You Try To Do A Nice Thing

Long-time readers will know that I’m involved with the nms project. This is a project which writes simple software that people can use on their web sites if they want guestbooks, forms that get emailed to them and all that very Web 1.0 stuff. It’s a nice thing that we’ve done. We’ve created something and donated it to the internet.

The programs are all open source. Anyone can download our software and use it pretty much wherever and however they want. We usually have no involvement at all if someone uses one of our programs. We’re most likely to get involved if something goes wrong. This can take two forms. Either the web site owner experiences problems setting up the program or, surprisingly often, the web site owner fails to notice that anything is wrong and it’s a visitor who discovers that the site is broken. The error page for many of the programs contains a link to our web site so a lot of the complaints come to us (who can do nothing about it) rather than the web site owners (who could probably fix it). That was a mistake. We should have made the programs so that the error page gave you the email address of someone who could help.

But it means that I get occasional email from very angry people who have been disappointed by a web site that uses one of our programs. I found this in my inbox this morning.


I don’t know who the hell you are, and I don’t care.
YOU are actively blocking my transmissions and receipts on the internet, and you can GO TO HELL.

YOU are the reason that millions of people are protesting all over the world, you ‘information funneling PRICKS’!.

Can’t you twits get a job in the REAL ‘private sector’, like cleaning toilets?

In closing, I would like to say, FUCK YOU TO HELL.

Tell STADMILLER to get fucked, as well, if he is ‘going along’ with this shit.
HE is still pissed that GCN still exists, isn’t he?
MAYBE he is pissed that I warned him about his on-air reference a couple of years ago to hanging the Congress by lightposts in D.C.,…
You are playing ‘the game’, and you will be held accountable.
How does that go, again?

Something like that, isn’t it?

[name redacted on the offchance that it’s not a pseudonym]

I have absolutely no idea what he is talking about. The link goes to a web site that has a broken configuration of one of our programs. I can’t even be sure which one it is as the site owner has renamed it. I did what I always do in such situations. I replied politely and explained the situation. I told him that if he explained exactly what the problem was then I would do what I could to put him in touch with someone who runs the site in question. Often this approach leads to an apology for the original rudeness. Which is nice.

But it’s not much fun living in a world where you can do a nice thing like giving away software and that opens you up to abuse like this.


  1. It’s amazing how often when you reply politely to an absolute cretin you get an apologetic email back. I’ve come to the conclusion that people who write this type of email don’t actually expect it to be read by anyone, and even if it is they never expect a reply, so to find out that it’s an actual person that saw it and responded, rather than a corporate machine of nothingness, comes as a bit of a shock!

  2. I haven’t had an apology, but I have received another email. He has forwarded to me (and a few dozen other people) a campaign email from Ron Paul (who, it seems, he supports).

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