Friday, December 14, 2007

Who Are You?

I’m reading Katha Pollitt’s Learning to Drive. I’m not done yet, but like everyone else, I was a touch surprised at the contrast between the Katha I know from The Nation and the Katha in the pages of this latest book.

But you know what? I shouldn’t be. This afternoon, I’ve been looking at the discussions of the parts of the current Brain, Child we put on the website. We have a flamer, folks. As my blog self, I’d be tempted to haul ass in there, and say, “What the fuck, angry anonymous? Why you gotta be like that, all disrespectful?” But as the Brain, Child lady, I’m gentler.

I don’t know. I don’t have meanies commenting here. Do you allow anonymous comments? Does it cut down on comments in general?

Also, have a read! There’s a call for Backtalk entries (acrostics, that thing where the first letter of each line forms a word); a terrific feature by Juliette Guibert about a movement that maintains high functioning “neuro-atypical” people don’t need curing, but a culture of their own; a funny and provocative essay by Heather Caliri about E.C.; and Donna Eis’s essay about finding community, online and in real life. Very meta, no?

11 comments:

Dawn said...

I think flames are best left sitting looking incongruous and insane. There's no need to engage the crazies but when one does, being cool, calm and collected highlights their crazy.

Jennifer said...

Thanks, Dawn!

It's bizarre how one scene from an essay can derail a whole discussion about it.

BarbaraCA said...

Oh my GOD. I LOVE how you thoughtfully redirect the comments. Aaaaaand, then they're off again. It's herding geese.

Elrena said...

I totally agree, excellent redirect. What a flamer...pretty sad.

laundrylessons said...

Going to check it out now...you're nice...no hitting the delete button on those with strong opinions. Unless you're afraid to of bodily harm, I always think you should attach your name to your opinion.

BabelBabe said...

i disabled completely-anonymous comments on my blog - if they want to go to the trouble to generate a fake ID as a blogger, then what the hell. But god, how annoying...

O said...

Now I need to go check Brain Child's site to see this.
I haven't had flamers before and don't quite know what I'd do. But ever since I had an anonymous spammer post multiple "comments" advertising something disgusting (not just lascivious, but truly disgusting) on multiple entries, I now review comments.
In fact, I'm debating right now another "comment" which is merely a website, advertising a form of product I mentioned I liked. Just need to mull over whether I want to be affiliated with them, even tangentially.
Off to go see this flamer...

Jennifer said...

The irony is, there's another essay on the site about this very issue--how discussions devolve into this LISTEN TO ME!!! fest.

Oh, my hell.

Anonymous said...

I just went and read the discussion you refer to here and I'm not sure why you consider anything posted as "angry" or "disrespectful". I don't see "angry". I don't see a cause for a "What the fuck?" from you, especially as an editor. I see a number of different posts where different people (women?) are expressing their opinions. Those opinions happen to disagree with the actions of the author. I don't see any "meanies" or "flamers" at all.

And yes, I am posting this as anonymous as well. If disagreement is considered "mean", I don't want you to think of me as mean from now on.

Jennifer said...

Anon, this is why I didn't "what the fuck" on the BC site. Check out my latest post. Disagreement is not mean, of course, but the tones of some of those? You betcha.

Anjali said...

Jennifer,

I just read through the litany of comments, and I must say, bravo for how you handled yourself! (Far more maturely than I would have, quite frankly.) It's a shame that people don't understand the difference between respectfully disagreeing and mere name-calling. Because it really did distract from what could have been a fascinating discussion.

I moderate all of my comments, and have since one nasty (anonymous) comment was posted on my blog last year about my miscarriages. I don't care if people are anonymous, but I simply won't publish them at all if there's bitchiness.