A rather large backlog of comments is requiring me to make an announcement and make some changes. Since early this summer I have been dealing with a recurrence of my carpal tunnel syndrome, and that has forced a number of changes in the way I have to blog.
For the past several months, I have been using voice recognition to produce my content. This is working much better than it did the last time I tried to use it, but we are talking c+ quality as opposed to d minus quality. There is a significant uptick in the number of mistakes, there are large numbers of words it doesn’t understand, and hyperlinks are difficult. For the majority of my audience, I hope it is better than not posting at all.
I have a significant backlog of comments. The blog gets hundreds, if not thousands of submissions everyday, the overwhelming majority of them from bots. I have filters in place to try to keep this to a minimum. I have also had to put some things in place to deal with some nasty trolls in the past. Some legitimate discussion gets lost in the crossfire. This is regrettable, but there is very little I can do about it.
I have received a number of rather nasty comments recently. A few of them had a point buried in there somewhere and I will try to deal with those as I can. Pro tip: asserting something exists without directing me to where I can find it, then calling me rude names isn’t a good way to get a post updated or a comment approved.
This blog is essentially a hobby for me. I pay for the internet connection, I pay for the hardware, and I spend time writing when, frankly, there are some days I would rather be doing something else. Something a BBS operator used to post on his welcome screen comes to mind. When you post here, you are essentially a guest in my home. So be nice.
I do what I can to keep up, but comments moderation is one of those things that is difficult. To try to make it a little easier, I have disallowed comments on any content older than 30 days. I hope I can relax this in the future. 30 days is enough time for my regulars to get their say.
I do not owe you a debate. If you have posted in the past, and I’ve approved the comments, the blog is configured to automatically approve future comments if you use the same e-mail address. Sometimes the spam filters get in the way, and I apologize. If I find a better way to deal with the bots and trolls, I will give those a try. I like the discussion, when it is civil. The sense of entitlement, I can do without. If you disagree with something I say and can’t get a comment through moderation, you are more than welcome to write your own blog post about it. That’s where some of my ideas came from.
I wish I could respond to every comment, unfortunately it has been a long time since that has been practical. I do get some very good comments. Unfortunately there are some other people who see the need to ruin it for everyone.
This doesn’t mean I’m quitting
Finally, as soon as this post goes out, there will be a hundred people saying please don’t quit or celebrating that I’m quitting. It happens every time I make any kind of personal announcement. People read things into them.
I’m not going anywhere. But I do need to manage expectations. This blog is not my full-time job, and I am a running at diminished capacity right now. Some days I’m at 80%. Some days I can’t unload a dishwasher.
I know what I have to do in order to return to form, and dramatically cutting down on my keyboarding and mouseing is among them.
When I am able to keyboard and mouse, my day job takes priority. My job sometimes requires me to code in Python, and I can’t use dictation for that. Unlike certain past employers, my current employer has been more than understanding and accommodating.
A good number of you have been reading me for the better part of two decades, and I appreciate you. Thank you for coming with me on this journey.
David Farquhar is a computer security professional, entrepreneur, and author. He started his career as a part-time computer technician in 1994, worked his way up to system administrator by 1997, and has specialized in vulnerability management since 2013. He invests in real estate on the side and his hobbies include O gauge trains, baseball cards, and retro computers and video games. A University of Missouri graduate, he holds CISSP and Security+ certifications. He lives in St. Louis with his family.
One thought on “A personal announcement regarding the blog”
Dave, I’ve only been reading this blog for about a year or maybe a bit longer. But I really appreciate your take on a lot of things. And I have used some of your tips and advice (such as on investing and setting up a more-secure WiFi router.) So, thank you! I know that I couldn’t deal with the amount of spam and negativity that comes with putting yourself out there for all to read. Kudos.
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