Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Wednesday, July 27, 2021

We’ve all seen the examples of how blabbermouthy blogging can get you fired. So the local angle on this phenomenon doesn’t necessarily offer much new. (Although it does give some nice exposure for College Confidential, lucky gal.)

But a couple of scattered considerations:

- It’s notable that the focus is on the potentially damaging content — what a blogger says — rather than on when they’re saying it. Blogging on company time is apparently not as much a concern for companies. Or if it is, it’s only within the context of general cyberslacking.

Of course, it’s pretty easy to manipulate the timestamp on practically all blog management systems. Just because the time of post says 11PM, it doesn’t mean the writer didn’t jot those thoughts in the middle of the workday, and just postdated it to throw the boss off the scent. (It’s the one thing about blogs that makes them most suspect as records, actually.)

- The impression of invisibility on the Web is sneakily seductive. Even if you remind yourself that the nature of website publishing means your stuff is accessible by practically anyone, the low hit-counter tally falsely convinces you that no one’s looking, and the self-preservative defense mechanisms fail.

Then again, most people are just stupider than that. The figure the Web’s too big, Google’s indexbots will never find them, and simply don’t have enough sense or discipline to edit themselves. Then they irrationally get upset when they’re discovered. Typical.

- Anonymity is a tough act online. For instance, I can’t pull it off here: Even if I were to delete all the content on this site, it’s archived elsewhere for eternity (or close enough). Plus the URL is registered in my name.

Even if you go with the free services and cover your tracks with dummy email accounts and such, most people aren’t savvy enough to maintain it. It doesn’t take much to blow your cover, and then you’re screwedtwice, even.

- Costa Tsiokos, Wed 07/27/2005 11:04:07 PM
Category: Bloggin', Business | Permalink |

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  1. Funny that the article didn’t explain the origin of the term “dooced” — or did I skim too fast?

    Comment by david — 07/28/2005 @ 01:11:50 AM

  2. No, it didn’t. However, the definition is included in a repurposed writeup for tbt*, the paper’s “hip” sister publication. Frankly, it’s sloppy editing in both instances.

    Comment by CT — 07/28/2005 @ 09:44:31 AM

  3. It’s something I struggle with on a daily basis. I go pretty far out of my way to prevent people from figuring out my secret identity, but at least two people have figured out where I work based on referral logs and comments left. It’s enough to make one think twice…

    Comment by trumwill — 07/28/2005 @ 02:47:36 PM

  4. People assume you have to do a lot of digging to uncover an anonymous blogger. In fact, it’s pretty easy, because people typically slip up themselves. For instance, Liz at Breakfast of Losers pretty much outed herself, despite precautions.

    Aside from human error, IP addresses take no effort to uncover. Anonymity online takes vigilance, and it’s often too hard to maintain.

    Comment by CT — 07/28/2005 @ 06:29:45 PM

  5. Somebody should start a blog detailing how other bloggers got uncovered. I’m not vulnerable the same way Liz was, but I am probably vulnerable the way someone else is vulnerable.

    Help the vigilant be as effective as possible, anyway.

    Comment by trumwill — 07/28/2005 @ 08:29:07 PM

  6. which is why I never say anything derogatory about work. not that there’s anything derogatory to say. . .

    Comment by liz — 07/29/2005 @ 07:42:02 AM

  7. That would be an area where I am quite vulnerable :)

    Comment by trumwill — 07/29/2005 @ 10:14:10 AM


    Rachel* has been kicked out of law school, and her blog had a little something to do with it:

    Basically, [the dean] gave me a set of options that boiled down to a singular choice: Stetson or Midnight Culmination.

    I guess we see which on…

    Trackback by Population Statistic — 09/03/2021 @ 05:45:58 PM


    In case anyone’s forgotten, your blog is a potentially self-damaging public (and permanent, even when altered) record. I’m thinking one Blake Ranking won’t be able to forget this, as the Central Florida teen was forced to plead guilt…

    Trackback by Population Statistic — 12/20/2005 @ 08:26:11 PM

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