Programming Note

Tomorrow (January 19) on NPR’s Day to Day magazine show:
“The Perils of Personal Blogging,” The tease has a quote from someone who got fired from his job because of his blog. Check your local listings. We all get National Public Radio, don’t we?
I wish I could get fired. Then I could write more. Did I say that out loud?


I heard the segment this morning (hey, it’s Wednesday in L.A.!), and I guess I will have to refrain from talking very much here about my crummy job. It seems a number of folks have lost their jobs, crummy or not, because of their blogs. We are not anonymous, people. It’s an illusion. I know two or three ways my real identity could be tracked down by anyone really serious about it (that’s why I don’t understand why I have not yet heard from Gwyneth Paltrow). I have not tried very hard to hide — just enough so the casual reader won’t bother to figure anything out.Anyway, if you’re in Los Angeles the entire show will be repeated at noon today (Wednesday, 19Jan2005) on public radio station KCRW, 89.9 FM. The segment happens about 28 minutes into the show, and lasts less than five minutes. Or you can go to Day to Day’s web site, and hear the audio after 3 PM EST.And if you think you are hiding yourself real good in your blog, you might want to take a look at The Hot Librarian’s post from yesterday. She got found out, apparently through total coincidence, and she is distraught.

We are not doing anything wrong. We are having fun, making connections, learning about ourselves and blowing off steam. It’s therapy in a lot of cases. Why should we be fired?

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13 Replies to “Programming Note”

  1. Is this the guy who worked at Microsoft? That story did make quite a splash sometime late last year. I couldn’t believe they actually fired him–if you didn’t think they were a ruthless totalitarian regime before, you did after you read about him. “Campus,” my ass, ha!

  2. Steph,
    Don’t know who the guy is. They didn’t ID him in the promo. I’ll find out tomorrow, I guess.
    Many Microsodt employees are bloggers, and they blog at work. The blogs are on Microsoft servers, so I think the company must know about them.
    Let me guess — you’re an artist, so you must be a Mac user. Right?

  3. I am Jack’s sense of paranoia.

    There are things you can put on a blog and things you shouldn’t. It also depends on where you work. As a rule, I do not put anything work related onto my blog. I think that’s a good start in protecting yourself at work.

    Also, I know for a fact that any IT Dept can monitor your surfing habits at work. They can see every address you visit. But they have to want to see that info. It’s not like they are constantly monitoring what you do on the web.

    Or are they?

  4. Larry, blogger is just not working very well today. It’s been doing the same thing to me. 😉 I think the whole idea of being fired for a blog is completely an invasion of privacy, unless, of course, the time spent blogging is keeping you from performing your duties. But, what you say and write on your off time should be your own fucking time.

  5. Well, I totally feel the same. My workload is about three times that of my co-workers. Yeah, I may be higher compensated, but there is one girl in our office who took three days to put up xmas decorations at her cubicle. So, fuck it. I’ll blog during my spurts of downtime.

  6. Oh, the poor librarian! That’s gotta su-uck *shaking head* I think she needs to torch it, but rise from its ashes like a Phoenix and try to maintain greater anonymity.

  7. an interesting dilemna.
    we blog to a degree, i think, to be known.
    or at least to not be unknown.
    i assumed from the first entry i’d be found out. by my students, by my coworkers.
    indeed, i have been found out.
    thank goodness this is all a creative writing exercise.
    only the pictures are real.
    thank goodness i only write from home.

  8. Steph — The Hot Librarian has posted a few things that will embarrass her if people she knows IRL get hold of them, and one or two items that could cost her the night job. She can clean things up if she wants to, and she’s a talented writer. My advice to her was that now she can prove her talent: be just as funny and engaging, minus the libel and the cruelty. I think she can (and will) keep the blog. After all, she’s The Hot Librarian. (BTW, the radio thing was not about the guy from Microsoft.)

    j — I have probably left too much of a trail to imagine that I am safe from discovery. On the other hand the only thing I am ashamed of is how bad some of my writing is. I do my job effectively, so I think I’ll keep my blog. Your disclaimer should innoculate you, but I think it could work against you, too.

  9. Those of us that blog from work, against all rules, are definitely targets. Luckily the IT guys are busy surfing porn so I feel somewhat safe. They even came by a few weeks ago and cleaned out all the “spyware” on my computer that came from surfing the net.

    To my IT guys: Thanks for not ratting me out.


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