Apparently this is supposed to be a really big deal or something. Never did get the thrill of ‘outing’ online. Since, having never met him in the flesh, ‘Red Tory’ is essentially a series of glorified ones and zeros to me (albeit one hilarious pixelated collection of text on my screen), I don’t see how knowing that ‘Red Tory’ is also ‘Martin Rayner’ (if that IS your real name, SneakyMcPseudonym) makes a rat’s ass of difference.
And yes, ‘matttbastard’ is (obviously) a pseudonym, and no, I don’t plan on revealing the Peter Parker below the Spider-Man mask. Trust me, the ‘truth’ is more underwhelming than Fred Thompson’s campaign kickoff (non) announcement (who the fuck pre-announces the date of their official announcement? The phrase ‘shit or get off the pot’ was never more apt.)
Update: For reasons unclear to me, Bene Diction has chosen to take issue with my (very brief, very glib) post on the Red Tory outing. Since my rebuttal is awaiting moderation [edit: it’s now up], I thought I’d offer my response in its entirety here [edited slightly for formatting and to correct a couple of typos]:
I think you misinterpreted my (very sarcastic) post, Bene. I wasn’t minimizing the potential harm ‘outing’ can have. I agree with everything you said in your response to the straw-matttbastard of your own creation.
I have many friends (pseudonymous and otherwise) in the blogosphere (not so many here in the Great White North, however), and have been involved in some capacity or another with the political blog community since late ’01/early ’02 (yeah, back in the good ol’ days when the VLWC consisted of five or six bloggers, most of whom discovered muckracking online agitation via Bartcop and MediaWhores, although I didn’t graduate from constant lurker status until around ’04. Yes, I remember when Drum was ‘CalPundit’, and the comments were actually readable. Hell, I remember Kos when he was a ‘he’ and not a community). So I [do] know and appreciate the value of pseudonymity, and the potential damage malicious outing and cyberstalking can present.
Hell, I’ve had online friends and acquaintances who’ve been outed by (or have received threats of outing from) such ‘ethical’ Yankee conservatives as Jeff G*ldstein (king of the virtual dickslap and the one who first patented the frivolous blogsuit – just ask [the pseudonymous] Bitch, PHD) and Josh Trevino (aka TAFKA Tacitus). And don’t get me started on Michelle-fucking-Malkin and her cyber-poo-flinging flying monkeys…(and then there’s the supposedly progressive Ann Bartow, who once threatened to out both bitch| lab AND zuzu, supposedly for their own ‘protection’. But I digress.)
As for the very unfortunate Kathy Sierra affair, well, here’s what I had to say at the time about Kos’ blase response to the cyberstalking she was subjected to.
In summary, the tone of my post was indeed offered purely in solidarity with Red Tory’s ‘fuck you, whatever’ tone, as you pointed out. Ultimately, what I can’t fathom is how truly pathetic those who take [childish] thrill in their revelations are, and how callous their indifference to [the potentially devastating] consequence is. But if you took it differently, well, I’m very sorry for apparently being unclear.
Judging by your attempt to ‘school’ me, apparently I need a secret decoder ring before I’m considered part of the Kewl Kanuck Kidz (thanks, but no thanks). But please, before you next decide to adopt a similar condescending tone with me, remember that just because I’m new to the ProgBlogs community doesn’t mean that I’m some blog-n00b who needs edumacation on how these here intert00bs work.
And (if there is indeed a) next time, at least have the decency to post your objections in the comments at my own blog.
Update 2: Now that I’ve calmed down, an addendum to the above (also from Bene’s comments):
What gets me is that I intended my post to supplement your (very apt) point about the ridiculousness of positing so much importance on ‘real names’ vs. pseudonyms (apparently these chuckleheads would arbitrarily discount the Federalist Papers. Publius-Smublius.) I linked to your post where I did because I thought you were bang on here:
Their thoughts, ideas, creativity, personhood, writing and influence any less authentic because their real names were:
William Sydney Porter
Eric Arthur Blair
Charles Lutwidge Dodgson
Samuel Langhorne Clemens
François – Marie Arouet
That’s why I don’t give a toss who Red Tory publicly identifies as – because his posts are awesome, regardless. I felt that enough folks were tackling the outrage portion, and that there was no need to also join in. Again, maybe I’m jaded because I’ve seen it happen so many times.
Perhaps my intentions would have been clearer if I’d included a quote and if I’d explicitly said that I didn’t understand why it (ie, pseudonymity) was a ‘big deal’ to the outers.
Apologies if my tone was too harsh. ‘bastard’ is sometimes more than just a clever name (and, in my defence, I recently quit smoking. A lame excuse, but one I’m sticking to like that construction worker superglued to the ceiling).