That Violet Blue thing

Update, 07-21-2008: A related wrap-up post was published on Boing Boing on July 18: Lessons Learned.

Speaking for all the Boingers--

Boing Boing has been caught in the middle of a real internet shitstorm and pile-on over the last few days. A blogger named Violet Blue noticed that we unpublished some posts related to her. Some people wanted to know why.

Bottom line is that those posts (not "more than 100 posts," as erroneously claimed elsewhere) were removed from public view a year ago. Violet behaved in a way that made us reconsider whether we wanted to lend her any credibility or associate with her. It's our blog and so we made an editorial decision, like we do every single day. We didn't attempt to silence Violet. We unpublished our own work. There's a big difference between that and censorship.

We hope you'll respect our choice to keep the reasons behind this private. We do understand the confusion this caused for some, especially since we fight hard for openness and transparency. We were trying to do the right thing quietly and respectfully, without embarrassing the parties involved.

Clearly, that didn't work out. In attempting to defuse drama, we inadvertently ignited more. Mind you, we weren't the ones splashing gasoline around; but we did make the fire possible. We're sorry about that. In the meantime, Boing Boing's past content is indexed on the Wayback Machine, a basic Internet resource; so the material should still be available for those who would like to read it.

Thank you all for caring what happens on Boing Boing. And if you think there's more to say, by all means, let's talk. We're listening.

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[Xeni] Update, 07-02-08: A number of the BB team were on the phone together today (for the first time since this started) discussing the situation. Several news organizations had pinged us to discuss this, including the Los Angeles Times, so we invited them to join the call and ask a few questions. It turned out to be a good conversation, and we hope the partial transcripts posted on the LA Times contribute to the thoughtful and evolving conversation. Comments welcome; ad hominem/feminem attacks not so much.

(1) BoingBoing bloggers talk about Violet Blue controversy's implications
(2) BoingBoing's Xeni Jardin on unpublishing the Violet Blue posts
[ Los Angeles Times ]