Thursday, March 4, 2010

Web Logs and Privacy

HistoryMike has written an excellent post about protecting your identity online, which I encourage everyone to read (click here)

I've been reading Mike's musings for some time and have enjoyed his presence at several social gatherings of Toledo area bloggers. I've found him to be an intelligent man having moderate political opinions and excellent diction who is given to few eccentricities. I also know that he's suffered unreasonable attacks and harassment due to the publication of his well-reasoned views by the fatheads, trolls and cretins who have learned to read but who have yet to master reading comprehension.

Compare Mike's somewhat mild rantings to that opinionated but lovable ledgend of the right wing blogosphere, Kim du Toit. Kim wrote and self- published such essays as The Pussification Of The Western Male, Alpha-Beta Males And Females and Cry Havoc: Taking Off The Gloves. If Kim isn't extreme enough for you (or even if he is), consider the tequila induced rantings of an author I admire greatly, Fred Reed. It's difficult to say what portion of Fred's essays are hyperbole and which portion are pure unadulterated fact, but one thing is certain – Fred is never understated. Fred used to cover the crime beat and did ride-alongs with the police as described in his police essays, such as Gangbanger Up Close. Fred also hates abuse of authority and obstructive bureaucracy, as found in TSA and Its Brethren. Sadly, Fred is no longer with us: Mexican Deaths.

I have no idea if Kim or Fred were ever seriously threatened, but I know that in Kim's case having an identifiable web log hurt his business terribly. Kim is a business consultant and a good one, but any client on the East coast immediately disavowed knowing anything about Kim du Toit after reading a few of his essays. (Sarcasm Alert) Can you imagine any warm, sensitive man of the nineties ever subscribing to the idea of acting like a red-blooded American male? Fred Reed may or may not be in the same shape, what with political correctness being what it is.

Excluding the extremism and vehemence of their opinions, I think the biggest difference between HistoryMike and the Kim-Fred camp is the reaction to being threatened. I envision Fred wordlessly pulling out a Mexican switch with a nine inch blade and shaving a patch of hair from his arm to test the edge. Kim would likely smile and open his gun safe to select just the right armaments for an expected attack, and as an afterthought emailing a few Internet friends to say that there's an outside chance to put some lead in the air down in Texas.

As for me, I have no desire to share business problems like Kim du Toit has. I have enough migraines of my own, thanks. Nor do I need undue harassment from pseudo bad boy groups who are threatening to publish my personal information on the Internet. I am, however, always willing to lend a hand where it's needed – so if HistoryMike needs to borrow a shotgun or asks for a few volunteers to help guard his house while he sleeps, I'll be near the front of the line.

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