Various Lies

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Mole Returns Home

*cough cough*

*sneeze sneeze*

Gosh it's dusty in here... 4 months with no house cleaning, time to get the feather duster out.

yes, dear reader, my adventure at LabSpaces has come to grinding halt. You can see the final post down below. I feel a bit like Mole, from Wind in the Willows right now. If you haven't read it, shame on you and I demand that you buy a copy immediately. And then read it.

Mole is befriended by Ratty and drug off on adventure (along with Toad (of Toad Hall) and Badger, and a nasty band of stoats and weasels). Somewhat like Bilbo Baggins, Mole isn't sure he likes the adventure, but goes along with the charismatic Ratty anyway. One of the most poignant moments in the book is when he finally gets home again, to his hole by the riverbank, to find it in disarray due to his absence. Of course, his friends help him spring clean and all is well with the world and they live happily ever after, perhaps some inter-species bestial love-up. Who knows. Milne never finished the sequel.

Anyway, I shall miss the traffic at LabSpaces, but I shall really miss my fellow bloggers. There is a surprising amount of camraderie, and I shall miss that.

*************************

To My Fellow LabSpaces Bloggers,

I assume it's obvious from the twitter discussion and general tension that it was me who emailed Brian regarding some of my concerns with LabSpaces. I assumed the email would be in confidence and would be the start of a dialogue, but in a sublimely, and typically, passive-aggressive manner he chose to actually post near verbatim sections of the letter for you all to see.

I wrote, "There are two main issues we face right now. Firstly, temporally at least, is the constantly increasing stable of bloggers. You stated clearly that you wanted the current bloggers to have some say in the recruitment of new "talent", and went so far as to share a spreadsheet with us. However, there have been more and more additions to the site and we haven't been consulted at all. I hope to keep this in confidence between us, but I don't think you're selecting the right people. Some of the bloggers really aren't very good writers and this is diluting the "talent" on the site. Moreover some of the blogs at LabSpaces are barely used anymore. We believe this isn't necessarily good for the LabSpaces reputation. We're also aware that you're still sending out invitations to bloggers, some of whom have declined your offer before. This too damages the reputation of LabSpaces, because people talk, and importantly for us, the bloggers are thus damaged vicariously."

Brian posted:
"Said bloggers have also complained that they think the stables are too full and include some lame horses. I'm not going take any of you out to pasture, because that's not right, but I do think that it looks bad on the community to have people in our "Active" Writer's List that haven't blogged in over a month. I'll code in some new changes to remove blogger names from the lists after 6 weeks of inactivity. I think this is fair. Once a new post is made, the writer list will be re-compiled to include the inactive accounts."

I have added emphasis to mine to highlight my wish.

I can understand that some of you are disappointed and hurt by my saying this, and I can only apologize to your feelings. Science communication, indeed, effective written communication in general, is surprisingly difficult to get right and takes a lot of practice. It is certainly not an art in which we are trained. It is also important to bear in mind the tone one might employ when writing a private communique versus something to be considered and discussed in public. I meant to offend no one by my statement, and surely I am not commenting on anyone as a person, but merely pointing out that, as I said above, effective written communication is hard.

Brian made it clear that this site is his creation and I respect that, but it was also implied that the current bloggers would have a say in site additions, and we clearly don't. Please believe me; I'm not singling anyone out here. It's the process, not the people that I'm pissed at.

In addition there are some other issues and concerns, but I have (surprisingly for me) calmed down enough to not stomp my feet, throw my toys out of the sandbox and start pointing fingers and calling names.

To Brian, best of luck with the site. It's certainly a major investment and I hope it pays off.

To my friends, the bloggers, I am sorry to jump ship in bad weather like this. I consider all of you to be my friends and I'll miss your companionship.

To my readers, I hope you'll continue to follow the adventures, tales and mishaps of The Tideliar at Some Lies on Blogger.

31 comments:

gerty-z said...

I'll miss you, too. I hope that we can still maintain the camraderie. I was counting on you making me a better writer. :(

Cath@VWXYNot? said...

Welcome home, moley!

I still had this RSS feed in my reader, so all I had to do was move it from the "defunct, maybe" folder back into the "friends and faves" folder.

tideliar said...

@gertyZ - I'll be around :) Like I said on tiwtter, not all experiments work, but we still keep trying right? Anyway, with you doing my NFL picks each week, we're bound to see lots of each other :D

@Cath - Hiya :) I hear you have a new adventure coming up too!

I really should looking to RSS readers y'know. tred it once and got all in a dither. Made a terrible hash of something...

Genomic Repairman said...

Now its time to troll like the good ole days.

tideliar said...

LMFAO - old habits die hard eh mate?

James said...

Bloody hell, I was contemplating deleting this feed from my reader the other week, too. Glad I didn't.

tideliar said...

I'm glad you didn't. Then again..you'd have seen the farewell post and known t come back :)

tideliar said...

nice profile pic too ...

ScientistMother said...

err welcome home? :)

Becca said...

LIAR!
Milne A) finished plenty of sequels... to the books he wrote. The books about Winnie The Pooh. Different interspecies lovefest.
Kenneth Grahame wrote the wind and the willows.

But yes. There is nothing. Abso-lute-ly nothing half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.

Although, I always saw you as more of a ratty than a moley.

In any case, I was waffling. But now you've done it. You made a wind and the willows analogy (even if you botched the author... who, if I'm honest, I had to google). So now you'll be stuck with me reading you. Whahahahahaha...

Jason Goldman said...

the camaraderie will persist, i think; its not about the URL.

Mike Fowler said...

Important question before updating my bookmarks: are knob gags (a) still or (b) more acceptable here?

tideliar said...

To LS posters, I'm over here now! *waves*



Kausik - I think NN is kind of a lame duck right now. I think Lou got me access again, but... if they can fix all the problems, or at least the big ones I'd consider it, but right now, it's band aids on bullet holes.

TFM - tis indeed a vast and bloated, tumescent ego...

tideliar said...

@Becca: I'm glad someone noticed! The MIlne ref was deliberate. Milne loved WitW and staged the first plays of it (I think).

(In addition to being a belov'd author and national treasure, he was also kind of... freaky, so I've heard (hence the obsession with children and animals?). So, for the sake of the gag I thought we'd have hm writing the homoerotic adveture follow-up!)

I think I'm a Ratty more often than moley. However there are way to many Toad moments :/

@Jason: I hope so. I figured the internet is like massless particles, everywhere is here and it's always now, so the URL shouldn't matter. We'll see :)

Fuck, did I just make a particle physics gag at 9am? WTF...

@Mike: HTF are you doing mate! Knob gags are bloody fine ! Anytime, anywhere!

tideliar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rpg said...

Dude. Good move. A pint (or 6) is required.

Your comments about effective communication are striking; I remember a certain greenhorn lablit writer who had to be edited mercilessly... you've come a long way. Great stuff.

And look out for the news tomorrow :)

tideliar said...

Hiya mate, and thanks. Jenny & The Gang worked very hard to scrub this n00b up to shape. One of her copy editors (you maybe?) even sent me pages of mark-ups and 'rules' etc.

The interchoobs are buzzing gently with the vibe of a nascent network waiting to eclose.... looking forward to the big annoucement :)

Dr Becca, PhD said...

Just checked, and my blogroll has magically updated itself. Happy homecoming, mole! :)

CK said...

You were one of the main reasons I became a regular lurker at LS. Between the kurfuffle over the press releases and now this, I'm beginning to wonder WTF is going on over there. In any case, I'll now lurk here too.

tideliar said...

@Becca - yay for blogrolls (and thanks for the reminder, I have to tidy up this place!)

@CK - Thanks very much for the de-lurk! I hope you'll comment over here from time to time too :)

Professor in Training said...

I always saw you more as Toad - PARP PARP!! Glad to see you back in your own digs, regardless of how dusty they may be.

chall said...

hm, I wonder if this means more posts about not only science but life, love and all the goodies?

in other words; profanity, stories from the ol' days and lots of fun intermingled with sciency stuff, right?! ;)

no boundaries but yourself here. Good times!

tideliar said...

@PiT - PARP PARP!! I am on olde washerwoman! :D

@Chall: yeah, I think we'll go back to the old Tideliar. I feel some free/creative wriing coming on too

microbiologist xx said...

Every time I step away from the blogosphere I miss something! Anyway, you know I'll read your blog, even if it's just on blogger. :)

Genomic Repairman said...

Did someone mention PARP, ah fuck I thought you guys were talking about the protein...

Anonymous said...

I fucking loved The Wind in the Willows as a kid.

-antipodean

Ricardipus said...

Ah, Wind in the Willows. Read it a few times. Still not sure if it's cute, or creepy.

Hm... I'm sure there's some kind of parallel to be drawn with certain blogs, there...

Anyway, welcome back, or hello, or whatever. And thanks for the summary - keeping track of "which science blogger went where" has become a confusing no-sum game over the past year or so. ;)

Candid Engineer said...

Dude, are you going to upload your picture with your badass haircut? That picture was, like, the only reason I visited your LS blog. Updating RSS feed... now.

tideliar said...

@Candid: Yeah, gotta fix the avatar & my blogroll is hella out of date. Bit n bobs like that can be done at work (after work) when I have two screen to play with...

Thanks for stopping by :)

Austin Elliott said...

Was wondering where you were blogging these days. Still have fond memories of the NN ueber-thread where Brian Josephson showed us (repeatedly) he was the latest victim of Nobel Syndrome... since joined by Luc Montagnier, sadly.

BTW, Wind in the Willows is a great book for reading to the sprogs, for those with'em. Though our 6 yr old takes great exception to being likened to Mister Toad, who she resembles in quite a lot of ways. Indeed, if you say this to her she throws a... completely Mr Toad tantrum.

tideliar said...

Hi auston. Looking forward to seeing you back in action at Occam's Typewriter