Denise Goldberg's blog

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Only one home

My travel journals now only have a single home. I posted here on Groundhog's Day that I had created a new home for them (easily accessible by clicking the Travel stories link in this blog sidebar, or by clicking Travel stories from the Gallery entry on the navbar of my site). I have now removed them from their old web location.

I just posted an entry over on the crazyguyonabike forum thread about watermarking pictures to explain to people there who may have been reading my journals why I pulled them from the site. I've decided to also post that response here:

I'd like to offer my thanks to those of you who have written to tell me that you'll miss my journals and my photos (even with a watermark). Both are still easily available, although they will no longer jump out and grab you from the home page or journal list here. You can always find my words and photos by following the Travel stories link in the sidebar of my blog. Here's a direct link if anyone is looking for it now -

I apologize if I pulled a journal out from under your eyes, if you were reading something when I unpublished my journals. If that's the case, and if you can't find it in its new home, please contact me and let me know what it is you are looking for. I'd be happy to send you a direct link.

In answer to anyone asking if there is something going on in my life under the assumption that I must have pulled out because of something else - it couldn't be because of this issue, could it? My life is just fine; I'm perfectly happy. And in fact I did pull my journals because of this issue.

Please note that I am not posting this to restart the discussion; I would just like some of you to understand my decision. If you are not interested in that decision then I'd recommend that you stop reading this post.

Neil's statement that he did not ban the use of watermarks is correct, but he might as well have. While the first post was civilized it did show an extreme lack of understanding (stating the assumption that the only reason someone would use a watermark would be so that they could sell the photos), and it quickly degraded into an out-and-out rant. It should have been a civilied discussion; it was not anything close to that. And I'm not talking about just the comments directed at me; there were comments directed at other individuals who also did not agree with the initial statement. It was very clear to me from this thread that Neil really doesn't want to see photos with watermarks here, and that he wouldn't "allow" journals to link off-site for the photos. And I would agree that it is good to have some photos embedded in the journal (although I will continue my habit of having a sample of photos in my journal, with more available in my photo galleries).

At this point I am not willing to publish my photographs on the web without a watermark on them (as an artist's signature). Yes, I do know it can be easily cropped off. But realize, that is my decision, not Neil's, and not yours. If my watermark distracts you, then I'm sure that you will not visit my photo galleries or the new home of my journals. That's fine - it's your choice, just as watermarking my photos is my choice.

I know that some of you think that I overreacted by pulling my journals from this site. That's your opinion, but no, I didn't overreact. I thought long and hard about it, and I weighed my choices. You already know my decision - I chose to create a new home for my journals. Don't be so quick to judge; you have no idea what you will do yourself until you are faced with a similar situation.

Did I do a bad thing? Apparently the webmaster of the previous home of my journals thought so - he sent me a behind-the-scenes email calling me an asshole. I wouldn't call that a civilized reaction, would you? That email made me realize that my decision to pull my journals from that site was even more right than I initially thought.
Update a few hours later... just to take it a little further, he just posted a reply to my post calling me a liar. Nice.

And days later... I can no longer access crazyguyonabike or its sister sites from my home computer to read the content published by other authors, although I can access it from my "baby" travel computer using a neighbor's internet connection (at the same moment that I can't access the sites from my usual computer). This implies to me that my IP address is blocked from the sites. I can ping the sites, but I can't get to them from a browser. Given that I have not posted anything other than this explanation, I think that was a more than childish reaction on Neil's part. I understand blocking someone from posting on a site if that person has been posting questionable content (which I really haven't been), but I do not understand blocking read access from reading the site. Again, a very childish and churlish reaction.
I have absolutely no regrets about the decision that I made.

In case you haven't been following along and would like to see my previous posts about this topic, here are links to my previous blog posts:
>>> Look over my shoulder, the announcement of the new home for my travel stories
>>> It's my decision, my reaction, my dismay, the start of my thoughts about where my travel stories should live.

Oh, and you're right. Most of my journals are still upside down, reading like a blog from newest to oldest. Yes, I'm still going to flip them over - but I needed a break from my computer. That change is still coming.