Rising from the Ashes

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by Tim Widowfield

Well, we’re alive again.  Did I miss anything while we were dead?

Folio 55 verso : Phoenix (Fenix) rising from i...
Folio 55 verso : Phoenix (Fenix) rising from its ashes. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Waaaah!  They stole my content!”

Here’s the short version of what happened. In one of Neil’s blog posts, he copied the content from one of Joel “Takedown” Watts’ posts, not to steal content (heaven forbid), but to prove that Joel had merely scraped Google for links related to “the science of history.”

Joel took issue with it and claims he sent Neil an email. Perhaps he did. Neil still can’t find any evidence of it, not even in his spam pile. Joel then complained to WordPress.com, and demanded that the post containing his stolen property be taken down.

As far as we can tell, what happened next is that the WordPress guys put that post on private, but neglected to tell us why. Yesterday, Neil asked if I’d changed a post’s status to “Private,” or if we were experiencing another WordPress glitch. I said I might have fat-fingered something.  I had been setting some posts I was working on from Draft to Private, because I was worried I might accidentally publish them.

“Nice blog ya got here. It’d be a shame if sumpin’ was tuh happen to it.”

So Neil, unaware of the storm brewing on the horizon, set the post back to Public. At that point, it appears WordPress interpreted our behavior as evidence that we were flouting the rules and ignoring the DMCA takedown order. Please note that neither Neil nor I received any warnings from WordPress about the Sword of Damocles hanging over our heads.

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