The Republic of T.

Black. Gay. Father. Vegetarian. Buddhist. Liberal.

Writer’s Strike At Daily Kos

I hadn’t really thought about it — in fact, I had to login to see when my I posted my last diary — but it’s been almost a year since I posted over at Daily Kos.

I didn’t make an announcement about it at the time. It was more of personal decision. After the Kathy Sierra saga. I didn’t particularly care for Kos’ response, but beyond that I didn’t particularly care for the general nastiness and callousness that seemed to have crept into progressive bogging. (Or perhaps it was already there and I finally had enough of it.)

Maybe I was still smarting from the Clinton blogger lunch debacle, and recovering from unwittingly resurrecting the great blogroll purge. But I’d become disillusioned with the much hyped “netroots.”

I was reminded of all that when I read this post about a writers’ strike at Dail Kos.

I’ve been posting at DailyKos for nearly 4 years now and started writing diaries in support of Hillary Clinton back in June of last year. Over the past few months I’ve noticed that things have become progressively more abusive toward my candidate and her supporters. I’ve put up with the abuse and anger because I’ve always believed in what our on-line community has tried to accomplish in this world. No more. DailyKos is not the site it once was thanks to the abusive nature of certain members of our community.

I’ve decided to go on “strike” and will refrain from posting here as long as the administrators allow the more disruptive members of our community to trash Hillary Clinton and distort her record without any fear of consequence or retribution. I will not be posting at DailyKos effective immediately. I will not help drive up traffic or page-hits as long as my candidate – a good and fine DEMOCRAT – is attacked in such a horrid and sexist manner not only by other diarists, but by several of those posting to the front page.

Instead, I will put my energy into posting at sites where my efforts aren’t routinely trashed, spammed and ridiculed by a handful of angry, petty and spiteful folks who clearly have too much time on their hands.

More candidate-driven than my decision, but it sounds familiar. At least, familiar enough to suggest that the nastiness and callousness I mentioned earlier isn’t a figment of my imagintion. For me it was a realization I wrote about in, and that got lost in, the blogroll amnesty post.

I’m not one of those people, and I’ll never be one of those people, because I’m not willing to change what I’d need to change to be one of those people. I don’t hang with them, I don’t roll with them, and I’ve pretty much stop listening or participating in their conversations. Kos and Atrios don’t know me from Adam. And that’s fine.

So, I quietly went away, stopped trying to scale that steep slope, and decided to spend my time and energy in other places in the blogosphere. (And I went quietly because I didn’t think anyone would care, and because I didn’t feel like dealing with the kind of nastines the post above got, when it was crossposted on DKos.)

I wonder how many others have had the same reaction and chosen the same response.


  1. I just had a stint yesterday guest blogging over on The Stranger’s blog, a href=””>the Slog. It’s a well-trafficked local blog, and I really thought long and hard before I accepted their offer, because I hate abusive people on the internet, and there are a lot of them on the Slog. They have a very lax comment policy. I actually haven’t even checked the comments on most of my posts, because I am afraid of what some of them might say.

    I am particularly worried about the post I wrote about prostitution, because a lot of progressive men believe that it should be legal, and have no problem telling you that in abusive and insulting terms. But, based on the research I have done, I don’t believe it should be legalized. I’m not posting this comment to get into that discussion, but just to illustrate that because I posted a controversial opinion, and especially because it is a feminist post, I fully anticipate abusive and potentially threatening responses. Because I was guest blogging and have no control over the comment policy, I ignored all the comments.

    The reason I decided to do the posting was because I don’t want to be intimidated out of expressing my opinion, and I ESPECIALLY don’t to feel silenced by misogynists. But I am shocked by how many people blame me for not being strong enough to tolerate the “inevitable” abuse that I’ll encounter on the internet. I KNOW it’s inevitable. That doesn’t mean I have to think it’s okay.

    I think about these issues a lot, and thanks for posting about them. I admire you for blogging publicly. I’ve thought about starting a blog (besides, you know, a livejournal), but I get nervous even about the fact that the email address I use for my comments is my real name. I know you won’t publish it, but I have to trust every blogger about that. Maybe I should start using an anonymous email address, too.

  2. Oops, sorry for the messed up html in the comment about. The link to the Slog is

  3. Dkos (a site at which I’ve never posted) is not the only place that is losing members due to outright hostility toward supporters of HRC. I’ve stopped posting on a forum I’ve been a member of for several years as HRC supporters are now labeled shills, trolls, “Hillbots” and other very unfavorable things. Hillary herself is called much worse names. Essentially if you don’t parade your support for Obama you might as well not post on the boards.

    I have my own blog and another I contribute to, (and the research that goes into them) as well as others I read. There’s no reason for me to take abuse from people who aren’t interested in discourse but rather an echo chamber.