Blogosphere

BoingBoing explains Violet Blue purge (sort of)

BoingBoing.net, the highly read blog semi-based in Los Angeles, has shed a little light on why it deleted posts about sex writer Violet Blue. But not much light. The public story is that a bunch of blogs, including the LAT's Web Scout, have been talking about the purge of Blue's name from the BoingBoing archives. She claims to be mystified, and since she's a female blogger who talks graphically about sex many bloggers picked up her case. Web Scout frames it as ironic given that BoingBoing can sometimes be fanatical about transparency. Anyway, a note posted at BoingBoing says the deletions occurred a year ago but won't say much about why they were done.

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 We unpublished our own work.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.

Of the four co-founders, Mark Frauenfelder and Xeni Jardin are Angelenos.


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