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t3knomanser's Fustian Deposits

Boycott the Boycott

How Random Babbling Becomes Corporate Policy

run the fuck away

Mad science gone horribly, horribly wrong(or right).

Boycott the Boycott

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I'm not the only one that thinks this boycott is bullshit. As you can gather from this post, I'm taking active steps to not participate, as opposed to the boycotting retards, who aren't doing anything.

Previously, I discussed how the outrage is much ado about nothing. Today, on the day of the boycott, I want to tackle the idiocy of the boycott itself.

First, you visiting LJ costs them money. A little bit, every time. Bandwidth mostly, maybe a little storage and a little processor time. If you have a paid account, you've already given them money. If you have a Basic account, you aren't, haven't, and probably won't, be giving them money. So they would probably rather you NOT visit LJ. If you have a plus account- do you realize how little money there is in ad revenue these days? You'd need the vast majority of the LJ Plus community to bail, and that just isn't going to happen. Most rational and reasoned people don't see anything to be upset about at the moment.

Second, are you really so deluded to think that your content matters? The blatherings you put it your own journal are so important that someone might care if you go missing for a day? I doubt it. In fact, for some of the people I read that are boycotting I know nobody will miss you for the day.

Third, boycotts don't work. Let's example the textbook boycott: Montgomery, Alabama, when Ms. Rosa Parks refused to move back in the buss. The boycott alone didn't accomplish anything. They marched, they canvassed, they distributed pamphlets, they brought cases to court. They did stuff. They sacrificed. By boycotting the busses, they gave up their main mode of transportation; they had to find carpools, use cabs (black drivers charged the same fare as the bus in solidarity) and some walked over 20 miles!

Let's ignore the difference of meaning between that boycott and the LJ boycott, and focus on the specific actions. What you'll notice about the successful boycott in Alabama is that people had to do things. They worked, they proved their commitment. The buses were running anyway, so the boycott cost the company money. This LJ boycott is just another example of "slacktivism". Proving your commitment to a cause by not doing anything is not really an effective negotiating strategy. In fact, it makes you look like an immature twit.

Fourth, LJ has already made it quite clear that they won't respond to belligerence. Even the impotent belligerence of this "boycott". Because they don't want to reward negative behavior with attention. And I agree with them wholeheartedly. Unlike the Montgomery, Alabama boycott, you are holding nothing over them. They don't need you, they don't need your content. Nobody with any clout in the outside world will see your complaints as valid or meaningful. Instead, you serve to reinforce the idea that LJ is populated with a pile of snotty drama queens.

Fifth, boycotts don't work. I know I said this, but I want to drive it home. You're what- not posting for a day? The implication there is that you will be posting tomorrow, probably to discuss how great you feel about the symbolic and useless act of boycotting. So why the hell should management care? Hell, if anything, you're drawing more news about their site, and that probably translates into more signups. If you want to get management's attention, leave. In droves. Don't boycott for one day- leave!

Oh, might that carry some cost? The risk of losing old posts? Old friends? Breaking up communities? Could it- actually cost you something? Heaven forfend!

Sixth, c'mon! One day? One frickin' day? You can't go a whole week without scanning your friends page, or reading the comments someone left to your most recent blathering?

Honestly, the whole thing disgusts me. I hate seeing these sorts of fake-movements; the crowing and backpatting and pride in made-up accomplishments. You aren't accomplishing anything but making yourself look like an idiot. The motivation for the boycott is baseless, your strategy is ineffectual, immature, and ill-conceived. You look like a bunch of whiny crybabies.

Finally, LJ itself is open source. This means anyone with a little technical knowledge can install in anywhere. It uses OpenID, so you could conceivably recognize existing LJ accounts on your own server. Hosting fees will probably start at around the cost of 3-4 paid accounts per year, depending on how many folks you entice into your server. With the magic of RSS and other Web 2.0 technologies, you can bring content from LJ to your site, and vice versa. If you're committed to offering Basic accounts and getting away from intolerant management: GO! Heck, if you integrate well, I'll probably sign up myself.
  • Preach it, Brothah Remy!

    These folks don't know shit about changing the world. They hold a friggin' parade and think it's a protest. They buy some logo merchandise, and suddenly they're part of a movement. Sorry sweetie, no such thing as free lunch and no such thing as changing the world for a five dollar Paypal donation. Mottos don't make a difference. All those are the style, not the substance.

    So, folks... pack up your patchouli and your picket signs and go learn from history that the only thing makes a difference is a situationally shifting blend of blood, sweat, and dollars.
  • I had originally used DeadJournal when it was completely free to join and LJ was not at all. I migrated to LJ when it was. If they really cared enough, they'd do things like this. But they just wanted another "cause" to rally around, I'm sure.

    Which comedian was it who mocked protestors for protesting anything, as long as they could protest?
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