Friday, March 31, 2006

April Fool's Joke Gone Awry?

Okay, so been sitting here thinking about Strumpette (no need to link), and the call I got from Brian Connolly ... and just mulling it over to think over the whole thing.

On one hand, the first post was amusing. It said stuff that most of us were thinking anyway, but someone put out there. In the end, did it matter? Of course not. It's a blog.

Thinking it through, I began to wonder if this was just a bad April Fool's Joke gone badly awry. Launched a week early - it smelled immediately, just from the first email - to string along PR people, then expose us for something or other.

But, then it blew up. It blew up badly, and I doubt Connolly (if it is him) understood the nature of blogs or the blogosphere. And, well, it also showed that the person(s) involved do not fully understand the scrutiny nature of the blogosphere.

He did call me up after I posted a comment on Krempasky. One little lesson - unless the blogger is a friend, start most conversations with "this is NFB (not for blogging)" or "this is off the record" - that will save you from a post like this. And, nicely, I always watch what I say unless I don't care. And, don't call me at my office - email me. That's why I have those links on my blog.

Connolly didn't like that I called his response knee-jerk. I explained that the sane thing to do is walk away, rethink the response, and then hit post when you deem it fine. Amazingly so, I do that with most of my posts on my blog, and comments on other blogs. Wrap your mind around that - my original comments and posts are more acidic.

So, he starts talking, and I'm half listening because ... well I am at work trying to work. But one thing gets me to notice his babbling ... "you are Strumpette. Tom Biro is Strumpette. Or, well, you guys could be."

Um, no I am not. Neither is Biro.

And that was so fucking offensive, it still sickens me. I have nothing to do with that shit (nor does Biro), but here is Connolly - if it is him - trying to deflect attention and make it a group effort.

It gets worse (of course). By him dropping a friend's name, Tom Biro, I immediately IM Biro. In the wonderful world of IM, I contact Tom to ask what this shit is about. With me, Connolly went for the "it would be fun, it would be a group effort" type pitch. With Biro, he went with the "we can make money, I already got an offer to buy it" pitch. Um, he's the Hungarian, I'm the Jew - switch those pitches, and it makes more sense.

Connolly goes on some more - I don't listen, again because I am trying to work - but gives me his contact info (redacted contact info) in case I am interested. I'm not, trust me.

Beyond the offensive nature of trying to tie me to that blog - and, well, the people out there know that if I write something, it's not going to be done anonymously - it is just an offensive, sexist blog (particularly if the guess work is right, and it's written by an old white man?). In the end, that does matter. It matters a lot.

It matters because the generation of next PR people are mainly women - we are a female-heavy industry, and always have been. It matters because last night I am sitting at PRSSA National Assembly dinner, listening to the next generation of PR practitioners (and some new entrants into the work force) talk about PR and online communications, people like Sarah Yeaney and Barbara Tate. It matters because I work with and respect the Auburn students like Erin Caldwell and Emily Melton, the SMU students like Casey Westlake and care about my own interns, Ashely Finch and Gine Weakley. They are what matter, not some crap blog.

Who'd have thunk it that I am a feminist - hey, philosophical issues in feminism and got an A, and helped launch the breast cancer stamp - but this crap tires me. Yes, I have that smirk sometimes, but it is not easy to be in a profession that judges looks just as highly (if not moreso) than talent. At the end of the day, if Strumpette is a female, that's sad. If it's a male, I feel bad for his female employees because it is obvious he has no respect for them (nor his Mother or sisters or daughters).

Let's end talk of that blog. It's tired, it's tripe ... it smells.
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