B´elton John

You never know who will find you...

It’s a fact a about the web that one should assume that nothing ever published to it will disappear.  The same is true of email and as such it is wise advice to never write anything in an email that you would mind being splashed across the front page of a newspaper and tied to your name.  Such a thought, I’m sure, will lead many of us to reflections upon some of the less than charitable things we may have posted on discussion boards, blogs or written in emails.

Another thing that should be cause for reflection is the result of products such as Technorati, Google Analytics etc… which allow a web site or blog owner to detect where their traffic comes from and to follow the backwards links to their origin.  I have come across some rather interesting discussions of my writing and web site this way.  Last month, I came across a negative example when I followed a backwards link to the “Friends of Jake” weblog, which I am assuming is an ongoing web presence for folks who used to frequent “Father Jake Stops the World,” the blog of a more “liberal” (for want of a better term) TEC commentator.

When I got there I found an out of date discussion that had taken place in July in which one commenter referenced my blog and some comments I may or may not have made on Episcopal Cafe.  The commenter references a different name and I went back and looked through the archives in Episcopal Cafe and couldn’t find any comments that I’d left during that date range, nor could I find any that fit the description… since he got the name wrong, I thought perhaps there was another Jody floating around–it wouldn’t be the first time:

JCF @ Friends of Jake

JCF @ Friends of Jake

The post JCF references was an excerpt of an article written for the Anglican Communion Institute by Dr. Phil Turner. Now, I suppose it’s fair to call me a “baby priest” and it may even be appropriate to add the modifier “piss-ant” depending on one’s mood, but Dr. Turner can surely be called by neither.

It’s interesting to compare the above comment to the comment policy published on the site:

About comments We ask that you remain civil and courteous in your discussion. Passion is fine, as long as respect is maintained. If you wish to post anonymously (i.e. without signing in), we request that you sign your comment with at least a nickname. The organizers will remove any offensive posts, without warning, and occasionally without reason.

When I found the discussion in October, I left the following reply:

JCF,

It’s been too long ago to know whether any comments at the Episcopal Cafe could fairly be labeled “patronizing” or not–I try to be pretty direct and call things they way I see them–sorry if you disagree. However, if you’re going to insult me by calling me a “piss-ant of a baby priest” and then link to my blog, you could at least get my name right. It’s Jody Howard, not Richards–if “Jody Richards” left patronizing comments, I have no idea who that is.

Next time, why not drop me an email or comment on my site rather than spreading insults across the web?

Now, I will say that there was a cordial response to JCF’s comment immediately following in which the commenter left it to interpretation as to whether or not I (or whoever Jody Richards is) had been patronizing and maintained that in either case it should not be blamed on youth. Be that as it may, since it was a dead thread and of course, there has been no response, I thought I’d use the interconnectedness of the web and link to Friends of Jake just to see if anyone shows up.