August 30, 2003

Slashdot Elect

I can always tell when Michael Sims (one of Slashdot's "editors", in spite of being the domain-hijacker of Censorware Project) has done something abusive. This is not due to ESP, or a mystical connection (though he'd certainly claim my knowledge is proof of some malignant aspect). Rather, it's a "push" effect as opposed to a "pull" effect - the knowledge comes to me, rather than my having to seek it out. Behind the magic, it's simple. I get many referred hits to my website whenever he throws a temper-tantrum on Slashdot. So I know something's up.

In this case, on Thursday, for five stories he posted, Michael Sims made their tags lines a completely irrelevant attack on the broadband company "Speakeasy". It seems he was having a service dispute with them. Thus the obvious course of action, if you've got journalistic power to abuse, is to make the front page of Slashdot a forum for ranting about it as a prelude to other stories. One posting by user "LittleLebowskiUrbanA" summarized it all:

Text of an email I sent to Speakeasy:

These comments are taken off of the front page of and were made by This seems to be very bad publicity for your company. Will you be posting a response? You may want to have your public relations dept take a look at this website and these comments.

(in order)

> *from the speakeasy-dsl-sucks dept.*

> *from the speakeasy-has-spent-two-weeks-without-placing-my-order dept.*

> *from the i-thought-premium-price-meant-premium-service dept.*

> *from the not-in-speakeasy's-case-certainly dept.*

*from the even-writing-to-speakeasy's-ceo-gets-no-results dept.*

Apparently Slashdot didn't care. It's hardly a big issue overall. Maybe they even think such whining on the front page is good for their street-cred.

People just don't get it when I talk about why the journalistic abusiveness is such a problem for legally risky anti-censorware work. I say over and over, Michael Sims held hostage then hijacked Censorware Project, and still has Slashdot's de facto support. I have essentially no power and have to worry about being sued, with the prospect of smear-attacks from Slashdot!

It's not sustainable.

By Seth Finkelstein | posted in journo | on August 30, 2003 08:32 PM (Infothought permalink) | Followups
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Dear Seth,

If you really cared about freedom, you wouldn't arbitrarily delete comments to your blog.


P.S. Speakeasy sucks.

Posted by: Slashdot at August 31, 2003 03:53 PM

I really care about signal-to-noise too :-)

By the way, if you were refered here from a Slashdot posting, it was likely from a troll.

My Slashdot uid is #90154, so beware trolls. That was another factor.

Posted by: Seth Finkelstein at August 31, 2003 04:00 PM