In the last 24 hours we decided to un-post (or move to draft) two posts that PSFK had published about a theory we had. In the hours that followed we...

Guy Brighton
Guy Brighton on May 24, 2007.

In the last 24 hours we decided to un-post (or move to draft) two posts that PSFK had published about a theory we had. In the hours that followed we first got harrassed in the comments section, we then got harrassed on the phone, we then got our conference tickets site hacked. The story was just an idea and we got a lot of hate about it. We don’t mind me told we’re wrong and sometimes we’ll even go back and give folk a second chance.

However, life’s too short to get kids on the phone screaming crap at you so we decided to hide the stories.

A couple of thoughts that the event has provoked about Red Coat, Black Coat:

  • Living a Red Coat digital public life can be hard. There is so much freedom to being available to anyone at anytime but if you upset a hardcore mob (particularly male college students) you’re open to abuse
  • Red Coat Life allows anonymous and fairly untraceable people to attack you. Real life, there’s often a witness, even if it’s the victim
  • In order for a Red Coat movement to grow, maybe we need to somehow know a tiny bit about the people who come to us. Maybe this should be some sort of opt in system which no one can access – that would allows bloggers, site owners, social networkers to stop totally anonymous visitors if we please. (Of course there’s an IP tracking but in the 24 hours these IPs normally originate in the anonymous libraries of US educational establishments)

On being a journalist vs. being a blogger:

  • Some of the recent commenters think we have to be 100% certain of anything we think before produce before we publish – ie. we shouldn’t speculate
  • Therefore some people think we should act like investigative reporters
  • Shouldn’t we leave that to the pros?
  • Some PR persons think we should phone and check our facts/ the ‘facts’ a brand wants us to believe
  • Therefore some PR persons think we should act like journalists
  • It’s unlikely 99% of the companies and organizations would return our calls or answer our emails, especially within our publishing times
  • Even if they did talk to us, PR agencies nor PR people cannot possibly respond in the time we research and decide to publish
  • Probably the time from when we find and digest an article and the time we republish or comment on it is about 5 minutes
  • We’ve never found a PR person on live chat ready to answer our questions. If PR people want blogs to interact with them, maybe all PR persons should be available 24 hours a day any way we want to hit them up
  • We don’t work like journalists, we don’t want to be journalists – we just write about stuff we think is interesting. If you don’t want to call us bloggers, give us a different job title please

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