[thelist] Client Problem

Jeff Howden jeff at jeffhowden.com
Fri Mar 28 00:52:46 CST 2003


> From: Derry Talvain
> <snip>this list is publicly archived, has been all
> along, and says so on the signup page...</snip>
> Does it? I have been searching the sign up page and I
> can't see it. It mentions that there are archives but
> doesn't say anything more than that.

well, it used to, at least before the big move a few weeks ago.  it should
go without saying though.  there are archives.  archives of posts generally
translates to publicly available information.  i see no reason why that
would be any different now.  so the word "public" isn't used, but it's
certainly reasonable to expect that's understood.

> <snip>and asking people not to use the name of the site
> in their critiques can help, but hey, they're only
> people, they'll forget...</snip>
> Is there a list etiquette available as part of the
> subscription process that points out this flaw? If not
> there should be. I don't remember this being pointed
> out to me.

good, old fashioned common sense should kick in here.

> I posted with a url address because I was copying the
> format others were using and assumed that was standard
> procedure.  If you don't list a url the first question
> you are asked is - 'could you send a url'. There are
> plenty making the same mistake - they should be warned.
> The punishment in this case way outweighs the crime.

and when the crisis is over you'll look back on it and wonder why you got so
heated about it at the time.  the solution is to be alittle more prudent
about what you include in emails to thelist.

> <snip>can the client control what the newspapers print
> about him?
> can he control what unsatisfied customers say about
> him?</snip>
> I think this is quite different. If someone types the
> name of the company/product into a search engine then
> they get a post saying the client and their partner are
> idiots as the second link.

ok, i addressed this before, but obviously you weren't paying attention.



by continuing to make that claim you only weaken your argument.

the comment about the client being an idiot is at least 3 clicks away from
the search results.  potential customers looking for dirt aren't going to
look that hard.

> [...] If it was in a newspaper it would be libellous
> (not sure if it isn't on the web as well) and he could
> sue - but even then it would not keep coming back every
> time someone does a search for the product - yesterday's
> news is yesterdays news but this is like clipping the
> libellous newspaper article to your advertising for the
> rest of eternity (or evolt hits the dust).

calling someone an idiot because of their flawed ideas about how the web
should work is hardly libelous.  what would be libelous is to say that your
client's business is setup for the sole purpose of conning hardworking
people out of their money and that he has no intention of performing a
service for their money.

> And once again the client would not have to have the
> dissatisfied customer having such direct access to all
> clients - beyond which it is not a dissatisfied customer
> at all - [...]

welcome to the web.  go do a search for "interland sucks" (without the
quotes).  it's called opinion.  everyone has one.  there's really very
little you can do about any of it.  the web just makes it so much easier to
share with others and to find.

> it is just a really big mouthed web developer who didn't
> realise that what he was saying was going to be served
> up on a plate to everyone of this poor companies web
> searches and would probably be really happy to have it
> removed if he could too.

oh, you think so huh?  maybe you don't know who you're talking about then.

> No one has an investment in rubbishing my client in this
> way. It was a mistake - not an informative critique of
> his business, not someone genuinely disgruntled by him
> and wishing to warn others. And if the mistake cannot
> be undone then that is a serious flaw in evolt or any
> other listserve that does this.

that's an awful lot of assumptions to arrive at the conclusion that there's
a serious flaw in the whole listserv/archive paradigm.  you're assuming head
lemur's comment was a mistake, that he didn't know it would eventually get
indexed by search engines, etc.  you're assuming that leaving it in the
archives is a mistake.  you're assuming you and your client can go around
cleaning up things on sites it has no control over that shed a bad light
(debatable) on it.  i suppose you're going to ask that this entire thread be
removed too since there are several posts in this thread alone that
reference your client and the ridiculousness of his technical requirement
that spawned the original thread(s) in october.

> It should be just common courtesy to have a method of
> undoing this - or of notdoing it in the first place
> without just saying to the ignorant 'you should have
> known'.

and all email clients should come installed with an unsend key...

> The purpose of the archives should be to allow people a
> knowledge base not for advertising ridicule of people's
> clients.

an unfortunate side effect.  but, censor once and you're suddenly expected
to censor everywhere.

once again, your response is offtopic and in need of a tip.   once again,
here's mine:

<tip type="IIS" author=".jeff">

in the department of silly geek tricks, here's a fun one.  want to add a
custom header to every request on a site you run?  go into the properties
dialog in iis for the site and click the custom headers tab.  add a new
header.  that easy.

this also has a practical purpose like sending a compact privacy policy with
every request.




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