This week a big brouhaha burst out on the web about BoingBoing’s taking down any and all links / posts about Violet Blue the San Francisco sex columnist / blogger.
And the web commenting folks reacted. And reacted. And reacted.
Upon, first reading about this to do, I wondered why such a big brouhaha now – given that the about Violet Blue posts were removed a year ago at BoingBoing – when not a peep has been written about KT’s whole section of Blogher Editor posts from the last year or two being removed lock, stock, and barrel over at Blogher.com over the weekend of June 14-15, 2008.
Now, I don’t think that BlogHer is as highly ranked as BoingBoing, nor do they have the readership, nor do I think that KT was getting it on with one of the BlogHer management in a way that would feed salacious gossip, as Violet Blue was getting it (supposedly) with BoingBoing’s Xeni.
What I do know is that BoingBoing’s moderator, Teresa NielsenHayden, did address the issue today and that she is a by far more astute web moderator than just about anyone else out there.
What I also know is that BoingBoing has a better designed site that is easier to navigate both on the website and over time then the BlogHer site, which seems to be redesigned every year before the summer conference and get more unusable than the year before.
Furthermore, what I also know is that BlogHer had a prominent post on the top of the front page to allow readers comment on the new site redesign on Monday, June 16, 2008, but it had no mention of the departure of a good daily editorial BlogHer. And all the comments about the redesign of the site were only gushing, positive comments by other editors of the site. I was the first, and apparently the last, to make a few critiques of the redesign & its usability in the comments. The post announcing the redesign disappeared off the front page within the day.
How do I know that KT’s posts disappeared? I have BlogHer on my feed list, and day in and day out 365 days a year for at least the last year if not longer, including holidays, KT’s daily astrology post would be on the RSS / Atom feed, as well as on the BlogHer website as the editor post for the Astrology section. KT’s posts stopped on Fri. June 13, 2008 and have not reappeared in the feed since.
More telling a few days after the BlogHer redesign was announced and launched on Mon. June 16, 2008, all of KT’s posts were deleted from BlogHer.
Now I am not going to make a big to do about the why or wherefores, but what I would appreciate is some editorial / leadership transparency on the part of the BlogHer folks about KT’s departure. Whether this is in the style of Anil’s metafilter comment about how to deal with a split or TNH’s BoingBoing post today it doesn’t matter, what does matter to me for BlogHer’s credibility is that they acknowledge the departure (good, bad, neutral) of an editor and her daily column.
I don’t care if BlogHer chose to take down all of KT’s posts or if KT took down all of her own posts, nor do I care about why or the personal politics about the departure, just make an announcement. Say goodbye.
Why should BlogHer say goodbye? Well, BlogHer’s whole premise is an all inclusive community of women bloggers that values diversity, transparency, and honesty. Blogher, live up to your explicit and implicit values.
BlogHer, in the meantime, please please please please hire someone to re-architect your website, it is unusable and I am only viewing posts in my feed reader to be able to see if the content is worth while, as my reader sorts everything nicely. I am very sad to see last year’s design go, as it was the only one I enjoyed clicking through to and seeing the content on the site in, this year’s site is very vanilla corporate.
As a side note to wrap up this post, amusingly enough, I have noticed that Xeni’s sex posts have declined over the last few months. I do think Valley Wag may have hit the whole brouhaha on the head.