I Will Hunt You Down Like The Dog You Are


Before I write the full post I want to ask “Aren’t there better things a journalist could be tracking down?” You’ll understand once you read the rest of the story.

So this reporter/columnist for the St. Louis Dispatch, who also happens to be the Director of Social Media receives some profane comments on his blog.  Alright? Who hasn’t. If you write a halfway decent blog some dweeb is going to come along and berate you, your manhood and your integrity? That is why you have comment blockers, filter, moderation tools and the old reliable “delete” button. Regardless, whatever action most normal people decide to take, this reporter/columnist decides to do the following:

  1. He noticed the IP address came from a local school.
  2. So he contacts the school and passes on the information.
  3. The school’s IT guy then narrows it down to the computer terminal
  4. The employee is confronted by the headmaster
  5. The employee has no job (a week before Thanksgiving).
  6. Reporter/columnist then writes (not one) but TWO blog posts bragging about this.

I am not condoning people anonymously posting vulgar, profane stuff on the Internet. I have been the recipient of this kind of stuff and it’s not fun. On the flip side, so the guy wrote something profane.  Just delete the comment and move on. Or, send the person an email reminding them of the comment or privacy policy and encouraging meaningful participation. You are the director of social media, you’re supposed to know how to deal with this kind of stuff.

But, please do not track someone down like this and get them to lose their job before the holidays. There are offenses and there are offenses. This one isn’t one worthy of this kind of retaliation. Especially if you’re in the newspaper business and your whole industry is tanking. You need all the good will you can get right now.

Plus, it’s the Internet. Now guess what – there is an entire site devoted solely to smearing your name! (Not Safe for Work). You’re not going to have fun dealing with this one Mr. Reporter/Columnist guy.

What do you think? Was this right? Wrong? Or about time someone did something!

Creative Commons License photo credit: sanberdoo

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