do to stop doing whatever I'm doing, OR help me help the person with the grievance to better understand where I'm coming from.

if an apology is deserved, or changes should be made, I will get out in front of that. it's the right thing to do.

but I have to know more specifically what's up.

I changed the title once before, I can change it again if Twisty herself objects, or if someone can come up with something better. it's just a title.
why thank you, rosarose!
yeah I don't get how you're getting piled on as the ammo depot of the anti-rads either. I've been reading you for a few months and you seem more than a bit easy to get along with. I think it's the name? I dunno, that's such a minor thing to get all twisted up about.
bimbo, that's the weird thing - I don't know specifically what the objectors are objecting to, precisely.

Honey: it DOESN'T MATTER. because it isn't -rational,- okay? These are people who have springs coming out their heads. These are people who are from both Mars -and- Venus, and apparently the Babelfish translator to and from Earthspeak just isn't functioning properly. These are people who've been both cowardly and malicious. These are -not people who have your best interest in mind.-

and therefore,

These are not people you need to take remotely seriously.

Okay? Please?

And I'll see your "No!" and raise you a "now, fuck OFF."
OR help me help the person with the grievance to better understand where I'm coming from.

and there's the rub. In this instance, in some instances: never gonna happen. Never, never, never. Not through any failing of yours. Because they -don't want to hear it.-

Or can't. Anyway, won't.

It sucks, but honestly, accepting this makes life -so much easier.- And frees up -so much energy-.
Good gravy, as my grandmother used to say, DO NOT take down this blog or stop blogging!

Good gravy, that would be horrible!

I like you EXACTLY the way you are also.


And this paragraph: "I can't deny that I have been angry angry ANGRY with radical feminism, and some radical feminists. I can't deny that I've been immature, hypersensitive, wildly hyperbolic..." the whole thing is me as well.

And "twisting of words" have been done on both sides. I got some twistin' goin' on my words as we speak -- will give the author a chance to respond before getting all pissy about it, but it's not us non-radical gals are the only ones who twist.
IF we do, which many of us, don't.
Twist, that is.

come on baby, let's do the twist!

I think heart is on your ass at the moment.

word verification - mbloge
I'm glad you're sticking around, too.
well, thanks, y'all.
Took me a minute to get that, AP. "Does she mean I'm weaing my heart is on my ass?" thought I.

Please don't kill your blog AP! You have given me so much to think about, and you express yourself in a way that more people could stand to learn. Your blog is one of my favorites - and you have a voice that needs to be heard!!
Hoorah! *Does a mini celebratory can-can. Falls over*

It's your space and you can do whatever the hell you want with it. I'm so glad this has made you more determined to keep blogging :)
what were my options, really...

I think I understand what stormcloud is trying to say, although hearing from her personally (whether in a comment thread or in email) would go a long way towards making her message clear to me.

And we (people in general) tend towards intellectual blindness, so to speak. we don't always understand what effects our words or theories might have down the road. Lack of 20-20 foresight is a human problem, and we need need need our ideas and theories to be examined and turned over and dismantled and put back together.

I certainly don't begrudge anyone the opportunity to tell me "hey, your premise is flawed", "your actions are inconsistent", "your behavior is harmful", "your theory has spinach in its teeth", etc.

because that gives me an opportunity to see whether those assertions are true. that leads to growth for all.

I don't think the cure for my own intellectual blindness (or for the intellectual blindess of Class Human) is to stop doing the thing that helps learning and growth to take place.

So, I thought about it, and decided to stick around.
Now this is interesting.

MsWasp offered up some most pertinent copyright information links. my comment (still awaiting moderation, as of this writing) follows:

Ms. Wasp, you’re talking about “Implied License”?

from this link: http://www.benedict.com/Digital/Internet/Usenet.aspx

There is an evolving theory of implied license that keeps popping up in Internet related legal issues. In the context of postings to newsgroups, one source proposes an implied license theory whereby in committing the act of posting to a newsgroup, you are in fact granting an implied license to other people to repost your message in the following circumstances:

copying a message from one message area to another message area on the same system.
copying a message from one forum to other similar forums on the same conferencing system.

If you are in fact toying with the idea of reposting a message from a newsgroup, keep in mind that the following characteristics will be taken in account when determining whether or not you have acted within the purview of the implied license:

whether the copied message will reach a different audience
whether the copied message is being introduced to different distribution systems

so in the context of our discussion here, “audience” and/or “system” can be taken to mean “radical feminist blogosphere” or “non-radical-feminist-blogosphere”?

what about linking to/from places like Free Republic or Jonah Goldberg or sources like that? I mean, I may be a lot of things, but I’m not a freeper - if I link to a Free Republic post, and quote a hunk of it on my blog, and comment on it, I am ensuring that the copied message will reach a different audience.

just thinking out loud here.

Thanks for linking to that site.

is a blog community the same as a "distribution system", is the question.
well, i don't know, but i sure hope someone pulls the "I'll SUE!" card next; that one's always oodles of entertainment (gets popcorn popper ready)
I think I understand what stormcloud is trying to say,

"In order to carve out what i think is a 'safe space' for myself, I am trying to control everything and everyone around me, and haven't even bothered to read anything you actually have to say"? Yeah, i think i understand it too, pretty well.
...and, uh. am i to understand that she is implying that -you- are in violation of copyright?

um. did she, or did she not just basically take a whole shitload of our words and not only repost them (with links, some, sure) but cobble them together in a rather lame attempted pastiche?

and i'm still not at all sure that she understood that my copyright of "the" was a, you know, not serious? or...

okay, this is getting sort of fascinating.

all i want to know -now- is,

how do some of these people like get through their daily life?

o well. I always did wonder who stuff like, instructions on the toothpick box, or warning labels like "DO NOT EAT" on the little silicon or whatever they are pellets that come with new handbags, were directed to.

well, you learn something every day.

well, some of us do.
...and, uh. am i to understand that she is implying that -you- are in violation of copyright?


and maybe she's right. or maybe not. I don't really know yet.
Wait, what's going on? I don't understand what this post is responding to.
click the link in the post, piny. that will get you started.
antip: if you're in violation of copyright, so are about 175,000,000 other people. including, oopsie, them.

i still wanna know if they're gonna go for the "i'ma tell my LAWYER" move. that one's a classic. oh, i'm so excited. although i doubt they'll ever be able to get even close to Blartow's contribution in that area; at least Blartow -sometimes- gives the impression that she could naviate her way out of a grease-proof paper bag on the first two or three tries, and has that whole degree and tenure n stuff going for her.

i mean, we've had just about everything else: "my lurkers support me in email," "help help i'm being oppressed," "i'm going to take all my toys and go home and eat worms and then you'll be sorry, oops wait i'm still here," "come let us reason together HAHA WEDGIE"...i'm sure i've missed a few. anyway: great stuff, really, i mean, when it isn't just annoying.
A big fat WHATEVER to the copyright stuff.

I was just at a blogging conference last weekend and this was a hot topic of discussion. Basically, the current state of things is simple: it's like sending a letter... once the person receives the letter, it's their property and theirs to do with as they please. A (non-password-protected) blog post is basically a letter to the entire internet.
well, the thing of it is, is, too, google's cached pretty much everything we've ever written. does that mean all our writing are belong to google? or that we could like sue google for doing the cache?
in any case, as with so many of these cases (o, mine eyes have seen) the real complaint isn't so much "o my precious words" as "these people are saying and -thinking- Meen Things about Me! make them stoooooooooppp"
further pursuant to the whole "fair use" thing:

from the same source as above - what's that, "ibid"?

Let's say that you are reading the newsgroup physics.brilliant.snob when in a flash of insight you discover the secret to free energy. Eager to memorialize this discovery, you compose the following message:

All that has been said in this newsgroup is ultimately as nourishing to the scientific appetite as a water molecule with a missing proton. The formula x = pi / $C0FFEE sublimely resolves all blemishes from the landscape of particle physics.

There it is - your baby...You can now send your baby out to the physics.brilliant.snob newsgroup secure in the knowledge that it is protected by copyright. As such, it is legally protected from indiscriminate copying to newspapers, magazines, and even the sanrio.hello.kitty newsgroup.

But ... posting such a virulent insult in sanrio.hello.kitty may offend the subscribers of that newsgroup. They may think that you posted it there and that you were referring to them, thereby causing the subscribers of that newsgroup to hold you in disdain. Also, you may feel that the subscribers of sanrio.hello.kitty are simply unworthy of the secret to free energy, and you would therefore just as soon not have them reading it. Whatever your reason, its irrelevant - you control the copyright, and its your prerogative.

Retransmitting Information

Suppose someone reads your post in the physics newsgroup and then posts the following message in the sanrio.hello.kitty newsgroup:

I heard in the physics newsgroup that most of the people who post are stupid and that the secret to free energy is: x = pi / $C0FFEE.

This message contains all of the information contained in the original post. Is this copyright infringement? It is not, because copyright only protects the expression of an idea, and not the idea itself. Consequently, a retransmission of the ideas, facts, or even conjectures (which are not themselves copyrightable elements) in the retransmitter's own words does not constitute a copyright infringement, and is itself as protected by copyright as the original posting. From a legal standpoint, this is the preferred method for information to propagate across the net.

ok - that I don't get. it's better to spread an unattributed rumor than to cite your source?
Doooood. Doooood! They're going to come and take all your stuff! That'll show you for using quotation marks and um, linking.... Whatever you got of value, come put it in my basement before the assessors see it.
AP: what i take from that is, i "copyright" only means anything at all if there is y'know something that one would bother copyrighting in the damn first place. in situations like that. actual work, a piece of art, a poem, a piece of music. someone else still doesn't get to take it and print it in their magazine without permission, or put their own name to it, or whatnot.

very occasionally i will see people who've copyrighted whole articles that they'd written and had published professionally, that are reproduced online on their websites, with warnings about fair use; even more rarely do those warnings include, "don't repost all or any of this on your own not-for-pay website without my permission." i don't think i've -ever- seen anyone, apart from SC, try to pull, and don't even LINK here. or, well, no one who stood a chance of being taken remotely seriously. i mean, you can ASK. i can ask for people to stop even THINKING bad thoughts about me, EVER, or i'll wish 'em into the cornfield; but you know, just between us, i don't actually have any real good way of enforcing that. and if i wanted anyone to accede to any of my demands i mean requests, it would probably behoove me to not act like a total asshole to the person of whom i am making the request. but then, i live on Earth; they may do things differently where um some people are from.
They're going to come and take all your stuff! That'll show you for using quotation marks and um, linking.... Whatever you got of value, come put it in my basement before the assessors see it.

yeah, ten percent of nothin'...

they can pry my sewing machine out of my cold dead fingers...

I really don't understand why citing sources is offensive/bad/wrong. what am I missing?

how can readers decide for themselves whether they agree or disagree, if they can't follow the link themselves?

how is saying "I read somewhere that someone said blahbleeblah", better than "on Oct. 4, Antiprincess said blahbleeblah in this post titled "Blah".
antiprincess: honestly, there is no reason that makes sense in this world, except for "i don't like it, because i can't control it!" it's down the rabbit hole, baby.
Mkay, so belledame filled me in over at Little Light's place. And, well, what I said to LL about the whole plagiarism thing: this is not a normal request, not a normal response to your writing, not a normal expectation to lay on you. This is really unfair and horrible, this request that you and you alone cease to exist in the blogosphere in order to broker some "truce." Fuck that. Same goes with the bullshit copyright thing. Of course you get to quote them; that's how the blogosphere works. If they'd prefer to restrict the discussion in some ways, they can drop you a respectful note or leave a few lines on the OP to let readers know--just like everyone else does.
From what you wrote, it sounds like someone thinks criticism is akin to treason. "All feminists should stick together no matter how illogical one of us gets".

I support criticism, especially the productive kind.

I do believe feminists are getting too spread out in their (mine) ideaology, and we'll never accomplish anything with the shotgun approach. I believe we need to agree on one thing that needs improving and focus our energies on it like a laserbeam until we accomplish it. Then, move onto the next.
what did you have in mind?
Same goes with the bullshit copyright thing. Of course you get to quote them; that's how the blogosphere works. If they'd prefer to restrict the discussion in some ways, they can drop you a respectful note or leave a few lines on the OP to let readers know--just like everyone else does.

o, there you go again with that pesky Earth logic!
I really don't understand why citing sources is offensive/bad/wrong. what am I missing?

that what the person(s) in question really want(s) is to be able to say whatever they please, and to a large extent wherever they please, despite their current protests to the contrary (including some very public, heavily trafficked, not-at-all radical feminist blogs, to wit the one where i first encountered the lady in question) and not get called on it, or get any sort of response, anywhere, that they don't care for, or can't control.

What? I mean, that's only reasonable.
The only reason for you to delete this blog would be that you had lost interest in maintaining it, or felt that it didn't meet your needs any more. Of course, those could be reasons for changing it rather than deleting it.
Essentially commanding someone else to delete their blog...why would you agree to that? You don't strike me as the timid sort, so why would anyone think that kind of attempt at silencing would work on you?
It's kind of mind-boggling, really.
Also, on the safe space issue...there's nothing wrong with people wanting to have a safe space to retreat to. Things can get a little testy on the net, people can be vicious...I think we can all udnerstand at least a little why some people might need a safe space. But, why should that then mean that one has a right to insist that the entire feminist blogosphere become a safe space for oneself? We're all offended by different things (OK, some are easier to offend than others, but still), any site that managed not to offend a single person would be...very dull, probably, and not worth reading. I think that the whole safe space argument is being used as a passive-agressive way to tell those one disagrees with to STFU. And really, we're not kids...if any of us feels the need to tell someone to STFU we should have enough courage in our convictions to say it in a more direct way.
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